Upgrading The Coralife Aqualight Pro 2x150 Halide

Discussion in 'I made this!' started by ReefSparky, Apr 14, 2009.

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  1. tatted4ever

    tatted4ever Clown Trigger

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    do you have any temp problems without a chiller?????
     
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  3. ReefSparky

    ReefSparky Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Now that I've upgraded to dual 250 watters, yes I do. I'm probably peaking at 83-84*F. At night, after lights have been out for at least 8 hours, the lowest the water temp will go is about 79*F. I'm not digging the temperature fluctuations, and I'm confident this is a major contributor to the sub-par growth of my corals.

    I'm not happy dropping $750 on a chiller either, but I decided that if I was "going reef" I was going to do everything right. Unfortunately, a chiller is a necessity. I'll set it for 78 or thereabouts, and that will be one less variable in this huge equasion.

    I spoke to Roger (Tangster) today on the phone, and he confirmed what I was thinking all along. "You can't get too big a chiller." I trust him implicitly--always have. He's a straight shooter and knows his business.

    I could do well with a 1/4 HP JBJ Artica, but I've decided to go with the 1/3 HP model. It'll run less frequently, consume less electricity; and when my wife and I move in a few years, and I upgrade to a 150G or thereabouts, I'll have an ample chiller.
     
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2009
  4. the fisherman

    the fisherman Vlamingii Tang

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    where did you get your reflectors from I want to replace my old for new. I have the 150 w coralife metal halide.
     
  5. ReefSparky

    ReefSparky Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I didn't replace them, fisherman. I used the existing ones. The only components replaced in the project were the ballast, socket ends, and bulbs.

    I had to do a bit of drilling, resizing, and creative wiring, but it got done. Let me know if I can help you in any way. :)
     
  6. Powerman

    Powerman Giant Squid

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    I kept mine at 78, but decided to go to 80. My heater comes on when the lights are off at 79.4. We have had cooler weather this year. It is starting to get hot now and I have been hiiting 82. The max I want to go. So I put my chiller back on. it is a JBJ 75. 1/10 hp.

    So why don't you move your lights up? I was still trying to get away without using my chiller since I need my heater now. the pump for the chiller is another heat input, so I tried running with out for a while. Moving my light up saved me another degree.

    I set my hanging kit to where the legs used to be. I moved it up another 3-4 inches. My lights are 7" off the actuall water level. I like the acsess and I saved some heat. Even with the chiller, it still saves run time. I really like the convienience of my hanging kit.
     
  7. ReefSparky

    ReefSparky Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I'd like to say I'm the sole decision maker in my household, but I'd need my wife's permission to make such a claim. She doesn't like the notion of the tank lighting hanging from the ceiling. I'm happy to say I share her taste there. I find it a cleaner look just having the fixture sitting on the topless tank. Personal preference.

    I use an inline Little Giant pump, and I'm planning on simply placing the chiller inline with the return. Water will come out of the sump, into the Little Giant, in and out of the chiller, and back into the tank. There will be no additional pumps in this build.

    For what it's worth, too, between the actual water level and the legs of the lights, the distance between the glass lenses and the water's surface is about 6".
     
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  9. Powerman

    Powerman Giant Squid

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    cool. And all my pumps are internal. I thought about external. Maybe later. My Mag 7 running the chiller sounds like crap. Even replaced the impeller. Perhaps in the future I will put money into one external. Taking the 9.5 out of the sump might even make the difference for me. I just don't feel like drilling my sump right now.

    At least you have minimized your heat inputs as much as possible.
     
  10. tatted4ever

    tatted4ever Clown Trigger

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    Reason why I asked bout your temps.... Is because I knew you had to been battling keepin temp down. Especially with your upgraded lights on legs and no chiller.

    Ive heard nothing but GREAT things from all my lfs's on the JBJ chillers.

    I have my lights bout 8 inches from water surface. Ive been doing my best to avoid the cost of a chiller. Highest my temps will get is 82. Keep ac running on HOT days. Ive been lucky this year.... Chicago has had the coolest summer since the 1960's :). I know next year Im gonna have to suck it up and invest in a chiller.

    I have multiple fans.... one under each halide..... and one in my sump area. I keep ice paks in the freezer in emergency situations. Like if I ever hit 84. My hard coral dont appreciate hi temps. Earlier this summer I had one crap out on me. Thats when I first posted on heat issue. Remember I had my glass tops on still.... LOL;).

    Hope your lights are treating you well otherwise. I absolutely love mine.

    Still tinkering on the idea on retrofitting for a canopy since Im havin a custom stand built. Thinkin havin a custom canopy done as well.
     
  11. Louis

    Louis Plankton

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    I just did the same thing to my 48" Coralife aqualight pro that had two 150 watt hqi. I will say ur blog was very helpful to me about everything I'm a electrical tech so I knew a good deal about it to. I did put the fan on the actinic an got two lumatek 250 watt ballasts that are dimmable down to 150 watt an actually when installin the sockets for the bulbs i didn't even need to drill or tap anything mounted them right to the same plate I took the 150's socket's off of worked great amazing would like to show some pics . Thanks for the pics
     
  12. ReefSparky

    ReefSparky Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Welcome to 3reef, Louis! I'm glad it worked out for you. Dimmable ballasts are pretty nice. Happy reefing!