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wulfin 05-16-2016 06:30 PM

10 Gallon Planted - Back after a long hiatus
I totally posted to the wrong forum here. But hey, while I'm here...I have some questions!!!

I have basically forgotten 90% of everything in the last 10 years.

I am starting over with a 10 gallon tank and went to my (usually fantastic) LFS.. and I know I overbought. So I'm debating now whether to keep everything, return some, or whatnot.

My current setup (which this part is done):
- 10g tank
- Fluval C2
- Fluval Substrate (I know, it's a love/hate relationship for most).

What I have left:
- Ballast with lighting... it's 2x24W T5HO .. and it's 24". So wider than the footprint of my tank
- CO2 setup (I was initially thinking low light/low tech..but with the immense amount of light..i would need CO2 and would then do highly planted).

My main thing is the lighting. Is it too much? I can't hang it would sit directly on the tank..but I worry it will be too much or too warm. When I was in this last, we didn't have these crazy things! LOL

FishayFishay 05-17-2016 10:36 AM

Yeah honestly I think the light will be way too powerful for a 10G. I have a single bulb T12 on my 10G and it grows algae like no other. Imagine a T5HO. Imo, it would just melt your plants all to hell and frustrate you.

wulfin 05-17-2016 03:55 PM

That was what I was worried about (the ballast was on for 1/2 price, so I got sucked in).

Fresh2o 05-17-2016 04:00 PM

Depending on how it is wired, you can always run one bulb.

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wulfin 05-17-2016 04:10 PM

I'll see if it'll work with one. If not, I'll probably return it and get a 20" so it fits properly on the aquarium (which I'm actually thinking I might do anyways as I have a 3yo kiddo).

If I do decide to return it, I might have to figure out if I want to do a T light or LED.

Fresh2o 05-17-2016 05:10 PM

I'm a fan of LEDs. Low energy consumption, minimal heat output, low profile/small chassis, long life, no bulb replacement.
I like Finnex. Unfortunately, they do not appear to be available north of the border :(. There are other reputable LED brands out there.
I've even used 13w 6700k spiral CFLs in a cheap metal dome with decent results.
You don't hear too much about VHO or MH these days.

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wulfin 05-17-2016 05:56 PM

I've seen a lot of mixed comments on LEDs, but I like the energy use reduction, that's for sure. So will hubby with the electricity bill ;)

Fresh2o 05-17-2016 08:49 PM


Originally Posted by wulfin (Post 3361441)
I've seen a lot of mixed comments on LEDs, but I like the energy use reduction, that's for sure. So will hubby with the electricity bill ;)

Just like anything else, there are good and not so good products for a particular application. Also, just because an LED fixture might not be ideal for plants, it maybe perfect for a fish only tank.
With planted tanks you need to keep a balance between light, carbon, and fertilizers. Else, you may have algae problems and/or poor plant growth.
There's a PAR chart for various fluorescent and LED fixtures; I will post it when I find it. PAR (Photosynthetically Active Radiation) is a unit of light measurement. It can gauge how much light your fixture is producing and help you set your expectations.

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wulfin 05-19-2016 12:35 PM

I have completely lost faith in my LFS.

I returned the 24" lighting and talked to the guy that does the planted tank seminars there about LED lighting and he suggested the 18-24" fluval eco light. (I've decided these guys must get some awesome kickback from them since they sell a lot of fluval products). I mentioned to him that fluval doesn't make a planted light in anything smaller than 24", but he said the eco light would be great.

I got home, set it up, put my first couple of plants in..... and then called it a night. I really should have researched more.

The ecolight is apparently not fantastic for plants and puts it into a low light category IF it will even work. I'm especially growling as I just realized I can get finnex shipped to canada through amazon (though the exchange rate right now is awful).

..and because I've opened and set up the light.. I'm not thinking I'd be able to return it. So my question - WILL this light work for low light? I can deal with that, though I'm saddened as I was hoping to at least go medium.

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