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Problem with scrubber

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Punisher, May 24, 2015.

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  1. Punisher

    Punisher New Member

    I have a problem with scrubber, I have it set since march but it does not grow it looks like it shows in the pictures. On one side I have a saving light bulb of 20W and on the other side two led of 10w..eight red ones and a blue one for growth. I think my problem is because I did not scrape the mesh right. In my fish tank I have alga on the glass and on some rocks. I will appreciate your comments.


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  2. Turbo

    Turbo Does not really look like Johnny Carson Staff Member Site Owner Multiple Units! Customer

    Welcome to the site!

    A few questions before I assume anything:

    What type of scrubber is this? It looks like a waterfall scrubber but I want to make sure it's not a UAS or a horizontal scrubber.

    What are the dimensions of the screen? L x W

    How much flow do you provide the screen (total flow)? For this question, if you measured the actual flow, that is ideal. Otherwise, tell me what pump you are using (brand and model) and how high it must pump the water

    How big is your tank?

    How much live rock is in your tank?

    What kind of fish are in there, & how big?

    How much do you feed the fish on an average daily basis?

    Can you take some pictures of your scrubber, but not screen close-ups - take pics of the entire scrubber when it is installed, with the lights on and then another with the lights off. Don't move the lights out of the way for the pic, leave them where they normally are placed when the scrubber is operating

    This should give me a better picture of what is going on

    Bud
     
  3. Punisher

    Punisher New Member

    1. Thanks for your message. I am sorry I forgot to introduce myself in my previous message, my name is Jorge and I am writing from Guatemala.


    2. What type of scrubber is this? It looks like a waterfall scrubber but I want to make sure it's not a UAS or a horizontal scrubber.

    1. Yes it is a waterfall scrubber but I also have a uas xD and I have problems with both.

      What are the dimensions of the screen? L x W

    1. The size of the waterfall one is 25 cm high x 30 cm long. The size of the uas is 20 cm high x 15 cm width

      How much flow do you provide the screen (total flow)? For this question, if you measured the actual flow, that is ideal. Otherwise, tell me what pump you are using (brand and model) and how high it must pump the water

      viaaqua va-2600 740gph
      http://www.viaaquaoceanpure.com/pumps/ViaAqua_powerhead.html

      How big is your tank?

      I have two fish tanks working under the same system, ones measures 100 cms long x 50 cm widht and 60 cm high. The other one is 80 cm long x 80 cms width and 50cm high and the sump 80 cm long x 40 cm high x 40 cm width and that is where I have the skimmer diablo 170 and my shelter of macro algae Chaetomorpha y caulerpa

      How much live rock is in your tank?

      I do not quite remember but about 200 pounds

      What kind of fish are in there, & how big?

      Before in one tank I had sea horses for 8 months and they died because we did not have electricity for a while. Therefore now I have tang yellow, fire fish purple, 2 clow fish, blenny rock, shirmp cleaner. In the ohter one I have2 fire fish, black clow fish, blenny bi color, watchman yellow, shirmp cleaner, shirmp blood red fire and corals

      How much do you feed the fish on an average daily basis?

      right now I am not feeding them too much because I have high levels of nitrate no3, I am giving them just a little bit of granulated food.
     
  4. Turbo

    Turbo Does not really look like Johnny Carson Staff Member Site Owner Multiple Units! Customer

    So is the via Aqua pump only feeding the scrubber? How hog up above to water is the slot pipe, about 10-12"?

    What are your nitrates at? What test kit are you using?

    Post some pics of your setup if you can, that will help me under dam what is going on

    Offhand I would say you growth is OK for the 2 month point, it might just take time to really get going. Let it grow for at least 10 days between cleanings
     
  5. Punisher

    Punisher New Member

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  6. Turbo

    Turbo Does not really look like Johnny Carson Staff Member Site Owner Multiple Units! Customer

    Based on these, here is what I would advise:

    The LED fixture is a bit too close - you're getting photosaturation right in front of is, at the top center of the screen (area of zero growth). If you can, back it off about 1 inch and see if that allows the screen to fill in a bit more. Don't back it off much more than an inch - right now, you've got some good growth around the edges, which is where the light level is "just right" from that LED fixture, it's just too intense right in the middle. So you don't want to cause the light around the edges to get too little light and die off - 1" should help quite a lot.

    It looks like the Via Aqua pump is dedicated to the scrubber. I couldn't find a good head loss chart for that pump but let's assume it has similar flow characteristics to a Rio 2500 (782 GPH @ 0' head, so a bit less than that). I count the slot pipe as 24" of head loss, so that puts yours near 3' or 1m. That should give you 500-550 GPH, or in that general range.

    30cm = 12"m so 500/12 = 41 GPH/in, so I think that your flow is fine, that's not the problem.

    On your screen, the holes are filling in well where the growth is good (around the edges of the LED light) so that is a good sign of the screen maturing. Remember, the curing/maturing stage can take a while, and every tank is different. If you started with high nutrients, my experience is that it takes a bit longer for the screen to grow thick green growth - it appears that a slightly different type of algae grows in the nutrient-rich water, perhaps a more nutrient-dense variety. As your nutrients come down, the growth should get lighter green and grow thicker.

    So I would be patient at this point. The scrubber has a great start, so maybe now would be the time to perform a decent sized water change to get the nutrients down a bit, then monitor it and see what happens.

    As for the UAS, my opinion on these is that the plastic canvas material is not the ideal substrate for a UAS. It takes significantly longer for growth to attach, and when it does, it doesn't firmly attach like it does on waterfall scrubber - it's very easy to clean the screen down to bare white, even after running it for years (I have experience in this - it takes literally a year or more before the growth doesn't completely come off during cleaning). This is why SM uses his crushed quartz material, as that allows the algae to anchor quicker and is nearly impossible to really "clean" all of it off.

    I think your waterfall scrubber is plenty big, I would just remove the UAS and toss it, it'll eventually get overpowered by the waterfall.

    What's that growing in your sump? Looks like caluerpa maybe?

    Also I forgot to ask - how many hours/day are you running your scrubber?
     
  7. Punisher

    Punisher New Member





     
  8. Turbo

    Turbo Does not really look like Johnny Carson Staff Member Site Owner Multiple Units! Customer

    yeah you've definitely got enough flow.

    I think you need better spray protection, that's really bad. You shouldn't let water spray all over your lamps like that, it dangerous. The pieces of acrylic (?) that are at the top of the pipe don't seem to be doing the job very well. Is that what you had those there for?

    Instead, try to find some cling-wrap, Saran Wrap, etc. It's kind of a pain to handle, but once you get it in place, it works well. Cut a piece so that you can drape it across the entire slot pipe lengthwise, and then about 3 or 4 inches down on each side. It will suck on to the screen and keep the spray down to next to nothing (you can even drape the entire screen in it - lay a piece on a table/counter, lay slot pipe/screen on it, fold over, install).

    Your LEDs appear to be multi-chips - is this right? Definitely photosaturation right in front of them, I would back them off 1" further.

    On your CFLs - the one in the back looks fine, distance is probably OK, maybe a tad close but that by itself is not causing the photosaturation, it's the combination of the CFL being really close on one side and the LEDs being really close on the other side - so that center section is getting it from both side. So just back up the LED fixture.

    The other CFL that is on the flex-arm is not pointing directly at the screen, and is not really doing much good. Your screen is oversized compared to what you are feeding, so the CFL in the back is probably all that you need - remove the other light.
     
  9. Punisher

    Punisher New Member

    Thank you very much for your time.

    Illumination is 16 on adn 8 off, then your advice is to remove the uas and to have a smaller one of waterfall, I already put the leds away, I changed 200 lts of water and I clean the algae every other week, how often do you think I should clean it?

    If I have algae chaeto y caulerpa do I have to remove them? The other lamp is for these algae to have light on them

    Could you tell me a way to clean the mesh, I took pictures today of the way the scrubber looks like I cleaned it since Saturday. I also moved the scrubber leds please let me know if it is ok the way it looks like now or should I move them further
     
  10. Punisher

    Punisher New Member

    photobucket maintenance .....:mad::mad::mad:
     
  11. Turbo

    Turbo Does not really look like Johnny Carson Staff Member Site Owner Multiple Units! Customer

    you can just drag & drop pictures into the reply window and upload them here. They have to be less than 2MB though, that's a server limitiation.

    16 on 8 off is OK for CFLs, but the LEDs *might* be running too long. LEDs are more intense, and this can cause the bare spot on the scrubber. Backing them off might help though, so leave the photoperiod as you have it and let's see what the change in distance of the LED fixture does.

    I would leave the other macros (chaeto & caulerpa) in place for now, the scrubber should eventually out-complete them, and this will be your indication that it's working properly. But make sure that you prune that macro at least 3 or 4 times/week - get rid of the larger branches, and don't let anything get shaded or die off - this is very important for a refugium!

    Cleaning the screen every 14 days is fine, if that's when it needs it. If your algae is not very thick, you might just give it a light cleaning, remove 50% or so of the algae.

    Also, when you re-install the screen, be sure to keep the orientation the same: CFL side stays on the CFL side, LED side stays on the LED side - that will take another potential variable out of the equation.
     
  12. Punisher

    Punisher New Member

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  13. Turbo

    Turbo Does not really look like Johnny Carson Staff Member Site Owner Multiple Units! Customer

    Which of those last 2 pics is the most current? (The tank pics)
     
  14. Punisher

    Punisher New Member

    yes, why???
     
  15. Turbo

    Turbo Does not really look like Johnny Carson Staff Member Site Owner Multiple Units! Customer

    No, which one is new and which one is old? The tanks looks different
     
  16. Turbo

    Turbo Does not really look like Johnny Carson Staff Member Site Owner Multiple Units! Customer

    Oh wait I got it now - I forgot you have a 2 tank system. I thought one pic was "before" and the other was "after"... <bangs head on wall> long day...

    See what happens over the next week.
     
  17. Punisher

    Punisher New Member

    xD

    I do not have pictures of how the tank looked before but if I do not clean de glass and the rocks algae grows again, do you think another water change would help?
     
  18. Turbo

    Turbo Does not really look like Johnny Carson Staff Member Site Owner Multiple Units! Customer

    I would not scrub the rocks. All that does is disturb the periphyton, which is the surface layer of bacteria and microbes that perform all kinds of biological processes. When you do this, you end up with a mini-cycle where all of these bacteria are forced to repopulate. So the general rule of thumb here is to set up your tank like you want it from the start, and then leave it alone and let the tank mature. Constantly fiddling with things like lighting, flow, rock placements, etc, will result in endless mini-cycles and your tank will have a hard time getting established.

    Let the scrubber ramp up and do it's job, and the algae problem in the tank will eventually get out-competed. It might take a while. You can pull algae off the rocks if you can get it off, but don't scrub with a brush, and don't take the rocks out of the water and scrub them either.
     
  19. Punisher

    Punisher New Member

    ok tnks
     
  20. Punisher

    Punisher New Member

    New picks after 2 weeks and 126grs harvest xD

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