Should I add CO2? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-19-2020, 02:03 AM Thread Starter
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Should I add CO2?

Hi


I am thinking of getting CO2 and going a bit more high tech.


My current set up



Yes yes I know it needs a prune.



Light.... Beamworks Viva grow.


Substrate..... Gravel.


Ferts... Seachem flourish comprehensive for the planted tank 1 milliliter 2 times a week.
Seachem root tabs, there are 15 in there.


PH..... 7.2
Ammonia....0
Nitrite.... 0
Nitrate....0


No idea about the rest


Stocking...... 1 Giant Betta, 1 Mystery snail, Rams horns and Malaysian Trumpet snails.


Ideas and advice welcome.

Lord and master of the tank
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 02:00 AM
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I'm relatively new to this hobby but I think you should go for it. You could also dose Flourish Excel (liquid carbon).

With CO2 you'll have faster growth and you could add more difficult plant into your tank.

You'll be less prone to algea issues also.

If you add CO2, buy a KH tester and measure/control it. It will be more important than you're pH. CO2 in water form acid. The KH will act like a buffer to avoid the pH to swing up and down.

Be careful if you want to go high tech, you'll always want more haha! I first started to add CO2 and now I completely change my aquarium (light upgrade, substrate upgrade, plenty of ferts).
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 06:52 PM
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@HairyNoseWombat, what are you unhappy with? just curious. new plants species that you want to add? fuller growth?

I see a pretty good job for not already having CO2! So kudos for that! For sure I never got close to that without it.
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 08:57 PM Thread Starter
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Hi

Thanks.

I want it fuller and faster growing.
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 11:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HairyNoseWombat View Post
Hi

Thanks.

I want it fuller and faster growing.
Then yes, get co2. Co2 will also increase uptake which will make algae less likely as well.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-21-2020, 01:01 AM
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If you want to try to het your plants to grow fuller than go CO2. Mind you that it's a whole other level of care. You have to be committed to it every day. You are going to have to dose daily, trim weekly, spend more money on more equipment than you expected. Honestly, you asked for opinions. I think your tank looks fantastic. I would just keep doing what you're doing and spend your time enjoying your tank. Good luck!
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This isn't rocket surgery
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-21-2020, 01:53 AM Thread Starter
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Hi

Thanks for the replies.

Quote:
You could also dose Flourish Excel (liquid carbon).
I would never use this stuff with live stock in the tank.


Quote:
Honestly, you asked for opinions. I think your tank looks fantastic. I would just keep doing what you're doing and spend your time enjoying your tank
Thanks, You may be right.

Here's a front view


Eventually I am going to have to prune that mess....................one day lol
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-21-2020, 06:13 AM
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Your tank looks great.

DIY CO2 isn't expensive or hard if you want to try it out. I've had success with this particular kit along with a cheap Fluval bubble counter and ceramic diffuser. You can also get a solenoid valve and use a timer or smart plug to automatically shut off the CO2 flow at night. To use it you put 1 cup citric acid + 2 cups water in one bottle, 1 cup baking soda and just enough water to get it wet in the other. Screw on the bottles, squeeze the citric acid bottle to get the reaction/siphon going, then open and close the outlet valve a few times to suck in more citric acid and build up the CO2 to working pressure. It'll last a good 2 weeks or more on a charge. You can play with the mix to get more time out of it (I've been using 2 cups each baking soda/citric acid lately), and the good kits like the one I linked to include a magnet for raising the citric acid inlet hose if you've got plenty of pressure built up and want to stop the siphon.

I've also tried out another kit on Amazon that looked nice (metal parts, included a solenoid), but the needle valve ended up being junk. It's all cheap Chinese stuff so YMMV.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jufa03 View Post
You could also dose Flourish Excel (liquid carbon).
Quote:
Originally Posted by HairyNoseWombat View Post
I would never use this stuff with live stock in the tank.
The 'liquid carbon' stuff is marketing, it's an algaecide. While I think it's safe at the recommended dose and can help control algae (releasing some carbon for the plants in the process), it's nothing like injecting CO2.

Do keep in mind that you can easily gas your fish if you go overboard on the CO2. I only need around 1 bubble per second in my 20 gallon.
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Last edited by DeathFromBelow; 05-21-2020 at 06:44 AM. Reason: Added the bit about Excel
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-21-2020, 06:44 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DeathFromBelow View Post
Your tank looks great.

DIY CO2 isn't expensive or hard if you want to try it out. I've had success with this particular kit along with a cheap Fluval bubble counter and ceramic diffuser. You can also get a solenoid valve and use a timer or smart plug to automatically shut off the CO2 flow at night. To use it you put 1 cup citric acid + 2 cups water in one bottle, 1 cup baking soda and just enough water to get it wet in the other. Screw on the bottles, squeeze the citric acid bottle to get the reaction/siphon going, then open and close the outlet valve a few times to suck in more citric acid and build up the CO2 to working pressure. It'll last a good 2 weeks or more on a charge. You can play with the mix to get more time out of it (I've been using 2 cups each baking soda/citric acid lately), and the good kits like the one I linked to include a magnet for raising the citric acid inlet hose if you've got plenty of pressure built up and want to stop the siphon.

I've also tried out another kit on Amazon that looked nice (metal parts, included a solenoid), but the needle valve ended up being junk. It's all cheap Chinese stuff so YMMV.

Thanks looking at it.
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-21-2020, 06:59 AM Thread Starter
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Heres a close up


Last edited by HairyNoseWombat; 05-21-2020 at 11:34 AM. Reason: m
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