Lighting is a part of setting up a Biorb or Biube tank to which many people do not give sufficient attention. All lights are created equal, right? Well, with fish tanks, light is more than just a way to view the fish. Light actually affects the temperature and even the algae growth in the tank.
There are different types of lighting you can choose from, for your fish tank. Starting with LED lighting, these bulbs rarely require replacement. The light from an LED lamp is usually dim enough that it can be used overnight. Nocturnal fish will feel at home with the night-like atmosphere. Lunar LED lights mimic the look of moonlight over the water.
Fluorescent bulbs are perhaps the most common lighting used in fish tanks. They will not generally cause a problem with heat, and can be found readily when replacement is required. Fluorescent lights, like LEDs, save energy over other types of bulbs.
However, fluorescent lights can encourage algae growth. Those tank owners who leave their aquarium lights on may be surprised that only days after cleaning, they are noticing algae spots and murkier water. It is recommended that this type of lighting be turned on only for the periods of time it is used and left off most of the day.
Finally, specialty lighting is available for those who want to actually house a miniature reef inside their aquarium. Metal halide aquarium lighting provides superior intensity for maintaining coral, than LED or fluorescent lights. Coral requires so much light, that owners should plan on one bulb for every 4 square feet of tank water.
With metal halide aquarium lights, the heat produced can significantly raise the temperature of the water. So, using a fan system designed for tanks with this lighting will help. Also, turning the lights off for the recommended 12 hours per day (or night) can help keep the tank from overheating. Planning the right lights for your tank can save you a great deal of cleaning, frustration, and expense.