- CW-200 External Algae Scrubber - Clear Water
Solve your nutrient & algae issues with an Algae Turf Scrubber from Clear Water Scrubbers. Algae scrubbers can save you money and time with the minimal maintenance and energy usage.
Dimensions - 16" L x 10" W x 11 3/4" H
- Easy to harvest
- Safe design
- Simple to plumb
- Quality acrylic construction
- Multi-directional input barb
Algae turf scrubbers use natural growing algae to combat nutrients and have been used for many years now with great results. Many reefers that have been using them do not use any type of protein skimmer or expensive phosphate removal media to combat nutrients because scrubbers work very efficiently and can be added to almost any saltwater or freshwater system. As algae grows it will "lock" up nutrients in its structure and harvesting the algae you are basically removing nutrients and other undesired chemicals from your tank
Clear Water Scrubbers are an external design that needs to be mounted higher than the sump of your tank for the drain to flow into. The feed for the scrubber can be done with a stand-alone feed pump, manifold, or through the drain of your aquarium and plumbed into the included 1/2" barb fitting. Water will then flow over the algae screen that is blasted with high power red/blue LED lights that encourage algae growth and then the water will flow into the main drain fitting and down into your sump. Clear Water's scrubber was designed with a 1/2" emergency drain fitting that will accept any excess flow if the 1" main drain ever gets clogged with algae.
Maintaining the scrubber only takes a few minutes every one to three weeks to harvest the algae that has grown on the screen. By removing the horizontal union and rinsing the screen under a faucet will help knock a majority of the algae off the screen to be disposed of. Removing all the algae from the screen will lead to a slow start of the next batch and by leaving a small amount of algae on the screen you will help seed the next batch allowing it to grow faster. You may need to use a soft bristle brush (toothbrushes work great) to clean the slot that the screen fits into every now and then also.
Max Recommended Tank Size - 250 gallon
Dimensions - 16" L x 10" W x 11 3/4" H
Screen Dimensions - 9 3/4" x 8 1/4"
Recommended Flow Rate - 450 GPH
Input Barb Size - 1/2"
Main Drain Bulkhead - 1"
Emergency Drain Bulkhead - 1/2"
Power Consumption - 60W @ 120VAC
1x CW-200 External Algae Scrubber
How to Properly Size an Algae Scrubber
While we can provide tank sizing recommendations based on typical feeding habits, the best and most accurate way of sizing for an ATS is based on the amount of food fed each day, measured for ease here as cubes of food, regardless of the size of your aquarium. There should be 12 square inches of growing screen per cube or equivalent amount of food fed to the tank each day. Oversizing an algae scrubber does not necessarily mean that it will grow algae faster or be more efficient, and in some cases, we have found oversizing the scrubber too large, can lead to poor results.
|Model||Screen Size||Cubes Per Day|
|CW-50||6" x 6"||up to 3|
|CW-100||7" x 7"||2 to 4|
|CW-200||10" x 8"||4 to 7|
|CW-300||11.5" x 10.5"||7 to 10|
1. Find a suitable place for the scrubber to be placed that allows it to freely drain into your aquariums sump.
2. For best results remove the main and emergency drain bulkheads and install them in reverse (flange and gasket inside of the scrubber body).
3. Using 1" soft tubing or PVC plumb the drain into your sump.
4. Plumb the emergency drain with 1/2" PVC or soft tubing allowing it to drain into your sump. We prefer to keep the emergency drain a few inches over the water level making the water crash into the sump that produces an audible noise, letting you know when something is not correct with the main drain.
5. Attach 1/2" soft tubing to the included feed barb fitting. We really like using soft silicone tubing for this application.
6. Adjust the flow over the algae screen so that an even sheet of water flows down the screen. Flow adjustments can be made with either a ball valve on the feed line or with a DC style pump.
7. Plug the LED light power cord into a timer or aquarium controller and program it for a 12-hour daily photoperiod. We suggest illuminating the algae scrubber in an opposite lighting cycle than your display tank to help stabilize your aquarium pH.
8. Monitor the algae growth and after a few weeks, algae will be ready to harvest!
Note - For feeding the scrubber we prefer to use a stand-alone feed pump since they can be fine-tuned to the algae scrubbers needs. We really like to use DC pumps that let us control the flow rate through a controller or an AC pump with a ball valve.
Poorly Built By Csr on 12/31/2017Csr wouldn't recommend this product to a friendUnfortunately, I have had to make modifications to this unit to stop it from spraying water and leaking from the top of the unit. It also dumps chunks of algae that get stuck in my return pump.
I will say that the customer service from Clear Water Scrubbers is excellent as I was sent multiple replacement parts for free. Even with the new parts I had the same problem.
Ultimately, I had to put rubber gaskets on the end of the top bar to stop water from spraying out the sides. I had to use the top lid (extra special order part) to stop spraying as well. I had to buy a tray and modify it so that when it leaks it collects and drains into the sump instead of on the floor. I had to run the exit water into a filter sock (more maintenance) to stop the loose algae from getting stuck in the return pump.
I do have considerable growth each week, however nitrate and phosphate levels did not budge. The worst part is I now have green hair algae growing in my display tank. I think the large volume of hair algae in the system allows the easier spread to other areas of the system (as in the display tank).
The maintenance on this unit far out weighs any other single part of my aquarium system.
I wish I could return it since it does not do anything for me except waste my time.
BRS was great too as they replaced my first unit that had the seems separating upon arrival.
I am now using NO3PO4-x.
Starting to work By Steven on 10/11/2017Steven would recommend this product to a friendSo I purchased one of these bad boys and I had my doubts honestly. With a little research I looked up how to seed the screen, and have been sitting on a 16 hour light schedule. Opened my Red Sea Reefer 170 Sump compartment one day and what do you know, the screen is growing algae. Right now its just brown, but its working. My weekly tests for phosphates and nitrate are remaining at zero, so I can't complain. Still having trouble with a bit of algae growing in the display, but I assume once the algae takes off in the scrubber it'll disappear.
Very nicely made - but pricey! By Empireman on 9/23/2017Empireman would recommend this product to a friendTyler over at BRS (whom I trust) told me about this unit and recommended it. I know that they just started to sell the unit and there are some issues with sales - but NOT the unit itself. Firstly - it comes nicely package BUT there is NO manual or material to explain what to do. OK - I'm new to the scrubbing scene and it should be expected that a lot of reef keepers are not going to know much about it. Anyway - I received it on a Friday and BRS was closed - so I tracked down JOSH - the manufacturer from Clear water and had a great conversation with him. He explained to me that they ARE putting a manual in each unit, but they hadn't done so yet and BRS was executed to get them out there. OK - fine. He told me they had a video on the BRS website - which there isn't as of yet. All and all - the bottom line is although it's expensive for what it is - it is very nicely made and I'm sure it's going to work awesome once all the installation kinks are worked out. The cons are: No manual = which will be corrected - No video up yet - which will be corrected AND the lights are so bright - you have be order and PURCHASE the light cover for another $30 from Clear Water. Personally - I think he cover should be included with the price of the unit as there couldn't be more than $100 worth of materials to make it but hey - I'm not a rich guy and just trying to do my reef right. Josh did explain to me that it would pay for itself within a year so here's hoping!
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What about a Calcium Reactor?
Thanks in advance.
Hope this helps!