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Light issue WHAT KIND? PLEASE HELP

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Hey everyone I really could use someones help here, I just purchased an aqueon 29 gallon deluxe kit (My first fish tank) very excited to get it up and running! and I'm going to make it a Low-tech planted guppy, Platy tank, I have everything else figured out except when it comes to the light situation. I have no idea what I have to look for when looking for lights. Like the watts? or what ever the k means in 6500k on some bulb specs, sorry very new to light bulbs and fish tanks. The tank came with a hood and t8 full spectrum florescent light. I'm sure everyone thinks I should probably get a whole different light fixture but I very much don't want to do that, does anyone know what I should do what would be the best single t8 light for live plants and it wont melt hood if too hot will it?

Exact measurements of tank 30L 13W 19H

Also what do you all suggest for a substrate best for plants and how much to use. I'm thinking about going with Eco complete, It seems with every substrate you will be a bad review on it somewhere.
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I use a finnex ray2 on my 29 gallon. the ray2 gives me med light. You might try the fugeray it's less then 100 bucks. For your t8 chances are it's only gonna provide very low light on a tank of that depth. I have used eco complete, fluval plant stratum and fluorite. I like eco the best but there's not a whole lot of difference mainly what you thinks looks good. Good luck with your tank
 

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You should have enough light with a single T8 bulb to grow low light plants, like Java Ferns, Anubias, mosses, some crypts. It doesn't make much difference which bulb you use in the light, but most of us like the appearance of the tank best when a cool white or 6500K bulb is used.
 

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How "handy" are you? Meaning would you be interested in a retrofit kit for your current hood? If you are, take a look at the AHSupply 55w (or you can squeeze two of their 36w kits) for your current stock hood. The kits come with literally everything you need and if you follow the instructions (which are very well written, plus you can email them with questions if you have them) it is very easy. Remember you have to buy the bulb separately, they also offer them on their site.

I have one of their 55w lights in my stock hood which gives me almost 2w/gallon (1.89). I am not sure what the PAR is since I do not have a meter, however I can say the light penetration is very good. The only downside is the heat put off of it if laid directly on top of the hood/aquarium. It will raise the temp about 2 degrees during the day with it on. I am currently looking at either hanging the light or making custom legs with angle brackets to get my light 1 or 2" off the top glass as I have an all glass aquarium top. (I ditched the stock hood) With most fish/plants this increase in temp will make no difference and actually kind of replicate the temp up/down day/night cycle. The ONLY reason I am worried about it is I have shrimp coming and am trying to balance the water temp required by my Fish, Plants and Shrimp as I am shooting for a constant 72 degrees. Again, this would be a non issue in a community/planted tank.

Here is their website: http://ahsupply.com/

Hope this helps.
 
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