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home depot metal halide

Home depot metal halide

Ok, tell me if this would work. My friend purchased a metal halide fixture from Lowes over the summer to light her backyard during a party. It doesnt look too different from the ones we pay HUNDREDS for that are for our tanks. She paid around $10-$20 for this 150 watt fixture. It ran an internal ballast and the only thing I could see that sets it apart is the quality of the bulb inside.
So, if I purchase a 14K bulb, suspend it over my tank, why should I pay a couple hundred bucks for one if I can get it at any local hardware store for less? Is there something about it Im not seeing that makes it less safe or different? Let me know, cause Im tired of PC bulbs causing algae blooms in my 29. I just had to do a water change, drop Chemi Clean in and lights out for 3 days! Im done with PC all together!

(ps. I did check my water parms, they are fine, its the lights)

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Current Tank Info: 125 Gallon Reef

I dont see a problem if you can find them. I recently completed a 125gal diy stand, canopy, lighting, sump, fuge and even drilled the tank! Man that took a long time to complete. I too ran the isles of the hardware stores for lighting. At first I found what looked like a MH but turned out to be halogen lighting at 14k. you can use this option just be prepared to change the bulb more often.
Andrew

I have PC lighting too. I want to get some sps coral for my aquarium, but the
PC bulbs don’t cut it. MH brake the bank, and T5s are a bit to expensive as well.

I would like to know if you can use hardware store MH.

If, that is they are safe.

I can’t say with certainty. But as a good rule of thumb, if no one is using it, it’s because it won’t cut it. Given how many broke reefers there are (such as myself ) the fact that none are using these lights should give you a sign. But this may be a phenomenon, so there is no harm in trying it out.

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Current Tank Info: 30G Nano Rimless

blennymower
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You won’t find any halide fixture for $10-20, most likely it was halogen which is cheap.
You can take one of the halogen floodlights and gut the fixture putting in DE halide holders a new ballast and bulb and use them, but they you’re spending close to the cost of a new fixture.

Nothing wrong with MH from hardware stores. I’ve been using metal halide for over 10 yrs on reef tanks and i have never bought one from a pet shop. My first one was an outdoor MH fixture from the hardware store. ( think it cost me about $60) Then i bought some parts and made a retrofit one which i still use today.( parts including ballast cost me less than $100) You want somethings that safe and works and looks reasonable good.

buffalo123
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You can definitely use a HD or Lowes MH fixture. There are only 3 types of MH ballasts – electronic, mag probe start and mag pulse start (HQI). Check which ballast it’s made with and go from there.

Current Tank Info: 125 reef

Most outer MH fixtures are regular magnetic ballasts. You can order the ballast just about any place online from $50-70 and the socket for $5-8, build your own reflector and mount it any way you like would be my suggestion. The MH fixtures at HD or Lowes will cost about the same but the aquarium bulb might be a little too long for the fixture (get the bulb before buying the fixture if your going this route). The fixture also tends to trap a lot more heat then a DIY fixture because it is enclosed.

OceanLandlord
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one of the reasons people dont go that route is the same reason people really dont use the old gull wing style reflector anymore. you can get better results out of a well designed reflector running a 250 watt bulb than a garbage reflector running a 400 watt bulb. so in the end it will eventually equal out.

Metal Halide Fixture from Lowes, Home Depot or Tru Value? Lighting, Filtration & Other Equipment

Standard HID’s from Lowes/Home Depot

I see standard metal halide and high pressure sodium bulbs made by Phillips and Sylvania at Lowes and HD for much cheaper prices than the hydro stores. I realize that the hydro specific bulbs have added phosphors,etc., which supposedly make them better for plants, but for the substantial price difference I am considering trying the standard bulbs. Any advice or experiences with these bulbs?

Comments (12)

disinmtl

I am a rookie, but I bought a ballast and 1000w hps at an electrical supply house (for electricians), I paid 125 for the ballast and 30 for the bulb, had to do the wiring myself. I grow lettuce and tomatoes indoor, have many problems b/c I am a rookie, but they grow like mad and set fruit under that light. My experience has been great with the light. I’ll send you pics and how to’s for the wiring if you want. Note, I don’t think home depot carries what you want.

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ramsay22

Thanks. They have the bulbs, but not the ballasts, Around $25-30 for 400W metal halide or HPS

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rokal

The initial lumens and lumen maintenance on the MH bulbs from Home Depot is quite bad. These bulbs are often universal burn which doesn’t help either.

Look into pulse start metal halide. You can order a bulb online for about $30. You can order a pulse start ballast kit for about $55.

Google “pulse start metal halide” or “pulse strike metal halide” for more info.

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Karen Pease

Lumens are not what you care about when growing plants. Lumens are based on a scale that’s exactly the opposite of what plants are interested in. The lumen scale weighs green extra high and counts red and blue very little. Plants do little with green light but are very efficient with red and blue light. For example, low-pressure sodium bulbs are the highest luminous efficiency bulbs available. But grow plants with them and they’ll end up chlorotic; it’s all yellow-orange light.

In general: if you want your plants to leaf up, go for the highest kelvin temperature you can. If you want them to fruit, go for the lowest kelvin temperature you can. If you use HID/MH/HPS, invest in an electronic ballast; it’s well worth it. CFLs aren’t quite as efficient as HIDs, but they do work if you get enough of them, as powerful sa you can. Lower up-front costs, certainly.

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garysgarden

I’m not sure if there’s much difference in the bulbs between the two. I’d say the plants probably don’t care much either, but that’s just my guess.

I’m actually kind of surprised that lermer hasn’t found this thread yet. He lives for the opportunity to say “ceramic metal halide”.

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Dirt_Wrangler

Im currently using a standard sylvania 400w mh from the home depot. no noteworthy decrease in performance from the pricey eye bulb it replaced (due to budget, of course )

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sappytreetree

They work fine how do you think people found out that hps worked so well to grow plants buy using the orginnal ones from home depot Ive grown with a hortlox side by side with a off name brand from home depot and saw very little deffernce

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TheMasterGardener1

You need to get a grow light 600w because it puts out more lums per watt then any other watt light. Even with a 600w hps system you will only get about 25 sqft of grow area so keep that in mind.

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homehydro

Well a 1000 watt will put out more lumens than a 600 watt light will, and a 1500 watt light will put out even more than that. I don’t understand why you would recommend (say “You need to get”) a 600 watt over a 400 watt when there is no mention of the type of plants being grown, nor any mention of the square feet of grow area. At least in the resent posts from this year, and not the ones from 2009.

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TheMasterGardener1

1000watt= 150000 lumens at most. 150 lumens per watt
600=95000. 158.333 lumens per watt

Doesnt sound like much?

2 600w hps= 190000 lumens
1 1000w hps= 150000

for 200 more watts you gain 40000 lumens

Note: a 250w hps putts out 28500 lumens

Do the math.
O wow this post is old.

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homehydro

First there are can be vast differences between manufactures, so those numbers might be right from one manufactures, that doesn’t mean they are even close for another. Second even if someone winds up getting bulbs that match those figures, that doesn’t mean that a 600 watt bulb, or multiple 600 watt bulbs are the best choice for every situation. Other considerations include heat buildup, electrical costs to run the wattage, equipment costs (especial the ballast), the actual amount of space and plants being grown, the type of plants and the light requirements of the plant etc. etc. etc..

So to simply say that a 600 watt bulb is the best value, and bulb to get for every situation is a bit off. Even if every bulb manufacturer had the same specs on their bulbs as all the rest of the manufactures in the planet (witch simply isn’t the case).

Those extra 200 watts equal 1/3 more electrical cost as well, not to mention the added electrical cost for more ventilation because there will be 1/3 more heat from it also. If the extra wattage isn’t needed, that’s wasted money, as well as wasted lumens in my eyes.

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TheMasterGardener1

Fact is a 1000w system is as much as a 600w system up front cost. 600w cost that much for a reason.

10-600w hps= 950000 lumens and 6000 watts
6-1000w hps= 900000 lumens and 6000 watts

Not that much but still substantial.

I am just stating that 600w lights save on power. A 1000w is an american thing lol (less upfront cost). Go look into europe and see what they use it is mostly 600w for a reason it saves power. more lums per watt.
Look at 2-1000w vs 3-600.
[email protected]=285000 lums
[email protected]=300000 lums

Now that I look at that. It is not much considering you to buy all those 600w hps systems.

I see standard metal halide and high pressure sodium bulbs made by Phillips and Sylvania at Lowes and HD for much cheaper prices than the hydro stores. I realize that the hydro specific bulbs have added phosphors,etc., which supposedly make them better for plants, but for the substantial price diffe…