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2ToesTony 01-12-2013 02:23 PM

Co2 Permanent Tester
Anyone have any experience with the ANS permanent CO2 tester? (the little glass bulb that sits in your tank to watch CO2 levels)
I have a setup planted 50 gallon running a DIY CO2 system.
According to my calculations I could be adding more CO2 because my PH is 7.2 and my KH is 4.48.
This gives me 8 ppm for my CO2 (?). I read 30 ppm is a good number to be sitting at for plant growth.
However every morning I wake up my little ADS tester is yellow, which means too much Co2. I use an elite mini pump as my diffuser for my CO2 system, which turns off when my lights go out. So, although it doesn't stop the CO2 from escaping when it is off, it stops it from being pumped/diffused into the water. All that happens is a little bubble escapes and floats straight up and out.


Shall I toss the ANS or is there something else I should be looking at?

Thanks for any help you guys can offer

DarkCobra 01-12-2013 03:45 PM

Any drop checker is likely to give wildly false readings if you fill the bulb with aquarium water. And I believe that's what the ANS instructions tell you to use.

For accurate readings, you must use a solution of exactly 4 degrees carbonate hardness, commonly known as a 4DKH solution. I've seen them for sale on the Swap 'n Shop here, Ebay, various other places. Then add 2-3 drops from a standard pH test kit. Do NOT use the indicator included with the drop checker. In my experience, if it tells you to use tank water, the included indicator is usually faulty too.

2ToesTony 01-12-2013 04:04 PM

Yep, that's exactly what the instructions say.
I'll give the 4DKH a go and see how that works out.
As for my calculations, I am correct in being able to add more CO2, correct?

Thanks for the info

chevyguy8893 01-12-2013 04:17 PM

The CO2 charts and the equation that goes with them doesn't take buffers into account, so the CO2 charts somewhat overestimate the Co2 levels. I base my CO2 levels off of the fully gassed pH before the CO2 and lights come on, and then I will take the pH after the CO2 has been going for a few hours. With this method shooting for a 1.0 pH drop is ~30 ppm of CO2. This isn't a permanent visual of the CO2 levels, but it gives a better idea of the levels.

DarkCobra 01-12-2013 04:27 PM

Probably. The pH/KH method of CO2 measurement is highly dependent on both accurate measurements, and carbonates being the only significant alkaline buffer. But at 8ppm, even if it's reading half the true CO2 amount (16ppm), you can still double the amount of CO2. Just keep an eye on the fish, they'll tell you if something is wrong.

2ToesTony 01-13-2013 12:01 AM

Thanks guys, will look for the 4DKH, and retest my ph in a couple hours.

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