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Old 03-14-2012, 02:58 AM   #1
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Protein Skimmer Broken

I have a 55gal saltwater tank that was passed onto me (it's a tank at school that I take care of for a club). We rarely do any water changes (I would say 50% a month... if we're lucky), but we only have a few fish (a couple of tangs and a couple of damsels), a snail, a fire shrimp, and a couple of hermit crabs.

Out of bad habit, I let the water level drop and so the skimmer was running dry for a while. When I finally got to fill the tank back up, the skimmer wouldn't pump the water up the tube. When my friend and I took it apart, we found that there little pieces of plastic that broke off from a wheel in the pump that we supposed pushed the water up the pipe.

So, basically, our skimmer broke.

Because we're a school club, we don't exactly have all the money in the world to buy a new skimmer. I've seen pumps online, but they're almost as expensive as a good skimmer.

My question is this: Is it absolutely necessary to have a protein skimmer? If so, should we look into buying an entirely new skimmer or is there a way to repair what we have?
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Old 03-14-2012, 08:03 AM   #2
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The only thing absolutely necessary is water and salt. But, since you guys don't do water changes very often, a skimmer is an important piece of equipment to help keep up the water quality.
What kind of skimmer is it? You may only need the pump impeller going by your description of what broke.
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Old 03-14-2012, 12:35 PM   #3
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If its a Deltec MCE 300 I had a similar issue. My needle impeller cracked and when I call or email them they won't get back to me. So I just bought a standard impeller and it is working pretty good.
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