Aquarium Lighting & Tank Size Advice

Discussion in 'Lighting' started by BHK3, Apr 17, 2017.

  1. BHK3Well Known MemberMember

    I currently have a 26 gallon moderately planted bowfront tank. I've been on the lookout for a 55 gallon to upgrade to primarily so I can give my Otocinclus and cories proper shoals. I've found a nice tank and stand that I'm thinking about buying, but I'm also on a budget. This tank I'm looking at doesn't come with a cover - no biggie, I can get one for $30 or so. But it also doesn't come with a light. I'm currently running a   aquasky RGB+W LED 24-36" light on my 26 gallon tank. So I have two questions about upgrading to the larger aquarium:

    1. From a perspective of giving the plants and fish enough light, do you think I could get away with using my current light, provided I figured out a way to extend/secure the brackets on the wider 48" tank?

    2. If my current light would not be strong enough for the whole tank, could I use it anyway and just supplement it with a lower cost light (I've seen some White/Blue lights that would fit for around $30)?

  2. AngelTheGypsyFishlore VIPMember

    If you have a glass lid, you can lay the light right on top of it, as long as there's no chance of it falling in somehow.

    Your current light could do a good job of reaching half your tank, I think you could just supplement with another light for the other half. You may notice a difference in growth from one side to the other, and that will probably be the best way to tell how it's doing. Or you could put all your plants on one side and have a large open area for swimming! Then any light will do on the other half.

    Just FYI, I have cheapo amazon lights on my 5gal tanks and low light plants grow well. They are 12" amzdeal lights. My 30" tank has a beamswork I got on amazon for under $40, and though I haven't had it running long, it seems to be working okay so far. That tank is 24" deep though so I'm not sure how well it will do long term. I have a lot of $ invested in plants, so I hope it does well, or I'll be ordering something more.
  3. vikingkirkenWell Known MemberMember

    The fish shouldn't need supplemental light. If you can't swing another light right now, you could plan your aquascape around your current light--create an island in part of the tank, directly under the light, and just do sand and maybe some driftwood under the unlit parts. It could look very cool actually... I love the island+beach tank look.
  4. grantm91Fishlore VIPMember

    I have a 55 gal with t8 tubes but was looking to upgrade to the aqua sky as i love the effect it gives but am worried my plants would suffer. Long story short i came up with this plan to get an Arcadia light and an aqua sky as the Arcadia is used for growing plants and is an amazing light but rather costly i just purchased the small one for my nano marine and the corals over the last few days have opened and extended like never before, the light i was running before was a 6watt off amazon it was led blue and white and to be honest they werent doing to bad the softys but a sps i was bought for my birthday was dying and is now thriving. Lol back to the point id say run a high powered one like an arcadia and keep the aqua sky for the display as they are so cool i will be investing in one. Ps maybe just give the plants a trial under the aquasky. [​IMG]

    Thats the arcadia the larger ones are the same you can invert the arms so the light hangs under your glass lid.
  5. BHK3Well Known MemberMember

    Thanks all! That's very reassuring. I do have a pretty good sized piece of driftwood (spans the length of my 26G tank - see image below) so it sounds like I have plenty of options available. Now I just need to figure out how to get this massive tank and stand home it our tiny hatchback. :-D I will put together another post once I get it home and figure out exactly what to do with it. Thanks again for everyone's advice!

    Fish tank.jpg

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