Best Refugium Light For Chaeto – My Kessil Picks!

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Over the past while, I have started using chaetomorpha in my saltwater tank’s sump. I didn’t realize the advantages of using this before, but now I do. Natural filtration is the best way to filter a saltwater tank and many people will use chaeto inside a refugium section of your sump. In order for this to be efficient and effective, you will need the best refugium light for chaeto. The right light will definitely help this macroalgae grow and become even more powerful at removing excess nutrients from your water.

There are certain types of lighting to avoid and some are better than others. It’s not as simple as grabbing any old bulb and putting it on your tank. Although some people may think it is. You want to find out some important information first before buying a refugium light.

If you are in a rush, here is my top choice for best refugium light for chaeto: Kessil H80 grow light

What is the purpose of chaeto macroalgae?

The purpose of chaeto is to help remove excess nutrients from the water. It needs to outcompete algae growth in your display tank therefore it needs suitable lighting to perform adequately.

What is the best light spectrum for chaeto to grow?

For the best growth, macroalgae will need light in the red spectrum. Wavelengths of 630-700nm. At least half of the light should be focused on this spectrum. The rest can be a mix of blue (435-495nm) and green ( 500-580nm).

How many hours should I run a refugium light? Should I have a lighting schedule?

Yes, it is a good idea to have a consistent daily schedule for your refugium lights. Most hobbyists will run their chaeto light opposite the display tank lights. Aim for something that is good for your chaeto, you may have to run some experiments to see what is best for your tank. You can start with 12 hours on and 12 hours off opposite your tank lights. You may have to increase this slightly, some people find more than 12 hours of refugium lighting is necessary.

 

Important facts to know when choosing a grow light for macroalgae:

  • Chaeto is a fast-growing macroalgae that can easily take up a lot of space. It will need to be trimmed back periodically.
  • Some lights can be too strong for chaeto and cause it to bleach.
  • Refugium lights can be very affordable and basic or expensive with certain features. You have many options.
  • Not all lights are mounted the same way. So consider the space and set up you have to determine the mounting options.
  • Proper spectrum wavelengths are crucial for macroalgae to thrive and grow.
  • It’s not all about the wattage of light used. There are other factors that are more important for chaeto to grow.

 

With that being said, here are my recommended refugium lights for chaeto.

 

#1. Kessil H80 Controllable LED Refugium Grow Light

 

The Kessil H80 is my number one pick for a few reasons. The main one being that you get the best value for the money spent. This light has many great features, design, and controllability that makes it a top choice for many people. It enhances photosynthetic efficiency and is a very efficient light to operate. It’s quality and solid design makes this a long-lasting light that you will be impressed with.

Kessil H80 Refugium Light Features and specs:

 

  • 4 different spectrums – blue, grow, bloom, red (360-780nm)
  • Fully adjustable
  • Fanless heat dissipation system
  • Quiet operation
  • Very reliable – low maintenance LED
  • Dense matrix LED – produces a concentrated single point source that is powerful and precise
  • High-quality optic design ensures minimal light loss
  • Very slim and modern design
  • Can be manually controlled or compatible with external controllers like the Kessil Spectral controller X
  • Daisy chain multiple lights
  • Manual mode, quick set, and auto modes
  • Covers up to 24″ diameter
  • Dimensions: 4.88″ x 0.98″
  • Weight: 0.88lbs
  • Power use: 15 watt

 

 

 

 

 

Kessil H80

 

The Kessil H80 is available at Marine Depot here.

 

 

 

#2. Kessil H160 Controllable LED Refugium Grow Light

The Kessil H160 is another great quality refugium light. It differs from the H80 in design, some features, and of course price. You will pay more for the H160. But it’s worth it and still great value in my opinion. I currently use a few different models of Kessil Led’s and have never been disappointed.

 

Kessil H160 Refugium Light Features and specs:

 

  • 4 different spectrums – blue, grow, bloom, red (380-780nm)
  • Fully adjustable
  • Heat dissipation system
  • Very reliable – low maintenance LED
  • Uses true UV-A and far-red LED chips that promote algae/plant health and growth
  • Can be manually controlled or compatible with external controllers like the Kessil Spectral controller X
  • Daisy chain multiple lights
  • Dense matrix LED – produces a concentrated single point source that is powerful and precise
  • Covers up to 24″ diameter
  • Dimensions: 4″ x 2.48″
  • Weight: 0.88lbs
  • Power use: 40 watt

Kessil H160

 

The Kessil H160 is available at Marine Depot here.

 

 

 

 

If you are really looking for a powerhouse light to grow chaeto in your refugium, check out the Kessil H380 Halo. This light is a beast! It has way more power, light penetration and even more extreme spectrums than the other 2 Kessils mentioned.

 

 

Best refugium for chaeto if you are on a budget

My choice for best budget refugium light is the Luxbird PAR 38 LED. You can read my full review of this light here.

A few other lights that will not break the bank but still do the job, are the Cob led grow light and the Roleadro grow light. Both of these lights are affordable and suitable for growing chaeto in both nano tanks and regular-sized sumps.  Don’t expect the performance to be as good as the Kessil Led’s, but they are used by many saltwater hobbyists and will work well for you. Both of these can be seen on Amazon by clicking the links or images.

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