How to make a LED backlight for aquarium


DIY Aquarium Lighting, LED Lights in Aquarium

DIY Aquarium Lighting, LED Lights in Aquarium
One of the key moments of maintaining a healthy, beautiful aquarium with lush aquarium plants is LIGHTING!!! Highlights of the selection of aquarium lighting have already been covered on, in this ARTICLE. Here, I would like to share with the reader my experience of creating a high-grade, high-quality lighting for an aquarium with live aquarium plants.
So, we will discuss the creation of mixed lighting: the installation of LED spotlights (hereinafter referred to as “SD projector”) in a plastic aquarium cover and a T5 fluorescent lamp (hereinafter “LL T5”). Also in this article we will consider the installation of coolers in the aquarium to cool the water in the summer.
- What is mixed lighting, why is it needed, what are the advantages?
- Why exactly the LED spotlight? -
- Why precisely in the cover?
- Why do I need a T5 lamp?
- The choice of LED spotlight?
- What do you need to create lighting with your own hands?
- The process of assembling aquarium lighting in the home.
- How much is it?
- Is it worth bothering? What is the effect? What is mixed lighting, why is it needed, what are the advantages?

MIXED LIGHTING - It is a combination of different sources of lighting. A good example of such lighting is the ADA Solar I luminaire, where Takashi Amano combines a metal halide floodlight MH-HQI 150W with two LL T5 lamps of 36 watts each.
In general, if we talk about high-quality aquarium lighting, then in my opinion a metal halide spotlight (hereinafter - MG) in combination with LL is the best option. Such lighting "breaks through" even the deepest aquariums, the characteristics of such lighting as close as possible to natural, natural lighting. Well, and a visual row, you just will please - sparkling glare of waves at the bottom of the aquarium, the shadows of plants and fish, natural, rich colors. Why do you need such mixed lighting? It's very simple to recreate the "effect of the sun" in your aquarium: the effect of sunrise, zenith and sunset.
Agree, the Sun does not fry 24 hours a day, the maximum intensity of sunlight is observed only during the day - at lunchtime. The rest of the time, the Sun either rises or sets, the intensity of illumination gradually increases and then decreases.
Approximately the same effect can be achieved with a mixed luminaire (lighting), when LL T5 (sunrise) is switched on first, then a searchlight (zenith) is added for 3-4 hours, and then (LL T5) again work (sunset) again.
The advantages of such lighting are clear:
1. Aquarium plants get the most natural light. Set a certain rhythm.
2. Prevention of algal outbreak. Powerful, long-lasting, and even more so illumination leads to the "greening" of the aquarium. It is only necessary to create a peak of activity of lighting, and not to “fry” an aquarium for 12 hours a day.
3. At the same time, the presence of powerful, directional and high-quality lighting in sufficient quantities is the key to success!
Why LED led spotlight? Why precisely in the cover? The only significant drawback of the metal halide lamp is that it heats up very much !!! Alas, such lighting can be used only in open aquariums (without a cover), at a distance of at least 30 cm from the surface of the water, while using hangers or stoics for the lamp.
When I decided the question of what kind of lighting would be in my aquarium, I proceeded from the assumption that the aquarium would be closed (with a lid). Firstly, the spouse wanted so much))), secondly, I agreed with her that the aquarium with the lid looks at home, as it is more comfortable, plus at home cats who watch Aqua-TV every evening, and all the same, the house is not an exhibition center and not an ADA laboratory ... metal halide spotlights in a house are a bust! But, here everyone decides for himself ... my opinion is not a dogma.
So, an analogue of the metal-halogen spotlight is the LED. Immediately I will note the word "analog" in quotes ... yet there is a significant difference. First, LED lighting, in contrast to the MG discrete. Discreteness (from the Latin. discretus - divided, intermittent) - a property opposed to continuity, discontinuity. To explain on the fingers, below the photo example, what a continuous and discrete spectrum looks like.

Thus, we see that the spectrum of LEDs, to put it mildly, is not the best. And the thing is, not even in the peaks of red and blue, namely, that aquarium plants in fact, in the process of photosynthesis, absorb the entire visible spectrum, and it is deficient in diabetes.
What is the similarity between MG and SD, you ask? Why initially do such "poor-quality" lighting? The answers to these questions will reveal the benefits of CD spotlights.
1. Like the metal halide spotlight, the LED has directional lighting. That is, the efficiency of LEDs is much higher than, for example, in fluorescent lamps, the effective use of which is possible only with reflectors. Speaking in everyday language, the SD and MG prozhetory "beat" in one direction, and not "sprayed" at all. It is this property that makes it possible to “pierce” MG and SD spotlights the deepest aquariums and the water column of 60 centimeters or more.
2. Unlike MG, the LED spotlight does not emit excessive heat. Checked !!! From the front side, the LED searchlight does not heat up at all, and the back part heats up, but is tolerable (tolerable for a hand and a plastic cover). Some aquarists are advised to put a cooler on the CD for heat, but so far even now, when it's 36 on the street, I see no need for that. Again, this is not a constant, everyone has their own specifics.
3. LED lighting is by far the most economical lighting. You will save 3, 10 times on electricity.
4. A significant drawback, for example, of fluorescent lamps, is their flickering with a frequency that is noticeable even to the eye. In this connection, with a long-term effect of LL on a person, his eyes very quickly get tired. LED lamps are powered by direct current, so they have no flickering.
5. Other positive aspects of diabetes: safety (work at low voltage, which is important for the aquarium business) and long life (up to 100,000 hours).
Why do I need a T5 lamp? From the fact that T5 fluorescent lamps are better than T8, I think they already know a lot, so I will not focus on this particular attention here.
I used LL T5 in my case, firstly, to create mixed lighting, and secondly, to make up for the discreteness of the LED spectrum.
Namely, the so-called lamp "Full spectrum" was used.

Fluorescent lamp for the aquarium, designed to provide intensive lighting. The JBL Solar Ultra Color T5 lamp has increased power compared to standard T8 lamps and has a full range of colors.
When using a JBL Solar Ultra Color lamp in an aquarium, you will gain increased red and blue color transmission of aquarium fish and other inhabitants of the aquarium.
Having a higher proportion of red and blue in the spectrum, the JBL Solar Ultra Color aquarium lamp stimulates the synthesis of chlorophylls, which in turn speeds up the process of photosynthesis.
Naturally, this lamp was installed with a reflector / reflector. I note that I wanted to initially install 2 such lamps, for uniform lighting and good power, but alas, the dimensions of the cover did not allow to do this.
The choice of LED spotlight
To the selection and acquisition of LED spotlight must be treated with special scruples. This is a very important and expensive moment, without paying enough attention to that, you can simply throw your money away.
Since I am a pioneer on FanFishka, I had to subtract a lot of information, review a lot of characteristics of various projectors and LED panels, collect scant information on forums and talk with a few experts on the LED case.
And so, what conclusion was made! Per 100-110 l. Aquarium, net volume need:

1. Two LED spotlights. Since they have a directional light and one, albeit a more powerful searchlight does not cover the entire area of ​​the bottom and the reservoir as a whole.
If the cover allows, you can put three spotlights (of lesser power), which will give you more confidence that the spotlights will not burn quickly. Alas, the repair of SD-spotlights are not subject. Less powerful spotlights heat less, respectively, the risks are reduced. At the same time, the smaller the watt of diabetes, the less its “penetrating” ability and its other characteristics, too. In general, all you need to calculate and estimate.
2. Everyone knows that LED lighting is much more powerful than the nominal. That is, the power of LEDs in watts to measure at least not correctly.
So I asked the question, but how many watts then is needed in my aquarium. To believe sellers in the market who say: "Multiply by three years and there will be those real vats" - stupid! In general, I had to rummage in this matter and find clearer information.
And the truth is quite simple, lighting, in addition to watts, has a lot of characteristics, including the so-called Lumens - is the amount of light emitted / emitted by the light source. A light source with a luminous flux of 1 lumen, which uniformly illuminates any surface of 1 square meter, creates on it (surfaces) an illumination of 1 lux.
Experienced, aquarists have found that for a good herbalist, for the Dutch and Amanovo aquarium, you need 40-50 lumens per liter of pure water.
The task was solved and the choice of searchlights became extremely specific - you need two searchlights so that in the sum of their Lumens they give 50 Lm / l.
3. And the last two important points when choosing a CD projector are all the same: spectrum and Kelvin.
As it turned out, the searchlights were full of variety: there was a warm glow, a cold glow, I even came across RGB searchlights (and for a long time I understood what that kind of thing was))). But, we only need one searchlight - with a spectrum as close as possible to daylight. This type of LED has the best characteristics.
Kelvin (K) - this is the color temperature of any light source. This is the measure of our impression of the color of this light source. For maintenance of aquarium plants, it is recommended from 6500 to 8000 K.

What do you need to create lighting in the aquarium with your own hands and how much will it cost?

First, you need skillful hands, without them in any way))) As well as tools, preferably: drill, electric jigsaw, Bulgarian, other small tools (screwdrivers, keys, pliers, etc.). If you do not have a jigsaw or grinder, do not despair. You just have to do everything "manually", for example, with a hacksaw or sawing.
I "modernsirval" aquarium cover TM "Nature" (plastic, with two integrated LL T8, ballast and starters), like this: Acquired two CD prozhetora 30W, TM "Feron" model LL 730. Features: daylight 6500K, 2850 lumen (by the way, 2 SD * 2850Lm = 5700Lm / 110l.vody = 51.8lm / l).
Acquired Aquaelev electronic starter for LL T5. Such a choice was made in order to minimize the "stuffing" of the aquarium cover, the place under which is worth its weight in gold.
Acquired previously voiced T5 lamp JBL Solar Ultra Color T5, 28 W, 60 cm. + reflector.

Socket - voltage relay.
It is necessary for safety and the prevention of power surges. In such an outlet, voltage limits are set, after which the equipment is de-energized. Sockets timers (2 pcs.). Required for automatic on / off lighting. It makes life easier and clearly controls the time of the filing of a particular lighting. Electronic sockets-timers were purchased for lighting, since, unlike mechanical ones, they do not go astray. For example, when the network is de-energized, they “remember everything” and after the resumption of power supply, they work according to a predetermined schedule. To install coolers (fans), you will need: 2-a computer cooler for 12W and a voltage adapter, respectively, 12W. I purchased an adapter with a switch W from 0 to 12 W, it is convenient to reduce or increase the speed of rotation of the coolers and, accordingly, the degree of cooling. And also to reduce noise, if necessary.

You will also need: Silicone (building and aquarium), fasteners (bolts, nuts, screws), tie-holders for spotlights (preferably aluminum, so as not to rust), wires (strong and three-core), are needed to connect spotlights, coolers, plugs under spotlights with ground connection.

The process of assembling aquarium lighting The process of assembling and installing aquarium lighting with their own hands is different for everyone, since everyone has different covers. I will describe my process.
1. First, connect the power cord and plug to the spotlights. From the spotlight comes a three-core wire (with ground), respectively, you need to attach to it the same wire. Do not listen to "smart sellers" in the building supermarkets. When I bought the wire I was told, they say: "What are you ... / censored /, grounding the searchlight." In general, trust only yourself and reliable information, and not “woe to the specials”, who, perhaps, understand only cheap vodka.
Photo can be increased paint

2. Next, remove all the "old insides" cover.
3. Make the layout and cut out the holes for the spotlight. This manipulation must be done very carefully, so that the illumination of the spotlights will be uniform - throughout the aquarium.
4. Install the spotlights and fix them with a tie and fasteners.
5. All silicone and seal. Remove special attention to metal parts (if used), make good silicone so that rust does not get into the aquarium.
6. After checking the performance and proceed to the installation of coolers.
7. Making holes for coolers in opposite sides of the cover.
8. Mount the cooler. One cooler is placed on blowing, the other on blowing. Silicone
9. Connect the cooler to the adapter, check the performance.
10. After all the wires stretch around the perimeter of the cover and fasten with silicone.
11. Install T5 and Aquaelev electronic starter in the last turn, based on the availability of free space under the cover. SD and LL should not overlap.
It looks like the electrical connection under the aquarium
How much is it?
Cover - in stock.
Searchlight (30W) - 2800 rubles. * 2 = 5600 rubles.
Aquaelev electronic starter - 1200 rubles.
T5 JBL Solar Ultra Color T5, 28 W, 60 cm. - 750 rubles.
Reflector - I used homemade, because Standard not intermeddle.
Relay socket - 400 rubles.
Socket timer - 350 rubles * 2 = 700 rubles.
Extension cable with off buttons = 400 rubles.
Power adapter 12W - 210 rubles.
Fasteners, wires, plugs, silicone, screed, and other trifles - 500 rubles. (about).
TOTAL: 9760 rubles. ($ 275)
Is it worth bothering? What is the effect? Definitely worth it !!! The price of the issue is not so global, but the effect is amazing !!!
My plants immediately bubbled up even without T5, with the T5 after two hours of intense lighting, the "oxygen blizzard" begins. And this is a clear sign - effective and high quality lighting. The plants themselves grow like weeds in the garden. And the aquarium sparked and transformed beyond recognition.
Here are the primary photos of the aquarium and plants with bubbles

DIY Aquarium Lighting - video description

DIY LED Aquarium Lighting

The first way is to make your own illumination of the aquarium with LEDs - the simplest, where you can additionally equip a lighting cap with special fitolamps. For this purpose, a white LED strip is attached around the perimeter. This will give the optimum spectrum and the most uniform illumination along the upper perimeter of the aquarium. A plastic-filled LED tape based on self-bonding is used, where the protective layer is removed and fastened around the perimeter of the box.

This light is widely used for decorative purposes, but it cannot be an independent source of aquarium lighting. Insulation at the junction of the tape and cord is made of special transparent silicone used for aquariums. It will reliably protect the power cord from water. The output wires are marked in red, this is a plus, and the minus is a black or blue wire. If the polarity is not observed, the LEDs will not work.

The second way is to collect a full-fledged LED lighting aquarium sufficient power without generators and sophisticated equipment. At 200-300 liters, a power of 120 watts is sufficient for an aquarium richly planted with plants. This adds a total of 40 dot LEDs for 270 lumens, 3 watts each. As a result, 10,800 lumens of illumination will be released, which will give a very bright illumination for a given volume. It is important to monitor the balance of the entire ecosystem, and with an excess of light and the development of green microorganisms, it is necessary to reduce the overall intensity.

The cost of such a design can vary greatly, since in Chinese online stores, for example, even more reputable companies can find LEDs and power supplies of the same quality. At the same time prices may vary at times.

For self-installation of the backlight will need:

  • LED lamp kit
  • 2-2,5 meters of a plastic trench 100 mm wide,
  • 12 volt power supply, can be from a computer,
  • soft wire 1.5 mm,
  • желательно 6 компьютерных кулеров по 12 вольт,
  • 40 гнёзд разъема под светодиоды,
  • фреза для обработки отверстий по 48 мм.

The length of the aquarium will cut 2 pieces of the gutter, in the bottom of which we drill holes, about 20 pieces per meter, placing them in a checkerboard pattern. LED lamps are inserted into the holes and fasten.

All lamps must be connected to the power supply in parallel to the 12 volt power supply. For proper connection, it is better to contact an electrician, since the connection scheme may seem difficult for people who are not experts in the field of connecting lamps to the connectors. Computer coolers or fans should be installed when large vapors or lids are heated for lighting.

For decorative purposes, sometimes they make additional night lights, such as moonlight. To do this, connect a little blue LED strip, which can be installed behind the rear wall, but so that it was below the bottom of the aquarium. The electric timer can turn it on when the daylight turns off.

Advantages and disadvantages of various aquarium lighting options

Determine what types of aquarium lighting exist about their features:

  • Backlight aquarium using incandescent bulbs has already become yesterday. They are very warm, disturbing the heat balance, and shine a little.
  • Illumination with the use of fluorescent lamps solves the problem of light intensity, but the required spectrum of illumination does not fully provide.
  • Aquarium lighting with the use of modern fitolamp fully provides both the intensity and the required range of lighting. However, such lighting is very expensive and not everyone can afford it.
  • LED lighting aquarium - a modern way to supply light, which is most close to natural light.

Advantages of aquarium lighting with LEDs

Aquarium lighting with LEDs is a relatively new offer. LEDs have important characteristics that today make them leaders among lighting fixtures. The use of such lamps has a large number of advantages.

  1. They are very easy to install, due to the fact that the cartridges fit almost all types of socles.
  2. LED lamps are not afraid of water, therefore, the likelihood of a short circuit is excluded. However, even in conditions of high humidity, these lighting devices function without interruption.
  3. LED lamps designed to illuminate the aquarium, fireproof.
  4. Such lamps do not generate heat during operation, which makes it possible to keep the overall temperature of the aquarium comfortable, even if the lamps work throughout the day.
  5. Depending on the length of the day, the presence of natural light, you can change the brightness of the aquarium lighting. In addition, it is possible to make a night lighting of the aquarium and observe the life of the fish, admiring amazing underwater pictures.

Important! The average time of one lamp is five years. Consequently, all this time there will be no need to make replacement parts and do not have to disturb the inhabitants of the aquarium. In addition, it should be said about energy saving (about 70%). For these reasons, most aquarium owners prefer to light them with LED lamps. The same qualities have special LED strip.

Safety and durability

Since the LED lamps do not emit ultraviolet and infrared radiation, they are completely safe for absolutely all the inhabitants of the aquarium. On the contrary, the lighting of the aquarium with LEDs on the coloring and health of the fish has a favorable effect. In addition, due to the spectral composition of the rays, they contribute to the development of aquarium plants. To the aquarium was lit as best as possible, you can combine different types of LED lamps. They can be installed in any conditions and in any premises.

Lighting aquarium energy-saving lamps.

The same fluorescent, but adapted for use with cheap fittings for incandescent lamps. By default, the "launcher" for the lamp is in the electronics of the lamp itself. If you are lucky with the manufacturer and the quality of electronics - the warranty period will last. If not, the lighting of the aquarium with energy-saving lamps will cease to function precisely because of breakdowns in cheap electronics.

  • Spectrum lighting aquarium. Regarding the spectrum, manufacturers are forced to install control electronics in each light bulb, so they are trying to save on something else. Most often - on the phosphor.
    Its quality is verified simply - on the site of a solid manufacturer the spectrum is ALWAYS present. If it's not there, a regular CD comes to the rescue.

    To determine the spectrum of lighting aquarium, just look at the "rainbow" of the light of the lamp being tested, reflected from the disk. If the "rainbow" of individual colors, the phosphor is cheap and in order to make the lighting of the aquarium is not suitable. If the "rainbow" is continuous, then you (and home water) are lucky!

  • Ease of use - like incandescent bulbs. Do not touch the flask with your fingers! But with cheapness (the ratio: lighting for an aquarium is a price), things are not going smoothly, especially since lamps with poor spectrum are often offered for substantial money (remember the trick with the rainbow reflected from the CD?)
  • Accessibility is great! Thanks to the accessories from incandescent bulbs and aggressive advertising of "economical" lamps.
  • In terms of electricity consumption, aquarium lighting with energy-saving lamps is 2–3 times more economical and more profitable than incandescent lamps. But the service life - not always. It is better to prefer expensive products of well-known manufacturers with a guarantee.

How to calculate the lighting for the aquarium? The power of fluorescent lamps for the aquarium is also calculated "from liters".

One liter of water is preferably about half a watt of lamp power. That is, an aquarium of one hundred liters will need fifty watts of fluorescent lighting (or a set of two or three energy-saving lamps of the same total power).

Lighting aquarium fluorescent lamps.

Today, aquarium fluorescent lighting is the unofficial standard for home oceans. In any case, the vast majority of purchased aquariums are sold with luminous lighting.

Such aquarium lighting uses an electrical discharge in a flask filled with mercury vapor. As a result, the aquarium is illuminated with ultraviolet light, affecting a layer of a special phosphor substance. Here it is, depending on the composition, and emits a "day" light with a small admixture of ultraviolet radiation. And if you use a special quartz glass for the bulb of a fluorescent lamp - you’ll get a tanning lamp

  • On the market there are two types of "day" lamps - the so-called "cold" and "warm." Products marked D (LD, LDC, etc.) are poorly suited for lighting the aquarium, as they have almost no red color in the spectrum. They are more used in production "state" premises. But the lamps with marking B (LB, LTP, etc.) are similar to daylight in the spectrum and are well suited for aquarium lighting, both for fish and for aquarium lighting for plants.
  • High-quality fluorescent lamps are more expensive than incandescent lamps - both the accessories and the lamps themselves. It is better not to be greedy and buy lighting aquarium with a reliable launcher. The fact is that in trying to conquer the market, manufacturers have developed low-cost lighting fixtures for aquarium lighting, in which cheap lamps with built-in launchers are used. But miracles do not happen and you have to pay twice for "saving" - such lamps do not last long, and, first of all, just the electronics, made of cheap components, deteriorate. So soon the repair of the aquarium lighting will be provided.
  • The choice is big - both cheap and expensive solutions.
  • Fluorescent lamps are almost not heated - they recycle most of the electrical energy into light and ultraviolet.

Such aquarium lighting is on average 2-3 times more economical than incandescent bulbs.

Aquarium lighting with halogen lamps.

An improved version of the incandescent lamp. Iodine or bromine is added to the flask, which allows you to raise the temperature of the filament and prolongs the life of the lamp:

  • The spectrum of lamps is also shifted to the red area, although it is smaller than that of ordinary incandescent lamps. These lights adore photographers for almost perfect color reproduction. This aquarium light radiates more ultraviolet light.
  • Halogen lamps are somewhat more expensive than their predecessors. Ease of use - at the level of incandescent bulbs.
  • Accessibility for aquarium lighting is ideal.
  • Halogen lamps “recycle” more energy into the light, but they still differ in their overly “hot” temper and are not perfect as lights for aquarium lighting.

Aquarium lighting with incandescent bulbs.

The oldest source of electric lighting. Let us analyze this type of lighting in more detail:

  • The spectrum of incandescent bulbs is shifted to the red area. That is why such aquarium lighting is especially advantageous for red fish. But the inhabitants of the aquarium of other colors will look faded and distorted. Not the best option for aquarium plants - ultraviolet in the spectrum of the incandescent lamp a bit. Lighting aquarium for plants with such lamps is not very suitable.
  • With ease of use, everything is clear - the oldest type of electric lighting long ago was overgrown with a bunch of "bells and whistles" for all occasions that are available in any specialized store. Everything is great with ease of use. Although to illuminate the aquarium, the option is more complicated than the banal "on-off". For example, the dimmer and turn-on delay mode dramatically increases lamp life and allows you to smoothly adjust the illumination.
  • Accessibility is perfect.
  • Efficiency is the worst possible. Most of the energy goes into heat, which is not always useful for aquarium dwellers and decently "shakes" the counter.

Proper Aquarium Lighting

As soon as lovers imbued with the beauty of tropical fish. hedgehogs. starfish and live corals. then the first problem that they have to solve is the problem of correct lighting. After all, the light is needed and fish, and the inhabitants of the reefs. And for the latter, it is more important many times. In order to choose the right lighting for the aquarium, most often use fluorescent lamps in combination with actinic and metal halide lamps. But first things first.


The lighting in the aquarium has its own nuances. How much light is needed in a marine aquarium? This is influenced by many factors. The main ones are # 8212 reservoir volume, as well as its height. How are the dimensions of the reservoir and the power of the lamps?

How to choose the right lamps

How to make lighting aquarium with your own hands? Quite often, fluorescent lamps are used in domestic water bodies. To ensure the required spectrum, they are supplemented by metal halides, but the latter convert a considerable part of the light radiation into heat. Therefore, they significantly increase the temperature of the water and heat the lid of the aquarium (if it is or is the built-in part of the tank under the aquarium). For the inhabitants of the underwater world is not very good. Apply also actinics (blue lamps), separately adding the blue part of the spectrum. Usually, the calculation of the lighting of the aquarium is quite simple. Takes 1-1.5 W of power per liter of water, if the reflectors are good, or 2 W per liter, if they are weak. You should know: if the lighting is not enough, then plants and corals will slow down growth.

For example, brown scurf may appear on algae. consisting of microbacteria, and this leads to fish diseases and changes in water quality. Proper lighting will solve this problem if artificial and sunlight combines well.

What kind of lamp for the aquarium better

Metal halide luminaire with integrated blue lamps

Many sources point out that the best option is to use fluorescent lights. They shine well, quite economical. They are connected via an electronic ballast, as well as a special device - a choke.

Nowadays, most lovers prefer special fluorescent lamps in combination with metal halides. At the same time they are placed on the front wall of the reservoir.

In addition, special fluorescent aquarium lamps of different power with warm or daylight white light are also used. Installation is carried out complete with special reflectors. With properly tuned lighting, the fish will demonstrate the diversity of all their color, while corals will develop excellently.

Fluorescent lamps are economical, provide excellent lighting, last long enough. As a disadvantage, it can be noted that they need to be connected using a special device # 8212 of electronic ballast or choke.

The choice of lighting

T5 lamps

Fluorescent lamps T5 do well with the lighting in the aquarium. In this case, special attention should be paid to their main indicators: color and power. Power can vary in the range of 8–56 W, but the length is 20–120 cm. It is important to know the following: 0.5 W of power should fall on 1 liter (at least) 1 cm in length - approximately 1 W of power corresponds.

In addition, aquarium lamps t5 have such important characteristics as brightness and color range. Properly chosen spectrum will allow corals to grow and develop properly. In general, there are 2 light absorption maxima. One is located from the red-orange, the other - from the violet-blue end of the spectrum. In this case, the first one and a half times more efficiently than the second.

Thus, it is clear that the blue spectrum should be expressed more. Based on the fact that photosynthesis does not affect fish in any way, they don't care what kind of light you choose.

From the manufacturers' point of view, lamps from such recognized names as Aqua Medic, Hailea, Reef Octopus, BLV are now on the market.

Spectrum and types of fixtures

metal halide lamps

As mentioned earlier, the spectrum is of paramount importance in lighting a marine aquarium. Usually used fluorescent and metal halide lamps of high power, having a light temperature of 10-20 thousand Kelvin. Unfortunately, they emit quite a lot of heat and do not fit well into small reservoirs without cooling equipment. Since the increased temperature is not very useful to the inhabitants of your underwater world, it is sometimes more rational to get fluorescent lighting. In addition, fluorescent light is much more similar to solar. With him, the fish will look more colorful.

The more they can be built into the cover of the aquarium # 8212 the better, because a lot of light does not happen. If you do not want to take metal-halide lamps, it will somewhat limit your choice of reef inhabitants, but for most animals lamps like T5 are quite suitable.

Spectrum of T5 fluorescent lamps

Note that the length of daylight hours of the sea should be 10-12 hours. It is also desirable to provide an 8-10 hour shading period. This is necessary so that many inhabitants of the sea eat only darkness, therefore they will simply remain hungry. The easiest way is to connect the lighting system to the timer, thereby ensuring the timely change of the time of day. Remember that luminaires with their control gear should not heat the water as much as possible.

In addition to the T5 series, T8 lamps are also available. What do these designations mean? T5 and T8 characterize the type of basement. The differences are in length and power standards. In this case, there are 2 types: economical (HE) and powerful (HO). The latter have a high brightness and small length. In aquariums it is often HO that are used, because they are compact and powerful. Another difference between t5 and t8 lamps is the temperature at which the luminous flux is attained.

The maximum luminous flux at T5 is obtained at a temperature of +35 Celsius, and +25 degrees. # 8212 at T8. It is also worth noting that the service time of the T5 is longer than that of the T8. It is 5 years with a loss of luminous flux of 20%. In T8, the light flux is halved in a year.

The general conclusion is that the LED lamps T5 are more durable, more powerful, they do not lose the light flux for a long time. T8 - thicker, cheaper and less heated.

Blue light in the aquarium

Pay special attention to the lighting of the reservoir at night when there is no natural sunlight. It is precisely to solve this issue and you can use blue fluorescent lamps, allowing you to create the necessary level of illumination with a specific spectrum. It is very important that the blue color in the spectrum penetrates deep enough into the water. Only invertebrates could adapt to limited coverage as a result of evolutionary selection. that inhabit the reefs.

Spectrum of blue lamps T5 aktinikov

Blue light is optimal, it does not affect the fluorescent dyes of these animals. Blue, blue and moonlight in the aquarium allow you to create blue fluorescent lamps, they are actinics. Blue and blue light can enhance the blue color of fish, corals and other invertebrates. Intense radiation in the blue region of the spectrum favorably affects photosynthesis, as well as invertebrate animals and deep-water corals.

Duration of daylight hours

In a pond where only fish live, they recommend a proportion of 3 watts of 4.5-liter lamps. If you have herbs, then the lighting can be enhanced. Если у вас живут тропические или субтропические рыбы, то стоит сделать световой день по 12 ч весь год. Для рыб же, живущих вдалеке от экватора, надо удлинять летний день, а зимний делать короче. Для облегчения этой процедуры приобретите таймер, который станет включать и выключать ваши светильники.

Растения и кораллы при аквариумном освещении

The intensity of lighting in the aquarium with corals depends on their species that you live. Therefore, it is very important to know the needs of plants for lighting up to the time when you decide to start them. There are many easy-to-care plants and animals that can live in an aquarium, even without artificial light. But there are also quite demanding corals, which require special lighting, because in order to grow successfully, they need intense fluorescent light. In general, often for solving such issues order professional maintenance of aquariums.

With species that grow near the surface of the water, and even in clean tropical waters, be especially careful. In addition, algae, releasing red leaves, very bright light will not like it.

For those lovers who hold corals, a powerful luminous flux is required, even not all fluorescent lights are able to cope with this. This task is successfully performed by metal halides.

There are also corals living in the middle depths. They do not need a bright light. Usually choose corals living near the surface of the water in the bright tropical sun, because they are colorful and picturesque. In addition, these corals live in symbiosis with green algae, carrying out the process of photosynthesis.

However, as a rule, in domestic water bodies there is almost always a lack of lighting compared to the natural environment, so amateurs try to ensure maximum light in order to get closer to the light level of the ocean reef.

Night lights

Night is the time of the natural activity of many animals. As a rule, nightly species of fish begin to hunt when darkness comes. For better observation of their life will require night lighting aquarium. To solve this problem it is recommended to use blue light lamps of weak power. They will illuminate the underwater inner world, perfectly imitating the natural light of the moon. Such a spectrum will allow your pets to create optimal hunting conditions. In addition, a blue lamp for an aquarium will provide an opportunity to stimulate reproduction in some fish that are having difficulty breeding in captivity.

Lighting aquarium DIY led tape.

Lighting an aquarium with LED tape is one of the most energy-saving and, importantly, safe ways to light an aquarium. Of all types of LED lighting for the aquarium, the best is the lighting of the aquarium with LED tape.

The advantages of such lighting:

  • LED tape is energy efficient, aquarium lighting with LED tape is the most economical type of lighting.
  • Such aquarium lighting is safe. The voltage of the power supply unit supplying the LED strip for the aquarium is 12 Volt, such voltage is safe not only for people but also for the flora and fauna of your aquarium.
  • Adjusting the luminous flux. You can always add or remove the brightness of the lighting, so you can adjust any ice lighting for the aquarium.
  • Can be used as additional lighting. An aquarium with plants often requires additional lighting of the aquarium. From the LED strip you get an excellent LED lighting aquarium with plants with your own hands, as the main and additional.
  • Diode lighting aquarium in various colors. Although it is recommended to use white LED strips for lighting an aquarium, this does not negate the fact that there are different colors and types of LED strips in nature.
  • Simplified installation. It is very easy to mount the LED tape on the aquarium due to the adhesive tape base.
  • An opportunity to mount a LED tape as lighting of an aquarium under water, at the expense of tightness and a class of protection IP65.

To make lighting aquarium LED tape with your own hands, but you will need a power supply of 12 Volts, 5 meters of LED tape (1 reel) power consumption of the tape 9.5 Watts per meter.

Total about $ 50 cost our lighting for the aquarium, the price of one reel of tape, protection class IP65, is $ 25, power supply - $ 20. Our aquarium took 2.2 meters of light tape.

We isolated the place of cutting and connecting the LED strip to the power supply unit using a transparent sealant, and glued it to the aquarium lid so that there was no contact with water and the filtration system. As a result, we have an enviable aquarium with filter and lighting.

The rest of the tape stock we used to highlight the computer system unit





DIY Aquarium LED Light

How to make aquarium lighting LED strip

DIY aquarium lighting

How to make a LED backlight on the aquarium

How to make a cover for the backlit aquarium