When it comes to properly maintaining a saltwater tank there are several pieces of equipment you must have. A thriving saltwater tank will require a high-quality filtration system to help remove solid and dissolved wastes from the water column. It will also require a high-powered lighting system, especially if you plan to keep corals in your tank. A protein skimmer may be necessary to remove excess proteins from your tank water and a sump system may be helpful in keeping all of this equipment in order. One piece of equipment that may not be mandatory for keeping a saltwater tank, but proves quite useful, is a UV sterilizer.
What are UV Sterilizers?
An ultraviolet (UV) sterilizer is a device that helps to control microscopic algae, bacteria and parasites in your tank water. This device can generally be attached to your filter system so that filtered water passes through the device as it is being returned to the tank. A UV sterilizer consists of an ultraviolet bulb over which filtered water is passed – the UV light kills off a significant portion of the algae, parasites and bacteria in the water before returning it to the tank. These devices are incredibly useful and, when paired with a high-quality filtration system, they are a very effective means of keeping your saltwater aquarium clean. The best part about UV sterilizers is that it doesn’t require any additional work on your part, other than setting up the device.
Tips and Considerations
Before you go out and buy a UV sterilizer for your tank, you might want to consider the benefits and drawbacks of such a device. One of the main benefits of UV sterilizers is that they are generally very easy to use – many models can be attached directly to standard aquarium filters. These devices also help to prevent excess algae growth and the spread of pathogenic bacteria by killing the cells before they are able to reproduce. Another benefit is that UV sterilizers come in a variety of sizes to fit all saltwater and freshwater tanks – you can even find stand-alone models if your filter system cannot accommodate a traditional UV sterilizer.
Though UV sterilizers are very beneficial in the saltwater tank, you should be aware that these devices only target the free-floating organisms in your tank water – they cannot do anything about algae growing on tank surfaces or bacteria/parasites that have already invaded the bodies of your fish. It is also important to note that UV sterilizers can interfere with certain medications so, if you are treating your fish for disease, you may need to unplug the device. Aside from these drawbacks, UV sterilizers are an excellent device to incorporate into your saltwater tank.
While incorporating a UV sterilizer into your saltwater tank setup may help improve the water quality in your tank, there are other simple things you can do to keep your tank clean. Installing an EcoBio-Stone, for example, is a hassle-free way to boost the biological filtration in your tank to help keep your tank water clean and clear. EcoBio-Stones are made from natural volcanic rock and they are infused both with beneficial bacteria and the nutrients they need to thrive. Once installed in your tank, EcoBio-Stones help to establish and maintain the nitrogen cycle, thus adding to the water-cleaning power of your UV sterilizer.