I'm CO2 stupid...please help - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-26-2007, 06:08 AM Thread Starter
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I'm CO2 stupid...please help

I've asked a LOT of questions on here, and I hope I'm not being a PITA. I'd like to thank everyone who's helped me.

That being said, on to my newest problem. I have a 20 tall with just the standard All Glass Aquarium hood over it(1x15W), which I'm sure is not enough and that should explain why my plants are doing better in my 3 gallon than in there. I can't find a higher wattage light that is within my price range to put on it, though(retrofitting is another very confusing topic for me , but I know it's cheaper).

I'm wondering if I add CO2 to the tank if that may compensate for the lack of light, at least somewhat? I've looked all over old threads and religiously read Rex's Guide, but it's all so confusing. Bubble counters? Reactors? Pressurizers? Not to mention how the heck am I supposed to keep all that yeast gunk out of my tank? I guess I'm looking for an explanation on how it works and why it works, not just how to make it(preferably in terms a kid could understand ). Also, would adding CO2 help me? Or should I begin my quest for info on how to retrofit(and not burn the house down )
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-26-2007, 12:19 PM
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NO, at that level I don't think co2 would be 1/2 as important as getting more light.
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-26-2007, 12:43 PM
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Light first.

www.ahsupply.com

55 watt kit

Easy to install.

Also check out www.theplantedtankFAQ.com
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-26-2007, 01:33 PM Thread Starter
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I've looked at ahsupply.com and I think I'd need the 2x13W bright kit. The 55W is about 3 or 4 inches too long for my tank, but 2 13W would fit fine. If I put those in my AGA hood, will I have to install fans or something to keep it from melting the plastic(either on the light strip, or the clear glass/plastic part that the light shines through)? That's the big thing that's been keeping me from doing it...me + electricity = disaster . I'm afraid I'll go to the store and come home to find a pile of ashes where my house once was. Are those kits hard to use? Do you have to drill the hood to fit the new light unit in there?
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-26-2007, 02:26 PM
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You could also look into one of the Coralife fixtures with two 18w T-5 bulbs in it. That would not be a huge amount of light (1.8 watts per gallon) but definitely better than the .75 you have now. I have two of those fixtures over my 29 gallon tank to get me to almost 2.5 watts per gallon.

It would be more light than the 2x13w and might be worth looking into if you want to find an option that doesn't require you to do any wiring yourself. If you have any questions about whether you would need to replace the plastic hood that came with your tank with a glass cover (cheaply available at the fish store, usually) to use their light fixtures safely, I would think that the Coralife customer service folks should be able to help you.
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-26-2007, 06:39 PM
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co2 is the most important thing in your planted tank, get that working for you first, then adjust everything else accordingly.


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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-26-2007, 08:10 PM
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1x36 watt from ah supply should work. How wide is it?
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-27-2007, 12:59 AM
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A 20H is 24" wide. And the AH Supply 55 watt kit works just fine. I have one over my 20H.

You can mount the reflector and bulb in the current strip light. The ballast on the outside of the strip. You should get vents that install in the ends or better yet top of the strip light.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-01-2007, 04:23 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rex Grigg View Post
A 20H is 24" wide. And the AH Supply 55 watt kit works just fine. I have one over my 20H.

You can mount the reflector and bulb in the current strip light. The ballast on the outside of the strip. You should get vents that install in the ends or better yet top of the strip light.
Do you happen to have a picture of the light...or a few, so I can see what it's supposed to look like when done(I generally try to avoid messing with electrical stuff, so I don't burn the house down, and am EXTREMELY nervous about trying this)? Also, where do I get vents and how do I install them? Do I have to go buy a little saw? This is something I hope to do when my camera gets back from the shop(so I can take lots of pictures...and can afford it ), and I want to be sure I'm putting everything together right. Thanks for all the help!
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-01-2007, 12:39 PM
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I can take a picture this evening when I get back home. But I'm sure someone will beat me to it.

The vents come with the kits. You will need a 1" hole saw (it's a drill bit) to install them.

The kits are extremely easy to install. Everything is color coded.
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-02-2007, 01:15 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks. I think I'm gonna give it a try. It'll be another week(2 at most), but I'm definitely getting it. I'd still like to see the pictures of it if you have them. Thanks again!
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-05-2007, 08:38 PM Thread Starter
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I went to a yard sale this morning and picked up 2 new fish tanks and accessories. In the one tank was a brand new fluorescent bulb. On the box, it says it's a 5.0 UVB Iguana light. On the bulb it says it's an 18" F15 T8. It fits in the hood I have and it kind of looks brighter. Is it a better bulb than the 15watt that came with the hood?
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-05-2007, 09:15 PM
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No. You have a UV-B bulb which is used for reptiles for heating and coloration, not for fish/plants. You won't be able to use the UV-B bulb.
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-05-2007, 11:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sethsmom5702 View Post
I've looked at ahsupply.com and I think I'd need the 2x13W bright kit. The 55W is about 3 or 4 inches too long for my tank, but 2 13W would fit fine. If I put those in my AGA hood, will I have to install fans or something to keep it from melting the plastic(either on the light strip, or the clear glass/plastic part that the light shines through)? That's the big thing that's been keeping me from doing it...me + electricity = disaster . I'm afraid I'll go to the store and come home to find a pile of ashes where my house once was. Are those kits hard to use? Do you have to drill the hood to fit the new light unit in there?
nahh you wont need to install fans so long as it is suspended above the glass. I have the 2 x13w over my 6 gal and have it suspended about 1 1/4" up. dosen't seem to effect the plastic housing of the fixture at all. No drilling is needed unless you are installing one of the vents they sell for this.

Tho I think getting a 24" 55 or 65 w fixture would offer you much more potential for growing. tho you would prob want to go with presurized CO2 at that point.

OR you could also go with a 24" 32W and that would get you at about 1.5ish wpg. that would be good for a low/med light setup. Actually I think I have one that I don't use. PM if your interested.


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