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low tech cheap lighting - guide

3702 Views 14 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  colinsk
Ok I promised before to couple of people that i ll make this guide . This morning finally got my hands on a camera and took some pics that will help me explain whats being done.
This is converting ur original hood into more powerfull one :

1.Disconnect power and remove original guts from the hood. ( save the screws)
2.Cut the wires as close to the original balast as possible so that you are left with enough wiring for ur new fixture.It should look like that :

and here is close up on the wires left . U will need couple more 5 inch long wires to connect both screw in type of sockets together.:

4. install reflector . i used aluminum foil which isnt great but works somewhat . if u can get real reflector i am sure it would work much better .
anywyas mine looks like that :

this is after i cut the foil so there can be some air circulation.\:

5.You gonna need two of this :
I got those in home depot . Make sure they got a screw holder .
another pic of it :

6.Connect the swith wires in series with power wires ( one of the switch wires together with one of the power wires. use wire nut as shown :

7.Connect the two sockets in parrellel and hook up the power to it as shown :
8. screw in the sockets using saved screws :

and insulate the connections with electrical tape :

9. screw the bulbs in and test it :)

I am using one 27 watts and one 32 wattas bulb and have no issue with heat .

Please if you dont have any technical experiance DO NOT DO it yourself .
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I also did this same thing with my 20g high. I got 3 26w 6500k Lights into my hood for only $6 and the price of the bulbs ($12 for 4) So I now have 78w over my tank where I had 15w before and it only cost me $18.
(criminalhate) where do you get $12 for 4 -- 6500K light bulbs? Thanks.
I got them from lowes
The brand is Bright Effects Daylight
which is rated at 6500K 26w each
with an output of 1600 Lumens

Here's a link to the same ones but only in singles I got a pack of 4 at my local store
Ok that's the wrong ones I'll keep looking to see if I can find the Daylight bulbs like I bought.
Nice write up!

Just a few comments though. Incandescent fixtures are not suitable for growing plants since they don't produce a lot of light, despite the wattage. Fluorescent and compact fluorescent bulbs put out far more light per watt than incandescent bulbs do and are thus suitable for growing plants.

Also, I was wondering why you wired the bulbs in series? Wouldn't this make the second bulb dimmer? I'm not a hundred percent sure, bur I think lighting is always done in parallel.
I know I am using CF replacement bulbs (screw in type) and I believe the OP is also. Also incandescent are not unsuitable if using the correct bulbs but they are inefficient so you would need twice the amount of incandescent to equal a CF bulb.

I know most wiring for lights should be done in parallel (I did in my hood) but I do not believe they will cause the light to be dimmer but I do know if the one bulb goes out both will go out (look at old fashion/cheap christmas lights).
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