Equipment & Supplies • UV sterilizers

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UV sterilizers

Postby Sinister-Kisses » Thu Oct 08, 2020 9:26 pm

Does anyone use these in their tanks? I know they're supposed to have a few benefits in an aquarium, but specifically I'm wondering whether they really DO help reduce algae in a tank. My mbuna tank is a 40 long, and the rocks in it go about halfway up the tank - so there isn't much space between the rocks and the LED light over them. As such, the brown algae builds up very quickly on the rocks, even though I make sure to keep lights on to a minimum - usually about 5 or so hours a day. I've tried fussing with other lights that aren't as strong, but they're just too dark and the fish get lost. As it is, I have about an 18" LED as the only light on a 48" in tank, and I've used black electrical tape to cover up half the lights on the fixture. I manually scrub the rocks every week with a water change, but it grows back so darn quickly lol. So I'm wondering if the claims that UV sterilizers help reduce algae have any merit or not?
SinisterKisses

135gal 8ft: Hap/peacock all male
40gal long: L. caeruleus and Cynotilapia sp. "hara"
33gal: N. brichardi and N. leleupi grow out
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Re: UV sterilizers

Postby SenorStrum » Tue Nov 10, 2020 7:33 pm

I guess I'm supposed to say *Bump* here...?

I also would like to know about FW UV Sterilizers. Like almost all things in the fishkeeping hobby, it looks like the saltwater guys have us beat here with technology, research, advice.
My wife and I have been wrestling with whether or not to include one on the Mbuna tank. So, does anybody run one on their tanks? Some folks in the hobby have told me it's a waste of money and others have said it's dumb not to do it. I'll confess, I've always been "Dumb" in this case.
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Re: UV sterilizers

Postby fishboy75 » Tue Nov 10, 2020 8:04 pm

I used one about 20 years ago on a 180 community tank I had. I was living at home rent free and had extra money to splurge at the time. My experience is it won't get rid of any algae that is growing on the glass, rocks, etc and is only useful to eradicate an algae bloom. It will eliminate any free swimming parasites that pass through. If you are medicating the tank the UV needs to be turned off as it could affect the medication being used. The bulbs usually last only 6 months to a year. Don't remember the cost of a replacement but also know I was too lazy or not as diligent in my early twenties to keep up with the maintenance of the sterilizer or the tank for that matter. I would bet there are more people that don't use them on freshwater tanks than do. My opinion is they aren't necessary for sure but I would do more research as my opinion is from 20 plus years ago haha.
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