Question about CO2 inhaling - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-21-2014, 10:30 PM Thread Starter
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Question about CO2 inhaling

I know this is not a medical forum, however I was curious and wanted to ask this question.

I just removed the pressure adjuster for my airline tubing from my DIY co2 and in the process I got a good whiff of some freshly brewed co2. I felt a little dizzy and had to sit down. Don't know if it was in my head or I was really being affected. Either way after re-connecting the tubing I sat down and the feeling went away after a couple minutes.

My set up is on my windowsill and the window is open, so fresh outside air is coming inside.

My question is how much co2 does one have to breathe in for it to be dangerous?
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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-21-2014, 10:32 PM
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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-21-2014, 10:59 PM
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I think you'll be okay considering the fact that kids suck down whippets for fun (small CO2 carts) by hyperventilating on them with a balloon and pass out before they asphyxiate.

Last edited by prighello; 03-21-2014 at 11:25 PM. Reason: TMI
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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-21-2014, 11:02 PM Thread Starter
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So if my room is about 12x12x9 and I have a 1 litre bottle co2 set up, is that 5 lbs of co2?

How do you measure weight of co2?
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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-21-2014, 11:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bsmurray View Post
So if my room is about 12x12x9 and I have a 1 litre bottle co2 set up, is that 5 lbs of co2?

How do you measure weight of co2?
No way is that 5lbs. The post is about 5lbs of liquid co2 in a co2 tank. Also you'd have to dumb the whole tank to get those concentrations. You're DIY so you're not generating enough pressure to produce liquid co2 plus a 1L container does not hold 5 lbs of liquid co2. I highly doubt a DIY setup is capable of producing dangerous levels of co2 is a typical sized room, but I'll let an expert chime in on that one.
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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-22-2014, 02:17 AM
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If there's too much co2 in the air, you would suffocate. The light headedness is from lack of o2.
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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-22-2014, 03:19 AM
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You may be confusing CO (carbon monoxide) with CO2. You will not be harmed by DIY CO2 unless you have some real special health problems. More likely to be able to pass out by holding your breathe than from breathing DIY CO2! Gas from the normal roommate may be more dangerous....
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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-22-2014, 03:37 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by PlantedRich View Post
You may be confusing CO (carbon monoxide) with CO2. You will not be harmed by DIY CO2 unless you have some real special health problems. More likely to be able to pass out by holding your breathe than from breathing DIY CO2! Gas from the normal roommate may be more dangerous....
Ok great. Even when the aquarium is on a window shelf that sits right next to the headboard of my bed? Basically Im sleeping (with my head) being within 3 feet from the aquarium throughout the night.
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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-22-2014, 05:01 AM
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Originally Posted by bsmurray View Post
My question is how much co2 does one have to breathe in for it to be dangerous?
There's no meaningful answer to this question the way it is stated. CO2 has no adverse effects by itself. It is not poisonous in any way. The gas is perfectly neutral health-wise. In fact, your body is already full of CO2 it produces by itself. CO2 is what you expel every time you exhale (and some of it you then actually inhale back). As you probably know, sometimes people breathe into a paper bag as a method of dealing with anxiety attacks. The whole point of that procedure is to make you breathe a lot of CO2 (in comparative terms, of course)

The only dangerous thing CO2 can do to you is displace oxygen and thus cause suffocation. In that regard CO2 is as dangerous as water, for one example. One can drink a gallon of water without any issues. But at the same time one can drown to death in a gallon of water. In the latter case it is not water per se that kills the person, but the absence of air (displaced by water). CO2 works the same way. One can drown in CO2.

So, referring to your question, you can breathe in as much CO2 as you want - nothing will happen to you as long as you breathe in enough oxygen with it. Of course, at some point breathing in less oxygen than usual might (and will) produce noticeable effects like dizziness, darkening vision etc.

Last edited by AndreyT; 03-22-2014 at 05:37 PM. Reason: formatting
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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-22-2014, 09:13 AM
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The current percentage of CO2 in the atmosphere is 0.0391% or 391 ppm. The OSHA maximum safe level is 3% or 30,000 ppm. Lethal dose is 30 minutes at 10% or 100,000 ppm.

http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/idlh/124389.html

You have a better chance of growing another set of arms than suffocating from DIY CO2. Not possible.

Also, while you can get high on CO2 whippets, NO is more commonly used (nitrous oxide).

HTH
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post #11 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-22-2014, 11:39 AM
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For pressurized, if ever one of your co2 tanks leaks, open the windows and doors, and the disaster is mitigated. No way will the co2 concentrations get to toxic or lethal levels if it's well ventilated. I wouldn't even worry about DIY.

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post #12 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-23-2014, 04:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndreyT View Post
There's no meaningful answer to this question the way it is stated. CO2 has no adverse effects by itself. It is not poisonous in any way. The gas is perfectly neutral health-wise. In fact, your body is already full of CO2 it produces by itself. CO2 is what you expel every time you exhale (and some of it you then actually inhale back). As you probably know, sometimes people breathe into a paper bag as a method of dealing with anxiety attacks. The whole point of that procedure is to make you breathe a lot of CO2 (in comparative terms, of course)

The only dangerous thing CO2 can do to you is displace oxygen and thus cause suffocation. In that regard CO2 is as dangerous as water, for one example. One can drink a gallon of water without any issues. But at the same time one can drown to death in a gallon of water. In the latter case it is not water per se that kills the person, but the absence of air (displaced by water). CO2 works the same way. One can drown in CO2.



So, referring to your question, you can breathe in as much CO2 as you want - nothing will happen to you as long as you breathe in enough oxygen with it. Of course, at some point breathing in less oxygen than usual might (and will) produce noticeable effects like dizziness, darkening vision etc.
This is not true at all. It is true that at normal concentrations it is considered non-toxic. At elevated levels it can have detrimental effects regardless of O2 level. Those effects can include death. Google carbon dioxide poisoning to see.
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post #13 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-23-2014, 07:50 AM
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It is a series mistakes to bring down a modern commercial jet...

In your case, I don't see problem, feeling dizzy is something else, not co2, but if you put your face right in front of the outflowing co2 for 10 minutes, problem.

As some people stated above, co2 does not react or cause damage to the body, but high concentration of co2 in the air(then in your system) displace oxygen and cause suffocation.

Naturally high co2 concentration in an enclosed enviroment, always low o2, sometimes, CO also present.
Co2 fatal accident is rare, you may not hear any, but once you talk to any korean you may hear stories.

Last edited by Darkblade48; 03-23-2014 at 03:53 PM. Reason: Please use the edit function for back to back posts to keep threads cleaner
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post #14 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-23-2014, 02:50 PM
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While we can read of many hazards on the internet, I find it pays to look over the whole situation and determine if those hazards really fit my situation. I find CO2 can have some hazards but they are so odd and low level that I have determined that those who actually are harmed in any major way, fit into Darwin's theory and would have expired some other way if they had not had CO2 available.
When I hurt myself with a gas that the kids at Burger King handle safely, I should just check out!
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post #15 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-23-2014, 03:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bettatail View Post
Co2 fatal accident is rare, you may not hear any, but once you talk to any korean you may hear stories.
I'd like to hear more about this.

Anthony

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