Plugged CO2 Diffuser & exploding tubing - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 10-07-2019, 01:57 PM Thread Starter
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Plugged CO2 Diffuser & exploding tubing

Hi everyone,

My ceramic CO2 diffuser has become clogged I believe, because for the last few times when I turn on the CO2 the silicon tubing dislodged from the diffuser creating a significant bubble burst that was quite loud.

I've been told that I should soak the ceramic diffuser in full bleach over night, then rinse with water many times and that's it. Is this really that safe to do? I don't know, but somehow bleach and aquarium don't sound right

Thank you.
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 10-07-2019, 03:26 PM
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Bleach should off-gas in 24 hours, especially if you leave it in the sunlight (nowhere any wildlife could get to it!). You can also give it a soak in water treated with an excess dose of dechlorinator, since that will help to neutralise any leftover bleach as well - you could look up how to recharge purigen for that, since I know some folks will soak their purigen in water with dechlor afterwards to be extra cautious!
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 10-07-2019, 04:30 PM
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I have cleaned my diffusers using both diluted bleach and straight h2o2. Both methods have worked well for me and haven't caused issues. After using bleach, I soak in some water with an excessive amount of Prime/Safe.


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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 10-10-2019, 06:36 AM
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This happened to me and it was mainly calcium carbonate building up in the diffuser. You can use bleach but vinegar and lugol's iodine work. they are not as dangerous as bleach. you can neutralize bleach vinegar and Lugol's iodine with backing soda. I purchased a second diffuser. When one fails I put it in a small bottle with vinegar or lugol's iodine and instal the spare in the aquarium. Then after about a week I open the bottle with the plugged diffuser ad replace the vinegar with ro water and a little backing soda. And after a few more days reface the RO water with new RO water with no backing soda. At this point the plugged diffuser is clean enough to go back into the aquarium. But I keep it in the RO until it is needed.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 10-10-2019, 07:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Surf View Post
This happened to me and it was mainly calcium carbonate building up in the diffuser. You can use bleach but vinegar and lugol's iodine work. they are not as dangerous as bleach. you can neutralize bleach vinegar and Lugol's iodine with backing soda. I purchased a second diffuser. When one fails I put it in a small bottle with vinegar or lugol's iodine and instal the spare in the aquarium. Then after about a week I open the bottle with the plugged diffuser ad replace the vinegar with ro water and a little backing soda. And after a few more days reface the RO water with new RO water with no backing soda. At this point the plugged diffuser is clean enough to go back into the aquarium. But I keep it in the RO until it is needed.
I am not sure how baking soda will neutralize bleach or iodine. I would not use iodine for cleaning a diffuser (vinegar may work). With vinegar, you can probably get away with just a few rinses, as neutralization of a trace amount of acid is not absolutely necessary

Anthony


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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 10-10-2019, 12:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Aqua07 View Post
Hi everyone,

My ceramic CO2 diffuser has become clogged I believe, because for the last few times when I turn on the CO2 the silicon tubing dislodged from the diffuser creating a significant bubble burst that was quite loud.

I've been told that I should soak the ceramic diffuser in full bleach over night, then rinse with water many times and that's it. Is this really that safe to do? I don't know, but somehow bleach and aquarium don't sound right

Thank you.
I never use full bleach, more like 5:1 water:bleach in a bowl. Then I rinse it off and let it sit in a bowl of straight water w dechlorinator, then let it dry out completely. Any residual bleach would evaporate off. The trick is to have at least two diffusers so you can just swap out and clean the dirty one at your leisure. Also you want just regular old bleach, nothing scented or splash proof etc, just straight bleach. It's very effective. If there's a little algae on the disk, you can watch it turn white again before your eyes

Also silicone tubing is super soft, so it's easier to pop off. (I've had this happen just by increasing bubble rate too quickly) But the softness is why I like it on my dainty glass diffusers! If it's stretched at all, snip off the last .75 inch or so to attach to fresh tubing, or replace it if it gets old. Silicone also is somewhat permeable so it's not as efficient as vinyl/plastic CO2 grade tubing. Splitting hairs IMO unless you have a long run of it... Personally I use the black CO2 tubing all the way to my tank, then a check valve, then silicone to the diffuser. That way there's only a few inches of actual silicone tubing out of the water so less opportunity for CO2 loss, and nice soft material for the diffuser to hook up to

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