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Benefits of Using a UV During the Day

Discussion in 'Talk to Tom Barr' started by The Rockster, Oct 15, 2009.

  1. The Rockster

    The Rockster Guru Class Expert

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  2. Biollante

    Biollante Lifetime Charter Member
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    UV True Believer

    Hi,

    Honestly, I have seen no downside to running the UV 24-7.:)

    As a practical matter, I don’t and I am not sure they actually need to be on all the time.

    I also will admit I was rather a slow convert to UV sterilization; I was kind of snotty about it, thought it for ‘lazy’ or people not able to follow good practices.:eek:

    I have noticed generally improved water conditions in tanks that already were pretty darn good. Since have been using an ORP meter and can do direct comparisons I am a true believer.;)

    Biollante
     
  3. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    I'd try lowering the temp to 83F or so.
    Discus will be fine.

    No effect anyone's ever noticed in practical terms on ferts etc.
    I think simply keeping bacterial levels down is a good thing, algae perhaps during the day for spores passing through the UV and killing them.

    Spores can attach and grow a little at night also, but once the tank is doing well, fish are healthy/stable diet, then you can run the UV much less.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  4. The Rockster

    The Rockster Guru Class Expert

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    Different Opinions

    Hi,

    I have been asking around here, and there are all kinds of thinking about UV:

    Don't use them constantly--- It affects the fishes immune system, making them susceptible.

    The UV heats up the water.

    Bulbs and electricity are getting expensive.

    If there is no reason to use it----don't (If the tank is balanced you shouldn't need it)

    May interfere with ferts

    Use a good micron filter instead (Vortex)


    My guestion was asking the benefits of day time usage. Not knowing that much about plant life, I thought possibly there was a valid reason, that I am unaware of.
     
  5. Biollante

    Biollante Lifetime Charter Member
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    UV True Believer, Still

    Hi,

    I am also partial to micron filters, actually, I like diatomaceous earth filters, and I like filtration, lots of filtration, mechanical and biological (unless I have a specific problem, I don’t use chemical filtration).

    I would love to tell you there is some great scientific reason I ran my UV sterilizers 4-6 hours a day (during the day), but as with much of what I do, it is ‘feel’, experience whatever you wish to call it as much as anything else. :eek:

    My first UV unit was a beat up used device that I moved from tank to tank, which is likely where I came up with the 4-6 hour thing.

    I did not notice any reduction in the effectiveness of the fertilizers. I did notice that I began going long periods without fish fatalities. I cannot say with certainty that the UV sterilization is responsible and not just the fact that I improved as an aquarist.:rolleyes:

    With UV sterilization, I found subjectively a distinct improvement in water quality and with what I think I understand regarding ORP measurements I believe that I can now objectively quantify the improvement.

    I suppose the ORP measurements may indicate some small reduction in nutrient effectiveness. Therefore, I suppose if your aim is to precisely dose the minimum amount of fertilizers then you may wish skip the UV bit.

    Now that the majority of my tanks are on a centralized system, I am much more dependent on UV sterilization.

    Just a note on the ‘balanced’ system, it is in my humble plant opinion a myth. Every system can be said to be balanced, whatever the situation it is the only situation that can exist. Every system can be said to be seeking balance.

    I have seen no indication of immune system deficiency in my fish with the use of UV. It does not mean it is not true I am not that bright. I am also not aware of any studies on the subject stating fish immune health is damaged by UV use. I am aware that Seachem and I suppose other makers of medication have a warning when dosing tanks with copper, possibly others substances as well.

    As to electrical consumption, compared to lighting and heating it seems minimal to me, but I am not very bright so I leave that to you people.

    I have never studied bulb life, so I cannot really say, but they seem to last a long time. I suppose as with many lighting devices the argument good be made that turning them on and off reduces life of the bulb.

    Same with heating I do not think I have noticed an appreciable heat gain with the use of the sterilizers, but to be honest I really had not considered the heat factor.:eek:

    Generally I categorize the type of arguments people are giving you as the ‘I don’t wanna brigade’, people who simply lack the guts to say I prefer not to use this or that device and cannot stand the idea others may be using them successfully.

    I still think it is weird you are using my Drivers License photo for your avatar.:p

    Biollante
     
  6. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hi Rock,

    I think the reason is here........

     
  7. The Rockster

    The Rockster Guru Class Expert

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    Hi neighbor,

    I was typing my thread as Tom was posting his. I was wondering about the algae spores and when they spread the most.

    So since you are living in the same climate as I am, what has your tank water temp been running? We keep the a/c around 80 degrees in the condo, our parrots are comfortable at that temp. Our tank water is running around 86-87(with the tank lights on). Wattley keeps his planted tank at 90, and the the Discus thrive. I was just wondering about the plants melting, or the warm water helping algae or other bacteria multiply.
    I also notice that my glass d/c, after 5-6 days of being in the tank, starts to turn a golden color on the outside of the glass, telling me there is something in the water.
    Would that be algae spores?

    Since we talked, I started using my Magnum 350 with micron filter, 4-5 days a week, along with my 2 Eheims. Don't really notice any difference with the additional filtration. We plan on getting more filtration soon, although we have been advised by many that 5X the tank volume is standard. We think the only way over filtration is bad would be if it caused over circulation, and we will remove a power head if need be.
     
  8. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hi Rock,

    Well my tanks temp runs around 81-83 here in high summer :)

    I had them up to 86 for 6 months or so before I redid my plumbing

    No issues to fish or plants that I could see. No algae due just to warmer temps.

    As long as c02, nutes, etc are up to snuff, the plants did not seem to mind the high temps.

    I keep my AC lower than yours for sure! 72-75.

    I have my MH lights 2' above the surface so heat is dissipated as well.

    Sorry to hear that the extra filtration is not helping, but not sure how it is not ????

    Hope this helps.
     
  9. The Rockster

    The Rockster Guru Class Expert

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    Things aren't so bad. All the fish are fine and eating well. Some algae is to be expected.
    I plan on doing maintenance on my UV Filter (new bulb, and cleaning the quartz sleeve) as the light doesn't seem as bright as when new. Plus adding more filtration, has to improve the tank situation. :D :D :D

    If not I will increase w/cs, monitor water perimeters, possibly start mixing tap with r/o......................enjoy the "cool" front!!!!!!!!!!
     
  10. Tug

    Tug Lifetime Charter Member
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    From what I've seen, thats a good thing. To a point. What is the driving concern here? If daylight is an effective action against bacteria, are most UV lamps able to reach 35,000 u W/cm² ? Anything to be worried about?

    What about a 9 watt UV sterilization lamp cycling the tank 4 to 5 times every hour?
     
  11. Biollante

    Biollante Lifetime Charter Member
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    35,000 u W/cm²--Whew

    Hi Tug,

    I suspect something like 35,000 u W/cm² includes a lot of energy not specifically developed in the ultraviolet spectrum.

    I do not think we in the hobby would find sterilization ranges desirable even if we could get them at an affordable price. http://www.steribeam.com/articles/AW-UVcongr2001.pdf

    For your situation, I think a 9-watt uv sterilizer would be fine. For routine maintenance 6 hours, after water change and 6 hours the next day or two would be great. ;)

    If you have problems run it longer, I have seen no harm even running 24/7.

    Biollante
     

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