View Full Version : How often do you replace bulbs in your light strip?

11-08-2010, 05:34 PM
I am noticing that my the lights in my tank are not as bright as they used to be. The bulbs are still lighting up but I am wondering if they are losing their efficiency. I've had them for about two years now without replacing them.

How often should I replace bulbs?

11-08-2010, 05:50 PM
I reaplace mine around 8 months.

11-08-2010, 05:55 PM
Well, I guess I am overdue.

11-08-2010, 06:03 PM
It can be a personal preferance as well. A friend of mine changes her lights the same week each year. I personally do not like the loss of light quality as I don't like the look of it and I have the minimum light levels for my plants.

Based on the light you have and the plant requirements for your tank, you could be fine. Just something else to consider if $$$ could be a issue for you replacing the bulbs

11-08-2010, 06:42 PM
$$$$ is pretty tight right now. That is the reason why I haven't replaced them. Fortunately, none of my plants require high lighting and all of my plants are still growing with nice color, so I guess I can handle the lack of light for viewing my fish for now.

11-08-2010, 06:53 PM
The primary issue is not the loss of intensity as it is the break down and change of the lumens. The bulb will not be putting out the same spectrum of lighting as it once was the older it becomes. Some bulbs "last" longer than others before they start to deteriorate in quality. A safe bet is to change T8s, PCs, CFLs every 6-9months and HOT5s every 9-12months....but regardless you are overdue for a replacement. Also you dont have to buy expensive bulbs from your LFS, look at large chain hardware stores...or online retailers as these offer much lower prices.

11-08-2010, 07:07 PM
I didn't know that you could purchase T5's at hardware stores. I've only purchased my bulbs online. Guess I'll be doing some pricing at Lowes this week.

11-08-2010, 11:11 PM
Maybe twice a year, varies though. I'm in the hobby on a budget and bulbs can quickly blow a budget out of the water. I have a friend who I borrow a par meter from to see how well the bulbs are working.