Milwaukee CO2 reg and ph controller - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 12-15-2004, 03:05 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Vacaville, CA
Posts: 38
Milwaukee CO2 reg and ph controller

I am new to this forum and would appreciate any advice on this product. Does anyone have experience with the regulator and controller under SPECIALS at If so, how is it? What else would I need to make my CO2 and pH fully automated? Thanks in advance.
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 12-15-2004, 03:51 PM
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Location: connecticut
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If you do a search, you'll find LOTS of people here use that equipment with great results. I use it too, but Im a newbie - still working on the great results. But I do love it.

In the general sense, this most of what you need. But practically speaking I think people will tell you there are a few other things to not leave out...

1) A reactor or diffuser - something to take the gas coming out of the regulator and dissolve it into your water. I'm sure someone will direct you to some good info on those choices. Mines DIY dirt cheap and very effective.
2) 7.01 calibration solution. Every month or two you'll want to dip that probe into some solution to reset it for any drift off of a perfect reading.
3) Reading the tank. You can't completely "set it and forget it". Periodically you need to check the pressure on the tank to make sure it is not almost empty. Apparently when they get there (mine hasn't yet) they tend to "dump" their load quickly - a potentially hazardous situation for your fish, even with an SMS controller.

That said, it's great equipment - the major step to making CO2 as easy as possible.

Steve - 33g reef and a 180g planted in need of a re-scape.
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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 12-16-2004, 02:46 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Des Moines, Iowa
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Two things to add to scolley's information.

1) You have to remember to keep up your tanks buffering capacity (KH), otherwise, the pH will remain constant, the KH will ultimately decrease and you won't be getting the CO2 levels you want. generally, good regular water changes are sufficient unless your tap water doesn't have much buffering capacity to begin with.

2) End of tank dump occurs when the remaining pressure in the tank isn't sufficient enough for proper regulator operation (there needs to be a certain amount of pressure on the regulators diaphragm I believe) and the regulator essentially opens up and any remaining gas in the tank is dumped out into the system. In a system without a controller, there is the potential for almost immediate disaster from the massive pH swing the tank will experience and possible CO2 poisoning. In a system with a controlled regulator, the danger isn't as crtical because as soon as the pH goes below the set point, the solenoid valve closes and the Milwaukke solenoid valve (as I am sure are other brands) can easily handle the relatively low pressures that are present at EOTD.

That being said of course, monitoring the tank pressure will tell you when the liquid CO2 is gone and only gas remains, at which point the pressure in the tank will gradually start decrease from it's nominal pressure (usually around 850-1000 for CO2)
at which point you need to plan on getting a refill. I usually refill mine at about 400-500PSI although I have let it get as low as 300. is offline  

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