Anyone replaced a ballast on a Juwel Rio 180

CeeJay

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Hi all.
Has anyone replaced a defective T5 ballast on a Juwel Rio 180 tank? I need to know how to get into the ballast enclosure.
My Rio is currently about 3 months old, so everythings working fine at the moment but I don't plan on spending £25-£30 on a Juwel tube when they finally fail.
I know Juwel have messed with their lengths and wattages so your pretty stuck to their tubes if you want a replacement. The current tubes I have are 2 x 45W T5's and are approx. 892mm in length. Try buying that length to wattage ratio in any lighting shop. :twisted:
My plan is to change the ballast to a 2 x 39W when ever the first tube or the ballast blows up and then get my future tubes from lampspecs or the like.
I know I'll take a hit of 6W per tube but at the Juwel rip off prices I'm prepared to do that and deal with whatever consequences arise (slower growth etc.). I also know that the standard T5 39W tubes are approx. 50mm shorter than the Juwel ones. So, I'll have 25mm at each end of the tank that may be a bit dimmer, I'll try not to lose too much sleep over that.
When you consider you can get a 2 x 39W ballast for £18.38 from National lamps and components, and tubes at £3-£4 you can replace the whole lot for less than the price of one Juwel tube!
So that's my plan, but I can't quite work out how to dismantle the Juwel ballast enclosure.
Therefore my question is, has anyone ever dismantled one before?
I've tried levering one of the end caps out but it doesn't seem to want to budge and I don't want to break it while it's still working.
Thanks in advance.

Chris.
PS. My day job is in electrical engineering, so fiddling with a few wires, ballasts and lamp holders shouldn't tax me too much. :lol:
 

CeeJay

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Big thanks to SuperColey1.
That's exactly what I was after. Might have known it would have to be cut because I couldn't find a sensible way in without breaking something. :twisted:
Right, now off to gather the bits and save myself a few bob. The only additional pain will be that I'll have to move the original lampholders because a standard 39W T5 tube is approx. 50mm shorter than the Juwel 45W lamp. Never mind, just a few more holes to fill. :( but at least then I'll only be paying the £3-£4 for standard T5 lamps. Lovely jubbly. :lol:
Thanks.

Chris
 

Steve Smith

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I've not replaced the ballast, but I had to re-seal my light unit on a second hand rio I bought several years back. The top section comes away from the \_/ shaped bit. You'll probably need to run a razor/sharp knife down the seam. You'll need to re-seal it with aquarium silicone though when you're done.

Thought about getting a 100cm luminaire?

Also, 39w T5s are a little shorter than 30w T8's - 39w is approx 86cm while the T8s are 90cm. Worth baring in mind, incase you end up with slightly dark spots at the ends of your tank, and also that you'll probably have to mod your light unit, and be left with holes where the old T8 light sockets where...
 

GreenNeedle

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SteveUK said:
Also, 39w T5s are a little shorter than 30w T8's - 39w is approx 86cm while the T8s are 90cm.

Still fresh from correcting this ;) on TFF earlier today :)

39W is T5HO. T5 is actually 21W

As an example of 863mm (ish) tubes:
T12 - 900mm - 30W
T8 - 900mm - 30W
T5 - 863mm - 21W
T5HO - 863mm - 39W

Some choices there but I guess you will be after T5 or T5HO so you don't have to do a complete overhaul.

AC
 

CeeJay

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Hi SteveUK.
Looks like we were typing at the same time. :rolleyes:
SteveUK said:
Thought about getting a 100cm luminaire?
Bit tricky due to the tanks location, it's in an alcove that has an arch that starts just above the Rio so tricky to suspend anything there. The arch is part of the house structure so I won't be modifying that! :lol:

Also, my tank came with the T5's as it's not that old and I had figured that I would have to move the existing lampholders anyway. No dramas, just a bit of additional DIY. :D

SuperColey1
My research suggests that the 39W T5HO is 849mm from here http://www.lampspecs.co.uk/Light-Bulbs- ... l-White_14 or have I missed something :?
The next one up is 1149mm long which are too long for the Rio 180.

Thanks very much for the input. That's what I love about this forum, everyone's willing to help and it is very much appreciated by me. :D :D :D
Thanks to you all.

Chris
 

GreenNeedle

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different retailers use different measurements :) Have to be careful

We are talking the same tube here ;) 849mm tube, 863mm inc. pins

AC
 

CeeJay

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Hi SuperColey1.
SuperColey1 said:
We are talking the same tube here 849mm tube, 863mm inc. pins
Glad we got that cleared up. :D
What I will say though, is when I was an apprentice electrician (many moons ago) I was taught that fluorescent tube lengths should not include the pins. Shame the retailers don't all use one dimension or the other.
Thanks anyway.

Chris.
 

altaaffe

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Got these guys on my favourites now thanks to your legwork :thumbup:

Had both of my 2x 39W luminaires blow their ballasts within a week of each other (probably why they were reduced when I originally bought them).

Repaired one this week with a new ballast from National lamps, perfect.
 
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