20L Lighting

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promisedsin

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I'm going to be setting up my 20L soon and it came with a halogen fixture rated for 15w bulbs. I know nothing about halogen lighting.

Is there a way to make the tank a medium-high light tank without changing the light fixture?
What bulb should I buy for growing plants?
Is there anything else i need to know about lighting the aquarium?
 

Kunsthure

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Are you sure it's halogen and not metal halide? I've not run across much mention of halogen lights during my research.

A quick googling turned up this link: . Halogen bulbs are considered to be incandescent bulbs and the link says the K rating is too low for plants (see below for explanation about K rating).

General stuff about lighting: anything over 2wpg means you'll need to supplement with CO2, and 2wpg is smack dab in the middle of the "medium light" range. You don't even have 1wpg right now. Too much light and not enough CO2 encourages algae growth. Light needs a Kelvin rating (basicay the color temperature) of at least 5500K to be suitable for plants, with 10,000K being ideal. You will need to get a new fixture if you want to grow plants.

If you need more help with figuring out what lights to go with, I'll be happy to help.

-Lisa
 

thequietman44

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If the fixture takes two bulbs you would have 30w, so about 1.5wpg. If it has standard bulb sockets you can get 10-13w CFL bulbs to replace the stock ones.

Fluorescent lighting is best for plants, although I've had several plants do very well under incandescent lighting. If you're going for medium-high light then you'll definitely need to inject CO2 and get a new light fixture though.

I prefer low-medium light plants because I don't have to mess with CO2 and I can keep the stock fixtures .
 

mathas

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promisedsin said:
Is there a way to make the tank a medium-high light tank without changing the light fixture?
No. Well, unless "adding a second light fixture" doesn't count as "changing the light fixture"

Halogen lights get so hot because they are inefficient, which is one of the same downfalls that incandescent lighting has. A good portion of the 15W that bulb uses is being converted to heat, not light.

Kunsthure said:
Light needs a Kelvin rating (basicay the color temperature) of at least 5500K to be suitable for plants, with 10,000K being ideal.
I sort of disagree with this. Sticking to the 5500K-10000K often does result in bulbs that are beneficial to plants to a greater or lesser degree, but what I disagree with is the absolute nature of your wording.

Bulbs can have a lower correlated color temperature value than 5500K and still be beneficial (see daigram 4 in post #21 ), and 10000K may or may not be ideal.

In general, I'm of the opinion that many people grossly over-inflate the importance of correlated color temperature ratings. Once you start using them to to determine anything other than what color the emitted light is likely to look to human eyes, you're treading on shaky ground.
 
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promisedsin

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I have very little money to spend on a new light fixture. Any recomendations of a cheap one that would work for my tank? I still need to get a stand that would hold the 20L & a 10 gallon :/
 
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