Low-voltage Fish Pond Lights
and Garden Lighting
I am an absolute sucker for lighting scattered around
our garden, and used underwater in the pond. It makes
such a difference for viewing your fish because it literally
brings the pond alive at night-time. I have the main
loop of my garden and pond lights on an automatic timer
to turn them on and off.
Some of the underwater lights use quite strong bulbs
and the fish love the heat given off by them, to the
extent that they will "sun" themselves under them, particularly
in winter when the water is freezing. This never seems
to have done any harm to them. I have a variety of lights
in my pond, some halogen spots, some lower wattage coloured
dome lamps. The dome lamps shine upwards, which silhouettes
any water surface plants, the halogens shine across the
Scroll down for more....
Night-time in the pond.
Above: Bell water fountain and lamp set with various other single lamps in the
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I also have a tripod stand
which rests on the bottom of the pond. The 3 lamps on
it are held about 6 inches below the surface and these
point DOWNWARDS, angled slightward outward. These are
NOT halogen, so the heat generated is gentle.
Not only does this light
up the bottom of the pond, but in the cold weather
my koi constantly fin themselves so they hover directly
underneath the beam of light. They are sun-tanning
Well, keeping warm anyway.
Amusingly the light gets reflected off their big fins
as they fan them, and its almost like you've got a pulsing
police car beacon in your pond.
So anyway, the point is that the fish enjoy lighting
as much as you will.
Generally the lights I use are all white lights. However
one of the domes is red and the smaller goldfish and
love this, and sometimes I've seen 3 at one go trying
to stay on top of it. This lamp doesn't generate any
more heat than the white or green dome lamps, so I think
its something to do with the colour!?
Anybody else experienced this?
Pond and Garden lighting tips:
- Make sure you fix them well. The fish will nudge
them and then they end up floating on the surface.
lights will soon get coated with a layer of algae,
so you should place these where you can get at them
easily to clean
them off. I am certain my fish
look forward to me cleaning off the algae so they can get back to their
- Plan carefully where you are going to lay the cabling
used to power the lights. It is best to use some kind
of armouring to protect the cable, especially if it
crosses places where people will walk over it. It may
be prudent to lay some channelling so that if you need
to get at the cable for maintenance, or to lay additional
cabling, it makes the job easier and tidier.
- Keep some spare bulbs handy as the bulbs will eventually
blow, although some of mine have been in use for 3
years and still haven't blown!
- Make sure you get a suitably sized transformer. Usually
lighting kits will come supplied with their own transformer,
but you end up with lots of transformers plugged into
your garage (or wherever you mains electricity supply
is). I bought one big meaty transformer capable of
powering many low voltage, low-wattage bulbs, and it
also has a timer built into it for controlling the
Jaws can be seen enjoying the heat from the lamps.