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Old 03-09-2005, 10:06 AM   #1
mwanttie
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How many hours a day do you run your lights?


I have only had my tank setup with LR for a couple weeks now. I have a 125 gallon tank with 4x96 watt PC lights (2 x Dual Actinic are 420nm/460nm & 2 x Dual Daylight are 6,700K/10,000K). I started with 4 hours a day for a week, 5 hours a day last week and 6 hours a day this week. I plan on increasing by one hour a week until I reach the max. But I don't know what that is.

What is the total number of hours you run your lights daily? I work during the day so can I turn them on a little later (like noon) such that they are on in the evening (when I'm at home)? The tank is in my living room so there is light in the room during the day but directly sunlight doesn't shine on the tank.
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Old 03-09-2005, 10:11 AM   #2
rockster2599
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10hr T5s
12 hr NO actinic (just to get the fish ready for sunrise).
I used to only run full lighting for 8hrs (to supposedly reduce algae growth) but upped it to 10hrs without noticing any difference.
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Old 03-09-2005, 10:15 AM   #3
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I run my a total of 13-14 hours. Which is probably high. But i have NO lights. By the end of this week, I have 4x95 watt PC's coming in. With three separate plugs (1 for the day lights, 1 for the acintics, and 1 for the moon lights). I plan on running all three plugs on a separate timer to make the light changes gradual. my moon's will be on at night, during the day, my acintics will be on probably the 14 hours, with the day's on in the middle of that for 8-10. Not sure if this is good or not, but it's my plan.

I actually asked before (on here, and at the LFS) about simulating 2 days in 24 hours, and no one saw any harm in this. So if you work a lot during the day, but want to see the fish in the morning, and when you get home, you could have the lights on for 6 hours...off for 6...on for 6...off for 6.

This is more what I do...others will chime in with what you *should* do. hehehe
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Old 03-09-2005, 10:23 AM   #4
Loverotties
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12 hours for actinic and 10 hrs 10K and 9 Hrs on the moon.
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Old 03-09-2005, 10:46 AM   #5
mwanttie
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Skeety, that sound a lot like what I was thinking as far as turning the Actinics on for an hour or two, then the Days and visa versa when turning them off to simulate dawn and dusk effect.

I had heard the algae thing too but I really want them on longer to enjoy the tank. That is the point, right?

Does it matter if I leave the moon lights on all the time?

On a side note, the lights were on when I got home last night after dark. The glow shining out the front window was amazing. I wouldn't be suprised if someone thought I was growing more than fish. (but the tank is visible if they bother to look).
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Old 03-09-2005, 10:55 AM   #6
rockster2599
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mwanttie
I had heard the algae thing too but I really want them on longer to enjoy the tank. That is the point, right?
Thats right. Whats the point in having a pristine algae free tank if you never see it. Photoperiod will not affect algae if you dont have the nutrients to fuel it

Quote:
Originally Posted by mwanttie
On a side note, the lights were on when I got home last night after dark. The glow shining out the front window was amazing. I wouldn't be suprised if someone thought I was growing more than fish. (but the tank is visible if they bother to look).
Now I have no proof of this but Im sure many reefkeepers houses are passed over by burglars thinking someone is in (watching TV) when they are actually out. Mind you it does mean you can spot a marine tank a mile away after dark. Ive certainly had some funny looks when caught peering into someones window to see where the blue glow was coming from (hopefully not a sunbed )
Rockster (not peeping tom)
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Old 03-09-2005, 10:59 AM   #7
Marco
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actinics 10 hrs.

MH 8 hrs.
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Old 03-09-2005, 11:00 AM   #8
ShirleyM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Loverotties
12 hours for actinic and 10 hrs 10K and 9 Hrs on the moon.
Same, except we don't have the moon lights.

We ran them shorter when the tanks were new and experiencing the early algal blooms. They are 6 and 7 yrs old now.
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Old 03-09-2005, 11:06 AM   #9
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I don't think there would be any harm in running the moons 24 hours. It'll get drowned out by the other light anyways. However, you will be wasting electricity, but other than that.

I assume you're asking so you don't have to buy the 3rd outlet timer?
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Old 03-09-2005, 11:08 AM   #10
drsyme
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I have the same type of light set up as a couple of you do, 4 96 watt PC and moon lights. The PC's are dual actinic and dual daylight.

At first I had the actinics on 12 hours, and the daylights on for 8. I dont keep the moonlights always on, I just have them on when the actinics are off, (yes it requires three timers).

But after seeing my electric bill for the last 2 months, I dropped each one by an hour, so actinics 11 hrs, the daylights 7. The moonlights are still on whenever the actinics are not, (so they are actually on for 13 hours now.) but I also dropped an hour on the refugium lights.

My fuge is on more or less a reverse photoperiod from the main tank. But I like the moon light, and when the fuge is on, the ambient light from that pretty much overwhelms the moon light effect, so I dont have the fuge lights come on until 2 in the morning and they stay on for 13 hours, so there is some overlap with the main tank lights.
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Old 03-09-2005, 11:54 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drsyme
But after seeing my electric bill for the last 2 months, I dropped each one by an hour
Was it really that bad?

How much would you say is the cost per month, on that old schedule?
Ballpark?
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Old 03-09-2005, 12:23 PM   #12
mwanttie
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I was once told to expect about $50 per month to run the lights, pumps, filter, etc... I haven't had a full month with everything running but I sure hope it's not higher than that.
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Old 03-09-2005, 12:27 PM   #13
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okay...THAT I did NOT know.

(sigh)

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Old 03-09-2005, 12:45 PM   #14
mwanttie
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I am trying to counter act some of the extra expense by saving in other areas. For instance, I tend to leave lights, TV, etc... on when I leave the room. Now I am trying to shut things off. Hopefully the electric bill won't hit me to hard. The summer will be the worst, when we have the central air running and the lights warming it back up.

Oh, and I don't have to turn the light on in the living room or the outside lights anymore. Heck, my neighbors probably don't have to turn their outside lights on either.
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Old 03-09-2005, 01:03 PM   #15
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just got my 2 month bill the other day. it went up 60 bucks!!!.. i figured 20-30 dollarsa month to run 3 mag1800's. 4 65 watt pc's and 2 heaters that i assume only come on at night for a bit. im not a 100% here but i think this is it.
Amps x Volts = Watts
Watts x 744 and divide by 1000 = KWH per month
KWH per month x Cost per KWH (located on your electric bill) = Cost per month
Do this and you can see how much the tank really costs.

discalimer...you might want to sit down when you do this..
or make sure your other half is not around..
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