Posts Tagged ‘Aquarium Lighting Fixtures’
All aquariums need proper lighting to keep your fish and aquatic plants in the healthiest condition. Getting the right lighting for your aquarium isn’t a complicated process, but a little research and planning are necessary. Note the following points and you’ll know what aquarium accessories are important.
Know the different types of aquarium lighting fixtures available. Look at the wattage and Kelvin ratings of each. Generally, fixtures with higher wattage provide more intense light. Kelvin ratings measure light’s color temperature.
Size and depth of your aquarium
Your aquarium lighting fixture should fit the length of your tank. The intensity of your aquarium lighting should be able to penetrate through the entire tank. Deeper, larger tanks need more intense lighting. A good rule of thumb to use is 2 to 5 watts per gallon of water.
Freshwater vs. saltwater aquariums
Freshwater tanks need less intense light, with lower Kelvin ratings. Saltwater tanks require more intense light, with bulbs that have Kelvin ratings from 10,000 to 20,000K.
Fish and plants
Marine plants and animals need the right amount of light to properly grow and thrive. Too much or too little light can detrimentally affect the health of marine life. When planning your aquarium lighting setup, check the specific light needs of the plants and animals in your aquarium. There are organisms whose natural habitats have low levels of light, even during the daytime. They thrive better with low amounts of light. Other forms of marine life come from tropical environments and therefore need strong lighting. Organisms that get their energy through photosynthesis, such as corals, require a special kind of aquarium lighting called actinic light. Deep water fish may require lighting with the highest Kelvin rating available, or even may need actinic light as well.
Remember, aquarium lighting should simulate the natural habitat of the marine life in your tank. Keep the above in mind, and your fish and plants will be thankful for it.
Aquarium lighting fixtures serve to make your tank as close to nature as possible. Fish and plants need the proper amount of lighting to grow and stay healthy. It’s important to pick the right kind of light that promotes growth and health for the marine life in your aquarium.
When selecting the type of aquarium lighting to use, you need to consider the following: (1) whether your aquarium is freshwater or saltwater, (2) whether your aquarium has fish only or fish and plants, (3) the depth of your aquarium, and (4) the specific lighting needs of your fish and/or plants
Incandescent bulbs, including halogen lamps, are the least expensive light source. However, they are also the least energy-efficient and generate a lot of heat. The high heat output of incandescent bulbs promotes algae growth that can upset the environment of your aquarium. It’s best to use incandescent light sources for terrariums and fish bowls that contain only low light organisms.
The most popular kind of aquarium lighting fixture is the fluorescent lamp. Fluorescent lamps are very suitable for aquarium lighting and are readily available. There are four kinds of fluorescent lights, each suited for a different environment: Power Compact (PC), Normal Output (NO), High Output (HO), and Very High Output (VHO).
PC bulbs are very energy-efficient and versatile. They can be used for both freshwater and saltwater tanks, as well as for aquariums with any kind of organism. However, they’re more expensive than NO lights.
NO lamps provide low intensity aquarium lighting. They’re very affordable, but their use is limited to shallow, freshwater, fish-only tanks. For aquariums that require more intense lighting, it’s best to use HO or VHO lamps.
HO and VHO give off moderate to high intensity light. These lights are good for any kind of freshwater tank. You can also use HO and VHO lights for saltwater tanks that have fish only.
Metal halide lamps
Metal halide lamps are most suitable for tanks with plants, whether they’re freshwater or saltwater. They’re also the best choice for deep aquariums and tanks containing corals and high light organisms. They provide the most intense level of aquarium lighting. However, they’re also the most expensive of all aquarium lighting fixtures.
As well as providing proper lighting there are also many aquarium accessories you may need. By matching the right kind of lighting to your particular aquarium setup, you’ll be able to provide the best environment that allows your fish to lead happy, healthy lives.
Knowing the kinds of aquarium lighting fixtures available will make it easy for you to make the best choice for your fish and aquatic plants. Each kind is best suited for a particular aquarium setup.
Aquarium lighting sources
Incandescent bulbs, including halogen lamps, are the cheapest source of light. These are the light bulbs that you commonly find in homes. However, they’re not always suitable for aquarium use. You’re better off using these for small fish bowls and reptile terrariums, such as those housing pet lizards and snakes.
Fluorescent light sources can be power compact (PC), normal output (NO), high output (HO), or very high output (VHO) kind. A PC bulb is a good choice for almost any kind of aquarium housing a variety of marine life. However, it’s more expensive than the other kinds of fluorescent lights. NO lights are less costly, but only provide low intensity lighting suitable for shallow freshwater aquariums containing only fish. If you need aquarium lighting for freshwater aquariums with plants, or saltwater aquariums with fish only, HO or VHO lights is your best bet.
For saltwater aquariums with both fish and plants, tanks with corals and other invertebrates, and aquariums containing organisms that require high levels of light, metal halide and HQI halide lights are the best choices. They also provide the highest intensity lighting needed for very deep aquariums. However, they’re also the most expensive out of all the aquarium lighting sources.
Light strips are aquarium accessories that are easily placed on top of your tank. They can house fluorescent light sources.
A light pendant isn’t directly attached to the fish tank. Rather, it’s hung from your ceiling over an open aquarium. Light pendants hold metal halide lights.
The aquarium hood can hold any kind and combination of light sources. Aquarium hoods also keep your fish from jumping out and foreign objects from falling in.
Aquarium Light Canopy
Just like aquarium hoods, aquarium light canopies can hold all varieties of light sources. This aquarium accessory is mounted on top of your tank. Keep in mind that aquarium lighting fixtures are there to recreate a natural environment for your fish and plants. The right choice will give you a healthy, thriving aquarium.