Multiple inline gadgets? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-11-2018, 10:22 PM Thread Starter
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Multiple inline gadgets?

I like the idea of having fewer tubes leading into my aquarium, is there a downside to having both an inline heater and an inline CO2 diffuser connected to my filter output hose?

Also, what is an appropriate size for a CO2 tank in a 90 gallon aquarium? I'd prefer to not have to fill it more than once a month and I do have quite a bit of room in the stand (vertical clearance is 20.5").

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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-11-2018, 10:37 PM
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Personally I would get multiple filters for multiple inline gadgets. It gets really awkward trying to run both heaters and diffusers on the same tubing. Though if your tank is 90 gallons at least you have the room to make it all work. I just personally found it really annoying, especially when time to clean the filter but they can be run together. I've found that running two canisters instead of 1 is useful though.


I have a 10 pound Co2 tank that runs both my 46 and 36 gallon tanks and a 5 pound for my 40 breeder and they last for several months. So I would think that a 10 pound tank would be fine but you could check to see if a 20 pound tank would fit and use that.


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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 01:07 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you @Triport very good points. Where do you get the 10 lb. CO2 tank filled?

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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 06:18 AM
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Originally Posted by babystarz View Post
Thank you @Triport very good points. Where do you get the 10 lb. CO2 tank filled?
I just did a Google search on gas supplies or something like that and found a company called Airgas that is reasonably close to me. They are found all over the US but if there isn't one near you there might be another place near you.Just search under gas/welding supplies etc.

I figured there had to be some place that you could get it since I think Co2 is used for kegs or something and I am near a college town and I know people also buy helium and oxygen in tanks too and people also use Co2 for salt water tanks and that is fairly popular around here. Very convenient. I got the original tank from them I think for about 80-100 bucks and when I need to refill I think it is about 25 bucks and they either refill it for me while I pay or swap it out for a new one.

I was definitely kind of nervous about dealing with Co2 when I first started but it turned out to not be that big of a deal.


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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 03:56 PM
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Several good points to think about. Definitely do some calling/checking pricing and who does what. There are some who like to have their own tank as they want it to always be bright and shiny new. There is a price to pay for this as it is almost always more difficult and expensive. They often have to take the tank and leave it or stay while it is filled. This costs more labor as well as the drag of wasted time.
So I look for ways to hide the tank and save time and money by putting it out of sight under the stand. That allows me to go to the cheapest/handiest spot to fill. It has to be a combo of price combined with ease of getting it done. For me, that is a welding supply. In my area, Airgas is the corporation style but they charge more than the simple "corner store" type welders use. Shop and ask who charges what price for ten and twenty and you may find the gas is not what they charge for as much as the time involved. My tens cost me $12 while the twenty is $14! The larger is much better on other points as well as it lasts far longer meaning less tear down/replace as well as the trek to the shop? Ninety gallon, I go twenty! But a ten should do a month if no leaks are left!
Look at the fittings that are used for inline and you will see they go INSIDE the tubing and that means it takes the inner space from 5/8 down to nearer 1/4 or 3/8 inch. Think of water flow as being traffic flow and you know what happens when the highway goes from four lanes to two? Each fitting you add to the tubing reduces the flow. That means that you need to have enough excess flow on the filter to stand to lose a significant amount each time you add an inline item. Sometimes it works better to hide the in tank equipment behind something. No perfect answer for all, though. Some tanks, I like to put it inline and compensate by adding a powerhead to keep water moving. Definite catch -22, there.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 05:29 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Triport View Post
I just did a Google search on gas supplies or something like that and found a company called Airgas that is reasonably close to me. They are found all over the US but if there isn't one near you there might be another place near you.Just search under gas/welding supplies etc.

I figured there had to be some place that you could get it since I think Co2 is used for kegs or something and I am near a college town and I know people also buy helium and oxygen in tanks too and people also use Co2 for salt water tanks and that is fairly popular around here. Very convenient. I got the original tank from them I think for about 80-100 bucks and when I need to refill I think it is about 25 bucks and they either refill it for me while I pay or swap it out for a new one.

I was definitely kind of nervous about dealing with Co2 when I first started but it turned out to not be that big of a deal.
Aha, you just made me realize I can probably find CO2 at one of the gajillion beer breweries near me. I'll definitely check those out in addition to Airgas, I'm guessing I can find a brewery that is within a more convenient distance even if the prices are similar (living in the middle of a big city means chains aren't always close to me but small businesses are everywhere and everyone and their uncle has opened a brewery here lately lol).

How long do these typically take to fill if you wait, half an hour or so?

I was initially a bit freaked out by handling CO2 as well but I started with the dinky little Fluval/ISTA kits and made all the mistakes on a tiny scale while I was learning so I feel more confident that I won't break anything now.

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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 05:41 PM Thread Starter
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Several good points to think about. Definitely do some calling/checking pricing and who does what. There are some who like to have their own tank as they want it to always be bright and shiny new. There is a price to pay for this as it is almost always more difficult and expensive. They often have to take the tank and leave it or stay while it is filled. This costs more labor as well as the drag of wasted time.
So I look for ways to hide the tank and save time and money by putting it out of sight under the stand. That allows me to go to the cheapest/handiest spot to fill. It has to be a combo of price combined with ease of getting it done. For me, that is a welding supply. In my area, Airgas is the corporation style but they charge more than the simple "corner store" type welders use. Shop and ask who charges what price for ten and twenty and you may find the gas is not what they charge for as much as the time involved. My tens cost me $12 while the twenty is $14! The larger is much better on other points as well as it lasts far longer meaning less tear down/replace as well as the trek to the shop? Ninety gallon, I go twenty! But a ten should do a month if no leaks are left!
Look at the fittings that are used for inline and you will see they go INSIDE the tubing and that means it takes the inner space from 5/8 down to nearer 1/4 or 3/8 inch. Think of water flow as being traffic flow and you know what happens when the highway goes from four lanes to two? Each fitting you add to the tubing reduces the flow. That means that you need to have enough excess flow on the filter to stand to lose a significant amount each time you add an inline item. Sometimes it works better to hide the in tank equipment behind something. No perfect answer for all, though. Some tanks, I like to put it inline and compensate by adding a powerhead to keep water moving. Definite catch -22, there.

Wow thanks Rich, it hadn't even occurred to me that they don't necessarily charge linearly by the gas volume. Also that is helpful to know about flow restriction, I kind of intuited that could be the case but wasn't sure exactly how it would play out in my head. I have a feeling I will need to baffle the filter flow for this tank regardless if I don't use any inline gadgets (it is an angelfish tank) so perhaps a powerhead will be easier anyway to have more control over fine-tuning the water flow rate and direction.

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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 09:22 PM
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CO2 pricing varies a lot from place to place across the country and even different places in the same city. When shopping, I found the off-name welding gas places, cheaper, next was name brand (Airgas?) and then specialty places like home brew or paintball. Near me, the paintball was priced at around $1 per pound, making a twenty cost me $20 instead of near $14. But the combo is what sold me as it was a question of taking it in, waiting while somebody got available to fill it against pulling up to a dock where they have the tanks, drop my empty and while I go in to pay, the guy loads the new one. But that all depends on lots of small details. If I was hauling it down the street on a bus, a five pound might fit better? Twenty pounders are semi-heavy when you get the tank and twenty pounds of gas added together, one might not want to drag it up the stairs to the third floor!
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 10:58 PM
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Mine I either drop it off and they give me a swap right away and then I go in and pay or I drop mine off, go in and pay, and by the time I come out it is filled. But I guess that would vary from store to store. Very easy though.


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