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Old 01-30-2005, 01:15 PM   #1
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Lightbulb search help needed ASAP

Ok I have a 20gal. I need a 40watt bulb? What size(length) bulb do I need?
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Old 01-30-2005, 01:32 PM   #2
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Your only options are to run 2 bulbs, overdrive 1 bulb, or change to power compacts and use a 55watt.

Bulb's are driven by the ballast. Your ballast only puts out 20watts to the bulb. To overdrive you'd put in a larger ballast.
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Old 01-30-2005, 01:39 PM   #3
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Whats a ballast? How would I run two bulbs?
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----29 gal with Emperor 280- 2 longfin zebra danios, 3 cories(albino-Speedy, 2 unknown), upside down catfish, 3 neons, 4 glow lights, blue gourami, Female betta, male betta (Otis), small pearl gourami, 2 flying foxes

----20 gal with Penguin 170 Filter- 2 angels

----10 gal-Leaf fish, clawed frog

----5 gal eclipse hex-betta, 2 young mollies

----5 gal-Fantail Betta

----2.5 gal Betta

----3 other Bettas
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Old 01-30-2005, 06:20 PM   #4
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OK, first the answer to the easy one:

To run 2 bulbs: you buy an extra light fixture, and put it in the canopy! ... <assuming you have room>

Ballast is a transformer that takes the 110V house current & step it up to several thousand volts the flourescent bulbs needs. <You'll find that inside your canopy.> Each ballast is rated for a specific watts / number of bulbs. You can't just wire extra bulbs to your existing ballast, nor can you put in a higher wattage bulb. Some people have wired a ballast rated for 4 bulbs & connecting that to 2 bulbs - in effect doubling the volts to the bulbs. This gives more (but not double) light but will burn out the bulbs in a few months. This is called overdriving, but I am not recommending non-code wiring of electrical stuff, esp. over water. Also, after buying the new ballast & taking into account the number of bulbs you will be going through, it is prob. cheaper (& definitely safer IMO) to go with power compact.
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