Desktop Lamp for light? 5 Gallon Tank

Discussion in 'Lighting' started by Suave, Apr 16, 2010.

  1. SuaveValued MemberMember

    I just set up my 5g tank again. I was unable to find the old hood and light that I had with it long ago, so I grabbed a desktop lamp, and have been using it for a couple days. Is that alright? it has a 40watt bulb..

    573.jpg
     
  2. peacemaker92

    peacemaker92Well Known MemberMember

    It should be okay for the meantime while you find or buy a new light for your tank. Just be real careful with all the wiring. We don't want any accidents :)

    Best of luck! :;hf
     
  3. OP
    OP
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    SuaveValued MemberMember

    wiring is all safe and what not. i have a piece of acrylic on top of the tank to prevent the light from getting wet or anything. but if the lamp bulb is 40watt, could i just use that instead of getting an actual aquarium light so that i will have a higher wpg? hahah
     




  4. Nutter

    NutterFishlore VIPMember

    Depending on what type of bulb it is. If it is just an incandescent, then no. If it is one of those spiral energy savers then possibly. Probably a good idea to replace the bulb anyway as it's probalby been in there for a fair while if you were using the lamp as just an ordinary lamp before. Replace it with one of the spiral energy saver ones. Be sure that you look for a bulb marked as being "Full Spectrum" or that has the kevin rating written on it. A kelvin rating of 6,500k - 10,000k will serve you best. Most energy savers come in the rande of 4,800k - 7,000k. Be carefull about how much heat the lamp is putting out. These types of lamp usually have a high heat output & it may be enough to cause a rise in the water temp. Monitor that carefully.
     




  5. midthought

    midthoughtWell Known MemberMember

    I love that picture for some reason. The posing of the lamp just looks so emotive, like "ooo? Hellooo? Where are you, fishies?" Reminds me of one of the robots from Wall-E. :)
     
  6. OP
    OP
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    SuaveValued MemberMember

    it is an incandescent. so I'll have to get a new bulb. but why are incandescent not good?
     
  7. midthought

    midthoughtWell Known MemberMember

    Incandescents produce a lot of heat, enough to affect your water temp.
     
  8. Nutter

    NutterFishlore VIPMember

    Incandescents contain lots of light from the red end of the spectrum, which is great for growing algae, but not so good for plant growth. They also use lots of energy, putting out lots of heat for not much light in comparison to energy savers, CFL or flourescent lighting. The Energy Savers will give you more light that the plants can use as well as using less energy to do it. Plants will grow better under 15w Energy Saver than they will under 100w incandescent. Mostly becuase of the spectrum that is emited.
     
  9. midthought

    midthoughtWell Known MemberMember

    ^^ I learn something new everyday. And most days on Fishlore, that something is from Nutter. ;D
     
  10. OP
    OP
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    SuaveValued MemberMember

    AHHH, ok! thanks for all the great info guys!! so I'm guessing then that the watts per gallon rule should be used when a person using flourescents? I mean by that, if someone has a 'lowlight' planted tank with 1.5wpg, that would only be so with flourescents no incandescents... right?
     
  11. mathas

    mathasWell Known MemberMember

    You've just found one of several reasons why the WPG "rule" is a flawed metric... different types of lighting systems have different levels of efficiency. And you can't really even boil it down to incandescent vs. fluorescent, either, since different types of fluorescent fixtures can also have varying levels of efficiency.
     
  12. amber_lea84New MemberMember

    That's really good to know!

    I've been using an incandescent and I wanted to switch to CLF to save energy and I'm glad to know it would be better for my plants.

    And it's also helpful to know that I need to pay attention to Kelvin, so thank you!
     




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