Floating Surface Upflow Algae Scrubber®
with Green Grabber(TM) surfaces, strings for saltwater,
2 power supplies, and Xtra Xtra LEDs for high nutrient water
"It Floats Like A Boat!" (TM)
Eliminate water changes. Remove nuisance algae, nitrate and phosphate. Cultivate seaweed for feeding. Also there is the larger SURF4
Sample growth before harvest:
Videos of similar SURF2:
First five cleanings in saltwater:
Next eight cleanings in saltwater:
Unboxing and Installation:
Overview: part 1:
Overview: part 2:
First harvest at 13 days in saltwater:
New LED frame and black epoxy seal:
SURF2xx dimensions: 6" wide by 8" long
by 3" thick (15 cm wide, 20 cm long, 7.5 cm thick).
Operates on both 120 and 240V. Can be shipped to any country; you can find shipping costs by putting the item into the shopping
cart; be sure to click "display rates"
No dangerous metal 240/120 volt lights.
Welcome to algae scrubbers. We are the only source for patented upflow
scrubbers: U.S. Patent 9,115,008 and 9,708,207. All the oceans, reefs, lakes
and rivers are naturally filtered only by algae, and all the organic particles
remain in the water to feed the creatures. Reduce your glass cleaning and
water changes, and create an environment for living micro-animals to grow
inside the scrubber. No more dosing or possible overdosing. No more refilling.
No more pale corals from low nutrients, and no more sick animals from high
nutrients. Far more powerful than chaeto or refugiums, and does not remove the
food particles. And you can use the algae as food!
Get the no-overflow advantage of an upflow scrubber: since it is ALL
underwater, it can't overflow onto your floor. And now the LED light is coated
with an extremely tough black epoxy to maximize protection from water, salt,
and physical damage.
Finally an aquarium filter that offers drop-in installation, reduction or
elimination of water changes and nuisance algae, along with almost no-light
and almost no-sound, and possibly most important, one-handed cleaning with no
disassembly required. It operates the way the oceans and lakes do, using algae
to do all the filtering, and truly can replace all other filters in your
The SURF2xx (TM) is the
highest-powered version of the original SURF2, which was the world's first
floating surface Upflow Algae Scrubber®
(also called a UAS®). It is also the
first Ribbon Scrubber®, which is what
allows the algae to be removed from the scrubber with one hand without needing
to disassemble anything or take anything to the sink. Simply lift up the lid
and pull the algae out. And you can feed some of the algae to your fish and
snails if you want to; fresh is best!
This SURF2xx floating surface scrubber has over 24 square inches (150 square
cm) of extremely rough Green-Grabber® algal growth surface which can grow up to a 2" (5 cm) thick block of
green hair algae. This is about two small handfuls, and is designed to
absorb the nutrients from this much feeding per day:
2 Frozen cube, or
20 Pinches of flake, or
20 Square inches (125 square cm) of nori, or
5.6 grams of pellets
The physical size or number of gallons or liters of water in your tank or
sump does not matter, however the phosphate level does: This SURF2xx is
great for saltwater with phosphate up to 0.5 ppm; if phosphate is higher
than 0.5 ppm, then use it with other phosphate removers at the same time.
And if you feed more than the above amounts, you can get multiple SURF2xx
units (or combination SURF and HOG units); multiple units are preferred
over one larger unit because you can clean one unit per week, and because
you'll always have one unit filtering while the other one starts growing
again after a cleaning. Multiple SURFxx units (or SURF and HOG) are also
good for backup. Alternately, you could get the larger SURF4
Note that if you have rocks which are soaked with phosphate from having been
in a problem aquarium,
each 50 pounds (110 kg) of problem rock will add 1 cube a day to your
feeding amounts; so be sure to account for this when choosing a scrubber size. For example
if you feed 1 cube a day, but have 100 pounds of rock that came from a tank
with nuisance algae problems, this rock will add 2 cubes a day to your
feeding, meaning that you would need a scrubber for 3 cubes a day. This
applies even if the rock was dried out and bleached, because this does not
remove any nutrients from the rock.
The SURF2xx starts with two air bubble openings at the bottom, where upflowing
air bubbles (from a strong air pump, sold separately) flow up into the growth
compartment and bring aquarium water with it. As the bubbles and water enter
the growth compartment they rub the algae-attachment ribbons and get blasted
by the super-red 660nm LED light. The bubbles then circle around and around
inside the growth compartment, rubbing against the ribbons and the
Green-Grabber® super-rough rock-hard attachment
textures as the bubbles rise up to the water surface. This repeated rubbing of
bubbles causes algae to start growing on the ribbons and textures; saltwater
grows thick, dense algae. The air then goes out of the top of the unit,
quietly and with very little salt spray, and the water goes down and out two
holes in the bottom, without hardly any bubbles remaining.
A few features of the SURF2xx provide real usefulness and are available on no
other algae scrubber (except the larger SURF units). First, the enclosed
growth compartment increases the dwell time of the water and bubbles inside
the unit so that they rub the algae many times before leaving the compartment.
This actually reduces nutrients (nitrate, phosphate) to a level lower than the
outside water, which allows greener growth to occur sooner (lower nutrients
grows greener algae) inside the unit, especially in high-nutrient aquarium
water. In other words, the SURF2xx creates a lower-nutrient ecosystem inside
itself which is different from the rest of the water in your aquarium. Also,
the position of the air bubble inlets (below the growth) causes the bubbles to
flow through the growth no matter how thick the growth gets. This is in
contrast to waterfall scrubbers, which mostly flow water on the outside of the
growth, leaving the inner layers of growth without flow.
Another feature which was highly requested was quiet operation. Since the
SURF2xx does not touch the aquarium glass or sump glass, and since it's made
of heavy material surrounded by foam, it is by far the quietest algae scrubber
ever made. As a matter of fact it's almost silent (the air pump is usually
louder). The thick and heavy gauge plastic growth container is coated
internally by even thicker and heaver Green-Grabber textures, and is
surrounded on the outside by 1" (2.5 cm) of closed cell polyethylene foam.
This stops virtually all sound from going sideways. And the 1/2" (12 mm) thick
LED lid is filled with super dense but flexible polyurethane, which absorbs
more sound than a rigid structure would, and much more than a non-sealed
structure would. Lastly the path that air has to take to get out of the top
requires the air to first go sideways towards the foam, and then upwards along
the foam; this allows the foam to absorb any remaining sound exactly the way
foam absorbs sound in a studio. So while you may hear very muffled bubbling if
the filter were next to your bed at night, you will hear nothing if there is
any other activity occurring in your house.
Another great feature is the elimination of almost all salt spray (for
saltwater). Since the air must come up through the narrow space between the
LED lid and the foam, all the salt spray remains in the growth compartment
where it is washed away by the water. There sometimes is the occasional bubble
that comes out the top, but it's practically nothing compared to the splashing
of waterfall scrubbers. And if the unit does ever need to be "washed", you
just push the it under the water surface for a few seconds and let water flow
over the top; no need to take it to the sink.
Bubble removal is probably the most-requested feature. Any and all algae
scrubbers, whether they are upflow, waterfall or horizontal rivers, all have
bubbles which must be removed. The internal growth compartment of the SURF2xx
keeps bubbles inside the almost 2" deep internal water level, only letting
water out of the two small holes at the bottom after the air has escaped out
the top. Thus, almost no bubbles at all get into the aquarium or sump water;
only a little red light, which gets less as growth gets thicker. And of course
the quicker you can grow green algae inside the unit, the quicker you will
remove nutrients and nuisance algae from your aquarium, and/or the quicker you
can supply fresh green seaweed to your livestock.
The Green-Grabber algal growth attachment surface is so rough and prickly
that is might be the roughest thing you've ever felt. A cactus might be
sharper, but that's about it. Rough surfaces are critical for allowing algae
to attach and grow and thus provide strong absorption of nutrients. The
rock-hard protrusions stick straight out 1 to 2 mm. Previous algae scrubber
screens were made from "slippery" plastic canvas that is used for sewing and
knitting; algae take a long time to attach to it. Green-Grabber growth
surfaces are not plastic at all; instead they are rock hard and have jagged
rough edges and points (don't let children play with them). And the white
color of the Green-Grabber surface reflects as much light as possible,
allowing lots of light to reflect back to the algae.
The main advantage of the SURF2xx or any algae scrubber is that if you size
and operate it properly, it can be the only filter for your tank, even
replacing waterchanges. It can, however, also be used with other filters.
Some other filters such as carbon dosing (Zeo, pellets, etc) may slow down
the scrubber, but nothing will really "hurt" the scrubber except possibly
large amounts of algaecide or copper medications. The SURF2xx cannot even
dry out, since it's always under water.
The SURF2xx will run on both 120V and 240V, and comes with a 10 ft (300 cm) power cord with U.S. plugs. If you
require different plugs you can get an adapter at any local hardware or
travel store, or online, or you can cut off the U.S. plugs and install your
own plugs from a hardware store. They are simple 2-wire plugs, and there is
one plug for each power supply (2 plugs total).
Comes with 3 ft (90 cm) of dual vinyl airline, but requires a 2-outlet air pump that can pump at least 5.0 total liters per minute (0.2 cfm), which
small low-cost pumps cannot do. Pumps that say they can handle 10 or more
airstones, or pumps with 2 tubing attachments instead of one, are
best..You can have as much air as you like, however, 10 lpm pumps are no
problem. One powerful pump which works exceptionally well is the
Tetra Whisper AP 300 which has 2-outlets. The Whisper AP 150 also works
but you will need two of them. Make sure to put any pump above the
aquarium so that it will not drain any water if it shuts off.
The SURF2xx lid contains 8 red (660 nm) 3-watt LEDs, which are attached to
an aluminum heat sink which is coated with black epoxy; it does get warm.
The LEDs will give the aquarium or sump a slight red color at night when
the aquarium lights are off, but this will occur less as the SURF2xx fills
with growth. You will probably need to get a timer so you can run the LEDs for up to 22 hours per day, although you
can try 24 hours if you want to. The LEDs never needs replacing.
The SURF2xx will need to be cleaned ("harvested") every 7 to 14 days. Just
lift up the LED lid, grab a handful of algae, and pull it out. You can
even feed some of the algae to your fish. You do not need to take anything
apart, or take anything to your sink, unless it is growing dark slime like
it usually does when new.
The SURFxx come with a 1 year warranty: Warranty is for
replacement or repair only; not a refund. Costs for shipping back to us
are covered if you are in the U.S. Costs for shipping back to us are not
covered if you are not in the U.S., however we will pay for shipping back
to you. In either case, you will need to ship the entire unit back to us
before we can ship a replacement. Warranty is limited to repair or
replacement, and does not cover fish loss, personal injury, property loss,
or direct, incidental or consequential damage arising from the use of it.
The warranty and remedies set forth above are exclusive and in lieu of all
others, whether oral or written, express or implied. We specifically
disclaim any and all implied warranties, including but not limited to lost
profits, downtime, goodwill, damage to or replacement of other equipment
and property, and any costs of recovering animals, plants, tanks or other
aquarium related items and/or equipment. We are not responsible for
special, incidental, or consequential damages resulting from any breach of
warranty, or replacement of equipment or property, or any costs of
recovering or reproducing any equipment, animals or plants used or grown
with this product.
Can be shipped to any country;
you can find shipping costs by using the shopping cart; be sure to
click "display rates". If you don't have a zip code, enter "zip code"
instead. Note that shipping outside of the USA will probably
require you to also pay an import charge when it arrives. We cannot mark
it as "gift". The lowest cost (but slowest) foreign shipping is
generally USPS Priority Mail International, but USPS Priority Express
International is faster. The size of the shipping box is 12 x 10 x
6.5 inches (33 x 23 x 16 cm).
SURF2xx size: 6" wide by 8" long by 3" thick (15 cm wide, 20 cm long, 7.5
cm thick). It requires at least 3" (7.5 cm) of water to operate in.
Comments of similar SURF2 and SURF2x:
"Bought the SURF2x, absolutely love it! Would never run a system without
a SantaMonica scrubber again!" -- Tannum_Paul on the MASA site.
Odilon Zerecero SURF2x from Mexico:
"Working perfectly!! [SURF2x] -- Cristiano Amaral in Brazil
"I have a SURF2 the same manufacturer and it is impeccable, it keeps me
PO4 zero distributing 3-4 cubes of food per day" -- Eric75003 on
the RF site
"Its a great product!!! [SURF2] I run mine in conjunction w/ a skimmer
and cannot run both 24/7 because I cant feed enough to keep at least a
little Nitrate in the system for the Acro's" -- TDTA1181 on the R2R
"I run one of these and quite like it. Getting similar results to a
typical refugium I used to have that was about 6 times the size. I went to
this product basically to buy myself some sump space back and couldn't be
happier" -- Sam Parker's Tank Of The Month on MASA:
"I recent removed bio-pellets, GFO, and trimmed off a lot of macro algae.
Oh yeah, overfeeding now to try and bring up my phosphates. Since removing
a bunch of nutrient exporting systems like bio-pellets, GFO, and a second
algae scrubber, my Surf2 has been growing nuts. It's been less then 7 days
and I have to remove more. People are surprised when I open up the Surf2
and show them what I pull out with one hand" -- ReeferEric on the R2R
"I see algae scrubbers as the single most significant nutrient exporter
you can have" -- Stephen Babcock, The Corner Reef, Columbia, Illinois
"The [SURF2] is really useful and highly necessary for my tank. So I
really can't be without it for too long" -- Jason Pappin
"[SURF2x is] growing very well. Love the in sump design. Will probably
get another down the road as I increase my bioload." -- Erik Sulman
"The scrubber is working great! getting a lot of nice growth in the
SURF2" -- Mike Buechs
"This [SURF2x] is the second scrubber I've bought. Love this product!"
-- biggins28 on ebay
"Many thanks for the safe arrival of the SURF2, Thanks again" --
bungy991 on ebay
"Happy with [SURF2], would get another bigger version maybe at some
stage" -- juggernoght87 on ebay
"Very reasonable offer [SURF2]" -- edwin65 on ebay
"I stumbled upon [a SURF2] and took a chance ordering one. They are a
really great algae scrubber" -- Reeffirstaid on the R2R site.
"I pull a handful out every week [SURF2]" -- Choff on the R2R site.
Matthew Coulthard SURF2:
"The [SURF2] has really taken off" -- Reefindownunder on the scrubber
"Currently I have two algae scrubbers that I purchased from Santa
Monica. SURF2 and SURF4. SURF2 is powered by Fusion 700 and SURF4 is
powered by Coralife Super Luft SL-38. I can grow significant amount of
algae in both" -- Tomasz Cop pic of SURF2:
"The [SURF2] at my office is doing great. I would like to order another
one for my home tank". -- Thomas Perry
"This is one weeks growth, I'm pulling out a lot more turf now it's
certainly got a hold on the ribbons and the textured walls of the box. I
tested phosphates a couple of days ago on the Hanna checker and it was
reading 0. I did the test again because I've never had a 0 reading on this
tank." -- Blinkyfish on the UR site:
"I am currently using the SURF2 on my zoa garden. It is way oversized for
my system but works well. Just takes a little longer to grow" -- Landon on
the NTRF site.
"My SURF2 is doing very very well [...]. i feed 1 cube a day which is
enough for the tank, harvest every 14-21 days ish. i saved a lot of money
for not spending any money on rowaphos. no algae in display tank. zero
phosphate and nitrate" -- Wesley on the UR site:
"The [SURF2] is great, works perfectly keeps nutrients low. I still have a
bit of bubble algae but it's slowly dissapearing. Works well and
takes less space than the [waterfall] scrubbers" -- Millar on the UR site.
"Very happy with the SURF2 so far" -- Juls on the UR site.
"I used to have so much cheato, I would sell it on RC. Since adding the
SURF2, the cheato is just vanishing as the SURF2 grows more and more. The
entire middle section of the sump used to be cheato, and as you can see,
there is not much left at all. Nobody else makes a all in one, low
maintenance, scrubber like this. There's no drilling or plumbing
modifications required, its nearly silent, and takes up no space in my
cabinet which all were huge selling points for me. A great product;
here's a pic of my growth" -- Dexters Reef...
Dlstn on the UR site:
"Works great!" -- Marcelo Silva, Brazil
"Working great" -- Steven Cantor
Pic from Damien Kwok:
"I'm very pleased with the quality of the SURF2 - it's superior!" --
"Using it now in my 60 gal freshwater tank where it works well keeping
nitrates below 20" -- Andreas Schaefer
Translated by Google: "After seven months, I test two of the [SURF2
units], I find that in the device it crawling with copepods that eat
algae, now I swarming zooplankton and in addition I take a lot of
seaweed every week in my devices (APPROXIMATELY 80 gr) and PO4
photometers to a decrease of 0.02 to 0.01 photometers. more I give an
amount of algae my surgeons". Original French: "pour faire suivre
cette enquête au bout de 7 moisj'ai tester deux algae scruber de la
societe santa monica (SURF2 floating surface) j'en avais pris
deuxrésultat au début assez long à venirensuite baisse
très moyen des phosphates j'ai décider de mettre en marche
l’écumeur sur 12 heures au lieux de 24 heuresdeux mois après
très peut d'algues dans les deux appareilsanta monica m’envoie un mail
en précisant de bien rincer les appareil a l'eau du robinet je
l'ai fait car j'ai constater que dans les appareil il grouiller de
copépodes qui me manger les algues depuis je rince une fois par
mois les appareils maintenant je grouille de zooplancton dans le
refuge et en plus j’enlève beaucoup d'algues toutes les semaines dans
mes appareils (ENVIRON 80 gr d'algues essorer) et PO4 au photomètres a
baisser de 1 à 0.02 au photometresde plus je donne une quantité
d'algues a mes chirurgiens ET JE DONNE 4 CUBES CONGELER PAR JOURS" -
Jegou Alain on the Recifal-France site.
Translated from Portuguese by Google: "Earlier this year the glass of
my [DIY] algae scrubber (Model Basso) broke. Due to lack of time and
manual skills, not tinkered with skimmer and was only for a few
months. decided to spend a little and bought SURF2 of Santa Monica,
which measures 20cm x 15cm by 15cm x 10cm outside and inside (area for
growth of algae). model is interesting because it is small and is
floating in the sump. With that much space gained by removing the
previous ATS. SURF2 installed but a few days after my skimmer pump has
gone bad. In two weeks the ATS already started forming algae and I
played without skimmer for almost one month, only with ATS. Even then
parameters were normal. These are photos from yesterday, two months
after installation. Already cleaned the box twice and am already
almost needs to take algae again. algae that formed in my display
during the relax (without ats and skimmer) have gone missing. With the
lid closed does not make any noise. You hear only if they get too
close" -- Luis Iarossi on the IPAQ site. Original text:
"No início do ano a placa de vidro do meu algae scrubber (Modelo
Basso) quebrou. Por falta de tempo e habilidades manuais, não
consertei e fiquei só com skimmer por alguns meses. Resolvi gastar um
pouco e comprei o Surf2 da Santa Monica, que mede 20cm x 15cm por fora
e 15cm x 10cm por dentro (área para crescimento de algas). O modelo
é interessante pois é pequeno e fica flutuando no sump.
Com isso ganhei muito espaço ao retirar o ATS anterior. Em 01/05/2014
instalei o surf2 mas poucos dias depois meu skimmer deu problema na
bomba. Em 2 semanas o ATS já começou a formar algas e eu toquei sem
skimmer por quase 1 mês, apenas com o ATS. Até então os
parâmetros estavam normais. Essas são fotos de ontem, 2 meses depois
de instalado. Já limpei a caixa duas vezes e já estou quase precisando
tirar algas novamente. As algas que se formaram no meu display durante
o período de relaxo (sem ats e skimmer) já sumiram. Com a tampa
fechada não faz barulho algum. Você ouve apenas se chegar muito