Smarter than your Protein Skimmer? These Top Mistakes say otherwise!
Articles Blog

Smarter than your Protein Skimmer? These Top Mistakes say otherwise!

March 9, 2020


(upbeat music) – All right, as we continue our journey of the biggest fails that
we’ve had in reefing, the top 15 fails of protein skimmers, starting with number one. – Yeah, number one is, I mean, this is fantastic, assuming that you need one to begin with ’cause you don’t in many cases. Some cases, like Zach’s tank, for example, thriving 60 gallon reef
tank, SPS heavy dominant, gorgeous looking tank,
doesn’t run a skimmer. – Yeah, you know that lobby tank they had over at World Wide Corals as well. No skimmer, right? This is an awesome, awesome looking tank. So here’s the thing, is a skimmer is just one of the other pieces of filtration in the tank, and I will say that if
you scaled this back quite awhile ago, there weren’t that many other ways to remove excess nutrients
and organics from the tank. So they were a pretty
important piece and still is, it’s just there’s other ways now here. So it’s just a component
of the overall filtration. So understand what it does and then just decide whether or not you wanna incorporate in your tank. So in this case, it is going to remove uneaten food and fish poop before it actually decays in the tank. There’s some things that
will remove it afterward, but this is one of the very few ways it’ll actually remove it before it totally breaks down. Also, we’ll add tons and tons of oxygen or gas transfer within the tank. Can maintain the pH and all
kinds of other things here. So it is a beneficial filter, but don’t let anybody tell you that’s it’s absolutely necessary ’cause that’s a total fail. You don’t absolutely need one, there’s just lots of really
good reasons to have one. All right, so that leads right into the number
two biggest skimmer fail. What is it? – That would be going too big. So this big guy right here, probably don’t need it on
my little 40 gallon system, maybe 20 gallon system. Don’t need something that big. – Yeah, I would have told
you differently a decade ago bigger is better, or whatever, I’ve learned differently since and I think a lot of the community is kinda starting to switch over. Kind of feels like from a mindset, you can’t filter your
tank too well, right, and actually we found that you can, but more importantly what
I’ve found over the years is that if you get a skimmer that’s too big for your system, it simply doesn’t work at all, right? So it’s not that it’s filtering too much, it actually doesn’t
filter anything, right? It’s too much air for the amount
of organics in the system. The neck is too big, so it requires too much foam
to actually produce anything, and if you get too big, it’s actually one of the biggest fails. You’d be the most disappointed. You’ll end up tuning it so the water is just barely under the edge just hoping to get something, and every time you feed, it just explodes. I would say one of the biggest fails you could do with your skimmer is investing in something
way too big for your system. Okay, so the number three
skimmer fail, what is it? – Directly opposite of too
big, it’s going too small. So this is like having
a whole lot of fuel, but not a big enough engine to burn it, and essentially that’s what it is. So I would not use this little guy and expect it to be extremely effective on a 100 gallon system. – Yeah. If you got this tiny little guy and you put it in a giant tank, it’s probably not gonna do a whole lot. So basically in this case, it’s not that it’s not gonna work, it actually will work, it just won’t remove as much as you’re putting in, right?
– Yeah, true. – And so if I had to go one
way or the other, though, it would be too small, because I know that too
small will actually work, it’ll do something, it just won’t work to my desires and they’ll be all kinds of room for excess improvement versus too big. It actually just doesn’t
work at all most of the time. So too small is actually
the number three fail. All right, so the number four
fail of protein skimmers. – Is considering fish
load instead of food load, so those recommended bioloads that the manufacturer has put on there making that the only determining factor for sizing your skimmer. – Yeah, you know, so one
skimmer might be saying heavy bioload, 75 gallons, medium is 150, and light is 225. So when you think bioload,
a lot of people think fish. – Yeah, true. – Right, like I got 10
fish, you got 10 fish, that must be whatever, but it actually isn’t that, right? – [Randy] Food that you put in tied in with fish,
though, and size of fish. – Well, kind of, but
it’s really just the food because if you had 10
fish and I had 10 fish and they were the same size fish, but I fed three cubes of
food and you only fed one, the skimmer’s only designed to export, and they’re only gonna
poo as much as they eat. – [Randy] True, true. – And so it’s really, really a lot more about how much nutrient input you put in than the amount of fish. The amount of fish is
loosely tied to this thing, but again, if you’re feeding like really stingy, a handful of pellets, and meanwhile I’m over here, I’m feeding nori sheets and algae flakes and dumping in amino acids and I got frozen food and just dumping all kinds
of nutrition into this tank, that is a heavy bioload. It’s not so much about the fish, it’s the amount of stuff that
I’m putting into the tank. – True. – And there’s different
reasons why you might be on any one of those spectrums, which is like a different kind of debate, but just know which end
of that spectrum you’re on and that’s how you decide heavy bioload, light bioload. Not the amount of fish, the amount of food you put in the tank. All right, the number five fail, and this one’s really about sizing in the right tool for the
right job in the beginning. What is it? – This is not considering
your other filtration when sizing your skimmer and probably more specifically, the mechanical for those
types of filtrations that can remove those uneaten foods or organics and waste before they even get
the chance to break down which essentially is kinda
what your skimmer’s doing. But it’s doing it first, meaning that I could probably size smaller if I have an effective theiling
rollermat or something. – Yeah, absolutely. And so when I was actually talking about skimmer and sump design stuff for the people that are
making my tank for me, once we incorporated the
fleece rollermat into there, I think you should step
the skimmer down, right? I’m like, oh yeah, absolutely. – It makes sense. – Because you’re removing
all that fish waste and poo before it actually gets
to the skimmer, right? And so in this case, I think amount of nutrient input, but if I’m removing half
of it with the fleece, you know what, I actually
don’t need a big a skimmer, If I have too big a skimmer,
again, it won’t even work. – [Randy] Right, true. – Right, and so, I’m
better off going small. So think about your total
approach to filtration when you’re sizing your skimmer. If you get one that you think is designed for your system and you
get everything right, but you haven’t incorporated that I change out my filter socks everyday or every three days like I should, you should think about that because you have really good filtration before it ever sees a skimmer. However, if you never
change out your filter socks and it’s all just gonna decay in there, well, you should probably get the skimmer that’s designed for that as well. All right, so the number six
fail of protein skimmers. – This is buying for today’s tank rather than where you’re going. Probably something I’ve done, too, is I’ve got this 125 gallon system and I see a skimmer out there that’s rated at a high heavy bioload area, lots of food input at that
125 level, so I get it. But I start with two or three fish in that big giant thing, so not gonna work as properly as what I thought or expect it to, but down the road it probably would. – Yeah, so if you buy
a really nice skimmer and you got your first two fish in there, it’s not producing anything, it’s ’cause that skimmer
wasn’t designed for two fish, tiny little amount of food, it’s actually designed where you’re going which is a year from
now and you have 15 fish and you’re doing three cubes
of food maybe twice a day. It’s actually designed for that. And you can’t really expect the same tool to perform the same ends
of that spectrum, right? And so be aware that it
may not work super great with that first two fish. It’ll maybe produce something, but it won’t be as efficient
as on the other end. So you can kinda
circumvent that if you want and you can buy a skimmer that works great for that first year and then upgrade it a year from now, but that’s like if you just like taking out your wallet and dumping it out. So I would suggest that you buy a skimmer that is on the path to where you’re going rather than where you’re starting. Okay, so number seven is
actually directly tied to that in one of the ways that you
can kinda bridge the gap there. – Right. And the mistake here,
or the common fail here is missing on the value
of a DC adjustable pump. My first skimmer was an AC and I, of course, knew
nothing about adjusting it other than just turning
this little knob here, and then I bought a DC skimmer, still didn’t know anything
about adjusting it, I just knew that now I had a quieter pump and I had to ability to
change the speed of the pump, but I had no idea what that means. So in this one, we’re talking
about the beginner tank and down the road when I’ve
got tons and tons of fish, the DC pump and adjustability actually allows me to adjust without buying skimmer, skimmer, skimmer. – Yeah, and the way it does that is it allows you to use a little pad to adjust the air and the
water in the same ratio down to slow the pump down, right? And that means it’s a foam engine trying to produce foam and then
overflow it and collect it, in this case when I got two fish, I have very little organics, which means I need less air to match that, otherwise I’m going to
destroy the foam engine. But I can actually as I add more organics, tune the air up at the same time, right? And so one of the DC options allows you to really scale from that smaller tank to the bigger tank or rather the smaller amount of organics to the bigger amount of
organics for feeding habits. And I gotta be honest, I didn’t catch that in the
first wave of DC pumps out there ’cause we were really just told, everybody’s like, more
air, more better, right? And that just isn’t the case. Too much air actually just looks like a boiling point of water if you don’t have enough organics, and they all just kinda sit there and pop and they never really produce anything. Never produces that thicker
foam that flows over the edge. And so it isn’t more air, more better, it is the right tool for the right job and the right amount of air matching with the organics in your tank. And with the DC pump,
not only is it quiet, which is something everybody likes, but also I can adjust it to span different areas of my hobby and tank and maybe even different tanks as well and outlive the first tank and go on. So really one of the biggest fails here is missing the advantages of a DC pump. I missed it myself, I
think a lot of people have, and then once it’s, through all of our
experiments and whatnot, you test it and you’re like, wow, you can really tune the air and watch the performance
materialize before your eyes. Something you can see with your naked eye. The moment you do it you’re like, I can’t believe I missed this. So that’s one of the biggest fails. Realize the value of the DC pump. All right, so that’s number
eight fail, what is it? – Number eight is exactly what I said. All I’ve known so far
is adjusting this valve, adjusting this gate valve only, and that’s the way I’ve reefed
for many, many, many years. But common mistake, because this is probably
what I would consider not close to the primary
adjustment for my skimmer, comes to, like you were talking about, adjusting the amount of air, adjusting the amount of
input and flow rate through to dial that skimmer foam head in and then only just using this
to change how I collect it. – Yeah, exactly. Use all the different
other mechanisms out there to change the type of foam it creates and then use this to change
how you collect it, right? This thing was actually
told to a lot of people as this is a wet versus dry. – Right. – And there’s a scenario
where that’s kinda true, but if you’re not getting the
type of foam that you want, this actually won’t change the type of foam you’re producing. It just changes the point
at it collects, right? So this is an important tool, but it’s only one of them. So that leads right into number nine, which is water level matters. – Yeah, paying attention
to the water level here and very specifically in every single case with a single pump that’s
pulling double duty. So it’s drawing in air
and it’s drawing in water, it’s one single pump. Doesn’t matter if it’s space saving, doesn’t matter if it’s outside the body, the water level that
you set the skimmer in will determine how much head pressure is on that pump and how much effort it has to put in to suck water into it which changes the whole dynamic of the air and water mixture. – Yeah, so if you look at this thing, what will happen is if it’s
in just a few inches of water, the pump actually has to
pump the water quite a ways ’cause you’re dealing with
a lot of head pressure which means water’s
gonna go through slower which means the Venturi
is gonna suck in less air and you’re changing all kinds
of dynamics of this skimmer by running the water too low. Now if I run it too high, now the water difference changed between the water in the
sump and in the skimmer, it’s actually not that much different, and I may actually get too
much water and too much air and it changes all the dynamics. So the skimmer manufacturers out there have found the ideal level. Make sure you pay attention to it. If you haven’t looked at it already, go measure what it’s actually in. Use a ruler, find out
the actual inches on it. Go find the instructions on the manufacturer’s website or ours and find out where it’s supposed to be. You might see a really big
change in the performance and how much waste you’re
able to pull out of the tank. So that is a definite huge
impact on water level. And one of the things you can also do is you can change the amount
of air and other dynamics. If you don’t like how
it works at that level because it just doesn’t match
how much organics you have, try lowering it, try raising it, and that is one of the
tuning things you can do is changing the water
level that it’s sitting in. Number 10, we kind of
already touched on this, but this is a huge, huge fail that a lot of people have been told and it’s just wrong. – Yeah, and that is the fail of assuming that more air is better. I mean, a lot of these pumps, they have these high air volume type of flow rates through them and the ability to draw a ton of air, and in a lot of cases, you probably don’t even need that much. – No, and so more air is great if you have more organics
to create a stable foam in, more air if you don’t
have a lot of organics is actually worse, you know? And I like to think about it a lot is if you’re blowing a bubble essentially in the bubble wand is just organics in
there in the soap right, and if I have a lot of organics, I can actually blow
through this really fast and just create a bunch of bubbles. – Right. – If there’s just very
little and I blow through it, it actually just pops immediately because there’s not enough organics for that velocity of air. And if we kinda look at this thing, essentially this little
cup here is the wand that’s blowing air through it. If I’m just pumping air
through this super fast and there’s not enough organics
to support a foam head, then it’ll just pop. And so you know what I’m talking about if you look at your skimmer and it’s just top to bottom air and then right here it’s just bubbling like a boiling pot of water,
no foam is coming over, that is a sure fire sign that you have too much air in your skimmer and not enough organics to
create a stable foam head and have the foam engine
actually work, right? And so more air, more
better is not correct. In many cases, it will
increase performance if you have a lot of organics, but if you don’t, it won’t. So the ability to tune it is even better but just understand that
the air has a purpose and that more doesn’t always increase the quality of the skimming. All right, so number 11, this one’s like near and dear to my heart and I think it’s just a fail
across the entire industry. Nobody really thinks about
this the way they should and what is it? – Yeah, this is the fail of overlooking the benefits and value of a recirculating skimmer. And we were just talking about the depth that this thing sits in, not an issue with a recirculating skimmer. We’re talking about the ability to adjust air independently
from water intake and the amount of organics
you can draw into this thing where you only in these, you only have one pump
that’s trying to do both. So any adjustment to one versus the other is gonna create this weird influx and a recirculating skimmer, able to just adjust
air or just adjust flow without any impact to
performance in the other areas. – Yeah, so this is a total miss. For whatever reason, recirculating skimmers
have largely been thought of external skimmers and because of that they end up being pretty big like this one, but if you look at it and this guy’s just
recirculating the foam through it and one of the benefits to that is I can now put it in any
height water in the sump and it’ll run just fine, including even externally, right? And we did some experiments
on a variety of these things and we saw that it didn’t matter literally what height you put it in, it was always the same amount
of air that was in there and it was always super, super stable. And so now with the feed pump you just add some water in here and because the water level
is actually coming outta here, it’s always a stable height as well, like there isn’t head pressure from that. So add just a little
bit, a feed pump in here, and I actually control the way the organics are fed to the skimmer now. It adds all kinds of
different dynamics to it. And the biggest one, though, is it just kinda becomes
more steady and forgiving. I just put it in there, I don’t care what the water
height is, it doesn’t matter, I just change, hopefully
I have a DC option. I can also just tune down the air like on the skims options
they have a little knob you can just turn down
the air to some degree and just turn the air
until I get the foam I want and then crank it up and when I crank it up, I’m not creating more head pressure or
less head pressure again. The recirculating options add a pump, but make it so much easier
and more stable to use. And hopefully in the future, we’ll see more recirculating
options come out because it probably only adds
50 bucks to the cost of it but adds so much value and makes it so much easier to use. All right, so number 12 fail, this is pretty common again. – Dosing 2-part right around
the intake of your pump. So, I mean, these
skimmers draw a lot of air obviously into the Venturi and right where that water and air start to meet inside the Venturi and in the inlet of the pump, this high turbulent area, if I’m dosing 2-part stuff in there, it just makes it more prone to calcify right in that area. And then I found that to be true on one of my own systems when I was running my skimmer airline from outside in and dosing
right around the same area. Once a week, I’d have
to pull the Venturi off and scrape out the hard calcarea
stuff build up in there, put it back on and then
I’d have to readjust my skimmer all over again. – Yeah, so this is a big one. Make sure it’s downstream, preferably in a totally
different compartment, right? And then things like heat,
all kinds of different things, will cause precipitation in the pump and you just don’t wanna do high doses of calcium alkalinity. That’s 2-part, 4-part, or kale flux or any of that stuff. Even probably a calcium reactor. You just don’t wanna
dose it into the pump, and if you do, note that you’re probably gonna
have to clean it more often to get the kinda performance
that you want out of it. So that is definitely
one the more common fails with a skimmer. And so closely related to
that is actually number 13. What is that fail? – That leads right back to cleaning it. So like anything in our aquarium, the pumps have to be
regularly routinely cleaned. Probably even a good idea to take and disassemble the whole thing. Clean out the body, clean out the neck, clean out the skimmer cup. We all have to. Obviously this needs to be cleaned because it fills up with nitrites and then this thing gets full and then you’re really not
collecting anything anymore. But the whole entire
thing needs to be cleaned. – Yeah, and sadly, the pump
needs to be cleaned, too. – Oh yeah. – And so you just need
to know what you’re doing and it becomes really obvious
once you say it out loud. This thing is constantly
sucking in organics, food, and poo, and algae, and it’s also getting high levels of calcium and alkalinity, it’s a heated object, has friction in it, and it will build up crust inside of it and it needs to be cleaned
frequently, you know? And frequently, I mean,
like quarterly or whatever. You need to kind of identify what that is. But if it runs slower, it’ll actually suck in less air, which means the performance will go down, the Venturi gets stuck. I’ve heard like intermittent cleaning. Some people pour hot water and stuff down or suck out hot water with the tube to try to keep it clean and whatnot. I’ve never done it myself, but I’ve heard a lot of people do it. That’s one way of cleaning. Another way of cleaning for me is just get a five gallon bucket that has some citric acid and water in it, stick this thing in it and
turn it on for an hour. And just running it in there, I didn’t even have to
disassemble it for the most part and it’ll just clean
all that stuff out of it and I can put it back in the tank and rinse it off. But better yet, is really take it apart, disassemble it, and clean
all the individual pieces at least once a year. If you want a high performance product and you want it to work in your system, you need to maintain the filter, otherwise it’s not gonna
work the way that you like. And some of them obviously require more maintenance than others and tend to be the cheaper ones that require the most maintenance. Again, if I’m gonna spend
$700 or whatnot on a skimmer, it’s because I want it to perform well, and if I can just spend,
take the thing out and spend like a matter of minutes of just putting it in
there, taking it back out, putting it back in the tank, and then get double the
performance out of it, I should absolutely do that. This one’s actually
pretty interesting to me. Number 14 fail with protein skimmers. – Where am I gonna put this thing? Overthinking your placement. Whether it goes in the first chamber, whether it goes before a refugium, or it goes after a refugium, whether it goes, anywhere
in this lineup of your sump. Probably is not going to be a massive difference overall when it comes to the filtration. – So, I mean, if I had my druthers, I would actually feed it
right off of the overflow. The poo and food that’s coming down it, I would have a recirculating design feeding it right into the skimmer. If that was if I had it every way. I’d also probably put it
before the refugium as well. I wanna remove as much
of that gunk and stuff so it doesn’t get trapped
inside the refugium. If I put it after the refugium, most of the poo and food is actually getting stuck and trapped
inside of all the cadomorpha. But in the end, this is all just kinda splitting hairs and we like to kinda
debate all of this stuff. It’s just super fun to
think about the best. But I think overthinking it
also causes some other problems. Trying to feed this
thing off of the overflow causes some functional challenges that you’re gonna have to get past and depending on your system you might do it wrong three
times before you get it right and think about the value
then we get out of it, right? I’m not gonna rebuild or re-buy a sump just so I can put the
skimmer in the optimal place in many cases. So I think it’s actually
one of the bigger fails here is just overthinking things,
trying to get it perfect, when actually 9.8 will do. All right, number 15 fail, this one is actually one
I’ve done myself many times. What is it? – Yeah, if you have a controller, use the controller to
control those things. So I’m dosing medications,
I’m dosing foods, I’m dosing aminos, I’m
dosing those types of things. I’m doing routine maintenance. There’s just a variety of reasons and ways and times where I just probably
should shut this thing off and especially if it means water levels are fluctuating in my sump because either you’re going to run this thing in very low water and you might run the risk
of just running it dry or when I shut my pumps off to
do maintenance in my display, my water level in my sump goes up, and now I’ve got, if
I didn’t clean my cup, I’ve got a mess on my hands. I’ve got fish poo and everything
all over the place so. – I think we’ve all seen
it, almost everybody. You turn off your return pump,
but the skimmer’s still on, water level goes up in the sump, the skimmer just overflows like crazy. So all that poo that it caught, now flowing back into the tank in like a super concentrated form. Not good. I will say that in the
recirculating form of skimmer, that one actually
doesn’t have that problem ’cause it’s not really affected by the amount of water for
the most part in the sump, so you can just turn it off and it really doesn’t affect it. But if you have a controller, and we’ve used the Apex for this, get the float switch or the little water optical eye attachment and you can do one of two things. If the return pump is ever set off, you can set up a rule to turn
up the skimmer or whatnot, or if the water level in a
sump ever goes above here, turn off the skimmer, right, or both, really. But if you’re doing feedings, I don’t wanna remove all
the amino acids right away, so turn off the skimmer for two hours. Still gonna run for 22 other
hours, it’ll be just fine. – Yeah, that’s right. – And so, like I bought those
amino acids, I paid for them, I don’t want the skimmer to remove it and it’s probably not stripping it out, but even if it only removed 20%, I can actually spend 20%
less money on amino acids if I just turn the thing
off for a couple hours. So use those things if
you have a controller. Use the feed mode, use
the little water sensors, and you can get better performance out of the skimmer that you have. All right, so as you just described it, bonus fail number 16, what is it? – Yeah, today we have a bonus fail 16, which is understanding,
or lack of understanding of how the skimmer affects pH. So this thing can affect
pH in a variety of ways. One, without any media or anything, the first thing my mind goes to is I’m running C02 scrubbing media directly using my skimmer for that purpose to scrub out that air, but even just a skimmer
in general in your system has such a high air velocity exchange going on in the chamber of it that it benefits the rest of the tank. – So for those of you that don’t know, assuming that your alkalinity is on par, the number one factor to pH in your tank is the amount of carbon dioxide in the air surrounding the tank actually. The carbon dioxide enters the tank, turns into carbonic acid and lowers the pH, right? All right, so if I have a skimmer that is just tiny little
bubbles from top to bottom, this is so much more surface area covering all those bottles. Probably like 100 fold versus
just the surface of your tank. Maybe 1000 fold, right? And so this thing actually
has the most gas exchange probably of the whole tank and it’s just cycling through it, and so there’s a couple of different ways that it could affect your pH in your tank. Assuming that the carbon dioxide levels are really high in your room, you got a lotta pets or there’s a bunch of people living there, it’s an office space, or a
restaurant, or who knows, and carbon dioxide levels are rising, This thing is actually going to lower the pH of your tank. Turning the skimmer on
will lower it faster because it’s pulling
more carbon dioxide in. However, you can actually do the opposite if you just draw the air from outside, you know, send this tube outside, in which case you might
want a stronger pump because they’ll be some back pressure from sucking it from outside and whatnot, you might want a bigger pump for it than you would normally run. But you can pull the air from outside which has lower levels of carbon dioxide and use the skimmer to actually lower the amount of carbon dioxide that’s in the water as well. You can run CO2 media,
you can do all different. I’ve heard of even people
putting plants in the room to suck up the carbon dioxide
than using the skimmer to use that lower carbon dioxide to suck it out of the water. And so just understand that this tool is actually one the biggest things that impacts the amount of CO2 and then the carbonic acid in the tank because of that controls
the pH both up and down. Just understand how that works. And one of the biggest fails I think is people talking about pH, talking about pH buffers
and all this other stuff, and this is actually one of the things that impacts it the most. Okay, so if I have one
takeaway from this whole thing, it’s pick up a skimmer that’s actually capable of today’s tank and hopefully a two years from now tank, probably a DC skimmer, but if you do that, your tank will thank you for it. It’ll be able to span the whole gap. You’ll probably reduce your
maintenance on your tank, maybe even water changes
and other elements, through that entire time. The water will probably be clearer, probably odorless,
probably less yellow water, all kinds of things will
benefit in your tank. So make sure to try to pick up a skimmer that does today’s
job as well as tomorrow’s. – Okay, so don’t fall
victim to those top fails and if you wanna geek out even further and even more in depth, we have all of these experiments
that we did on skimmers and you can find that in
a very special playlist right up here, so go check it out.

Only registered users can comment.

  1. I've just taken my skimmer offline to help get my nutrients up – I have a 40 gallon refugium full of chaeto and it strips my water way to quickly when teamed up with my skimmer. Having taken it offline, my pH is a few points lower than it was before, I used to bounce between 8.1 and 8.5 to now 7.9 to 8.2.

  2. Great video guys, have you considered doing one for those of us who don’t have a refugium ? I have to use an internal skimmer as I haven’t got the room for a sump, unfortunately I have to use a canister filter which makes life a whole lot more challenging ☹️

  3. Once again you missed the biggest fail.

    The biggest fail is spilling skimmate on the carpet right as your wife comes around the corner

  4. Brilliant video, I’ve made the mistake of having multiple large skimmers while carbon dosing, having them pulling waste from various areas of tank and sump and it resulted in way LESS skimmate. Gone back to a single skimmer and it’s pulling out waste way more efficiently. As always you guys are amazing and bang on with your advice!

  5. Another incredibly help video! I have one question that didn't seem to be addressed in the video though. If you're using a refugium with a macro algea or something similar like an algea scrubber, will that have any affect on the overall bioload in the tank? In your refugium videos you made it seem like a refugium could be a good single nutrient exporter up to a certain bioload point. So if this is the case, would I then take into consideration my refugium when selecting the skimmer that's right for my tank's bioload similar to a filter sock? Also is it even necessary to run a skimmer on a tank with filter socks or a raller mat while also running a larger refugium? Maybe a spin off series of tests from your refugium videos?

  6. @Bulk Reef Supply I'm running a 1 month old tank on a Bubble King 160 with DC pump and running it at 100%.
    It's doing absolutely nothing without running the bubble high up the neck.
    I cannot believe I didn't understand why it was a DC pump and this meant I could dial down. As you said, I figured "more air, more good".
    FacePalm

  7. Love these videos:)! Inevitably we all go bigger:) Would be cool to see a skimmer that would do small bioload and could ramp up?

  8. This is a great video. Best in months and that is saying a lot when BRS does such awesome work. I only have a 20 gallon IM reef and I dumped my skimmer two years ago because I could never get it to work right, it was loud, and I do a 5 gallon water change each week. Here is the sad part. Randy has learned to quiet his hands so I cant play “Drink when Randy gestures wildly” anymore. Sad.

  9. I like the first, do I even need a skimmer.

    If I can get the best eco-system without a skimmer with other methods that are lower maintenance than a skimmer 😁

  10. hi im Building a 2500 liter reef tank Witches is 660 Us gallons would a Reef octopus regal 300 S be big enough going to Be fairly heavily stocked thanks

  11. I ordered a tunze 9004 dc skimmer installed it my tank is doing so much better better growth from my coral and water is crystal clear

  12. I got a 350 Red Sea reefer tank my skimmer just went out on me if anyone got a a skimmer day don't need it anymore hit me up let me know

  13. Thanx for that series. I think it's just as important to know what not to do as what to do. But most of the time you only lern what to do wich didn't save you from big fails.
    Keep going!

  14. Doesn’t meticulous cleaning then force you back through tuning the skimmer. Definately wash and clean but maybe don’t make it like new clean?

  15. The 15 fails series is my favorite series to date. Your giving real results. So many talk about what the positives equipment can do but fewvare willing to talk about there fails

  16. Love Top 15 episode very very useful information,Plus saw BRS advertisement in YouTube about international shipping.my orders coming for BRS only.

  17. Let’s say you have medium bioload on a 500g tank but also have a massive sump, frag tank, etc for like 800-1000 gallons, which gallon rating should you shoot for in a skimmer?

  18. Just received my Reef Octopus 110sss from you guys. Your tips have helped me set it up and it's working great because of them!

  19. The biggest fail is I just read the thumbnail as "Protein Skimmer Milkshakes" – I think I need to go back to bed…

  20. First I would like to start by saying that I love your videos. I think you guys have done the best job of educating people on reefing. Now that said, I am about to blow my top. So all the information I got back in the early 2000's, they all said: "The bigger the skimmer, the better". So, me being a poor dude trying to do things right the first time, I go and get the coral life 125 gallon protein skimmer for my 60 gallon reef tank. For years I wondered why it never produced very much scum……. Now it looks like I have to go out and spend more money and get the smaller 65 gallons to hang over the tank protein skimmer…….. I was not blessed to have a reef ready tank nor a tank big enough to have a sump underneath. Man, I wish this video was around back then. This may be why people tell me they don't get into reefing, because of the expense. Keep up the great work. I'm going to bite the bullet and start from scratch but purely by the BRS videos. I can't believe I fell into those videos by self-proclaimed "expert reefers".

  21. Need help please
    Tank: reefer 250 running for 1 year
    Water parameters:
    Ca. 445
    Mg. 1320
    Kh. 8
    P04. 0.04
    No3. 10
    Salinity 1.025
    Clarisea 5000
    Skimmer: octo elite 150s placed as per the recommended hight
    The issue is the old skimmer octo regal stopped skimming and I replaced it by the elite and running now for almost 2 weeks.
    Massive of micro bubbles comming out of the skimmer, no skimate at all, only bubbles no foam created.
    I've been in the same issue for more than 2 months, and I thought the old skimmer was broken but it seems something going wrong. Will never imagine the amount of micro bubbles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *