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Old 08-03-2011, 11:22 PM   #1
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Protein Skimmer

Hey, so I'm getting ready to start my first saltwater tank and I was wondering what is the actual purpose of a protein skimmer. How important are they?
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Old 08-03-2011, 11:28 PM   #2
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They get rid of all the waste that the fish make. Also keeps you from doing pwc all the time. I just started my tank and I still don't have one. I've had it about a month now. Plus I'm no expert, just going off what I've read here and LFS. IMO, if you can wait, then u should.
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Old 08-03-2011, 11:30 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hdcollins1276
Hey, so I'm getting ready to start my first saltwater tank and I was wondering what is the actual purpose of a protein skimmer. How important are they?
Ahhhhh.................. the protein skimmer, it's Basically the heart of your systems filtration you should get one thats rated double of your tank.
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Old 08-03-2011, 11:32 PM   #4
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They aren't really important. If you have a refugium with some chaeto, it's just as good.
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Old 08-03-2011, 11:33 PM   #5
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Depending on how big of a tank you have, fish bioload, feeding habits and water change frequency you can sometimes go without a skimmer. i run a 29g cube that has no skimmer. My 125g is running a sump so the skimmer is in there. My 55g has a hob skimmer.

I do weekly water changes of at least 10-15% and my nitrates are either 5 or less, some tanks they run 0.

The skimmer will skim out excess organics and nutrients from your water.

hope that was helpful
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Old 08-04-2011, 03:20 AM   #6
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My opinion on the skimmer is, get one. If you don't have much saltwater experience, you will really appreciate the help from a skimmer. Eventually if get a healthy refugium and figure out the proper balance of feeding and maintaining your mini ecosystem, you may be able to get away from skimming. I didn't skim for some time, because I had a huge fuge and major mud bed with micro algae. Everything was fine, but I wanted to increase my fish load considerably so I hooked up my asm G2 again. I'll probably continue to skim, since it's back in again. It's easier when you skim, but you kind of trade off losing some good stuff too. I say skim though, you will be able to do more.
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Old 08-04-2011, 09:45 AM   #7
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Imo it could go both ways I have a sesoned 30gal with a skimmer. I dont like the fact that I lose good stuff so I run it a week on and a week off with weekly water changes. seems to work out good
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Old 08-04-2011, 02:06 PM   #8
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In my opinion everyone's reef tank runs differently and if you don't have alot of experience in saltwater run a skimmer.

What it actually does is run tank water
through alot of tiny rising bubbles. With saltwater being heavier then the dissolved organics, the bad stuff and a little of the good stuff sticks to the air bubbles and is raised out of the water and into the collection cup.
The bad stuff is basically pollutants caused by the waste of your livestock, rotting food, etc. that will slowly build up in your water and slowly turns your water toxic.

A skimmer is extremely beneficial but not absolutely needed. It does have drawbacks. But can be extremely helpful especially in adding to filtration and allowing your tank to just generally run smoother.

I hope my blabbering answers your questions.
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