How to make aquarium lighting with LEDs
LED (Light Emitting Diode) lighting is an excellent option for a saltwater or freshwater aquarium. LED lamps do not consume much electricity. Differ in long and rather easy operation. These features allow you to reduce operating costs for a long time. Environmentally friendly LED lighting does not contain harmful chemicals such as mercury or phosphorus, unlike fluorescent lamps. You have the opportunity to install LED lighting aquarium with your own hands, if you use the instructions.
Advantages and disadvantages of LED lighting
- LED aquarium lighting is initially expensive, but standard LED lamps currently work up to 50,000 hours, and are cheaper if you count on their long-term perspective.
- LED lighting also emits less heat, so it does not always require fans and cooling systems (depending on the number of lamps installed).
- Determine what type of LED light will best suit your needs for lighting a fish tank. If you have a salt water aquarium, more powerful LED lights will be required. Large and deep tanks also require strong lighting.
- This is ideal for a tank with relatively small plants. Tanks with lively underwater reefs require more light, and buying LED aquarium lamps with higher power ratings is highly recommended.
- Electricity and water in the interaction form a charge that can be deadly. The human body works as a channel between them, and with improper maintenance of the lamps, injury from electric shock may occur. Turn off all electronics, wiring systems and lighting when installing LED lamps, and drain the water from the aquarium. It will protect your life.
Look at the LED backlit aquarium.
How to install LED aquarium lighting by yourself
The first method, how to make LED lighting aquarium do it yourself is the simplest. Here you can use the cover with a special backlight. It is recommended to attach white LED stripes around the perimeter of the lid, which will provide a variety of spectrum and ensure uniform illumination of the upper perimeter of the tank.
The second method is to make a small "chandelier". Above the tank it is necessary to make a block of square, round or diamond shape, in which you can put all the equipment and LED strip. Lighting capacity of 120 watts is enough for a spacious tank with a capacity of 250-300 liters, where many fish and plants live. Such a "chandelier" may contain about 40 LED lamps with a luminous flux of 270 lm (lumen), 3 watts each. The brightness of the illumination will be more than 10,000 lm, which will provide a bright light spectrum in an aquarium of such a volume. The main thing is to constantly monitor the balance of the ecosystem: an excess of green light contributes to the reproduction of microbes.
How much does it cost to assemble such a lamp? The cost may be different, depending on the seller. It is advisable to buy LED lamps from trusted manufacturers, so that they last for a long time and do not create installation difficulties. Reliable imported LED lamps: Osram, Cree, Philips, Lumileds. Russian manufacturers of LED dump: "Feron", "Camelion", "Jazzway", "Gauss", "Navigator", "Era".
To mount the lighting with such bulbs yourself, you need:
- Buy a lot of LED bulbs, LED strip;
- Plastic trench 10 cm wide and 2 meters long;
- Power supply 12 V, can be carried out from a stationary computer;
- Take the soft wire 1.5 mm;
- Get air conditioning at 6-12 V;
- No LED connectors are needed for the LED strip; 40 lamps are required for the lamps;
- Cutter for holes 48 mm.
See how to make LED lighting for the aquarium with your own hands.
After all materials have been prepared, two grooves should be cut along the plastic construction, and about 20 pieces should be drilled in the lower part. at 1 meter, you can staggered. Then in the holes you need to put the LEDs, and fix them. All lamps must be connected to the power supply. If you do not know how to properly handle the wiring, contact an electrician who can perform the procedure correctly.
The cooler or fan should be placed in the place of evaporation or heating of the lighting coating. For decorative purposes, you can make a night light, which will become an imitation of moonlight. It is needed for tropical sea fish and sea anemones. For night light, you can use a blue LED ribbon, which can be installed on the back wall. An electric lighting timer or automatic switching on / off of the backlight must also be connected in order to regulate the amount of daylight required.
The lighting of the aquarium should come from its upper part - this is how soft and diffused light is formed. It is better to use an ICE lamp with a power of 1 W, however, for different aquariums the appropriate power is chosen. A LED strip of 30-40 light bulbs with a total power of 3 watts may be enough for a 200-liter tank. The main thing that the light was not too bright, and not harm the slaves and plants. The optimal calculation is 0.5 watts per 1 liter of water, but for a deep and spacious aquarium in the formula, all indicators must be multiplied by two.
It is also important to take into account the thickness of the bottom - visually the water and all bottom plants should receive enough light in the lower layers of the tank. Bottom fishes and snails require a little light, but the plants will still grow and require more light. In the process of photosynthesis, plants will require a lot of light, because of its deficiency will emit less oxygen. To avoid problems, you need to adjust the amount of daylight, and create a uniform lighting in the pond, which will receive every inhabitant.
DIY Aquarium Lighting
Delight the fish in your tank with high-quality lighting. This is not only spectacular, but also necessary for these animals.
The need for lighting in the aquarium
Aquarium dwellers are very sensitive to the "light" issue. When light is not enough, the first on whom it manifests itself are plants. They become dark brown instead of the usual green. The decay provokes a shift in biobalance, the appearance of harmful microorganisms and diseases.
It is difficult to say which lighting is better for an aquarium: a regular light bulb, a halogen lamp, energy-saving or daylight. Ultraviolet even contribute to the breeding of fish, but such installations are very expensive. The volume of the tank, the number of inhabitants, the dimensions of the aquarium, the material from which it is made, affect the calculation of lighting for an aquarium. If the fish and plants have a bright color, then the lighting is all right. It is very important that the light passes through the water column as evenly as possible.
What kind of lighting to choose in an aquarium is up to you. One of the inexpensive ways to light the aquarium is to use fluorescent lamps, but the work of 220 volts and the lack of start-up of the control unit makes them dangerous. LED strips work from 12 volts, but the lighting is not very powerful. However, to pick up and build homemade lighting for the aquarium is still worth it!
Installation of aquarium lighting
The advantage of hand-made products is that you can use the available tools. In this case, we will collect lighting for a small aquarium of 60 liters. As consumables, you need 4 lamps T5 13 W, buttons, wires, plug, ignition and soldering iron, bolts.
- For fixing the lamp is proposed to use the remains of a plastic window sill. At two corners we make 4 holes with a diameter slightly larger than the diameter of the light bulbs purchased.
- The buttons are designed for 2 lamps, it makes it possible to adjust (reduce / increase) the luminous flux. Adjust the "scheme" with a soldering iron.
- On the other side of the corners we drill 4 holes for further fixing the ballast. Take the 8 bolts.
The finished ballast with buttons looks like this:
- We begin the assembly. In the final version we get:
- You need to make plastic legs for the entire system. The grooves on the legs guarantee the stability of the lighting on the glass.
- Fix the elements and “blow out” the seams using sealant
Leave the product to dry, then you can try on the workpiece on your aquarium. Light will turn out uniform, moderately bright and safe for all inhabitants of the "water house".