UV-Sterilization, What Do You Think

UV-Sterilization, What Do You Think

  • No

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Yes, 24 hours a day

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Yes, a few hours at least 1 day a week

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Yes, when I have a problem

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    0

Biollante

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Hi,

UV-sterilization devices, I like them, just not every circumstance.

What do you think?

If you use UV-sterilization devices, how, when and where do you use them?

Biollante
 

Oreo

Guru Class Expert
May 6, 2010
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I voted yes - 24/7 because I still am but I'm clearly going to have to make some changes based on my UV-Fe reaction test results. Not sure what those changes will be just yet. (Too much new equipment to get installed & not enough time.)
 

dutchy

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I also voted yes and use it 24/7. Reason: Another little hammer to battle algae. Also that it has a benificiary effect on ORP.

regards,
dutchy
 

Philosophos

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For me it's when I have a problem.

Elegance is being able to achieve more in a simple way. I see UV sterilizers as elegant for their ability to clean up a mess, but I do not see a functioning elegant tank as requiring one constantly. The ideal is to be able to do without, but not have to sacrifice in a noticeable way. I think a good tank does this.
 

Tug

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I have sawdust for brains.

No, only because I know very little about them. I wouldn't say they don't work. Zappers kill mosquitoes, but there are other solutions focused more on the cause. Dan found this link on the Krib that explains them some, http://faq.thekrib.com/filters.html#sterilization but what are we zapping and are there other ways of dealing with ORP and such? Cheap and effective ways.
 

dutchy

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Philosophos;50902 said:
For me it's when I have a problem.

Elegance is being able to achieve more in a simple way. The ideal is to be able to do without, but not have to sacrifice in a noticeable way. I think a good tank does this.

Some people say the same about CO2. Do you use it? Why? You can do without. ;)

regards,
dutchy
 

Oreo

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May 6, 2010
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I think UV is like a pH controller for CO2. Sure, you can do it without one and just use a drop checker but that pH controller is there to save your ass if you slip up. Same with the UV. I could exercise meticulous quarantine procedures, give all my new plants a bleach dip, and have excellent control over my nutrient / light balance but that UV is there to save my ass if I slip up. It's saved me a number of times when one fish was sick. I can be relatively sure that the problem doesn't migrate through the water column to other fish. It buys me a few days time to notice and move the sick fish to a hospital tank before my whole population crashes.
 
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Philosophos

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dutchy;50906 said:
Some people say the same about CO2. Do you use it? Why? You can do without. ;)

regards,
dutchy

I can do without with certain plants, and I do. I don't strap CO2 to a tank unless I've got a species that depends on it in order to look the way I want for that situation. The idea is to be able to perform to a required standard with less, not to hold yourself back.
 
C

csmith

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Philosophos;50902 said:
For me it's when I have a problem.

Elegance is being able to achieve more in a simple way. I see UV sterilizers as elegant for their ability to clean up a mess, but I do not see a functioning elegant tank as requiring one constantly. The ideal is to be able to do without, but not have to sacrifice in a noticeable way. I think a good tank does this.

My answer is no, but with some of the same justification. I've had two outbreaks of ich and both were handled in due time with some patience and ParaGuard. Did it affect the rest of the tank? Sure, but not in anyway not recoverable. Perhaps if I were to have a major bout with something nasty my vote would change, but until then it's just another piece of equipment I can make it without.
 

Oreo

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May 6, 2010
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This debate always seems to go in circles though. We know what the UV does & does not do. It's there for those who choose to use it and for those who choose not to and still achieve success good for them. I think we can all agree there is no harm in using UV, albeit with some question currently about how it affects chellated iron in the water column.
 

Biollante

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Icky

Hi,

Ich is actually one of those ailments that UV-sterilization is not particularly useful, generally temperature and water quality is effective. :gw

An 80-micron filter between tanks is an effective protection against transfer among tanks on a common system. :)

Biollante
 

Tug

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Ouch.

I for one, am glad to see this topic discussed openly. Some of us do not know what they do and do not do effectively. Come on, 24/7? What do you know that I don't? Enlighten us.
Oreo said:
This debate always seems to go in circles though. We know what the UV does & does not do.
 

Oreo

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May 6, 2010
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Please forgive my poor choice of words. What I meant was that generally speaking, what a UV light does for an aquarium is well documented. It seemed to me that the conversation had fallen to competition between high-tech and low-tech philosophies for which neither are right or wrong.
 

Tug

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Thanks for the link dutchy. I'll give it a go and try to understand the importance of ORP. In the meantime, is there a simple explanation for how UV filters show a direct relationship to improved redox balance? To quote my favorite question looking for a causal relationship, "if we wash our hair tonight, will the sun rise tomorrow?"
 

Philosophos

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Splice Job

Bio and I are moving our discussion from here: http://www.barrreport.com/showthread.php/7285-Whitish-Cloudy-Water?p=50915#post50915

Over to here. I'm going to quote Biollante's last post in an attempt to reduce the frustrating tab-switching thing that happens during these moves.

Biollante;50915 said:
Hi Dan,

Yes, I am saying that most UV-sterilizers are relatively ineffective against bacteria. :)

Perhaps I did not have all the information. :p

I assume that whenever we answer these questions we do not have all the information. That does make me vulnerable to those not interested so much in helping the person asking the question as trying to appear smarter or forward some silly agenda. :rolleyes:

In this case, Steven said he has a 96-liter (25-US gallon) tank {post #1}, had purchased a 5-watt UV-sterilizer; he did not specify the brand or the pump used {post #6}.

I have no way of verifying anyone's statements, I take them at face value and unless they beggar reason, assuming they are true, I answer based on my experience, with the base assumption unless otherwise stated that they are hobbyists and the equipment is appropriate to hobbyists.

A 5-watt UV-sterilizer is sufficient for most hobbyist purposes in a 96-liter (25-gallons) tank. {In my always humble potted plant opinion.}

I am hard pressed to believe that a 5-watt hobbyist UV-sterilizer is going to produce the 1,900 to 24,000-µW sec/cm2 of 257.3 nanometer ultraviolet radiation required according to your referenced chart to produce a 90% kill rate. I suspect that chart gives air or atmospheric kill rates. I accept that it is possible that a person could get high kill rates with the 5-watt UV-sterilizer if the allowed enough dwell time.

I use a couple of 400-watt commercial UV-sterilizers and I can toast just about anything, but for practical everyday operation the common bacteria kill rate is under 30 percent.

In any situation where we are establishing or inoculating microbes, we bypass or do not use UV, because we are trying to establish the population as quickly as possible. In my ever humble potted plant opinion that is the bacterial bloom situation. You are free to have another opinion.

I do get the snarky bit, I am not playing your game, this is polite conversation with the intention of assisting the person asking the questions. I have another thread where we can discuss the various issues.

Biollante

My reply is in the works, including maybe a gimpy little table or formula to make some guesses at UV sterilizer requirements in order to be efficient.
 

Oreo

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May 6, 2010
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To be semantically correct, UV does not "kill" bacteria it "sterilizes", as in makes it unable to reproduce. Chlorine "kills" bacteria.

What Biolante said above is more or less correct that UV dwell time means everything with regards to how much & what makes it through the UV. There are a couple things to consider. First is that aquarium water "turbidity" or ability to transmit light varies greatly day to day and from one aquarium to another. Watt for watt, not all UV fixtures are created equal either. However, in an aquarium we have the advantage of recirculation to help out where overall wattage and first pass dwell time usually aren't enough to sterilize the tougher stuff. Figuring out how effective any particular system is without a standardized set of bacteriological tests is about as accurate as having your palm read. For our hobby those dwell-time / kill charts are a crude reference at best. If the charts are meant for water treatment they're probably developed using water with
 
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bluedragon

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Apr 21, 2010
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After reading this thread looks like i could use one too. I have found one for sale
Aqua Ultraviolet UV Advantage 2000+ 15Watt and my tank is 55 gallon. Is it enough for my tank? It is good UV, I need your suggestion.
thank you
Regards
NN
 

Oreo

Guru Class Expert
May 6, 2010
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What are you trying to achieve by adding UV? That will determine how much is enough. That sounds like plenty to stop greenwater but things like ich require a pretty beefy setup.
 

dutchy

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bluedragon;50945 said:
After reading this thread looks like i could use one too. I have found one for sale
Aqua Ultraviolet UV Advantage 2000+ 15Watt and my tank is 55 gallon. Is it enough for my tank? It is good UV, I need your suggestion.
thank you
Regards
NN

To let your UV be effective you need a certain amount of flow, or better said, gallons of flow per Watt. If you read the article in the link I provided before you will know everything you need.

regards,
dutchy