Can't Find T5 Fixture that will work with a canopy

robyneller

New member
Hi, I actually have a freshwater tank, but I thought this would be a great location to get good info on lighting. I have a 5ft long 26" deep (120 Gallon) freshwater tank with 2 large fancy goldies in it. One of them has turned totally white due to lack of adequate lighting. I currently have 2-24" LED fixtures and 1-48" fixture, but its just not lighting the tank very well at all.

The challenge I have is I have a canopy hood on my tank, and several years ago I bought a t5 fixture and it got INSANELY hot to the point where you could not touch the fixture without burning your hand, so obviously I could not use it. It was Corallife brand I think.

I've spent MONTHS looking for a 2 bulb T5 fixture that has fans built in to cool it, but they all seem to have the blue lights in them and I don't need those. I was planning to still use the 48" LED fixture along with a new T5 fixture. I also do not want to mount the light fixture to the canopy. Question 1: Can I replace the blue lights with regular lights and have them come on at the same time or are the ballasts different for the blue bulbs? Question 2: Is there a 2 or 4 bulb fixture that has the right kind of legs that will work with a canopy that sits down over the edge of the tank (which is normally where the legs of the fixture rest) Question 3: Is there a 2 bulb model (that can use both regular white lights) that has a built in fan? Question 4: Is there a small external fan I can buy for this purpose that does not have to be clipped or mounted onto the side of the A/Q? I saw some that clip onto the side, but my canopy hood comes down over the edge of the tank. This seems like a simple thing to do, but like I said, I've spent months and I can't find what I need for my set up. I just want my goldies to be gold again! Thanks! Robyn
 

Mishri

Active member
Answers:

1)bulbs can be replaced with whatever you want, you don't need to use the blue. Most manufacturers also make a freshwater version, which doesn't have the blue, and usually those are 2 bulbs.

2) on my aquaticlife 48" and 36" the legs are adjustable left to right, there is a rail they slide along, one rail on top, one on the bottom. as long as there is something for them to sit on it should work. But I think they have a new model out with different legs/mounts.

3)I haven't seen any that include a fan, not much heat comes out of 2x T5 lights. But there might be one if you do enough searching.

4) Your best bet is to drill some holes(3 or 4) in the back of the canopy and attach Computer fans to it,(you'll likely need an exhaust port/hole) the fans have screw holes, just screw them into the canopy. There are a few ways you can wire those up, get a power adapter and wire them together(there are guides for it) or you can get ac powered computer fans, they tend to cost more. Higher quality, larger fans at a lower speed will keep noise down if that is a concern. Once they start making noise replace them, these fans aren't long lasting. With the amount of heat 2x T5 generate you might only need 1 fan in the canopy.

doing #4 should solve your heat issue and you can just get a retrofit 2x T5 kit and mount it into the canopy.
 

robyneller

New member
Thanks for the quick reply. Knowing to search for a freshwater version is very helpful. I already see options that don't have the blue lights. I know the Coral Life T5 I had put out a ton of heat, so I will at least try a different brand this time before I buy the fans. Good tips all around. Thanks!
 

ktownhero

New member
Use 48" fixture(s). They should be lighting the tank very well and you don't need them to be the fully length of the tank.
 

jayball

New member
4) Your best bet is to drill some holes(3 or 4) in the back of the canopy and attach Computer fans to it,(you'll likely need an exhaust port/hole) the fans have screw holes, just screw them into the canopy. There are a few ways you can wire those up, get a power adapter and wire them together(there are guides for it) or you can get ac powered computer fans, they tend to cost more. Higher quality, larger fans at a lower speed will keep noise down if that is a concern. Once they start making noise replace them, these fans aren't long lasting. With the amount of heat 2x T5 generate you might only need 1 fan in the canopy.

doing #4 should solve your heat issue and you can just get a retrofit 2x T5 kit and mount it into the canopy.

This is your best option. Here are a few retrofits you can stick in your canopy http://www.bulkreefsupply.com/aquarium-lighting/t5-fluorescent-aquarium-lighting/retrofit.html
 
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