The Planted Tank Forum banner
1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
190 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I installed a Fluval surface skimmer and I'm not sure if its working properly. I also am not sure if they require any maintenance. It seemed to be working great for the first week. All of a sudden it is making a bunch of noise and the tube is filled with bubbles. Adjusting it doesn't really do much for the bubble situation.

TBH, I don't care for it too much as it feels extremely cheap. Any input on these issues or the need for maintenance?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
213 Posts
there could be two situations: 1) check the intake strainer. if it's clogged, you'll be drawing more from the surface to the point that air is being drawn into the tube or 2) you've unscrewed the adjusting stick completely so that it it's unable to divert the flow correctly. i have a feeling it's #2.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
190 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
there could be two situations: 1) check the intake strainer. if it's clogged, you'll be drawing more from the surface to the point that air is being drawn into the tube or 2) you've unscrewed the adjusting stick completely so that it it's unable to divert the flow correctly. i have a feeling it's #2.
I read that you are supposed to see the water level in the clear tube about half way up. That is where I have it set at. There is some debris on it but nothing that would restrict it too much. Ill clean it off to make sure and see if it fixes the issue. Am I correct with where the water level is at?

I watched a video by green aqua and he talked about there being an internal filter. From what I can tell, I do not have one. I assume his is just a much higher quality. Would you tend to agree?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
213 Posts
i think your water level in the clear tube is too low. you need to be drawing less water from the surface.

don't really know what you're trying to ask in the second paragraph. what is your skimmer attached to? canister or hob?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
190 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
i think your water level in the clear tube is too low. you need to be drawing less water from the surface.

don't really know what you're trying to ask in the second paragraph. what is your skimmer attached to? canister or hob?
It wasnt clogged when I checked last night. Ill try raising the water level up. The skimmer is attached to a fluval 407 canister. Ill find the video and share a link. Basically he had a filter inside of his skimmer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
213 Posts
yes do raise the level. mine is about 1/5 of the way down (gets larger as the intake gets clogged).

please do post the link. i've never seen a filter in a surface skimmer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,933 Posts
I'll throw some shade on surface skimmers. More unsightly equipment in your tank and to clean? Sorry not for me, some like the extra equipment, but for me minimal is best. I've never felt the need for one. If you have a surface slick, it's either from leftover food, dead plant leaves, or some other substance that wasn't removed during a 2-minute maintenance quickie. The surface film just tells you to do some maintenance.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
190 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I'll throw some shade on surface skimmers. More unsightly equipment in your tank and to clean? Sorry not for me, some like the extra equipment, but for me minimal is best. I've never felt the need for one. If you have a surface slick, it's either from leftover food, dead plant leaves, or some other substance that wasn't removed during a 2-minute maintenance quickie. The surface film just tells you to do some maintenance.
I agree on both accounts. I also read that they help with surface agitation however after using one, I don't see how. But because you made that statement, I have to ask! Why was I getting a surface scum even though i was doing my do diligence with tank maintenance?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,933 Posts
I agree on both accounts. I also read that they help with surface agitation however after using one, I don't see how. But because you made that statement, I have to ask! Why was I getting a surface scum even though i was doing my do diligence with tank maintenance?
Assuming it's not coming from outside the tank (like a kitchen) then it usually happens in my tank if I'm not diligent in removing certain leftover food. When I feed frozen food like bloodworms I noticed a film develop. But it can happen from any organic matter since most will contain some type of oil, which floats to the top. I guess it's how you want it, some would rather not worry about it and have the skimmer remove it. To me it's an indication of too much waste left in the tank. I'd rather be preventive than reactive.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
190 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Assuming it's not coming from outside the tank (like a kitchen) then it usually happens in my tank if I'm not diligent in removing certain leftover food. When I feed frozen food like bloodworms I noticed a film develop. But it can happen from any organic matter since most will contain some type of oil, which floats to the top. I guess it's how you want it, some would rather not worry about it and have the skimmer remove it. To me it's an indication of too much waste left in the tank. I'd rather be preventive than reactive.
Maybe I should take mine out and see how it does. I was overfeeding for a while but I think I have it taken care of. I still want to get some floating plants anyway.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,933 Posts
Maybe I should take mine out and see how it does. I was overfeeding for a while but I think I have it taken care of. I still want to get some floating plants anyway.
You could try it and see how it goes, but it's never been a problem for me. I just hate having more equipment in the tank unless it's absolutely necessary, but I don't think it is in most cases. Maybe someone else will chime in.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
190 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
You could try it and see how it goes, but it's never been a problem for me. I just hate having more equipment in the tank unless it's absolutely necessary, but I don't think it is in most cases. Maybe someone else will chime in.
From what I can tell, its like everything else in the hobby, To each their own. Id prefer not to have all the extra equipment personally, but I do hate the surface scum. I just dont know what was causing it. Ill give it a shot I suppose.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
213 Posts
I'll throw some shade on surface skimmers. More unsightly equipment in your tank and to clean? Sorry not for me, some like the extra equipment, but for me minimal is best. I've never felt the need for one. If you have a surface slick, it's either from leftover food, dead plant leaves, or some other substance that wasn't removed during a 2-minute maintenance quickie. The surface film just tells you to do some maintenance.
the glass surface skimmer i use is the one that doubles as the intake. it is not a separate unit, like the kind the green aqua guy uses. so it's not really adding much more to the tank's interior (the diameter of it is 3/4" ; diameter of regular intake is 1/2"). eliminating surface scum helps with light penetration and more importantly surface agitation. let it do it's job and it will do the "maintenance" for you.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,933 Posts
the glass surface skimmer i use is the one that doubles as the intake. it is not a separate unit, like the kind the green aqua guy uses. so it's not really adding much more to the tank's interior (the diameter of it is 3/4" ; diameter of regular intake is 1/2"). eliminating surface scum helps with light penetration and more importantly surface agitation. let it do it's job and it will do the "maintenance" for you.
It's still more obtrusive and more to clean than just an intake. Like I said it's a personal choice, once you have the surface film it means something has been left in the tank too long. The skimmer is still reactive maintenance and if your developing surface film other issues might develop from the organics left in, not just the film. I've always been more preventive. Doing things that would prevent the film in the first place.
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top