DYI co2 emergency - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-31-2013, 06:56 PM Thread Starter
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DYI co2 emergency

I set up a DYI co2 system yesterday. It going strong I'm getting 1/2 bubbles per 3 seconds. It varies but it never has gone over that. It's connected to a power head and it puts out very very tiny bubbles that ride the length of the tank and rise slowly to the surface. The bubbles that make it to the end of the tank are small as the period in this sentence. I left it hooked up last night and when I woke this morning I had a dead green tiger barb that's over a year old. There are two more just like him large in size that seem to be breathing quickly but doesn't seem stressed and not at the surface gasping. The rest of the fish all seem normal and happy. I'm posting pictures and tank parameters in 5 mins. Does anyone have experience with this and should I be very concerned.

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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-31-2013, 06:57 PM Thread Starter
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The set up

Last edited by ChadKruger; 01-09-2015 at 01:41 AM.
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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-31-2013, 07:02 PM
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How big is your tank?

From previous post I've read that plants won't consume much co2 at night, so it's advice able to run an air to increase o2 levels over night.

Could an expert at co2 please validate my response.
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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-31-2013, 07:13 PM
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The barb got gassed. You need to shut of the CO2 at night or put an airstone on a timer to run at night.
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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-31-2013, 07:34 PM Thread Starter
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My tank is 39 gallon it's 36 long 16 tall 12 wide
Ph dropped over night when i tested it at 8pm pacific from 8 to 7.4 when I just tested it
My ammonia is 0 or .1 color looks to yellow to be the .25 on the master test kit chart.
Nitrite is 0
Nitrate is >20
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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-31-2013, 07:36 PM Thread Starter
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Ill shut it off at night but as for right now should I turn it off and let co2 levels drop? My fish are all a year old or older I'd rather not loose anymore.
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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-31-2013, 07:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thelub View Post
The barb got gassed. You need to shut of the CO2 at night or put an airstone on a timer to run at night.
Lub is right. Most people that run CO2 either increase turn over to dissolve oxygen or turn it off altogether. I would rather think turning it off altogether will cause more sway in the pH over what normally occurs at night to begin with. How heavily planted is your tank?
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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-31-2013, 08:00 PM Thread Starter
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My tank i am sure is considered lightly planted. I have 2 amazon swords dwarf hair grass one big tuft and then about every inch of the tank a small tuft I put to hopefully make a carpet. Also Jaffa moss a bunch that's 6"x 6"
I think the pic I posted shows some of it.
I do have the outlet of my canister filter churning up the water surfac now. Last night I had it low under that water where there was minimal surface movement.
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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-31-2013, 08:02 PM Thread Starter
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Oh and why would just the green tiger barbs be struggling and the other tiger barbs be fine? Just curious. I also have a ghost knife some tetras a rainbow shark and misc. they are all happy and normal.
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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-31-2013, 08:28 PM
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just like people they react to variables differently and individually. Basically the stress is most likely occurring because your oxygen levels may by dipping too low at night when the plants stops photosynthesizing. The amount of C02 is irrelevant in the exchange here. If both concentrations are high then the exchange between CO2 and 02 cannot occur because C02 cannot leave the blood and O2 therefore cannot bond to the hemoglobin in return. Even if the CO2 concentrations are lower and the blood release the CO2, without sufficient dissolved O2 the fish will still asphyxiate. So really the ideal situation is to make sure you increase your oxygen levels to compensate for the plants not producing it. Easiest way is to increase water turn over and get as much water in contact with the surface where oxygen is dissolved. Leaving your CO2 running will add the nightly benefit of keeping your pH stable.
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post #11 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-31-2013, 08:32 PM
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I have a single bottle, which I rotate with a pre prepared mix every 2 weeks an hour before the lights turn on, the run rate is 1 bubble per second, feeding via a ceramic difuser. Works fine and co2 drop off is minimal. I have a ph indicator in the tank too, as a safely check. I run mine 24 hours a day but have a little surface movement as the water level is flush with the HOB outlet.

I heard that a number of people say your water surface should be totally still but mine has a good movement and I hold a pretty steady 30 ppm CO2!

Defo run an air stone at night if you have no agitation on the surface.
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post #12 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-31-2013, 08:50 PM Thread Starter
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All of your help is very appreciated. I'm glad I found I found this forum. The ph swing is a good point. I will keep it connected at night but point the power head up towards the surface and being the outflow of the filter close to top so it'll churn the surface also. You guys think it'll be a good solution for now?
This is all short term (few months) until I can save up for a proper system.
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post #13 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-31-2013, 08:53 PM
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I think it'll get you on the right track. Good luck. Don't lose faith.
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post #14 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-31-2013, 08:58 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you again. I'm defiantly keeping around this place and I hope to learn enough to give back. I've always had fish tanks but never planted. It's defiantly kicked up the difficulty level
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post #15 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-31-2013, 09:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChadKruger View Post
All of your help is very appreciated. I'm glad I found I found this forum. The ph swing is a good point. I will keep it connected at night but point the power head up towards the surface and being the outflow of the filter close to top so it'll churn the surface also. You guys think it'll be a good solution for now?
This is all short term (few months) until I can save up for a proper system.
Yeah defo good idea. As long as your waters moving the Co2 will burn off
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