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View Full Version : What would cause a skimmer to start skimming light?


bassking16
01/24/2010, 05:33 AM
Hello,

I'm looking for a little advice on this one. I have a 75g tank with a 20g sump that has been up and running for about 8 months. After my skimmer broke in, it was doing a great job over the last few months of skimming real heavy dark green skimmate. I only had to emty the collection cup every 3 or 4 days.

Over the last few days, my skimmer is going crazy, and skimming real light green watery skimmate. I have to empty the collection cup once, sometimes twice a day. What would cause this? I haven't done anything as far as changes except for adding a Kalk drip. No new critter additions. I haven't messed around in the tank too much recently. No epoxy or superglue recently. All my water parameters are good and unchanged from before this problem.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

cdbias2
01/24/2010, 06:06 AM
Possibly either:
1. surface tension of the water has been affected (Kalk drip possibly?)
2. Something died
3. Skimmer gate valve minor blockage

bassking16
01/24/2010, 06:38 AM
Okay, I understand the surface tension from the kalk. Allthough the problem started about four days ago, and I didn't add the kalk drip until yesterday evening.

As far as something dieing, I did have a Clown go missing yesterday, but the problem started before that. I figured he was just hidding out anyway, since all my other fish are is excellent condition. I don't see him again this morning, so you might be right about a dead fish, and this may be making my problem worse. Asside from tearing down my rockwork to find the dead clown, is there anything I can do for this problem?

As for the gate valve on my skimmer, I'm not sure what you are refering to. The skimmer seems to be working fine, aside from the real light skimmate. Can you tell what to look for on the gate valve, and where they are normaly located on a skimmer?

One other thing. I may have had my hand in the tank without washing it first. So, I may have introduced something foreign. I remember reaching in my tank the other day to fix a coral that had fallen over, and I remember afterwards thinking to myself that I forgot to wash my hands prior to sticking them in my tank. If this is the cause of my skimmer going crazy, what can I do to fix it? I already did a 15% water change yesterday afteroon.

Thanks Again,
Bassking

cdbias2
01/24/2010, 07:19 AM
Some skimmers don't have a gate valve.
How old is your tank?
Don't tear into the rock work. It should work itself out with water changes.

Anemonebuff
01/24/2010, 09:32 AM
Check the venturi for clogging. When dripping kalk you may get some precipitate that builds up in the air intake of the venturi, which restricts air flow, and this cause the pump to pull less air and more water, resulting in a higher water level. You can clean the venturi by soaking it in vinegar for a few hours or as a temp fix you can dip the airline in a cup of very hot water(just make sure you open up a gate valve or remove the top first, or you will flood the collection cup).

Anemonebuff
01/24/2010, 09:34 AM
Okay, I understand the surface tension from the kalk. Allthough the problem started about four days ago, and I didn't add the kalk drip until yesterday evening.

As far as something dieing, I did have a Clown go missing yesterday, but the problem started before that. I figured he was just hidding out anyway, since all my other fish are is excellent condition. I don't see him again this morning, so you might be right about a dead fish, and this may be making my problem worse. Asside from tearing down my rockwork to find the dead clown, is there anything I can do for this problem?

As for the gate valve on my skimmer, I'm not sure what you are refering to. The skimmer seems to be working fine, aside from the real light skimmate. Can you tell what to look for on the gate valve, and where they are normaly located on a skimmer?

One other thing. I may have had my hand in the tank without washing it first. So, I may have introduced something foreign. I remember reaching in my tank the other day to fix a coral that had fallen over, and I remember afterwards thinking to myself that I forgot to wash my hands prior to sticking them in my tank. If this is the cause of my skimmer going crazy, what can I do to fix it? I already did a 15% water change yesterday afteroon.

Thanks Again,
Bassking

Most times your skimmer bubbles collapse when you put your hands in. The skin oils cause this.

Using dechlorinators and certain additives can cause a skimmer to go nuts.

Playa-1
01/24/2010, 09:38 AM
I would pull the pump offline and clean it up real good. Check for obvious damage and clean the air intake to make sure there is no blockage with salt creep or precip like Anemonebuff mentioned.

luther1200
01/24/2010, 12:00 PM
Check the air intake for salt build up.