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Silly Questions about my new lights


Derbird
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Hello I have finally got my new lights for the reef tank. (dancing)

 

Of course the noobie has some questions. It is a 3 250 MH with T-5 Actincs fixture. At this point I am only planing on using the two end MH lights, total overkill for a 125g tank.

 

Question 1, Do I need special timers, extention cords, circuit breakers to handle this much power or will standard be able to work?

 

Question 2, I hear the ballest will get very hot. Should I worrie about putting it on carpet or near other furniture? I could put a shelf up above the tank if that would be safer.

 

Question 3, I was thinking I should use a different outlet then the rest of the tank is on. Is that a good idea or just parinoid?

 

The new light, it fit in the hood (laugh)

NewLightsinHood.jpg

 

The ballest

NewLightsBallest.jpg

 

Spaz got tired of me fiddling with the tank - random but cute.

TiredPuppy.jpg

 

A huge thank you to Tim at west side for the great deal!

 

Sorry to post so much today, and thank you for any advice

 

Some times I feel (stupid) with this hobby LOL

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Question 1, Do I need special timers, extention cords, circuit breakers to handle this much power or will standard be able to work?

 

Just use quality ones...that are grounded. Most construction grade extention cords will work (like 14 gauge or more), most timers handle up to like 1500-1750 watts, so you should be fine there. Circuit breakers are a different story and variable. Most likely you will be using 15 amp circuits on your plug outlets, it just depends how much load you add to it, as well as what is already on it.

Question 2, I hear the ballest will get very hot. Should I worrie about putting it on carpet or near other furniture? I could put a shelf up above the tank if that would be safer.

 

Ballasts will create heat. Dont fear it igniting anything, but possibly discoloring or melting touchy items. Up on a shelf is preferred.

 

Question 3, I was thinking I should use a different outlet then the rest of the tank is on. Is that a good idea or just parinoid?

 

I do this. I have dedicated circuits for lighting and one for pumps etc. I you have to wire a new circuit, you can get fancier. But like I said before, it depends how much load is going to be on the circuit, as well as what is also on the circuit.

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Don't know the answers to you questions' date=' but Lexie could come play and spaz so he would'nt be bored. Congrats on getting lights :)[/quote']

 

Thank you, I must not read this aloud. If I say Lexie she goes nuts and runs to the door ready to visit.

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watts = volts x amps. 750 watt halides on at 120 volts (outlet) will be 6.25 amps. Most electricians recommend not normally exceeding 3/4 of a breakers capability. so you are almost half of your 15 amp circuit right there. Add some heaters and pumps etc, you will be close, it just depends if you want to hookup a microwave or vacuum on the same circuit it might trip the breaker

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Question 1, Do I need special timers, extention cords, circuit breakers to handle this much power or will standard be able to work?

 

Just use quality ones...that are grounded. Most construction grade extention cords will work (like 14 gauge or more), most timers handle up to like 1500-1750 watts, so you should be fine there. Circuit breakers are a different story and variable. Most likely you will be using 15 amp circuits on your plug outlets, it just depends how much load you add to it, as well as what is already on it.

Question 2, I hear the ballest will get very hot. Should I worrie about putting it on carpet or near other furniture? I could put a shelf up above the tank if that would be safer.

 

Ballasts will create heat. Dont fear it igniting anything, but possibly discoloring or melting touchy items. Up on a shelf is preferred.

 

Question 3, I was thinking I should use a different outlet then the rest of the tank is on. Is that a good idea or just parinoid?

 

I do this. I have dedicated circuits for lighting and one for pumps etc. I you have to wire a new circuit, you can get fancier. But like I said before, it depends how much load is going to be on the circuit, as well as what is also on the circuit.

 

Thank you for the quick responce. I will put up a shelf. I really have no way of doing it on a seprate circuit. Older house and a rental so no rewireing allowed, but would a different outlet then the tank help. I am an electrical idiot, its worse then my spelling.

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As long as the diffrent outle tis on a diffrent breaker then yes but if it is on the same breaker it wont make a diffrence =) I f you are not sure run a test witha night light and turn off the breaker your tank is on with the light plugged into the outher out let if the light stays on you are good.

Hope that helps.

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I have had to install 2x 20 amps circuit breakers for my lights to run. And I still need to be careful on how I bring up the system due to the start up load.

 

I have had some people tell me they did this. One person said their breaker kept tripping so they put in a 20 amp breaker where their 15 was the kept popping. I DO NOT recommend this. The wire that goes from the breaker to the outlet is a certain size based off of that breaker. 15 amp uses smaller wire gauge than 20 and above, therefore, if you replace the 15 amp with a 20 and dont change the wire size, the heat can build in the wire and that is what causes fires. If you increase breaker size you have to also increase wire size.

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Humm...

 

It sounds like I just might have a problem with the electrical. This is a old house so the living room is one circuit that currently has the TV / DVD / Satalite, the tank and a lamp. Using two of the MH........ I'll give it a try and if not I'll have to run a extention cord to the next room. Thie things we do for our little friends.

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I have had some people tell me they did this. One person said their breaker kept tripping so they put in a 20 amp breaker where their 15 was the kept popping. I DO NOT recommend this. The wire that goes from the breaker to the outlet is a certain size based off of that breaker. 15 amp uses smaller wire gauge than 20 and above' date=' therefore, if you replace the 15 amp with a 20 and dont change the wire size, the heat can build in the wire and that is what causes fires. If you increase breaker size you have to also increase wire size.[/quote']

 

I would like to add one thing to that. I had it professionally installed. I didnt replace the 15 amp breakers with 20 amp ones

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Do you have a garbage disposal? That is usually a 15 amp circuit that is for the disposal alone.

 

No unfortunatly we don't. I don't think I should add too much more to the kitchen load. I have the freshwater tank on that one. No outlet where I wanted it so I ran a extention cord around that wall. If I have to run another one it would have to be from a bedroom or the dinning room but neither is a great option. The cord would be a bit in the way.

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