T5Ho versus standard - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-30-2009, 12:40 AM Thread Starter
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T5Ho versus standard

Hi,
I do not have a planted tank, but a "tank with plants", at this point. I am trying to learn in an organized way, so as not to kill my fish and plants!!!!!

I am hoping to graduate to a planted tank, but feel i need to learn a bit more. I have ordered, and am ready to set up my bigger tank, but feel like I need to get my act together with the smaller tank before I launch into the bigger one.
my current tank is a 29 gallon with a hagen glo fixture. This is the standard 1 bulb fixture sold at Petsmart. I do not have CO2, etc,but have chosen what I thought were appropriate plants ( java fern, anubias, etc) that do not require a TON of light.
Well, things are going great, as long as you love ALGAE!!!!
I have a boatload of it! I cut my light time down to 8 hours (from twelve) and added in a bunch of ottos. i also added in a giant hornwort, with the hopes that it might slow down my algae growth. This is, of course, couple with BIG water changes ( I did a 40 % Today, and should be able to do one again in 48 hours), as well as a UV sterilizer.
Anybody want to add some suggestions? help? thoughts?
my substrate is fluorite with a sand and pebble overlay and I have a number of small anubias/swords in additiion to the above - I do not know more info on the plants as I got them from Petsmart, so they just say, anubias, species. ( of course they are all BLACK with algae...boohooo)
I am hopeful to not create the same issues in my bigger tank, but am not sure what I should think about. By the way, this 29 gallon tank is a JOY!!!
A lot more work than my 75 gallon with fake plnats, but a LOT more fun, and so much more beautiful!!!
The fish just seem at home and happy....even if there is a lot of algae.

thanks for any help or suggestions.
The main question is about lighting: I have this T5HO and it has been alluded to that there is a difference in the watt requirements as compared to standard fluorescent lights.
thanks for any help.!
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-30-2009, 12:50 AM
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T5HO's are typically considered about 1.25-1.5x more intense depending on reflectors and spacing.

You should try packing out a tank with cheaper, easier plants, and see how you like it. A tank with a few plants in it doesn't behave much like a densely planted tank; I find these types of tank harder to work with if anything. The limitations are greater, the chemistry isn't as stable, and there's greater surface area for algae.

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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-30-2009, 01:32 AM
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You've made good choices. You just need more with that much light.


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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-30-2009, 11:28 PM Thread Starter
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WOW! Thanks... I will take these suggestions and run with it.
I was not sure HOW MANY plants I could put into a tank without CO2, but I guess I will see. I have Leaf Zone for fertilization as well as flourish for micronutrients but have been holding those until the algae is down a bit. I have been looking at the CO2 systems and am not sure I am that tech-savvy yet. I appreciate the help.
post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-30-2009, 11:55 PM
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Consider buying one of the packages members offer here in the swap shop, or the beginner selections at the online vendors. You will get superior product for your money and that means greater success.

Co2 isn't so hard. Don't be intmidated, just start reading. Most of the discussions are about "the best" this or that. The basics are pretty straight forward though and pressurized is pretty easy. Just has a high startup cost.

Until your comfortable, just dose with Flourish Excel. It is a little expensive to do forever, but will work fine until you've decided how to proceed.

Like I said before you seem to have made good decisions and believe it or not, plants WANT to live. Get more plantsto keep algae under control.

Have fun


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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-01-2009, 02:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
Hi,
I do not have a planted tank, but a "tank with plants", at this point. ...
Well, things are going great, as long as you love ALGAE!!!!
... cut my light time down to 8 hours (from twelve) ... This is, of course, couple with BIG water changes ( I did a 40 % Today, and should be able to do one again in 48 hours), as well as a UV sterilizer.
My thoughts are you have too little carbon and probably too fast a flow past your UV light. Start dosing with Flourish Excel or one of the substitutes. DIY CO2 using sugar and 2 liter bottles won't help as much as the Excel will. Been there, done that. I switched to an Excel substitute for small tanks and pressurized CO2 for my big one. Personally I'd double or triple dose one day a week for a couple of weeks to kill off the algae.

UV sterilizers, particularly cheap ones, are over rated and over hyped by sales people and anyone who doesn't understand how UV kills. Water has to flow either slowly enough (longer time or longer fixture) past the light for UV to do its work. Multiple passes that aren't long enough only gives algae a nice tan. You want it to get a fatal burn. Most canister filters push water too fast for inexpensive (cheap or short) UV units.
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