- MAR-3181 Macro Algae Reactor - Tunze
Grow Macro Algae to Control Nitrates and Phosphates!
Cultivating chaetomorpha algae in the Tunze MAR-3181 makes controlling your aquariums nutrients clean and easy. Tunze's algae reactor can be placed internally in your sump, or placed externally if you do not have room in your sump, or just don't have a sump. The reactor uses an external lighting solution provided by the Tunze Eco Chic Refugium Light that can be fully submerged underwater for maximum efficiency. To help increase the efficiency of the external light, water that is input into the reactor creates a spinning effect that forces the algae to circulate inside the MAR-3181. One of the biggest downsides to an algae reactor is the maintenance, and Tunze has made harvesting super simple with an easy to remove lid that is held on by large thumbscrews and only takes about a minute to remove the algae, harvest it, and replace the cap.
Recommended Max Tank Volume - 160 Gallons
Reactor Dimensions - 9.2" L x 7.7" W x 16.6" H
Flow Rates - 132 - 318 GPH
Lighting Power Consumption - 9W @ 120VAC (approx)
Circulation Pump - Comline Pump 2500
Pump Power Consumption - 20W @ 120VAC (approx)
Pump Dimensions - 3.5" x 2.8" x 2"
Silicone Tubing Size - 3/4"
1x MAR-3181 Algae Reactor
1x Eco Chic Refugium LED Light
1x Comline Pump 2500
1x Turbelle Basic Controller 7090.200
2x 80" Silicone Hoses
Does not spin By John on 12/30/2019John wouldn't recommend this product to a friendIt works great for a few days but as soon as the algae touches the sides of tube tube it stops spinning and growth slows dramatically. I was unable to return the product to BRS per customer service because I had opened it. Hopefully Tunze will refund me the $300 I spent. I find it hard to believe that they tested this product before bringing it to market and it would have performed any differently than this. Especially given the number of people already reporting that it stops spinning in a few days. I feel like Tunze got over on me at this point. I will update if they are any help or if i'm just out $300.
disappointed By Brad on 12/26/2019Brad wouldn't recommend this product to a friendStops spinning all the time, even with very little chaeto in it. Always a small drip regardless of how tight the screws are.
Great for all-in-ones with no sump By Tom on 12/12/2019Tom would recommend this product to a friendI bought a used Red Sea 250, but wanted to run Cheato. This works perfectly, the pump is in the built in overflow section on the display tank pushing water down to the reactor and back up to the tank. I still need to buy valves to make accessing the reactor for thinning out the Chaeto when it gets too full.
I did have a problem when I opened the box the main body was missing. Apparently, Tunze had problems with the glue seals holding, and in the Black Friday rush prep they must have missed putting in a good body. BRS support helped with linking me in to Tunze who shipped out the body. The second issue I had is once I could use the reactor one of the bolts on the top cover had a slow pinhole leak. I contacted Tunze directly this time and they were quick to send out a new cover.
Both BRS and Tunze stand by their products and customers. I will continue to do business with both.
Initial Impressions By Always a new reefer on 12/8/2019Always a new reefer would recommend this product to a friendBuild- good quality, easy to build, needs easy instruction overview. An initial spillage due to me not tightening the bold. Easy twist an off. A little leakage taking off top. Initially issue were no water was pumping through. Used a stronger pump and water went through with the Com 2500 pump subsequently working. Easy to plump and set up. Neat.
Effectiveness- just on for 1 day fully working. pH is 8.2. The cheat has risen up in the reactor and not spinning.
Great product By David on 12/6/2019David would recommend this product to a friendI love Tunze and German made products.
This is a very well built reactor and it comes with everything except the algae to get it up and running.
The provided hoses are very long and should accommodate most installations without difficulty.
If you opt to place the reactor in the sump you can utilize the magnetic sealing mechanism which is a nice touch that makes accessing the reactor very easy.
Grows Chaeto fast! By Reefsmith on 12/1/2019Reefsmith would recommend this product to a friendI bought this 2-3 months ago because I’m unable to get decent flow in my DIY sump fuge. Now this frees that space for something else!
Comes with a great pump and light and the lid is totally watertight. Has the option to add a second light if desired.
After some tweaking to the light cycle, I’ve got it running to the point that Chaeto goes from a good all sized piece to filling it halfway every 2 weeks.
My only complaint is that the plastic screws that secure the lid get really stuck between harvests and cleanings. I have to be very careful not to damage them, but it feels like only a matter of time before something happens to one of them.
Great quality and no spin By Jerry on 12/1/2019Jerry would recommend this product to a friendI have found that just a tiny maybe half once of algae will spin as it should and within a day or two the spinning stops. No way does it even fill one quarter of the way with algae growth. I would like it to work as it is supposed to. Any suggestions as what to do to keep the spin going?
Works awesome so far! By Timothy on 8/26/2019Timothy would recommend this product to a friendThis thing is great! Filled it so full with algae that it would no longer spin after three weeks. Instructions were good, comes with everything you need. Had to prime pump to get it started, which isn’t mentioned. Comes with a ton of tubing to place it where you want. Works in or out of sump. Super easy to clean out algae with big thumb screws, and the gasket seals tight and doesn’t fall out! Has space for a second light bar if you would need it, although I don’t know why you would. It also includes some wrap to black out the tubing that runs near light strip. This thing is amazing! Nitrates are at .01 or less and no phosphates.
Could u run this off a manifold with a gate valve to adjust flow ?
Thank you for reaching out to us! This can indeed be ran off a manifold, however the algae scrubber also comes with a DC controllable tunze pump as well.
Can you converted to a hang on algae reactor?
While these can be used externally it does not have a bracket for hanging on the back of aquariums. Due to the weight this reactor will have once filled I would recommend just sitting it on the ground next to the tank or under the stand similar to a canister reactor.
Happy reefing! :)
How much chaeto (from algae barn as sold by you guys) would you recommend to start with?
2 oz, 4 oz, more?
I would start with a 4oz ball, it will grow pretty quickly to start out.
Can you connect this to the apex EL?
If so what's needed ?
The pump for the 3181 cannot be controlled by Apex but if you plug the light into the energy bar you can use that as a timer to turn it on and off.