Co2 electric solenoid getting hot - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 06-25-2020, 12:27 PM Thread Starter
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Co2 electric solenoid getting hot

Hello guys. Got a question. So my electric co2 solenoid valve getting hot which is attached to regulator. So regulator getting hot as well with a gas cylinder. (hot its only on top of the cylinder) is that safe?
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 06-25-2020, 03:40 PM
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I hope so, because they all do it.
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 06-25-2020, 07:49 PM
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How many watts of your solenoid?

if it requires 4 watts for continuously holding, it works ok and only warm/hot, But if it is a 6 watts or more solenoid, it will burn, and will give potential problems.

High wattage solenoids are not bad, but for our application, are bad. We only have really low flow rate of co2 gas in our aquarium co2 system, but high wattage solenoids are designed for much larger flow rate(and high pressure holding capacity), the fast flow media/fluid can carry away the heat in these high flow solenoids. In our co2 systems, co2 gas never flow fast enough to carry away the heat-the high wattage solenoids will burn and fry.

Solenoids about 100psi rating, 3 watts and below power consumption are perfect for our co2 systems, some are even better such as clippard mouse solenoids and numatics solenoids, they are below 1 watt. There are even rare and expensive 0.5 watt solenoids, Parker(900) or Burkerts(2822). These solenoids are expensive and not readily available in commercially available co2 system.



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Last edited by Bettatail; 06-26-2020 at 07:12 AM. Reason: correction
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 06-25-2020, 10:13 PM
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Put a little computer fan nearby to blow off the hot air.......?

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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 06-25-2020, 11:26 PM
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Every single one of them does it, sometimes my room is like 86F, and it's like a fire, haha, but I leave it alone, a fan for the room is fine. The solenoid isn't touching your tank, right? You adjusted it on a slant hopefully?


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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 06-26-2020, 09:09 AM
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Had the same issue. It got too hot to touch. So I added a fan and heat sink. Now it runs cool.

heat sinks $6
25mm fan $5
3ft usb $5




usb fan and solenoid turn on at the same time. on the background, you can see a travel adapter with usb port plugged to kasa smart strip.
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 06-26-2020, 01:59 PM
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On the question of safety, yes it is safe for a few reasons. One is that CO2 is not a real hazard unless we set up some really weird situation where we fill the room and can't get O2. We do breathe out CO2!
Second is that the tank has built in safety limits and will vent off pressure if it gets really too high so that the tank might split and that limit is way high like beyond 1500 PSI or more.
CO2 tanks are very bear bullet proof if we don't let them tip over to knock the top off, which is a super danger! Consider that folks use CO2 in bars, hamburger joints or anyplace that sells soda or beer. They are used by welders who often throw them in the back of a truck or van and leave them on the roof of buildings in the sun all day.
Bigger hazard is to your wallet as the heat does tend to dry any lube on the solenoid moving parts and distort the parts just enough to make them stick on or off.
If the new folks at Burger King can't figure out a way to blow it up, you are likely to be safe?
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 06-27-2020, 07:36 PM
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Its normal for the Solenoid to get very hot. Don't worry about it.

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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 06-27-2020, 09:44 PM
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Just for fun it's always worthwhile to remind folks of what we DO need to worry about:
Strapp it , tie it or whatever you need to do!!!
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 06-27-2020, 09:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Preeths View Post
Its normal for the Solenoid to get very hot. Don't worry about it.
if the outer casing temperature more than 50 celsius or 120 fahrenheit, the coil is even hotter, I think you should worry about it.

most of the solenoids are around 60 celsius or 150 fahrenheit upper operational temperature tolerance(the valve coil temperature), and even in our co2 system this temp pushing too far because constantly on for 8+ hours a day everyday.

Ten years back some people used clippard block type solenoids and others solenoids to make their DIY pressurized co2 system, but this particular clippard solenoid failed easy and often, because it is 6 watts, same as other solenoids that are 6 watts or more, they are good solenoids but not for our co2 system.
The clippard company also produce miniature mouse solenoid, Ironically, it turned out really good, only 0.67watt, normally don't feel any heat when it is working and it is 1 billion official on/off cycle life. It was back in 2013, Neilshieh, one of the young forum members successfully talked to the Clippard and have them make the 15490-5, the 1/8 NPT ported single manifold. Now it is possible to use this mouse solenoids and the numatics/asco stainless steel miniature solenoids on the 15490-5 manifold in our DIY co2 pressurized system.

for safety reason, a fail solenoid may not cause too much trouble other than non-stopping flow of co2 injection, then gas your fish, and cost to get a replacement co2 system and co2 refill, may not be much but no one wants that to happen.


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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 06-29-2020, 07:47 PM
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The Solenoid commonly used is normally closed. That is when there is no power it will not allow CO2 to pass. The solenoid is attached to the regulator that gives an output pressure between 20 and 40 PSI. So if a solenoid fails due to over heating of the coil, ideally CO2 stops. if it remains open there is not much pressure to cause the cylinder to become a rocket motor.

If there is a short circuit and causes sparks, it is a fire hazard.

The solenoid cannot fail and cause the cylinder to go flying. This is only possible when of if there is catastrophic damage caused to the Regulator. This means you dropped the CO2 cylinder breaking the regulator, or hit it with a hammer or something similar. Just ensure there is ventilation to keep the temperatures down.

I have had solenoids fail multiple times in the last 10 years of using them.I never had a problem. They just shut down.

Assume the solenoid stays open after failing.


If the solenoid fails and you use a "needle valve", The fish are still safe as it will not allow lots of co2 into the tank.
If you use a "flow control" instead of a needle valve, then there could be a large dump of co2 into the tank.

Both the Needle valve and Flow control look very similar externally. So its easy to mistake one for the other.

-Preeths
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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 06-30-2020, 04:52 AM
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@Preeths
every time it failed, you changed a new hot solenoid or a complete co2 system with a new hot solenoid? anyway, why not just get a good one and keep it runs forever?
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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 06-30-2020, 12:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bettatail View Post
How many watts of your solenoid?


I use something similar. But its rated for nearly 140 psi.


I have to replace only the solenoid coil. I use an industrial solenoid, the coil is about 2 inches in diameter and runs off the mains. The coil fails after 3-4 years of use. These are locally manufactured and each separate component can be replaced individually. I am quite happy with them lasting 3-4 years. Replacing the coil takes less than 2 minutes and I don't have to dismantle the setup.

Some times "Good Enough" is better that "Perfect" since the price difference is huge, almost 10 times.

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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 06-30-2020, 02:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Preeths View Post
I use something similar. But its rated for nearly 140 psi.


I have to replace only the solenoid coil. I use an industrial solenoid, the coil is about 2 inches in diameter and runs off the mains. The coil fails after 3-4 years of use. These are locally manufactured and each separate component can be replaced individually. I am quite happy with them lasting 3-4 years. Replacing the coil takes less than 2 minutes and I don't have to dismantle the setup.

Some times "Good Enough" is better that "Perfect" since the price difference is huge, almost 10 times.
We do all have to adapt to what we have in our situation and this may be good advise for this location but it is not good for most of the forum users as it has too many failures to fit what most of us want and it is much better to have reliable equipment that lasts, rather than buying twice.
In my market, I can but a Clippard mouse series that will last longer than I will use it for about $15 . That makes it a much better value than buying and replacing the cheap solenoids. In a well made solenoid, powered by reliable electrical systems, the coil should never fail.
But we do have to work with what we find in our situation.
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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-01-2020, 05:12 PM
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Coming to the Actual topic of the solenoid getting Hot. Send an email to the manufacturer requesting the ambient temperature range the Solenoid is supposed to be used in as well as the normal operating temperature. This should give you a fair idea if all is well.

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