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Discussion Starter #1
Hi,

I am still trying to get the protein skimmer to work :(

I have experimented with twisting the little knob attached to the hose and I have found that it controls the water flow. When I turn it one way I get a flow that does not disrupt the tank but it causes no foam to bubble up in the skimmer. When I open it more, the skimmer starts to create foam, but the skimmer's water flow is so strong that it puts so many bubbles into the tank that it is disruptive. Also, when it is open like that and creating foam, you can even see all of the bubbles in the pipe that draws water from the tank into the skimmer... it appears white as opposed to clear like it is when the knob is closed tighter.

Can somebody please help me figure out how to get this thing working so that it is creating the necessary foam but not disrupting the tank with so many bubbles/such a strong current?

Thank you!
 

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When you turn the knob to get the foam action, thats a sign it's working. The water current does get stronger as it's pushing more air. Thats the reason I got a sump tank that way I wouldn't get bubbles in the tank and the skimmer can do it's job. Your skimmer works. The bubbles enter the tank because they have no other place to go except though the collection cup or out into the tank.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you. It looks very different from the one in the pet store, though... In the pet store, the skimmer's main cylinder looked like a tornedo of water. Mine looks like a blizzard of bubbles! The entire tank has tiny bubbles in it now... is that supposed to happen? Am I supposed to leave the skimmer running continuously, or skim for a while and then unplug it so my fish get a break from fighting the current and bubbles?
 

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Don't let it produce too much bubbles. Too much bubbles can penetrate underneath the fish's skin. This is painful for them and this results into air bubble disease.
While the remedy is usually aeration on that case, it can also happened with the vigorously circulation of bubbles.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
The problem is that it only produces foam at the top when it is also spewing tons of tiny bubbles into the tank. After reading about air bubble disease I am afraid that I harmed the fish by leaving them home with the protein skimmer on, but there is nothing I can do about it from work. At this point I have no idea what to do.
 

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can you place something on the output of the skimmer to catch the bubbles?-filter floss Or im sure you could rigg a device to dicipate the bubbles
 

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You can try but I think that it will either back the water flow up or get pushed out into the tank from the pressure.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I got a new skimmer and still need help

Hi guys,

Thank you for the replies. The skimmer was a SeaClone which my LFS told me was garbage. Because I didn't have a working skimmer and only had a fluval, which I have been told is a freshwater filter, I bit the bullet and got a ProClear 150 Pro w/ prefilter.

I am having a problem with the skimmer that sits in the sump. If I open the air valve, it produces bubbles so fast that it fills the drainage coke bottle entirely with water within a few hours. If I close the air valve, it does not make bubbles.

Can somebody tell me how to set this thing up so that it will produce the black sludge it is supposed to? Thank you!
 

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How about setting it somewhere in the middle. all on or all off usually does not work. Adjust slowly, like a quarter turn at a time. when I used to have a sea clone I would turn the air all off then slowly turn it until I started to hear disruption in the chamber. be aware that if you have never had a skimmer set up and running in the tank it will produce alot of watery foam at first until it settles in after a few days of skimming. in the long run try to get a better skimmer, sea clone is not that good, and both of mine eventually leaked at the bottom of the j pipe. I bought a bakpak clone online and it does twice the job of the clones for about 50 bucks. And it don't leak like the clone.
 

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This is why I always advise to get Eororeef. Truly the industry standard for quality, foam production and ease of use. With saltwater equipment you truly do get what you pay for. $300 or more may seem like a lot of money but I haven't had to spend any time with my ER except daily cup cleanings. The blackest sludge imaginable. ASM are also quite nice but generally do not include a matched pump like ER.

I also advise you to take it very slow with your adjustments. Sounds like you can only adjust air input. It would be great if you could raise the water column as well but it sounds as though you cannot do that with an "all in one" sump.

You may also be running wet for several other reasons. If your pickup is too low in the tank. You only want to skim off the top 1/4" of water from the tank to the sump. You may have a huge buildup of nutrient just waiting to get out. IE: it may slow over time as it catches up.. The amount of times you put your hand in the watre can make it go wet from the oils on your skin. The foods you feed can make a skimmer freak out. I add amino acids to my tank and if I do it to quickly can freak out any skimmer. 2 part epoxy will drive a skimmer nuts.
 
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