Not sure how the protein skimmer works

Emma1234

New member
Hi,

I took this picture of my protein skimmer.

skimmer.jpg

Does anyone have any suggestions on what I can do so the skimmer works properly. I think the pic shows that it isn't working, I have bubbles deep down inside the skimmer. If I adjust the water coming into the skimmer by turning the tube outside the skimmer (grey tube to the right of the skimmer), to boost the bubbles higher, the cup on top overflows. I don't know what to do to fix. I'm thinking there may be something that needs to be done with the level of water in the sump. The skimmer currently sits in about 9 inches of water. It's obvious that I don't know what I'm doing but I'd really appreciate some help.
 

zsuman101

New member
first thing you should do would be to remove and clean it. just scrub it with a brush toothbrush whatever it takes. disassemble the pump and clean it aswell. then put it all back together and run it with minimal bubbles for about a week. this will break it back in. then it wont be so sensitive to adjustments. you could also raise the skimmer so it is only 7 inches submerged, this should also reduce adjustment sensitivity. good luck zsu
 

zsuman101

New member
from the picture that is one very dirty skimmer. ime keeping them clean can on be a good thing. again good luck zsu
 

falconut

New member
If it's like either of the two skimmers I have, the top of the bubbles should be around the neck of the skimmer. You can start with them lower, then raise them if the foam doesn't start rising up the cup. Like previously suggested, scrub it clean first.
 

AlSimmons

New member
After you clean it I would turn the grey tube all the way to the right. (open up the valve) The bubbles should line up somewhere in the chamber now. Over the next 24 hours just keep rotating the grey tube to the left in small increments. Let it run for an hour or so between each adjustment. Once the bubbles have reached the bottom of the neck stop. Let the skimmer run for a day and see how it performs. If the skimmate is extremely dry turn the grey tube to the left a little more. If the skimmate is wet adjust it to the right.
 

Optionman

New member
empty it, clean it, then lower the grey tube to be level with the narrowest point in the neck (just below the middle blue ring). let it run a few hours and u should start getting good skim collect in the cup.
 

Potatohead

New member
I have the same skimmer with a Sicce pump. I don't remember the exact water level I have it in, but it's about 1/4" above the pump, I think it's about 9 1/4". I set the top of the bubbles with the cup off to about 1/4" above the blue ring on the body where the neck start to get narrower. It does take very, very fine adjustment but when you get it right it is very stable and a good skimmer.
 

ericarenee

New member
Did you just install this skimmer into your tank..

it looks like its been working for some time.

Its producing bubbles but the water level is too high

adjust it down to where the water level is above the body of the skimmer maybe one inch into the tube...
Let it set for 12 or so hours and see it starts to foam inside the tube if it does adjust the level a bit high and wait another 12 to 24 hours. Your Goal is to get it to fill the tub with Foam NOT BUBBLES.. The foam will after a day or so form a dryish skim on top and slowly fall over into the collection cup...

My opinion the skimmer is fine your just trying to adjust it too fast

ohh that skimmer is not very dirty those who think that is dirty would say mine skimmer needs pressure washed. i only clean it twice a year other then the collection cup tube

hope this helps
 

MrDaniel

New member
It sounds like you are experiencing a very common problem. Like many other suggested, it takes time to dial in the skimmer. You will want to set the skimmer so that the bubbles are just reaching the bottom of the where the collection cup connects. Let it skim there for a day and come back. Most likely the bubbles will now be reaching much higher in the neck when you left. If no skimmate has been collected, make a minor change to close the valve a little further. Continue and repeat until you the level stabilizes and the skimmate produced is a dark brown/tea color.
 

Emma1234

New member
Thanks

Thanks

I haven't been online for a couple of days and just saw all the suggestions. I'm feeling more optimistic about getting the skimmer to work properly. I'll update in a few days how it turns out. Thanks a bunch!:beer:
 

jml1149

New member
That's one of the cleanest skimmers I've ever seen! Only when you need a shovel to remove the brown rancid crud from the neck would I consider a skimmer dirty. That probably has just the right amount of slime on it to work just fine.

But like somebody said, keep turning the grey pipe to the left an eighth of an inch at a time until it skims as you want it.

I'd be worried about the chaeto getting into the skimmer and gumming stuff up though as well.
 

Sk8r

Staff member
RC Mod
Ideally, you should be able to go a week without having to clean the cup, once the skimmer has been running a while...otherwise you'd be in trouble having to leave it on vacation. If it's kind of walnut brown/green opaque, that's pretty good: if it looks like weak tea, you're pushing it too fast and losing too much tank water with the crud---back off the grey pipe. Do watch your salinity while skimming like weak tea: it can be a problem ---re removing too much water with the crud.
 

Emma1234

New member
Update on Protein Skimmer

Update on Protein Skimmer

Hello Everyone,

In my original post I ask for help with my protein skimmer. I said that I didn't think I knew how to make the skimmer work properly and asked for help. I received a lot of great and, much-appreciated, feedback. Here is the picture of the protein skimmer before I got your advice.

View attachment 362473

I made the adjustments that people suggested. I cleaned the skimmer on Saturday the 26th of November. I started out with the grey tube on the right of the skimmer completely open. I turned that grey tube slightly to the left bit by bit over the next couple of days. Today is Tuesday the 29th. Here is what the protein skimmer looks like today. Clearly the input I received made a difference.

skimmer 1.jpg

I'm wondering what I should do now. Should I leave it alone or should I move the tube to the left or right?. When should I stop the adjustments?

Any ideas on how my weekly water changes would affect what I do with the grey tube? Should I not tamper with it, after water changes, once it's in the "right" position. Or do I have to re-adjust the tube after every water change.

Thanks very much for the help.
 

ericarenee

New member
Hello Everyone,

In my original post I ask for help with my protein skimmer. I said that I didn't think I knew how to make the skimmer work properly and asked for help. I received a lot of great and, much-appreciated, feedback. Here is the picture of the protein skimmer before I got your advice.

View attachment 362473

I made the adjustments that people suggested. I cleaned the skimmer on Saturday the 26th of November. I started out with the grey tube on the right of the skimmer completely open. I turned that grey tube slightly to the left bit by bit over the next couple of days. Today is Tuesday the 29th. Here is what the protein skimmer looks like today. Clearly the input I received made a difference.

View attachment 362474

I'm wondering what I should do now. Should I leave it alone or should I move the tube to the left or right?. When should I stop the adjustments?

Any ideas on how my weekly water changes would affect what I do with the grey tube? Should I not tamper with it, after water changes, once it's in the "right" position. Or do I have to re-adjust the tube after every water change.

Thanks very much for the help.

The Skim looks a bit to wet still.you want it collecting very dark brown kinda thick stuff not see thru like yours is. but you are almost there

ohh from this point on its kinda a preference thing on how often you want to have to empty the collection cup in relation to how thick darn you want it to pull..

i say adjust it a bit more to produce slower but darker waste..

Glad you got it working ..

ohh a tip when you empty the collection cup you can clean the collection container that holds the waste very good. but just rinse off the inside body of it i use a old tooth brush and just knock off the built up crud
 

DamonG

New member
Hello Everyone,

In my original post I ask for help with my protein skimmer. I said that I didn't think I knew how to make the skimmer work properly and asked for help. I received a lot of great and, much-appreciated, feedback. Here is the picture of the protein skimmer before I got your advice.

View attachment 362473

I made the adjustments that people suggested. I cleaned the skimmer on Saturday the 26th of November. I started out with the grey tube on the right of the skimmer completely open. I turned that grey tube slightly to the left bit by bit over the next couple of days. Today is Tuesday the 29th. Here is what the protein skimmer looks like today. Clearly the input I received made a difference.

View attachment 362474

I'm wondering what I should do now. Should I leave it alone or should I move the tube to the left or right?. When should I stop the adjustments?

Any ideas on how my weekly water changes would affect what I do with the grey tube? Should I not tamper with it, after water changes, once it's in the "right" position. Or do I have to re-adjust the tube after every water change.

Thanks very much for the help.
Me personally, I'd leave it.. I like a little wetter skim personally.. But it is sort of user preference as advised above.. One thing to keep in mind if you do leave it as is, as it gets dirty on the neck, it is going to dry out a little also..

From note 5.. rip note 7
 

AlSimmons

New member
From the look of the skimmate I would adjust it just a tad to the left. (close the valve). This should raise the water level/bubbles in the chamber and make the muck a little bit lighter. Dry is dark, light is wet.
 
Last edited:

Emma1234

New member
Protein skimmer, water level in sump, Bean overflow

Protein skimmer, water level in sump, Bean overflow

Hello,

I'm having continued trouble with my tank setup I'm hoping to get some help.

I wanted to have a silent tank in my living room. I read about the Bean Animal silent overflow. I tried to set up a Bean Animal overflow system. I have a pvc pipe in my overflow about six inches tall so the pipe is completely submerged. This allows the water to completely fill this pipe with water. Therefore there is no air in the pvc pipe and no noise. There is a second pipe whose top is above the water level in the overflow just in case the water level rises too high the water will overflow into this overflow pipe and run into the sump. Here is a picture of the overflow. You can see the two pipes. The shorter one is behind the taller one and is a little harder to see in the picture. The water runs through this shorter tube into the sump. The taller one is the emergency overflow. The return from the sump comes in the other side. I'm wondering if this set up is causing me problems.

overflow.jpg

One problem is I can't tune my protein skimmer. The skimmer is an EShopp. I've cleaned it. Opened the tube all the way and adjust the tube slowly over time. I've tried to adjust it numerous times but I get the same result. You can see in the picture of my sump that I'm not getting foam in the cup. I get skimmate in the main chamber and sometimes in the cup, but I can't get the foam to build and drop into the cup.

View attachment 363246

Another issue that I'm having is the water level in all three chambers of the sump vary. I believe that one chamber in the sump should stay at a constant level and the protein skimmer should go in the chamber with the constant water level. I think having the water level fluctuate in all the chambers, including the one with the protein skimmer, could cause problems.

I'm not sure what I can change to make the skimmer work and the keep the water level constant in one of the chambers. Anyone have any ideas? I'd be grateful for your suggestions.
 

DamonG

New member
I mentioned to you building a sump.. You can build a simple sump out of a 20 long(i love the longer tanks, you can even do a ten gallon tank) and a couple pieces of glass, and then some silicone.. Very, very inexpensively.. And it doesn't, and shouldn't be complicated at all.. A three chamber design is the most basic and effective design to begin with.. I just happened to stick with the design because it's both easy, effective and extremely scalable(i have built sumps with this design from 10 to 75 gallon off the shelf tanks, by just adjusting the distance between the baffles/pieces of glass).. I haven't had to adjust the heights of the glass at all, and I have used this for years.. No bubbles, as the pretty much dissipate in the middle section and things are completely settled be the time the water reaches the return/third section..

The design is simple, first the deepest section for the skimmer, heaters, filter socks, etc, the second for a fuge, and the third for return pump, ato probes/float switches, etc.. But the only level in this design that fluctuates is the third/return section.. And.. You have plenty of cushion of return pump cutoff/failsafe..

I believe in the kiss principle so I can focus on other things with the systems.. But check out the picture.. It's easy to build and takes at most 2 to three hours to build.. I think a lot of designs people buy, do and get onto are really overly complicated for no reason, and honestly don't make too much sense.. They "look" clever, but aren't very functional at all.. This design, every single thing is easy to get to, stable, and you can add and change, because it's so very easy, and it's cheap(after spending so much time and money, for years on off the shelf sumps that just didn't work without modification anyhow, I decided one day to try to build my own, and I'll never buy another one)..
32f234ac8141053bde62fbf0b1394d75.jpg


From note 5.. rip note 7
 
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