UVB Lighting

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UVB Lighting

Postby sparkybeardyandme » Thu May 17, 2018 1:31 pm

I have been doing a bit of research on UVB and lighting in general and I just have a couple of questions. When you buy a new light bulb how quickly does the UVB start to decay? I use the Arcadia 10% lamp and have just got a brand new bulb. I also brought a second one so that I immediately have a back-up if something should happen to the first on but it got me thinking. Does the UVB run down even if the bulb is not being plugged in. What I don't want to happen is when I replace the old lamp in 6 - 12 months and actually it's not producing any UVB. Or is it only when they are plugged in that the UVB begins to run out.

This also leads on to my second question. I have been looking at UVB monitors. I have seen the Solarmeter 6.0 mentioned in a couple of places. My first question is is it worth buying one? It is quite an investment so I don't want to buy one if it's not really worth it. Secondly, I have seen the solarmeter 5.0 monitor for a more reasonable price and wondered if this would still work as well as the 6.0?

Here is the link to the one I'm looking at:
https://www.reptilecentre.com/solarmete ... gLiLPD_BwE
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Re: UVB Lighting

Postby CooperDragon » Thu May 17, 2018 4:43 pm

The Arcadia bulbs are very good. I've gotten almost 3 years of use out of my bulb so far but it is a T5 which tend to be longer lasting than the T8s. That's the advantage of having a Solarmeter - you can measure the output from the bulb so you know when to replace it. You can also adjust the height of the bulb to make sure it is producing adequate UVB over the basking area. They aren't cheap but are a very nice tool to have. I like the 6.5 because it measures UVI so I can easily compare the output from a bulb to sunlight and get an idea of relative intensity in the range that is beneficial to dragons. Without a Solarmeter you need to estimate where to mount the bulb based on testing done on the specific bulb. This varies quite a bit between bulbs.
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Re: UVB Lighting

Postby sparkybeardyandme » Fri May 18, 2018 1:16 am

Thank you for the quick reply. I think I might bite the bullet and get one. It is a lot of money in one go, but if I work out how much I may spend on bulbs in her lifetime and the amount I will save if I can extend that even by 6 months to a year, it sort of pays for itself.

Also as you say it gives me the peace of mind to know that her UVB exposure is within optimum range. I do also take her out when it's warm enough. I'm in the UK so that's only for certain months of the year but when I can I do. So at the moment she's certainly getting enough UVB, but I am a bit of a neurotic beardy mum lol.

Any ideas about whether the second UVB bulb will be OK after the first runs out?
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Re: UVB Lighting

Postby CooperDragon » Fri May 18, 2018 10:22 am

It does make a long term savings difference with bulb replacements but the main difference is paying for output that is closer to natural sunlight and more beneficial for them overall. The second bulb you have can go into place as soon as the first one starts decaying. I like to have the basking area between 3-6 UVI and replace the bulbs when they drop below 3.
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