CO2 injection - water clarifying properties? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-09-2014, 04:01 AM Thread Starter
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CO2 injection - water clarifying properties?

So, I normally keep a CO2 cylinder around for homebrew dispensing...

I'm currently not using my CO2 for its normal use, so I decided to haul it up out of the basement and toy around with CO2 injection..

One thing that amazed me was after I had the CO2 running for 2 hours or so I walked by the tank and the water was considerably clearer than it had been before I started the CO2. Co2 levels were around 15-ish ppm, and it seems surprising that such a short run could clear up the water so much..

Is this normal? Does CO2 normally clarify stuff out of the water?

Longer details:

For the tinkering experiment, I got a cheap fluval mini diffuser disc (for an 88g system), cheap bubble counter, cheap check valve, cheap drop checker, a parker needle valve and adapters needed to hook onto my homebrew-standard 1/4" flare gas fittings. Minimal cost stuff to experiment with, but a decent needle valve.

I set the drop checker up with 2dKH, intending to target 15ppm or so of CO2 in my initial tinkering. I got the CO2 going at about 1.5 bps (meaningless in general I know) and turned off my airstones. This ended up turning the drop checker from a blueish shade to a darkish shade of green... I was probably a tad shy of 15ppm, but in the general neighborhood.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-09-2014, 12:36 PM
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I don't think co2 does anything to clear up the water.


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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-09-2014, 12:54 PM Thread Starter
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That is what I thought, I can only guess that it was coincidence, or somehow lowering the pH caused some trace of calcium precipitate to dissolve.

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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-09-2014, 01:01 PM
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I experienced a similar phenomena. Back when I was still using Flourish liq ferts, and only dosing Excel, the iron on micro days always made the water cloudy for 2-3 hours. But once I started real co2 that no longer happened. The water stayed crystal clear. I never figured that out. What you said about the lower PH affect on precipitates might explain it though.


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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-09-2014, 01:27 PM
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i would think it was your airstones making things cloudy. Creating a constant tumble in the water column , therefore keeping particles suspended.


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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-09-2014, 02:20 PM
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I'm guessing here, but if you have hard water with suspended calcium particles, the CO2 could help dissolve it. Your KH/GH would rise, but the water would become clear. Anyone tried using salty shrimp salt mix for keeping sulawesi shrimp ? The effect is similar, where the salt mix dissolves better in slightly acidified water - CO2 injected water in this case.

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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-09-2014, 11:44 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sadchevy View Post
i would think it was your airstones making things cloudy. Creating a constant tumble in the water column , therefore keeping particles suspended.
I doubt that.. I have a couple single-spot airstones. They don't circulate the entire tank.. only the corners.

Quote:
I'm guessing here, but if you have hard water with suspended calcium particles, the CO2 could help dissolve it. Your KH/GH would rise, but the water would become clear.
That seems the most plausible.. My water isn't really all that hard, but it is alkaline (GH 6, pH 7.8 from tap), and I supplement the hardness up to 11 dGH (for mollies) with equilibrium. Perhaps the last batch I added with a water change never fully dissolved.
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