Cleaning the skimmer cup

6 May 2007
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How often should one clean the skimmers cup. I do mine ones a week, I take it off completely and then I wash, dry it off and put is back on,

Is ones a week to long, enough or to long ??
I only installed my first skimmer last week so I am tagging along for the info.
Hey Physco Ideally you want to clean your cup every 2 - 3 days or as soon as you start to see a build up of scum in the neck of the cup.
This scum starts to impede / slow down the foam production - causes friction.
I know it's not always practical to clean it often, but the maximum amount of time should be after a week. Use a paper towel or similat when drying and try not too touch the inside neck region too much. The oils given off from our skin makes the skimmer take longer to kick into action again.
Yes it started to produce foam today. The foam is still white, but waiting to see what happens tomorrow.
Thanks DR, so bit bit more house keeping now for me, will it cause a problem if I wash he cup with some sunlight liquid ?? Sometimes it feels a bit oily ??
Aish NO, don't use soap. Some detergents are lethal to Marine life.

Use warm water and a sponge, should get it squeaky clean.

I bought myeslf one of those Addis cup washer sponge thingies. Works great and I don't have to touch the smelly stuff with my hands - lol
I cleam my skimmer twice a week! I dont want the dirt collected on the neck of skimmer to go back in the skimmer and back into the system water. Thus creating more nutrients in the tank water. Also like DR said, the dirt on the neck prevents the foam from overflowing.
After a week there is so much s h i t in the neck, so I think I will try to clean in every 3rd day
I clean mine once a week aswell - there seems to be a period where if the neck is slightly dirty the skimmer performes better but when it gets filthy production backs off again.
I would love to have the time to clean my skimmer cups everyday, thus keeping them effecient, but unfortunatly its once a week. Another tip on the maintenance of a skimmer, take a cup of ro water and insert the airline tube from the pump and let the pump suck up the ro through the airline will keep the venturi nice and clean and clear of calcium build up.
take a cup of ro water and insert the airline tube from the pump and let the pump suck up the ro through the airline will keep the venturi nice and clean and clear of calcium build up.

Now that is a nice tip,
I have installed my Octopus 150 but I only have water & substrate in the tank at the moment, there has naturally not been any slime activity yet but I do see some white residue in the neck, did'nt know I should be cleaning this out.. good to know
I wash mine with clean water then rinse it in tank water making sure the riser tube get rinsed and I must say the skimmer starts skimming much sooner after cleanng.

Just my 2cents
I generally clean my skimmer 2 or 3 times a week. Anything less than that and it impedes the production of skimmate.
Interesting thread, I didnt know it gets impeded by the existing skimmate.. better start cleaning more often!
Yeah Elrond, it's something a lot of guy's overlook, particularly when they have big skimmer cups and it takes a while for it to fill. That's why I also don't like using a drain line on my cup.
Basically the foam "slides" up the neck of the skimmer and overflows into the cup. Protein waste will cling to the surface of the neck and this is the brown scum you start to see building up. This creates friction for new foam production and it can't slide up as easily, slowing down overall skimmate production.
It goes without saying though that getting the right setting on your skimmer is just as important - that sweet spot where you have minimal scum build up in the neck, maximum waste collection in the cup :)
I have read on an american site about wet neck skimmers. Not too sure how it all works though but is quite interesting.
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