Protein skimmers are a beneficial accessory for marine or saltwater aquariums. They remove organic and dissolved substances from the water by creating foam using mechanical action. Protein skimmers are not as effective for freshwater aquariums as the amount of foam produced in freshwater is less as compared to saltwater aquariums. Here are the ten best protein skimmers that will suit a wide variety of aquariums.
1. AZOO SKIM 250 Aquarium Nano Surface Skimmer
AZOO SKIM 250 in an affordable and compact offering on the list of the ten best protein skimmers. It is a nano surface skimmer that will suit 2.6 to 66 -gallon aquariums depending on the number and size of the aquatic inhabitants inside them. Despite its small size, it can remove the surface film from your fish tanks effectively. It has an inlet float that automatically adapts to the water level in the tank thanks to its enclosed design. An inlet flap prevents small fish from entering the skimmer. AZOO SKIM 250 is easy to install and maintain.
2. Aquatic Life 115 Mini Internal Protein Skimmer
Aquatic Life 115 is a product that occupies minimum space among the ten best protein skimmers. It can be installed internally although the filter box area of quite a few aquariums may be able to accommodate it. The protein skimmer can be used in up to 30-gallon saltwater aquariums. It uses an 8W pump with a needle-wheel impeller designed to improve air-to-water contact for maximum efficiency. A knob allows you to adjust the water flow as required. You can install the Aquatic Life 115 mini protein skimmer using the included mounting brackets or suction cups.
3. Coralife BioCube Protein Skimmer
Coralife BioCube is another affordable item when it comes to the ten best protein skimmers. It uses a heavy-duty pump for creating foam. An airflow valve allows you to adjust the amount of air entering it. The collection cup can be removed for getting rid of the collected waste easily. It has a hanging clip that makes it convenient to set-up and easy to install. If you have a BioCube aquarium (size 14, 16, 29, or 32), you will be able to fit the BioCube protein skimmer into the built-in filtration system at the rear of your aquarium.
4. Macro Aqua M-50 Mini Hang-on External Protein Skimmer
Macro Aqua M-50 is a hang-on option for the buyers who are searching for the ten best protein skimmers. It is a small skimmer that you can hang on to your aquarium. It is equipped with a self-priming pump that is capable of pumping water at a rate of 238gallons/hour. Its needle-to-wheel impeller improves skimming efficiency by increasing air-to-water contact. Macro Aqua M-50 protein skimmer is suitable for up to 60-gallon tanks depending upon the number of fishes in them. An M-60 variant of the Macro Aqua is also available that will be suitable for up to 120-gallon aquariums.
5. Instant Ocean SeaClone 100 Protein Skimmer
Instant Ocean SeaClone 100 is a versatile offering among the ten best protein skimmers. It can be used both as a hang-on and an in-sump accessory for aquariums. The skimmer can be used in aquariums having a capacity of up to 100 gallons. Its Turbo-Venturi Injector System improves gas exchange for creating micro-bubbles and enhancing its skimming efficiency. The Vortex Reaction chamber uses a tornado-like motion for separating the dissolved wastes from the water. You can adjust the air volume using a control valve. Another variant of the protein skimmer, Instant Ocean SeaClone 150, is also available that will suit up to 150-gallon aquariums.
6. Bubble Magus BM-Curve 5 Protein Skimmer
Bubble Magus BM-Curve 5 is a highly-praised product among the ten best protein skimmers. It is a suitable choice for large aquariums having a capacity of up to 140 gallons. The skimmer comes with an SP1000 internal pump, and you don’t have to purchase one separately. It is a needle-wheel pump that is designed for heavy-duty operation. Its venture intake ensures the right amount and size of air bubbles for maximum skimming efficiency. You can adjust the water level in the pump using a valve. Its curved body enables the foam to rise smoothly to the collection cup while an air silencer minimizes noise.
7. Coralife Super Protein Skimmer 125G
Coralife Super Protein Skimmer 125G is a high-performance alternative from the company for the buyers looking for the ten best protein skimmers. It is effective for saltwater and coral reef aquariums with a capacity of up to 125 gallons. Its specially designed foam fractionator, dual-injection inlets, and the patented needle-wheel impeller allow it to get rid of dissolved organic compounds with exceptional efficacy. The diffuser prevents the reverse flow of micro-bubbles into the fish tank. The wide-neck collection cup of the skimmer is easy to clean. You can hang the skimmer with a mounting bracket or use it in the sump. Coralife Super protein skimmer is also available in 65-gallon and 220-gallon variants.
8. Reef Octopus eSsence S-130 Protein Skimmer
When it comes to the ten best protein skimmers, Reef Octopus eSsence S-130 is a premium offering. It makes use of an Aquatrance 1800s pinwheel pump that has a maximum flow rate of 140gph. It is suitable for up to 75-gallon aquariums having a high number of fishes, up to 120-gallon tanks with a medium number of fishes, and up to 160-gallon sparsely populated aquariums. A 16-step dial enables you to adjust the water level precisely. The twist-and-lift collection cup is easy to remove and also acts as a silencer. Reef Octopus eSsence S-130 protein skimmer has been designed for in-sump use only.
9. Simplicity 240DC Protein Skimmer
Do you need a compact yet powerful protein skimmer? Then Simplicity 240DC is the perfect fit for you among the ten best protein skimmers. It has a small footprint but will work for aquariums as large as 240 gallons. It uses a powerful DC pump that comes with a controller. You can adjust the speed of the pump using the controller. Its display shows you the current speed and power consumption of the pump. The needle wheel impeller produces micro-bubbles for skimming protein. You can adjust the air intake as well. A drain is provided on the collection cup for easy cleaning.
10. Reef Octopus Classic 110-INT Needle Wheel Protein Skimmer
Reef Octopus Classic 110-INT is a well-recommended item for in-sump use on the list of the ten best protein skimmers. It uses a Hailea OTP pump and a 4-inch needle wheel skimmer for maximizing foam production. It is suitable for up to 100-gallon aquariums. The pin-wheel impellers are designed to improve the performance of the skimmer. It has a 4-inch cone-shaped neck that makes it easier to separate the protein from the foam. Reef Octopus Classic 110-INT protein skimmer is easy to assemble and install. A gate-valve allows you to adjust the water level while the quick-release cup makes it easy to clean.