Lighting for the aquarium – how to choose the right one?

Plants need light for photosynthesis and animals feel well. Both allow for proper development. That is why it is so important to choose the right lights for your home tank. Are LED lamps an aquarium a good idea? The right bulbs for the aquarium (or rather lamps) are the basis of animal welfare. Check what lighting for the aquarium is worth choosing so that the fish develop properly. Read our article!

What is aquarium lighting needed for?

Appropriate lamps for the aquarium are needed not only to illuminate and display the flora and fauna that is in the tank. Good lighting for the aquarium is essential for plants and animals to feel comfortable and develop properly. Natural light, although desirable, cannot guarantee a proper environment in the aquarium. It is especially difficult in the autumn and winter season, when the sun is getting smaller every day. In addition, the basis is lighting with a certain intensity and composition, and this can only be guaranteed by a properly selected lamp.

Aquarium lighting – basic issues

So what kind of lighting should you choose and what should you remember when buying? Before we get down to that, it is worth knowing the needs of aquarium flora and fauna regarding the supply of light.

Requirements of plants and animals

Different species of fish and aquatic plants require different types of lighting. There are organisms that do not need much of it and feel best in partial shade (aquarium mosses or catfish fish). Then it’s best to look for subdued light. However, other species may require more intense fluorescent lamps. Too little illumination of the aquarium will cause them to develop slower or even start to die out. Therefore, before buying, it is worth considering what organisms will be in your aquarium and choose the right light on this basis.

How much time to irradiate the aquarium?

The time of exposure to the aquarium depends on its type:

  • from 10 to 14 h for classic tanks;
  • 14-16 h in tropical aquariums.

Both too little irradiation and too much light can make creatures feel worse and plants may not grow properly. The type of fluorescent lamp used also plays a significant role.

Lighting for the aquarium – how to prevent light loss?

In order for the aquarium irradiation to proceed correctly, several important aspects should be taken into account. First of all, you should remove any contaminants from the water on a regular basis. It is equally important to wash the fluorescent lamps themselves. Why? They become very dusty over time, which limits the flow of light into the tank. In addition, fluorescent lamps wear out, so they should be replaced once a year. You should also take care of the appropriate distance between the lamp and the water surface. Too large “gap” will cause the light to be insufficiently dispersed and will not reach the bottom of the aquarium.

Securing the lamp for the aquarium

Before starting the aquarium lighting, you must make sure that all equipment is properly protected against getting wet. This also applies to all cables and switches. In addition, you will need a special cover, which, however, should not interfere with, for example, feeding fish.

Which lighting for the aquarium should you choose?

Are you looking for aquarium lighting suitable for all organisms, which at the same time will be similar to natural light? It certainly won’t be easy. Nevertheless, it is an effort necessary for the proper development of home aquarium life.

What are the most popular types of aquarium lighting

The fluorescent lamps most often used by aquarists are:

  • they are available in many colors;
  • they give even illumination;
  • consume little electricity.

Some, however, are deterred by their prices, so sometimes tungsten lights are still used.

Or maybe LED lighting for the aquarium?

LED aquarium lights are more and more recommended solutions. They have many advantages:

  • they come in different colors of white light (warm, cold and neutral);
  • they can be used both as main and additional lighting;
  • do not heat up;
  • consume little electricity;
  • they are distinguished by a long service life.

You should choose lighting for the aquarium taking into account the type of light that fauna and flora need. It is worth getting acquainted with the offers of aquarium stores and consulting trusted aquarists who will help you choose the right light for your dream tank