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Old 05-25-2019, 11:12 PM
BCOrchidGuy BCOrchidGuy is offline
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Default Skimmer or Chaeto

Anyone have a good argument for running both? I'm downsizing and that means downsizing my sump as well. I could have a reasonable chaeto compartment or I could have a small one with a skimmer but I'm considering getting rid of the skimmer.
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Old 05-26-2019, 12:15 AM
tunachunks tunachunks is offline
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I had to make the same decision a while back. And I ended up using all the space in the sump for cheato, I am also using a HOB skimmer that has a much smaller footprint. It hangs off my sump, and runs 12h per day.
Not sure if the Skimmer is needed, I had the system running without it for 3 weeks with no ill effects. But it gives me piece of mind.

If you had a big nutrient spike, like when something dies in your tank the skimmer would take care of it. That is my argument for still running it.
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Old 05-26-2019, 02:17 PM
BCOrchidGuy BCOrchidGuy is offline
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@Tunachunks, that's a really good point. I know it's been discussed before but I couldn't find anything, hence the post.
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Old 05-27-2019, 07:23 PM
tunachunks tunachunks is offline
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Thanks BCOrchidGuy, what I would be interested in is the ability to add oxygen to the water - Chaeto vs Skimmer.
Reason number two for me to run the Skimmer is its ability to oxygenate the water.

I just don't know if Chaeto alone is sufficient to add enough oxygen to the water. Would be great to hear if anyone has some more insight...

Thanks and Happy Reefing
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Old 05-27-2019, 08:13 PM
hillegom hillegom is offline
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If you want to add O2,You would have to have the lights on above the chaeto 24/7
Also, what happens if the power goes out? The skimmer stops of course, but the cheato would consume O2 without the lights. This happens to everyone, of course, so an airstone on a battery solves that.
I would have both
HOB skimmer and chaeto in the sump
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Old 05-27-2019, 11:18 PM
cvrle1 cvrle1 is online now
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A lot of people think that skimmer and chaeto are used for same thing, which is incorrect. One targets organics, while the other targets inorganic. I look at them as complimentary to one another, and not one or the other. Also, depending on size of tank you are running, you may need a lot of chaeto, and then you get into issue of keeping it in check, which can become hassle really quickly.
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Old 06-11-2019, 07:26 AM
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Reyphox Reyphox is online now
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Skimmers will remove dissolved organics before they release nitrates and phosphates. Macro algae will remove nitrates and phosphates. Think of them as stage 1 and stage 2 filters. Remember, a little of this filth is good, its a nice treat for your corals. Anyways it all really depends on your bio-load. I run both currently. I have a 75 gallon with 9 fish including 2 tangs. My nutrients are way too low. My fish are fat. I over feed them, I overfeed my corals and my phosphates and nitrates don't have a pulse. I have recently pruned my chaeto down to the size of a tennis ball in hopes to get a reading of either. If that doesn't work, I'll have to consider running the skimmer for a lesser time or just open up the skim cup plug completely. This way it's doing nothing but adding O2 into the tank.

Last edited by Reyphox; 06-11-2019 at 07:30 AM.
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Old 06-12-2019, 07:10 PM
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Bblinks Bblinks is offline
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I also run both currently but if space is restricted then I would go with skimmer and possible algae scrubber instead...
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Old 06-12-2019, 09:35 PM
tunachunks tunachunks is offline
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it's amazing to hear so many voices on this subject, and here is one more I just came across:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JjBYtHHnsXE
at 7:20 Julian Sprung talks about refugiums and/or protein skimmers, really interesting

I personally will stay with both.
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