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Old 08-16-2006, 03:28 AM   #1
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UV sterilizers, diatom filter

Well im not fully understanding there purpose of UV sterilizers
i have an 80 Gal FW live planted tank and want to know if there worth
the money
next diatom filter is this worth the money also, can it run 24/7 in conjunction with my HOB filters?

TIA
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Old 08-16-2006, 09:41 AM   #2
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Well they are for 2 very different purposes. The UV sterilizer will kill any living thing that goes through it, be it diatoms, algae, Ich, etc. It will NOT however remove these from the water column. They are designed to run constantly (or a good portion of the day), and the bulbs need to be replaced every so often.

The diatom filter does not damage anything, it simply filters to a very fine level. The benefit here is that, unlike the UV sterilizer, it will REMOVE the particulates clouding your water, as well as any living thing present in the tank (diatoms, algae, Ich, etc.). They are meant to be a quick polishing of the water column, or remove debris after a tank rearrangement/large pruning of plants, etc.

I do not believe diatom filters are designed to run constantly. They are somewhat loud in operation, do a great job of quickly filtering your water, and are easy enough to disassemble and clean that I love mine.

For a tank of your size I think you'll find either a good investment, as if you have a case of GW or other floating algae the fastest way to get rid of this is using one of these.

HTH,

justin
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Old 08-16-2006, 09:58 AM   #3
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They both can be useful and I have toyed with purchasing a UV for a quaratine tank, but IMHO I don't see the need for repeated uses if one has the tank in balance. I see both being used as bandaids basically. Many times these are recommended to mask a problem. If I don't know what is out of balance or am using poor fish keeping practices (lack of quaratine tanks, water changes, basic maintenance, proper filtration etc.) I really haven't solved anything. Sort of like putting a picture over a hole in the wall. Looks good to the observer but hasn't changed the fact I have a hole in my wall. Are they needed to keep an aquarium, no not at all. Can they help in some cases yes, most definetly.
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Old 08-16-2006, 11:57 AM   #4
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I look at these differently then bandaids. I look at them as ways to avoid needing a bandaid measure.

If you go and do a massive re-arrangement in the tank you very well could be inviting an algae outbreak regardless of how good you maintain the tank (small amount of ammonia not taken up by the plants/bacteria). In this situation using the diatom after the work can be preventing a problem.

How about you leave on vacation for a week and your DIY CO2 peters out, and you have some spot algae or GW? This just happened to me. I had someone feeding the fish, but they cannot be asked to make up a fresh batch of CO2. I also lost a fish during the week and that contributed to some algae problems. I got home, used a razor blade to clean the glass, and ran my diatom for a short period of time. No more spot algae.

Or what if your power goes out while your out of the house for a while and suddenly you suffer from some GW? You have a great planted tank that looks wonderful, and you cringe at the thought of doing a blackout for several days. Some GW cannot be cured by a blackout even. If you have a UV sterilizer or a diatom, you can cure this quickly.

I don't find these above examples to be bandaid measures, I find them to be very real possibilities that are out of our control.
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Old 08-16-2006, 04:15 PM   #5
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Well i guess ill go with the diatom filter yes its to clear up green water
i have an imbalance in ferts and i dont have any Co2 i tryed the DIY but that never worked and pressurized is a little exspencive at the moment
tho i am using Flourish Excel dont know if that makes any difference
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Old 08-17-2006, 08:06 PM   #6
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what is a good diatom filter to get? I can't really find much on them...
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Old 08-17-2006, 11:00 PM   #7
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Here's what I got, and it's well worth the money. I also got a box of diatom filter powder as well.

http://www.bigalsonline.com/BigAlsUS...diatomfilterxl

http://www.bigalsonline.com/BigAlsUS...mitepowder5lbs
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Old 08-18-2006, 01:36 AM   #8
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I also got my diatom from big al's. It was a toss up between a uv sterilizer or a diatom and I went with the diatom. I hooked it up and ran it for a couple of hours the other day just to see how it worked.

8O I didn't realize how well they could polish the water. In my opinion the diatom is a better choice. Now when I really want to snuff it up to perfecto contiono I know its only two hours away 8)
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Old 08-18-2006, 02:07 AM   #9
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uv is deff worth it
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Old 08-18-2006, 02:18 AM   #10
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The only thing I don't like about the UV's, and is the reason I won't get one, is that it kills the stuff that goes through it, and then spits it out back into the tank. And if you don't do proper cleaning, then it starts decaying, and then phosphates begin to rise. I love my diatom filter, what goes in stays in, whether it's dead or alive, lol.
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