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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok, I'm getting close to having my new DIY canopy done! I'm curious though, is putting glass over your tank really necessary? What is the purpose of having a glass top. Mainly to prevent evaporation? Keep out heat from the lights? Keep moisture from the lights?

Would like eveyone's 2 cents before I take the time put build in a glass top to my canopy!!!

g
 

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The few main reasons for me, and probably most others, is to slow evaporation, keep jumpers in, and to act as a safeguard against others who might unwittingly add something to the air or directly into the tank that can do serious damage (if the tank has a wood canopy already then that's not such an issue). In a plant-only tank, evaporation is probably the main reason.

I don't think it has much effect on temperature from light, if anything it probably traps heat as well as partially cancels out the cooling effect of evaporation.

Incidentally, I have a new theory that my glass covers are the root of my GDA problem, ever since noticing that GDA is growing in the large droplets hanging from the cover and falling into the tank. Seems the glass and the algae came around in the same time period. :-k
 

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Glass is not necessary except for evaporation and jumpers. If you build any type of canopy lighting that covers the tank you needn't worry about jumpers. I have no glass over the tank that is shown even though I have 4 fully grown SAE's.
 

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I built a canopy and do not have glass underit.

Keep one thing in mind if your running high powered lights youn will need to vent the top...I had to add 4 12volt computer fans because the CF's increased the tank water temp by 10 degrees...

John
 

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Glass is not necessary except for evaporation and jumpers. If you build any type of canopy lighting that covers the tank you needn't worry about jumpers. I have no glass over the tank that is shown even though I have 4 fully grown SAE's.
Your tank looks great by the way...

John
 

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I have glass just because I don't want water near the electricity!

I also have open slats on the top ala ah supply's design and this negates the need for fans. There is plenty of ventilation. The sound of NO fans is delightful.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I built a canopy and do not have glass underit.

Keep one thing in mind if your running high powered lights youn will need to vent the top...I had to add 4 12volt computer fans because the CF's increased the tank water temp by 10 degrees...

John
John,

Yes, I'm putting 3 small computer fans in the top. I'm building just about everything you can imagine into this canopy. Moon lights, I'm putting the in-wall timers so I can have the lights on a timer, but when I want to override, I just hit the button.

g
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I have glass just because I don't want water near the electricity!

I also have open slats on the top ala ah supply's design and this negates the need for fans. There is plenty of ventilation. The sound of NO fans is delightful.
Vancat,

I was wondering, my back is completely open, plus I was going to put vents in the top. I work on computers for a living so I did get ultra silent fans, but I was wondering if I needed them at all. The ballasts are under the aquarium so the heat is not to bad.

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I don't think you do!
I used this model. There are open slats on the top. If yours is open in the back too, that's even better! No ballasts, even better! No need for fans, patch.
penny
 

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PS as far as the glass goes, in addition to protecting the lights, it keeps the evaporation down and the fish in!

My opinion is no fans needed but yes to glass.
 

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One piece of advise

If your going to build a top and have glass think it through completely.. If you can design it in a way to open the entire lid it will be much easier to do trimming, feeding and general maintance...

Do not ask how I know this...lol...

John
 

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I had two 1/4" panes cut, each are half the length of the tank and fit in side by side, I can lift one side and set it on top of the other to work on one side of the tank at a time. One of the sides has a corner cut-out for filter pipes. You can buy the little plastic All-Glass Versa-top handles that stick on with double sided tape, or in my case I use the bracket w/ suction cups from an old Jager heater as a handle.
 

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Well, a good reason to put glass on top is that you will lose a lot of heat from evaporation meaning the heater will go on a lot more often raising your electric bill. I would estimate your heater will be on at least 2x more with no cover, and possibly more if there are any air currents near the tank (helps evaporation and heat loss).
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Yes, actually what is going to be neat about this canopy is the whole thing is going to be on hinges. When I flip it up, lights, timers, etc will all flip up. Even the glass will be built in if I decide to put a glass top on.

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The need for a glass top for the tank is dependent upon the type of lights used, the location & type of the tank, and the tank fauna's propensity to escape.

If the tanks lights are on tank top stand, or hung type a glass top is necessary to enclose your tanks top for prevention of introduction of foreign objects, and to prevent any of the tanks inmates trying to escape the tank's confines. :D

If the tank is located in a place where the tanks temperature is difficult to maintain above the normal ambient temperature, a glass top is indicated and the contrary is also true - where the ambient temperature tends to be higher than that of the tank, a glass top is contra-indicated. :cool:

Tanks with hoods which are capable in preventing any introduction of foreign objects, or escapees from the tank, necessarily would not need a glass top for any other purpose than preventing fast evaporation. Tanks without such hoods would naturally need either a net or a glass top, especially if its fauna are escape artists. ;)
 

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I bet a lot of us glass cover folks started after we found a valuable or beloved fish dried up on the floor. :eek:

Also with big tanks, evaporation is a big deal when one inch equals 5, 10 or even more gallons you have to add back every few days. The cover pretty much eradicates the need for top-offs if you do weekly changes, or else it can take as long as two weeks or so to lose an inch, depending on the amount of ventilation.
 

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I really like my glass tops. When I got my 75 gal all the girl did was just have the glass. I made my own lid for it and it is secured down using the center brace.

When I made my DIY HD light fixture I measured so that the lights sit on top of the back glass and the front two pieces can still be lifted up on hinges for feeding and water changes.

I also have my ballasts and all the wiring in the light fixture so the glass works well. I mounted switches in mine to turn on the tow 48' bulbs and then I used two 24" bulbs that I had laying around for my bursts. I also have a switch mounted for my moon lights. I used stainless steel round vents from a boat shop to vent the hood. The only thing I need to do is set up a timer.


Matt
 

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jaidexl makes a good point. I lost 5 guppies last week when I forgot to put the cover on over night. They decided to take up base jumping from the tank. All dried up on the carpet :(
 
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