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Advice on Tank


New Member
20 Feb 2009
Hello All, hope all are well. :)

I am going to invest in a new tank, but before I do, some questions if I may?

Are there any advantages to tanks with lids?

Is Gas exchange a factor to consider when running a planted tank?

What sort of flow 20 x volume of water? How is this delivered - type of P/H to consider?

How is Co2 delivered to a tank (can it be done if tank has a lid (I suspect some mods may be involved)).

Given the current cost of electric, what sort of lights are recommended T5's? and what spectrum?

I used to run a 5x2x2 full marine system M/H's ect, and cost was begining to mount up in terms of amount of power used, and I want to avoid those cost as much as I can.

So, some advice please.

Thank in advance.

9 Jun 2008
Advantages to tanks with lids:

- Fish can't jump out as easily
- Heat is kept in more easily
- If you have cats, children etc it helps
- Stops insects and stuff getting in

I'm sure theres a load more advantages but they are the main ones I could think of. Needless to say, many people hae open-top tanks in the planted hobby.

20x flow is a good number to aim for. You don't necessarily need a powerhead, just a filter with that turnover. e.g. if you have a 100l tank, 20x100=2000 so a filter or two filters with turnover of 2000lph

T5 lights are recommended, but you'll have to speak to someone else about lights. You can still use T8 successfully depending on what plants you want to grow etc

There are many ways to inject CO2 into your aquarium: pressurised, EasyCarbo etc but this also depends on what plants you want to grow/cost etc. Look in the Tutorials forum for a few articles.

Hope this helps.


21 Aug 2007
Chippenham, Wiltshire
There is also the evaporation to take into account. You'll have to top up a tank without a lid and in hot weather etc this can be considerable.

There's a sticky in the lighting section about tubes from a company called lampspecs which good photos and is a worthwhile read. The spectrum isn't as important as is often made out. If you think it looks a bit like daylight, it'll be fine :)


6 Jul 2007
Aston, Oxfordshire
I have to say the easy of cleaning, water changes, feeding, fert dosing, etc is so much easier with open top, having had both I would always have open top if possible.

In terms of evaporation, my tank is 48x18" and it must loose round 7-10lt a week from evaporation. As I understand it people give off 3lt each a day!


Simon D

22 Sep 2008
Light overspill is a consideration. Depending on where you are going to be putting the tank an overhead luminaire could be too bright in a living room (depending on size of room and positioning of tank in that room).

Having said that ,I've never gone for an open top tank with overhead lighting for that reason, and personally prefer a hood to contain the lighting. Also there is almost no evaporation if you use a condensation lid ( I use a perspex cover cut to shape to prevent evaporation). This may be considered old fashioned but I am 109 years of age.

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