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Thread: What happened when you ran with and witout a Skimmer Thread!

  1. #1

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    What happened when you ran with and witout a Skimmer Thread!

    Lets see what peoples results are if you ran a system with and without a Skimmer. This while having a Scrubber running the whole time.

    Also what else do you do or not do and get the best results. Like Carbon, Biopellets or GFO...

    Do you do Water changes and at what % per month?

    But this thread is mainly about what happened when you run a Scrubbed tank with and without a Skimmer.

    This is the post that got me wondering.
    Quote Originally Posted by greenmachine View Post
    I put my aqua-c urchin skimmer online when I first read this and left it for a few weeks just to see what happened. The skimmer took a few days to "break-in" then it started to make lots of green skimate. It only made the skimate for about a week. After that it just made light tea collared water. during this time of skimming my algae did grow a bit faster than normal. My displays water looked a little more "sparkely" but my corals spent much more time closed , and my pod populations wear on the decline! I took the skimmer off line last week and put it back in storage where it has been for the last 5 years I know this is not a skimmer vs scrubber thread BUT I am sold on the scrubber and my skimmer will be getting dusty as it sits in storage! Hope this helps!

  2. #2

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    I ran without a skimmer for two years and did fine, but always had diatoms and little places where algae kept coming back in the display. I added a skimmer and started dosing vinegar and those issues cleared right up. So in my experience, skimmers + carbon dosing worked well in conjunction with a scrubber. Some people get along well with just one or the other, but for me, the combo worked well. Also during that time, I did basically no water changes. I recently started doing daily automated water changes, but I can't say whether they help or not since I'm in the middle of a tear down and rebuild and I'm just changing water in the temporary tank. The new system will have a scrubber, skimmer + carbon dosing, and 4% daily water changes.

  3. #3

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    glad you liked my post! I do a 5 gallon water change once in a blue moon on my 55 total gallon system. I have had the same (makes 200 gal.) bucket of instant ocean salt for about 3 years now lol

  4. #4

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    Well I recently added a skimmer after losing five fish and watching corals shrivel to nothing overnight for who knows why. The tank was about to crash for one reason or another. I am running essentially the same tank I had before with just a scrubber and zero water changes for a few years with excellent results. But this tank which has been up for about six months isn't doing so well. It's an upgrade from a tank I had for about a year in the garage with only an ATS which did great. Anyway. After adding the skimmer and doing a whopping five gallon wc on a 90 gallon tank things came back to life for me. No more dead fish and corals are growing. But I am fighting algae like nobodies business. I'm hardly feeding my fish to limit nutrients. Sump is algae free even though flooded with light from scrubber.

    Afraid to yank skimmer now even though I know scrubbers work. And I'm even thinking of adding more crap like reactors to my system even though I know they aren't needed.

  5. #5
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    Simple case of a too-weak scrubber.

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    My 180g Mixed reef( SPS dominate) is running a L4 Scrubber with a skimmer and part time carbon. I feed about 4 cubes a day in this tank. I find that if I go part time with the Skimmer. That I start to get a green slime algae and the corals don't look as bright. Also I then start to get a surface slime. I find that I need to run carbon every couple weeks for a few days or this will start up as well. I change about 10% every 6 weeks while siphoning the sand. I don't want to mess with success as the tank looks better then I could get it to while running full Zeovit!

    I have a 20g Frag system that has a L2 Scrubber with no Skimmer or carbon added. I'm trying to see what happens if I run Scrubber only with this tank. So far after a few months it is doing okay. The corals at this point loose a lot of their color in this system. I feed about 1/2 a cube a day in this tank. Also no water changes.
    Last edited by sabbath; 08-06-2013 at 04:51 AM. Reason: Added SPS dominate clarification

  7. #7

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    Scrubber is same one I was using for almost a year on temporary tank with great results. Temporary tank was 45 gallon. This set up is 90. Screen size is 7x7 maybe with two 23 watt CFLS on both sides.

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    sklywag, I'm completely confused as to which tank had which scrubber on it and when, and for how long. I think I need a timeline from day one.

  9. #9

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    Lets see if I can clear this up. I had a 90g a couple years ago that ran solely with an ATS for a few years like a champ with no water changes and looked beautiful using old size guide lines. Sold it prior to moving. Kept my smaller freshwater tanks.

    After moving about a year and a half ago. I bought a running 45 gallon tank in horrible condition for a good price. Sold the skimmer and built an ATS for it. Again oversized because I didn't know sizing changed to feeding instead of gallons. Anyway. This tank was in the garage doing great for a little over a year again with zero water changes. Then I got back into local forums and found a deal on a 90 g with stand, hood, and lights. 90 gallons seems to be an ideal size to me. And figured I couldn't go wrong with virtually the same set up.

    After refinishing it I moved it into the house and transfered everything over to it and added more water of course. Went through the natural changes and then it all cleared up. Been up since about Jan. Well about a month ago algae moved in and as posted earlier lost several fish and some corals started to die on me. And also as stated as above. I did a very minor water change and added a NAC7 I got for dirt cheap and everything turned around on me except for the algae problem. It's not GHA it's rust color hair algae.
    My screen is actually 5 wide and about 9 long with 23 watt CFLs and growing great. The skimmer is doing a good job too. I know the problem isn't the scrubber. May be my lights. Using T5s just like on original 90 gallon. Keep thinking of switching to LEDs.

    So did I clear that up for you?

    Building a new sump to create a constant water level for skimmer. It's looking like I'm going to have to use a stand alone pump to feed scrubber instead of overflow feed due to my poor engineering and designing skills. Current sump has no baffles just like the original tank I had before. Ooh to get back to such simplicity of that set up.

    Since I'm going to have a water level of 10 inches in one section I thought about a UAS but don't believe they filter as much water as a waterfall.

  10. #10
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    That does clear it up. So are you thinking that your scrubber, which is 4 cubes but new guidelines or 45 gallons by old guideline, is properly sized or not?

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