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Marine LED Aquarium Lights

Aquarium lighting is one of many important aspects of owning an aquarium. Like many of the other components, lighting is often overlooked by many casual fish owners. LED aquarium lights, in particular, use less electricity than other types of lights, so they are more kind on your utility bills. They can also be programmed to run automatically, dimming and brightening to mimic natural light, making aquarium maintenance easier.

Why does my aquarium need lights?

  • Fish benefits: LED fish tank lights make it easier for fish to see their food. Turning the lights on and off in roughly twelve hour intervals can also help your fish keep their sleep cycle, which is as important to their health as our sleep is to us.
  • Plant photosynthesis: Plants need light to create food. Therefore, if your aquarium has any live plants in it, you should install lights onto your aquarium. Without lighting installed, your plants may be less vibrant and smaller. Ultimately, they will die due to the lack of light, especially if your aquarium is not exposed to much natural light.

How long must I have the lights on?

  • Typical hours: It is common to have the lights on for twelve hours and off for another twelve. Generally, if it is day time outside, the lights should be on. If it is night out, the lights should be off. Times for lighting can vary with the type of fish in your aquarium. For example, an aquarium with tropical fish typically found in shallow waters would need more light than an aquarium with fish found in colder, darker climates.
  • In case of algae: It is important to remember that algae flourish in the presence of light. Therefore, if you notice some algae formation in your tank, you can shorten the hours when the lights are on. You can also dim the lights if your LED lights are programmable to do so.

What other lighting options are there?

  • Fluorescent lights: Fluorescent lights are the most common type of aquarium lights. They are more suitable for freshwater aquariums. They typically use more electricity than LED lights, however they are still a popular choice for their affordability.
  • T-5 high output fluorescent lights: T5 lights are much brighter than a regular fluorescent light. They are ideal for larger tanks that require brighter and deeper penetration of light through the water. However, they tend to produce a significant amount of heat so you need to be careful with your aquarium temperature if you opt for this type of lighting.
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