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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm running an 83 gallon tank with a Tek 216W fixture and I'm not getting the types of species to grow that I'd like to. Specifically I'm having a hard time with carpet plants.

My question is, how long is everyone running their lights? How long are they running both sets of bulbs?

I'm running a fairly reduced photoperiod with two lights on for about 6 hours and all of the lights on for about 3 hours of that 6 hours.
 

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I run my lights for 8 hours, 110 watts raised 6 inches above a 45 gallon tank. No problems.

Is that light fixture sitting on top of the tank or raised up? It is a T5 fixture, right? If so, that is a lot of light for an 83 gallon tank, unless it is raised up above the top of the tank a few inches. But, using all of that light for only 3 hours doesn't sound bad. Why not try running the two lights for 8 hours total instead of 6? I think most people try to stay at 8 hours to 10 hours.
 

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For me, it depends on the tank and the amount of lighting. Lowlight tanks its around 10-12 hours, medium light about 8 hours, and the other tanks vary from 5 hours to 6 or 7.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hoppy, thanks for the input, I think you're right, boosting the two light photoperiod was what I was thinking. I'm a bit nervous to really crank the light to it, mainly because I've not yet automated my fertilization. I have the tank autochanging 15% or so each day, so if I don't stay right on top of it the fert levels get low and the algae can start.

Having said that, the fish are so very healthy with that 15% daily, I've never had fish growing so healthily and vigorously.

Oh, and the lights are in a custom canopy, roughly 3 inches from the surface of the water.
 

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I would do lighting changes slowly, add 15-30mins to the period every week or 2 till you get to 8hrs. Leave the noon burst at 3hrs to start.
 

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How's your CO2?

I'd try 8 hours at the lower light level in addition to 4 hours "burst" if just the additional hour on the "burst" doesn't work.
 

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pretty much only when there is someone there to view the tanks, why keep them on if no one is there to see it?

my office tank's lights turn on 8:30am M-F, turn off around 6pm Mon-Thursday, 10pm Friday night. And only a few hours from 10am-2pm saturday and sunday.

my tanks at home, the lights turn on at 6pm, turn off around 10pm Mon-Friday. Saturday and Sunday they run 12noon to about 10:30pm.
 

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I'm 8 hours for 3x54W T5 HO over my pressurized CO2 and EI-dosed 72 gal tank. Anymore hours than that and I get GSA on a lot of leaves. My plants grow really well. A little slower than when I was 4x54W and 10 hours of lights but on the other hand that's fine with me because I was getting sick of twice a week prunings!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
My CO2 is really solid, I've pushed it down to 6.45 via CO2 from about 7.5 to 7.9 w/o. I've a closed loop system that does a very good job of keeping CO2 up.
 

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2 x 54 T5HO sitting on the rim of a 75 gallon. EI dosing, pressurized CO2, heavily planted. Good growth with minimal algae. It has turned into a very stable set up over the last few months.
 

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IDK how Jeff is running his, but I'm running 108w of T5HO for 6-8 hrs/day. No CO2/low tech tank though. If I go over 8 hours I start getting hair algae. My fixture sits on the Solar legs 2-3" over the tank.
 

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I run a 6x39W Tek over a 40 gallon breeder tank.

8 hour photoperiod broken down like so: 3 hours with 2x39W, 2 hours with 6x39W, 3 hours with 4x39W. Running pressurized CO2 with a manifold to two reactors to keep up CO2 levels in the tank. I had a spare reactor, so why not.

Yes, it's a lot of light. No, I don't have massive algae issues. Fertilizers are dosed via a dosing pump with dual lines.
 
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