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The Hagen T5 HO Linear lighting system that came with my tank does not seem to be working. Everytime I plug it into the wall, one bulb fires up for about 3 seconds, then shuts off, the other bulb does not fire at all. I noticed when putting the bulbs in that one had a bit of a rattle to it, so I think perhaps the bulb is shot, but don't have another to test it.

This is brand new, does this sound like a bulb problem or ballast problem? I had to get a new tank already (kit came with tank, light, stand) as it had a bit of damage on one side suggesting it had a rough time in shipping as well.

Should I order a replacement and take this back, or try changing out some bulbs?
 

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this happens when one of the bulbs are dead. You just need a new bulb and you'll be fine.
this is true... though I have had trouble with my GLO fixtures when I try to plug them into a socket without using a timer of some sort. I cant explain it, but they come with a timer and don't seem to want to work properly without it. This could be your problem as well
 

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The timer should have nothing to do with anything, that sounds like a bad fixture or bad bulbs of some sort. The wiring may be fault or the prongs on the plug may not seat properly in the outlet but are nice and tight in the timer. I have two GLO HO fixtures and they both work fine whether I plug them into a wall or the timer.
 
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