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Wednesday, 19 December 2012

How To: Replace Juwel T5 Tubes

A quick guide to show how this is done, not that its difficult in the first place.

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Wait for your lighting cycle to end and the bulbs to cool, or catch them before your cycle starts.

Remove the flaps then lift the whole unit off the top of the aquarium…

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At this point i would say remove the reflectors, BUT STOP! Don’t remove them before you remove the bulbs. Once you have done so, you can slide the tubes out from the clips.

Why am i saying this?

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I am saying it because i had a 100% failure ratio with the clips where one side snapped off, and i wasn't being aggressive with the tubes either, just gently pried them out.

The plastic appears to have gone very hard and brittle, perhaps from the heat, perhaps from UV degradation (if that's possible from T5 tubes?). Either way I'm a little miffed and the usual high quality Juwel standards seem to have slipped a little bit.

I did try to fix them with a dab of superglue, which held them for so long before eventually failing again. Thankfully the clips can be purchased separately for a few pounds which i will obtain some as soon as possible, for now though I'm reflector-less!

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Your reflectors will most likely be very grubby, this is an opportunity to give them a clean and back to full potential.

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A blob of washing up liquid and a dish sponge bring them up fantastic, no need for any strong chemical cleaners. Don’t use anything abrasive either like scouring pads!

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The bulbs are removed by first releasing the end caps, don't loose the red o-ring on the inside!

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Gently pull the tube out the fitting, sometimes you need to gently weave it through the slot in the thread to get the pins out. Don't be heavy handed, remember they are only made of very thin glass!

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Install is the opposite of removal… (reflectors shown attached before the glue failed!)

  • Slide the tube into the reflector clips to save damaging them!
  • Put the end caps onto the tube, again check the o-ring is there and in good condition.
  • T5 tubes have no polarity so it doesnt matter which way they go in.
  • Gently handle the tube and work the pins through the slot in the threaded part of the fitting.
  • Apply light pressure to the metal end cap so it “clicks” into the connections.
  • Reattach the end cap, take your time and don't cross thread it. Do them up hand tight.

Return the unit to the tank, replace the flaps, and power them up!

2012-12-19 14.44.15


Despite them seeming a little dull with increased shadows due to the lack of reflectors, the colour in the tank looks 10 times better! Really goes to show that you don't notice them wearing out when looking at the aquarium on a daily basis.

1 comment:

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