Protein Skimmer/Co2 Scrubber

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MichaelReefer

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So, I recently added a CO2 scrubber to my protein skimmer (as some of you know) but am having some problems I am hoping someone can help me with.

So I hooked my Co2 scrubber on a recirculating line and it seems to be working, my problem is when I tune the skimmer higher (more air- gets my PH higher from what I've noticed), it always overflows over night. I'm not sure if this is being caused by the Co2 scrubber itself, or it's a super delayed reaction to the skimmer. If I leave my skimmer steady with some space for the foam head, I get to about 8.10- not where I want to be. However if I push it to the limits I get into 8.20-8.30 (but then it overflows). Anyone got some advice or help?

To explain the below picture. The days it overflowed were the days (nights) I had my skimmer turned up a bit higher to get my desired PH.

Appreciate any help!

Untitled.png
 
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jassermd

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I have one set up on my skimmer as well. Fresh air intake from outside, through scrubber and then to skimmer.
I have not had any issues with overskimming due to the co2 scrubber. Maybe it's the skimmer that's the difference?
I have a Red Sea 900, which is not DC so I can't really adjust the air mix per se.
My pH runs 7.95-8.10. I haven't been able to get it much above 8.1...
 
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MichaelReefer

MichaelReefer

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I have one set up on my skimmer as well. Fresh air intake from outside, through scrubber and then to skimmer.
I have not had any issues with overskimming due to the co2 scrubber. Maybe it's the skimmer that's the difference?
I have a Red Sea 900, which is not DC so I can't really adjust the air mix per se.
My pH runs 7.95-8.10. I haven't been able to get it much above 8.1...

Yeah thats where I'm at with it. I normally sit in that window if I dont turn it up crazy high. I am just trying to get it turned up as high as I can without overflowing the cup and get as close to 8.3 as possible.
 

jassermd

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That's gonna be a tough one based on my experience.
My set up is a bit more simple... I don't recirculate and only draw fresh air from outside for my skimmer intake.
I had a lot of trouble getting my pH above 7.8 when pulling inside air, so I installed an external intake line to pull fresh outside air.
My guess is that your set up is causing the overflow issues. I would guess it has to do with the recirculation piece... If you haven't tried using external fresh air, you may want to try that and see what you get for pH...
Question: Why are you trying to get to 8.3? Is there a specific reason?
 

PeterC99

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Intake hose going into the overflow up, exit going into the breather. Solenoid to open if over 8.3 (which Ive only ever been over one time, on accident when the cup overflowed lol)
Have you tried setting up your CO2 scrubber directly to the top of the protein skimmer cup (no other connections)?

When I have the CO2 scrubber directly from skimmer cup to scrubber to air input of skimmer, I can get my pH up to 8.5 (on a 90 gallon aquarium).
 
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MichaelReefer

MichaelReefer

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Have you tried setting up your CO2 scrubber directly to the top of the protein skimmer cup (no other connections)?

When I have the CO2 scrubber directly from skimmer cup to scrubber to air input of skimmer, I can get my pH up to 8.5 (on a 90 gallon aquarium).

Thats what I am doing. It is going to the Collection cup.
 
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MichaelReefer

MichaelReefer

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That's gonna be a tough one based on my experience.
My set up is a bit more simple... I don't recirculate and only draw fresh air from outside for my skimmer intake.
I had a lot of trouble getting my pH above 7.8 when pulling inside air, so I installed an external intake line to pull fresh outside air.
My guess is that your set up is causing the overflow issues. I would guess it has to do with the recirculation piece... If you haven't tried using external fresh air, you may want to try that and see what you get for pH...
Question: Why are you trying to get to 8.3? Is there a specific reason?
8.2-8.3, according to BRS research can increase coral growth up to 50%.
 

Biokabe

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Hmm. That's a funny one for sure. I think I have the exact same scrubber and skimmer as you, and I don't have that issue at all. The main difference being, I don't have the recirculating design that you do - just straight intake from the cabinet.

Something in your tank seems to be responding to the higher PH and altering the surface tension of your water. It shouldn't happen with the water itself, which only tends to notice PH (in terms of surface tension) at the extreme ends of the spectrum (below 1, above 14).

Have you tried to duplicate the overflow manually? I know that with my skimmer and scrubber, if I don't have it adjusted correctly it completely alters the character of the foam in the skimmer body. It's been a while since I had that particular issue, but I think it happened when I got things adjusted properly again.

When you look at the foam in your skimmer - is it a full-body foam with a mixture of all sizes of bubbles (getting larger at the top) or is it a more chalky foam with mountains of microbubbles (like water with an Alka Seltzer tablet)?
 
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MichaelReefer

MichaelReefer

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Hmm. That's a funny one for sure. I think I have the exact same scrubber and skimmer as you, and I don't have that issue at all. The main difference being, I don't have the recirculating design that you do - just straight intake from the cabinet.

Something in your tank seems to be responding to the higher PH and altering the surface tension of your water. It shouldn't happen with the water itself, which only tends to notice PH (in terms of surface tension) at the extreme ends of the spectrum (below 1, above 14).

Have you tried to duplicate the overflow manually? I know that with my skimmer and scrubber, if I don't have it adjusted correctly it completely alters the character of the foam in the skimmer body. It's been a while since I had that particular issue, but I think it happened when I got things adjusted properly again.

When you look at the foam in your skimmer - is it a full-body foam with a mixture of all sizes of bubbles (getting larger at the top) or is it a more chalky foam with mountains of microbubbles (like water with an Alka Seltzer tablet)?

I haven't, but it sucks because I will get my PH higher and then I come out in the morning and the cup is overflowing. And it seems to only happen at night.
 
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