turning up co2 - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-04-2020, 02:02 PM Thread Starter
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turning up co2

My CO2 has been the same for the last three months (started tank Jan 1st).

The last couple of days the checker has been a solid blue. Obviously I will turn up the juice, but was just wondering how common this is.

The plants are taking off pretty well and I'm trimming back every week. Also, I'm dealing with BBA at the moment. It started off slow, but seems to be picking up speed.

I'm assuming the more plants and algae the more CO2 is needed correct?

I am an equipment and tool junkie. I try to keep it simple but.........
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-04-2020, 10:47 PM
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Drop checker should read yellow. Ive found even green isnt enough
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-04-2020, 11:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PlantStudent View Post

I'm assuming the more plants and algae the more CO2 is needed correct?
Not exactly. Generally the more algae, the more CO2 is needed unless light is too much. But with the right level of CO2 in the water column, it would be correct for 1 plant or 100.

Have you measured ph gassed vs. degassed? Many here believe that is a more accurate way to confirm the level in your tank than via drop checker. The idea is that you want a 1 point decrease in ph when the CO2 is at peak level (after being on all day) vs. the level after CO2 has gassed off.

I'm not arguing one method vs. the other (that's a big can of worms!), but suggesting that if the other method shows a 1 point drop, then perhaps your drop checker fluid is bad. Wouldn't be the first time...
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-05-2020, 11:44 AM Thread Starter
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Generally I run a light green checker, but it went to straight blue the other day without me changing anything else. I turned it up to about 2 bps after posting the above and didn't think too much of it until I got home from a walk with the kids. The checker turned bright yellow and all the fish were gasping at the surface.

I shut off the gas and pulled the outflow line above the water surface to increase agitation. I didn't lose any fish, but that was a wakeup call for sure. Even some of my nerite snails were making a break for it trying to get some oxygen. I found one on the carpet.

On a positive note.....the fish my daughter dubbed "scuba kitty" is alive. We put in a tiny synodontis lucipinnis in the tank several months ago and haven't seen it since. It was up gasping at the surface like all the others but now it's twice the size it was before. It was easy to scoop him up and put him in a container for return to the pet store where I got it. I regretted the impulse purchase from the moment I put him in thinking it would be damn near impossible to pull it out once it got too big and started reaking havoc.

I am an equipment and tool junkie. I try to keep it simple but.........
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-05-2020, 12:46 PM
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Yellow means pump the brakes

Quote:
Originally Posted by Saskatoonplantguy View Post
Drop checker should read yellow. Ive found even green isnt enough
YMMV, but for most tanks yellow drop checker is too much CO2 and will result in gasping, as OP experienced. Any time you adjust levels it's important to closely monitor your fish. If you are not using a dual stage regulator, it's also a serious risk when your CO2 canister nears empty. If you're not familiar search "co2 tank dump".

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