View Full Version : ??? VHO lights not working ???

02-28-2010, 01:38 AM
I just bought a 37 gal tank and it came with an icap ballast 660 and 3 VHO bulbs but the lights don't work (I new this when I bought it). So I'm trying to figure out how to fix it. When I first plug it in one light starts to warm up but then goes out. I have never had VHOs before and the wiring looks crazy. The only thing else is the light fixtures look a little worn and I don't know if the lights themselves are any good. Any ideas would be great.

PS I don't even know the different types of VHOs or T5s I'm really new to these lights and I don't want to spend a lot of money to get them to work just in case I decided I like metal halides better( That is all I have ever used).

Thanks for any help.

02-28-2010, 02:08 AM
Have you tried any other bulbs? It could be as simple as old/bad bulbs.

Next thing I'd check is end caps.

Then Ballast

Then wiring.

02-28-2010, 02:12 AM
Thanks I haven't tryed new bulbs yet. It's weird to me that the closet light to me turns on then off in like 10 sec and the others do nothing. Also could it be the fuse? but if the fuse is gone it shouldn't turn on at all right?

02-28-2010, 02:16 AM
Also I just turned it on with no lights in and I heard it start to run and pop but not a loud pop.

02-28-2010, 06:17 AM
Also I just turned it on with no lights in and I heard it start to run and pop but not a loud pop.

If the light is turning on for 10 seconds then turning off usually I found it may have something to do with the wiring. I had that issue with mine I had to double check to make sure all my wiring was secure and such and then boom it worked just fine. I wouldn't worry to much about a fuse and such just check the wiring.

02-28-2010, 04:03 PM
If you have the white 3 piece end caps, I would take the wires out, one at a time and cut a short piece off each one and reinstall.
Make sure each one is secure.

02-28-2010, 04:23 PM
Thanks everyone will try all these and let you know.

02-28-2010, 06:52 PM
I found wires that where not connected and connected them now it doesn't light up at all and it blows fuses every time I plug it in. I think I'm going to switch to metal halides I don't like these lights at all.

02-28-2010, 08:38 PM
Sounds like the lights you hooked up have been hooked up incorrectly. Either that, or somewhere in your wiring, you have a short.

02-28-2010, 08:40 PM
on one of the end caps the center part is broken could that cause a short?

02-28-2010, 11:59 PM
When I first set up my icecap 660 I had a bad bulb and it would not fire. I then bought all new bulbs and found a bad connection in the end cap so it was not creating a full loop. Once I fixed the wiring / end cap they lit right up.

03-01-2010, 01:38 AM
on one of the end caps the center part is broken could that cause a short?

It's possible that this could cause the negative and positive wires, or internal parts of the end cap to short to one another.

03-01-2010, 11:17 AM
I have had the original problem that you described on my T5s with the same ballast. It turned out to be a bad lamp. There are IceCap wiring diagrams to be found, maybe you could disconnect the whole thing and redo it all. The wiring harness can be a bit of a bear to work with when none of the wires have been shortened yet, but it's really not very hard and the diagram makes it pretty cut and dry.
Hehttp://www.marinedepot.com/lighting_fluorescent_icecap_660_ballast-ap.htmlre's a link:

03-02-2010, 12:50 AM
Thank you all so much I will try it and let you know when I figure it out but its going to be slow.

03-02-2010, 10:53 PM
Ok I'm going to buy new lights and end caps but I want to make one a 24" and the other two be 36" so I can run one to my refugium. Does this work or do they all need to be the same size?

03-02-2010, 11:15 PM
They do not need to all be the same length. Your ballast will determine how many total inches of VHO lighting you can have.

03-02-2010, 11:18 PM
Also if I'm going to buy new end caps should I switch to T5s or keep VHOs. And why is one better than another?

Also my reason for only putting 2 lights on top(at 36") and 1 or 2 (24")(can I do that put 2 lights on the bottom at a different length) is to put a MH in the canopy and the 2 lights being blue atentics on either side of it?

03-02-2010, 11:21 PM
If you switch to T5s, you'll also need to replace your reflectors. T5s, are much smaller diameter. Because of this, more bulbs can be fit in the same area. Also, since they're smaller, the reflectors can be shaped differently, which makes T5HO much more efficient.

03-02-2010, 11:32 PM
I think the 660 can power up to 12' of bulbs.

I'm a fan of VHO actinics

03-02-2010, 11:43 PM
The set up didn't have reflectors on it. Do I need reflectors?

Finn when I pick up the metal halide from you on sat I'm hoping that you can see your set up and get some ideas. When is a good time for you on sat.

03-02-2010, 11:51 PM
I am with Finn on he VHO's 10k bulbs and vhos to offset the white light Blues will pop with color. some of the best tanks I have seen are with VHO's

03-03-2010, 12:25 AM
Ok so if I have to keep them all the same size would it be ok to have 24" ones on the tank because there is no way to put 36" ones in the refugium area? the ones on the tank would be actinic ones.

Also could I buy this setup and cut off the harness and wire it to my harness?

03-03-2010, 03:15 PM
THat is something I am unsure of honestly I think if you did do it that way it would just all be on at the same time unless there is a way for you to seperate the timers dont you think?

03-03-2010, 10:40 PM
That is true I forgot about that. Well there goes that idea.