Protein Skimmer Efficiency : Skimmate Smell and Consistency

AI Nero 5

SoCalVictor

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Apr 6, 2019
Messages
168
Reaction score
74
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
Los Angeles, CA
I recently switched/upgraded protein skimmer from an Aquamaxx ConeS Q3 to a SImply Aquatics DC30 with the hopes to get my organics more manageable as I have a fairly heavy bioload (4 large tangs and 7 wrasses) in my SPS dominated mixed reef. DT is 180 gallon with a total of 230 volume when factoring in a sump and a frag tank that's plumbed together

Aquamaxx ConeS Q3 details

Simply Aquatics DC30 details

I was actually pretty happy with the performance of the Q3 but was seeing if a larger skimmer can help better manage my organics. I have low nitrates 5ppm and higher phosphate around 0.15 and I haven't seen those numbers move significantly as a result of the skimmer change. I've been able to bring my phosphate down to 0.1 with a combo of GFO and nitrate dosing.

The Q3 skimmate was dark, smelly (sewer, poopy smell). After switching to the DC30 and 'tuning it', I'm noticing the skimmate is lighter in color and the smell is more 'algae' like, if that makes any sense. lol

I've also got a second skimmer, a lifereef VS3-24 in another chamber of the sump for additional filtration and aeration. Keep in mind that the second skimmer is the constant here, before and after I switched out the Q3.

Thoughts on what might be causing the skimmate change and whether the skimmate change implies anything about the efficiencies of the skimmers? I'm tempted to get a larger size ConeS to see if that's a better route to go.
 

ATB USA

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Oct 12, 2009
Messages
477
Reaction score
329
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
Chesterfield, VA
Most likely how you have the skimmer set. You are now getting more skim that is lighter? If you want a darker thicker skim you will need to adjust the level of the bubbles in the neck.
 
OP
S

SoCalVictor

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Apr 6, 2019
Messages
168
Reaction score
74
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
Los Angeles, CA
I've already tuned the DC30 for the 'dryest' setting w/o having to mess with the sump water level.

Even though the skim is lighter, I expected the smell to be similar, just less powerful. But the smell is much different. lol
 

ATB USA

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Oct 12, 2009
Messages
477
Reaction score
329
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
Chesterfield, VA
Let me give that a try. Ultimately does it matter whether I have more skimmate that is 'not smelly' vs smelly skimamte that is 'smelly'?
I do not think so.
The lighter the skim the more you will need to empty the collection cup.
The heavier the skim you will need to empty less but when you do you need to clean and not just empty because you will have the thick residue also. It smells worse because it is more condensed.
 
AS
AI Nero 5

Do you quarantine new coral before adding it to your reef tank?

  • YES always

    Votes: 71 17.8%
  • Sometimes depending (tell us why)

    Votes: 49 12.3%
  • NO never

    Votes: 268 67.0%
  • Other (please explain)

    Votes: 12 3.0%
AFX
Top