When it comes to aquarium equipment, the old proverb “you get what you pay for” plays a very important role. Cheap equipment usually breaks down, has poor customer service and product support, and can even cause damage to your aquarium or the building around it. The great deal then turns into an expensive nightmare. Case in point, there was at one point a small trend in the hobby to purchase cheap light fixtures from a particular brand that was sold on popular auction sites. Hobbyists thinking they found a good deal ended up with malfunctioning lights that even caught fire in some cases.
Although the hobby can be very expensive, try to pay that little bit extra for a product from a well-known brand with good customer service backing it up. If you have to, take the aquarium build slow or even purchased used equipment to help alleviate the costs.