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post #11 of 13 Old 08-07-2009, 07:03 AM
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Skimmers vs water changes

Almost everyone has a skimmer these days. However, in a small nano or micro reef, there's not much room for skimmers. In tank skimmers take too much room and HOB skimmers clutter the hardware and most have an outlet tube that interferes with coral and rock placement.

I've also read many times (from reefers who know their stuff, and reefers who should probably try another hobby where living things don't die) that water changes in a small tank can effectively take the place of a skimmer.

True or not true?
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post #12 of 13 Old 08-07-2009, 12:21 PM
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My post above wasn't very well thought out was it? I suppose if you wanted to do enough water changes you wouldn't need any filtering equipment of any kind, including skimmers.

My point was (not clearly stated) in a small tank 0f 20 gals or less, weekly water changes are no big deal and would take the place of a bulky, extremely noisy, sometimes problematic, and often expensive protein skimmer.
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post #13 of 13 Old 08-09-2009, 10:22 PM Thread Starter
Ideally, you would have a sump system set up to increase your water volume. In there, you could just have a skimmer running. I understand it it can be difficult to setup a sump on a smaller tank, but it can be set beside it in a cabinet or something. Anyways, keeping a smaller thank is not recommended, but it can def. be done.But yeah, it is important to skim..... people do get by without them and some of their tanks flourish; most of them are the more experienced hobbyists who decide to go skimmerless after their tank has matured. Constant water changes help rid the tank of bacteria; this includes some beneficial bacteria. If you are changing 10 gallons of water per week in a 20 gallon tank because you are not skimming, you could end up with more problems down the road. One does not want to rid their tank of any pods etc. on a constant basis especially if you have any livestock whose diet relies on them. I do not find any GOOD skimmer problematic in anyway. If you go out and buy a cheap one, then yeah you probably wasted your money. Still, a crappy skimmer is better than no skimmer to me.
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