Energy Saving Lightbulbs

Discussion in 'Lighting' started by dkm, 6 Aug 2009.

  1. dkm

    dkm Member

    Messages:
    208
    Hi,

    Firstly I would like to say hello to everyone on the forum. This is my first post.

    I am about to set up my first freshwater aquarium. My background is 5 years of reef keeping. I am now setting up a planted discus aquarium.

    I have been deliberating over how to light my new aquarium (a Wave station 120x50x50). I have obtained some Silver bresslein MV pendants and think they look fantastic. Right I was going to just run two with each set at 80w but after looking at the units they have standard ceramic 27mm Eddison Screw fittings and was contemplating loosing the external ballasts and putting some Daylight (6500K) Energy saving mini spiral bulbs in them! You can get these bulbs in 11w, 15w, and 18w which equates to 60w, 75w and 100w respectively. According to manufacturers info.

    I have tested one in the bresslein pendant and works well. Nice white light as well.

    Now has anyone tried this or does anyone see any reason why it cannot be done? Would it restrict what plants I can have?

    The reason I am thinking of doing this is:

    big electricity saving
    cheaper bulbs
    lower heat emission from the bulbs
    higher kelvin rating than MV bulbs

    Any advice would be much appreciated.

    Cheers

    Dave
     
  2. ceg4048

    ceg4048 Expert/Global Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    8,952
    Location:
    Chicago, USA
    Hi,
    Welcome to the forum. :D These all sound like pretty good reasons to me! I can see any reason why it shouldn't work. :thumbup:

    Cheers,
     
  3. Dan Crawford

    Dan Crawford Founder Staff Member

    Messages:
    3,266
    Location:
    Daventry, Northants
    Thats a great idea, i had some MVs and whilst they worked very well and certainly grew my plants, i would have preferred a whiter light. Shame i got rid of them now :rolleyes:
     
  4. Themuleous

    Themuleous Member

    Messages:
    4,126
    Location:
    Aston, Oxfordshire
    I've not really heard of how people get on with energy saving bulbs. Isn't there an issue with them not giving off enough light? I.e. they are energy saving for a reason?

    Just a thought, dont want to rain on your parade :)

    Sam

    PS - if you do use them, please let us know how you get on, any way to save money it fine by me! :lol:
     
  5. dkm

    dkm Member

    Messages:
    208
    Thank guys for the responses. Much appreciated.

    Going to do some more experimenting with them. Will post up my findings. Right where can i get a par meter from?!

    Dave
     
  6. JamesC

    JamesC Member

    Messages:
    1,276
    Location:
    Bexley, Kent
    I tried an energy saving spiral bulb a while ago and found it to be rubbish. This is the one I used - http://www.lampspecs.co.uk/Light-Bu...aylight/Low-Energy-Spiral-30W-ES-865-Prolight. Gave a very green light and produced poor growth with very little pearling. Replaced the 30W bulb with 2x 11W Arcpods which gave much better results.

    Some people do use them and seem quite happy so it could be a case of trying different ones to find the best one.

    James
     
  7. milla

    milla Member

    Messages:
    241
    Location:
    Leeds
    You could look at the energy saving Grow lights / envirolights used in hydroponics. These are standard es fitting and range from 50W to 300W.
     
  8. dkm

    dkm Member

    Messages:
    208
    Interesting thanks JamesC. Going to try different ones. Thanks for sharing your experience. It is going to be trial and error!

    Will take a look at them milla, but think it might be defeating the object ie. lower power usage, heat etc,

    Cheers

    Dave
     
  9. milla

    milla Member

    Messages:
    241
    Location:
    Leeds
    Reason i suggested higher wattage is because i have a small 10G tank 45*45*45cm tank with hood by interpet that comes with 2*15w energy saving daylight bulbs. I use this tank as a shrimp tank, 30w over a 10G tank is 3wpg so going on the numbers you would assume the tank was highlight especially if you believe the hype about been equivalent to a bulb of 75w. This means i should have the equivaqlent of 150w over 10 gallon so 15wpg. Yet in reality all i can grow in this tank is moss and slowly at that.
     
  10. JamesC

    JamesC Member

    Messages:
    1,276
    Location:
    Bexley, Kent
    On smaller tanks the WPG rule doesn't work very well which means that you need more WPG than you would need on a larger tank to get the same light conditions. Those comparisons you quote are comparing fluorescent lighting with incandescent lighting which is notoriously poor. As we don't use incandescent lighting on our tanks it's of little use to use.

    James
     
  11. milla

    milla Member

    Messages:
    241
    Location:
    Leeds
    Fair point James

    I suppose the point i was trying to make was that i do not think that 2 pendants each with a 18w energy saving bulb over a 120*45*45 tank would produce enough light to grow anything.
     
  12. JamesC

    JamesC Member

    Messages:
    1,276
    Location:
    Bexley, Kent
    Oh, yes I missed that and I think you would be right as well. Two bulbs on that size tank would be nowhere near enough light. People who have used energy saving lights that I have seen have used about 8 on a tank that size.

    James
     
  13. dkm

    dkm Member

    Messages:
    208
    Food for thought.

    Well I dont really believe that the manufacturers claims about how much a energy saving bulb is equivalent to but thought it might be worth experimenting with. The only way of knowing how much light they give off in comparison to MV is to measure the par. Milla I think you may be right. That's why I am asking to get other peoples experiences. Cheers.

    So it looks like I would need a lot more bulbs in peoples opinions / experience. Ok might have to stick with MV but will still experiment before the tank is set up. Fortunately the MV bulbs I have are very white burning.

    Now does anyone know how the law is going to affect the use of MV bulbs? I have heard that very soon you wont be able to get them any more! Not really a problem since I have managed to obtain 20 MV bulbs. But will I be able to use them?

    Thanks for the input.

    Dave
     
  14. JamesC

    JamesC Member

    Messages:
    1,276
    Location:
    Bexley, Kent
    I heard too that they were going to put a stop to mercury vapour bulbs, but have now idea when or if it is indeed still going ahead. If you already have spare bulbs then you have no worries, that is until you run out.

    Even fluorescent tubes contain mercury vapour and shouldn't actually be chucked in the bin when disposing of, but be properly recycled. Who does though?

    James
     
  15. Themuleous

    Themuleous Member

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    4,126
    Location:
    Aston, Oxfordshire
    Me!!! :D :D :D
     
  16. JamesC

    JamesC Member

    Messages:
    1,276
    Location:
    Bexley, Kent
    I'm impressed. Well done Sam :clap:

    James
     
  17. fourmations

    fourmations Member

    Messages:
    201
    hi there

    im no expert but have read a lot

    I have read that "restrike" is a problem with spiral bulbs
    (ie the spiral section just shine into each other if that makes sense)

    so thats why tubes are preffered in general

    just what i read...
    let us know how you get on

    rgds

    4
     
  18. dkm

    dkm Member

    Messages:
    208
    This is what I have found out so far:

    'Frosted bulbs banned from 1st September 2009
    Once the Directive is in force and existing stocks have been exhausted, retailers in the EU will no longer be able to supply bulbs with a frosted, opal, pearl or other opaque finish unless they are category A energy savers. With current technology, this effectively means that the only bulbs which will be available will use compact fluorescent technology. Please note that this does NOT apply to directional (reflector) lamps such as spotlights nor does it apply to most types of striplight. Some special purpose lamps such as oven lamps are also excluded. Many types of household bulbs such as candles, golfball, globes and standard light bulbs as shown here will however be banned.

    Phasing out of clear bulbs
    Recognising that it is more difficult to replace clear bulbs with energy saving versions, the Directive provides for a banning of the least energy efficient clear bulbs in categories F and G and a phased removal of clear bulbs which are less efficient than category C. This effectively means that only the most efficient types of halogen energy saver bulbs will be able to meet the new requirements. The phase-out is as follows:-

    # All clear bulbs must be category E or better from 1st September 2009
    # 100W bulbs and above must be category C or better from 1st September 2009
    # 75W bulbs and above must be category C or better from 1st September 2010
    # 60W bulbs and above must be category C or better from 1st September 2011
    # All clear bulbs must be category C or better from 1st September 2012'

    This is an exert from http://www.lightbulbs-direct.com/articl ... -bulb-ban/

    Then again things may have changed since this has been written.

    Dave
     
  19. dkm

    dkm Member

    Messages:
    208
    If this is being brought in to force I cannot see how a 125w MV bulb will reach a cat C rating. Therefore will not be available after 1st Sept 09. IMO

    Dave
     
  20. Sarutobi

    Sarutobi Newly Registered

    Messages:
    13
    Location:
    Okinawa Islands, Japan
    So I'm guessing if you are going to get energy saving bulbs, they are fluorescent light tubes?? like T8 or T5 long tubes like that?? Do you have a metal halide cover so then you can put in a bulb like that that can shine light over the tank? I don't really know if energy saving bulbs are good. It might depend on how well they work out. I don't use energy saving bulbs. Mine are T8 and only about 20 Watts. I want stronger wattage for my 29 gallon tank like 30W 10,000k something like that.

    Are the energy saving bulbs working well?
     

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