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I am considering buying a UV sterilizer but I am wondering if they are worth the money. Are they simply to decrease simple forms of algae that cause green water? or do they really make better water quality for fish? Therefore, are they more cosmetic (clearer water) or beneficial (increasing health of tank)? I have seen many conflicting views of UV sterilizers and I would like to see some of the opinions of UV sterilizer owners.
 

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A UV filter will clear green water. I bought one when I couldn't get rid of green water and it has been gone since. It won't kill other algae that doesn't flow through it. Depending on the flow rate it can make your tank healthier by killing free floating nasties. Check out a few online and they will tell you a recommended flow rate. toward the bottom of that estimate is where you kill the nasties. At the topof the estimate is where you get rid of the algae.


So in response to your question it depends on the flow rate.


Lou
 

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I have both a UV and a diatom. Like bigstick said I get more use out of a diatom than a UV.
Once you have a UV it just sits under the tank and isnt seen very much.
If you have a diatom and need to use it to clear some water you can see almost instant results.
 

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While using a diatom will give you instantaneous results, I have personally had much more use out of my UV sterilizers. Every tank I've ever had that kept sensitive fish (or fish more likely then others to suffer from Ich) had a UV on it.

UV's are great for killing off a greenwater explosion, although it does take longer then a Diatom. I personally love them for helping my fish stay parasite free (which is a real concern for me, I am adding, or removing, or rehoming fish on a regular basis, so I never know what they will come in with). I much prefer using UV for parasite control then nuking a tank with chemicals.
 

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I am considering buying a UV sterilizer but I am wondering if they are worth the money. Are they simply to decrease simple forms of algae that cause green water? or do they really make better water quality for fish? Therefore, are they more cosmetic (clearer water) or beneficial (increasing health of tank)? I have seen many conflicting views of UV sterilizers and I would like to see some of the opinions of UV sterilizer owners.
LOL, looks like you should have done a poll. Is a UV worth the money? Yes. But so is a diatom. If you can only get one, get the diatom (to initiate another debate start a thread asking what kind of diatom to get). A UV will kill stuff but it will not remove the dead stuff from the tank. A diatom will remove the stuff and at that point you do not care if it is dead or not; it is out of the water and no longer in the tank.......DC
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
personally I have never had any issues with green water but I have had issues with parasites, such as flukes. All my algae issues were usually with green hair algae (so I don't think it would help with that). So, a UV sterilizer would kill parasites if the flow rate is slow enough?
 

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I use a UV on my tank and like it. It's true that it does more than help against green water. I have never had gw on this tank, but I have always had a UV sterilizer hooked up. Before converting it to a planted tank, I had south american cichlids and Silver Dollars in here. I had two or three ich outbreaks in about 8 months. While no one ever died, because I always jumped on it fast, it was a pain to deal with. Since I redid the tank and hooked up the 9w turbo twist, I have had no problems even with clown loaches in there. I would never run a planted tank without it. The medication and raising temp would be too detrimental to the plants (and fish) if an outbreak ever occured.
If I were to get a UV OR a diatom, I would get a UV. A diatom is just a filter. It will do nothing to free-floating algae spores or parasites. If you're worried about clearing out dead stuff then use a good gravel vac or get some bottom feeders ;)
 

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effective rate of UV depends on the unit itself. Most units, even the smaller ones, should be fine as a GW killer at that flow rate. The nasties take more UV exposure to get rid of which can only be accomplished by having the water run through the UV slower AKA dwell time.
 

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personally I have never had any issues with green water but I have had issues with parasites, such as flukes. All my algae issues were usually with green hair algae (so I don't think it would help with that). So, a UV sterilizer would kill parasites if the flow rate is slow enough?

It will only kill water-borne parasites. If a parasite comes into the tank attached to a fish, UV won't kill it. It will only help minimalize exposure/infestation of the other occupants of the tank. You still have to cure the infected fish.

Tommy
 

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If I were to get a UV OR a diatom, I would get a UV. A diatom is just a filter. It will do nothing to free-floating algae spores or parasites. If you're worried about clearing out dead stuff then use a good gravel vac or get some bottom feeders ;)
I disagree with that info. A diatom may be a filter but it does filter to one micron (one millionth of a meter). What?, It will do nothing to free-floating algae spores or parasites?, wrong, it will completely remove them from the tank dead, alive, or whatever. One micron is the filtration ability of a good quality RO unit. There is no way a UV can compete with that. Since I use both on 22 tanks, IME, the diatom is much more effective on large and small tanks. It will take several hours for a UV to do its job on a 10 gallon tank, 10 minutes for a diatom. A gravel vac competing with a diatom? come on! Sorry but I prefer not to intentionally remove parasites dead or alive with any my fish........DC
 

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I do own both as well, each has its uses. If green water is the objective, UV is the way to go. The diatom will give the nearly instant satisfaction of a clear tank, but the UV will burn the GW out and if you leave it running for a week or two extra, it'll keep it from coming back. Atleast it did for me. Diatom.. it came back.. Diatom again, longer run, just to make 100% sure. It came back. Hooked up UV, left it on for a month, never saw GW again (8+ months now).

Jon
 

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when you have GW you know it's worth the money.

I just used my 18W turboTwist clean the GW tank in two days and water had never been so clear.

here is the pic of my diy portable UVS



 

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I used to think it wouldn't help much but, I gotta say my tank looks cleaner and my fish look healthier. I haven't lost a single fish since I installed my turbo twist.
 
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