C02 ppm rate - confused - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-25-2006, 05:17 AM Thread Starter
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C02 ppm rate - confused

I am more than a little confused.

Just started pressurized Co2 last week and was doing my normal weekly water testing (necessary for now despite dosing EI - I'm a newbie needing to understand what my water parameters are and how everything correlates).

So I calculated my Co2 levels based on Chuck Gadds calculator and I'm reading 16.6 ppm. Now, Chuck's website says that's decent. Rex Grigg's site says otherwise, in fact, everything I've heard about Co2 is that I should shoot for 30 ppm.

Quote:
Chuck Gadd:

A desireable CO2 level is 10-25ppm (which is indicated in green on the chart). Levels below that don't provide optimum CO2 concentrations for high plant growth. CO2 concentrations over 25ppm can be harmful to the inhabitants of your tank. I typically shoot for 15ppm CO2.
Quote:
Rex Grigg:

The ideal CO2 levels for a planted tank are in the 20-30 ppm range.
So, what am I suposed to be aiming for? As of today, I saw pearling, so that's a good sign. No gasping fish - also a good sign. Here's my readings, give your thoughts, please on all - Co2 and otherwise. All suggestions, ideas and feedback greatly appreciated. I have soooooo much to learn still and appreciate the wealth of knowledge you fine folk provide!!

PH 6.6
NH3 0
KH 40
GH 80
No2 0
P04 1
No3 5

Thanks!!
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-25-2006, 05:36 AM
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Well, with a kh of 4 and a ph of 6.6 you are injecting 30ppm of CO2, not 16ppm. I inject around 40ppm. I've gone up to 100ppm accidentally for a day or two with no loss of fish. I would say anywhere from 30ppm-40ppm CO2 with a little surface agitation is a good level.


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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-25-2006, 12:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toofazt
Well, with a kh of 4 and a ph of 6.6 you are injecting 30ppm of CO2, not 16ppm. I inject around 40ppm. I've gone up to 100ppm accidentally for a day or two with no loss of fish. I would say anywhere from 30ppm-40ppm CO2 with a little surface agitation is a good level.

I think her KH is really 2.2 dh and 40ppm which woul make here 17ppm co2 correct.

Julesann, I have found 30 to 40ppm of CO2 to work best too. I suggest you inject more CO2. Slowly increase the bubble rate until your ph drops to 6.3. That should give you 33ppm co2. Be sure to montior your fish while you do it becaue it is easy to overshoot some when you are setting up a bubble rate or your KH readings could be wrong. If you notice your fish hugging the surface back off some.

When you increase the bubble rate a little, make sure to give the system a couple or three hours to stablize before you increase it again if another increase is needed.

Rick
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-25-2006, 01:50 PM
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one thing is that the chucks site is real old and hasnt be updated in a long time. i would up it to 30 ppm to
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-25-2006, 01:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John S
one thing is that the chucks site is real old and hasnt be updated in a long time. i would up it to 30 ppm to

Ditto.

I've run ~45 ppm with fish, and thankfully no incidents, but YMMV

Walter

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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-25-2006, 02:28 PM
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While you are increasing your CO2 to 30 ppm you should also increase your nitrate to 20 ppm, and your phosphate to 2 ppm, and be sure to dose micro ferts too. With the amount of light you have, the plants need to have enough of all of the basic fertilizers at all times.

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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-25-2006, 02:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoppy
While you are increasing your CO2 to 30 ppm you should also increase your nitrate to 20 ppm, and your phosphate to 2 ppm, and be sure to dose micro ferts too. With the amount of light you have, the plants need to have enough of all of the basic fertilizers at all times.

soz to hijack post an bit

but do u think i should put my nitrate to 20ppm as well with 4x 54watts HO T5 on 240litres ? i got them at 10ppm atm



thanks
Gavin
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-25-2006, 04:16 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for your help guys! This site rocks!

I felt so happy that the pearling had begun and then so confused when the Co2 levels appeared so low. My aim for about 30+ seems correct then... thank you for clarifying that. I will gladly increase slowly as directed.

My EI fertilizing schedule is such:

-------------------------------------------------------------

Sunday
50% H20 change using python and Seachem Prime conditioner
Vacuum bottom just above substrate
Add tsp baking soda and 1 tsp Seachem Equilibrium
Prune and preen plants
Scrape glass inside and wipe outside glass with vinegar

Monday
DRY MACRO: 1/8 Tsp-KN03, 1/16 Tsp-KH2P04,1/16 Tsp-K2S04

Tuesday
LIQUID MICRO: 5ml Trace (1/2 cap of Seachem Flourish)
2ml-Fe (1/2 cap of Seachem Iron)

Wednesday
DRY MACRO: 1/8Tsp-KN03, 1/16 Tsp-KH2P04,1/16 Tsp-K2S04

Thursday
LIQUID MICRO: 5ml Trace (1/2 cap of Seachem Flourish)
2ml-Fe (1/2 cap of Seachem Iron)

Friday
DRY MACRO: 1/8Tsp-KN03, 1/16 Tsp-KH2P04,1/16 Tsp-K2S04

Saturday
LIQUID MICRO: 5ml Trace (1/2 cap of Seachem Flourish)
2ml-Fe (1/2 cap of Seachem Iron)

-------------------------------------------------------------

For testing I use Hagen drops. It's basically all we have available here on the island.

How do I increase nitrate to 20 ppm, and your phosphate to 2 ppm?

I think my bubble rate is about 2 bps and the kH is measured in ppm.
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-26-2006, 02:18 AM
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I don't think you will need to dose the extra iron. I just dose flourish and it works fine. You might try it. It might save you a few bucks.

Rick
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-26-2006, 02:19 AM Thread Starter
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That's cool. I sure can use a few cost savers. But how do I increase nitrate to 20 ppm, and your phosphate to 2 ppm?
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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-26-2006, 02:47 AM
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I do not even bother to measure nitrate or phosphate any more. If you use EI no need really. Just follow the recipe and change half the water once a week. You will always have enough. I tried to chase the test kits but found the hobbyist kits really lacking in accuracy. You can save money on test kits too if your careful. haha.

Add 3x a week:
1/4 teaspoon KNO3
1/16th teaspoon KH2PO4
Flourish 5mls


The parameter I monitor is PH because it is my co2 indicator.
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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-04-2006, 11:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by julesann
That's cool. I sure can use a few cost savers. But how do I increase nitrate to 20 ppm, and your phosphate to 2 ppm?
I don't use EI, so I measure my nitrates and phosphates and dose to targets. If you really want to do that, I would recommend the Aquarium Pharmaceuticals kits. I've heard from others that the Hagen kits are inferior. You can get these kits on various on-line retailers (mops.ca, bigalsonline, etc.). There is a thread on gtaaquaria.com (a new Toronto-based aquarium forum) that talks about strategies for shopping online (price matching, etc.). If you ever visit the US, getting stuff at BA (US site) is the cheapest that I've found.

So if you do decide to go with the trouble of the test kits, then test the levels of nitrate and phosphate, dose your ferts, wait 5 or 10 minutes, and then test again. Again, I don't use the EI method, so I don't know if testing is helpful at all.

Good luck! Nice tank, BTW!
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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-04-2006, 11:52 AM
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I forgot to mention: I use Chuck's Calculator to work out roughly how much ferts to add, given the baseline levels. It's pretty darn accurate!
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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-04-2006, 11:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nitromad
soz to hijack post an bit

but do u think i should put my nitrate to 20ppm as well with 4x 54watts HO T5 on 240litres ? i got them at 10ppm atm



thanks
Gavin
You do have high light intensity too, so, yes, I do think you should go to 20 ppm NO3 and 2 ppm of PO4. I'm assuming you also have CO2 at 30-40 ppm, and dose micros too.

Hoppy
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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-04-2006, 11:19 PM Thread Starter
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I do dose micros.
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