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Re: Aquatic Plants Digest V4 #1562

    * From: Cavan <millsman7 at yahoo_com>

I've had an inline Aquanetics 8 watt UV sterilizer
hooked up for two days now.  No effect on the slime
algae.  Almost like it wasn't even plugged in.  I
fiddled around with the plug and an orange light
inside the end cap where the plug goes in flickered on
and off.  I could not get it to stay on.  The manual
mentions a viewport on the endcap that glows a bluish
color.  It says that with the model I have (either the
Q8IL or PQ8IL), "you can see blue light reflecting off
the vinyl tubing connected to the inlet and outlet of
the UV."  I could see blue light there when I first
plugged it in.  What is this orange light?  A pilot
light?  Why is it not mentioned?  I could hear a
"tink" sound when the orange light went on and off as
I wiggled the plug around.  Is it even operational?

Thanks, Cavan

My guess is that the orange light that flickers is the filament at the end
of the tube which heats to high temperatures until the arc through the
mercury vapor is established.  You can see the same thing happening in an
ordinary fluorescent tube that is operated by a starter---the little, 2
inch aluminum "can" thingey.  Once the arc is established through the gas
in the tube, the starter cuts the flow of current to the filaments at the
ends of the tube.  If the UV light is operating correctly, there is a very
dim blue light that can be seen through the little clear plastic viewing
port.  It is VERY dim.  You can see it best in a dark room.  Compare the
view with the plug pulled and with the plug in.  You should be able to see
a very dim violet color with the plug in.  If you see the violet color,
then the tube is operating normally.

Paul Krombholz in soggy central Mississippi, where a strong squall line
gave us a thrashing yesterday.