Co2 reactors - Page 4 - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #46 of 53 (permalink) Old 02-06-2020, 02:06 AM Thread Starter
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Ok, for something that completely diffuses co2 I think I can live with that.

I don't understand all these pipe and thread measurements which is why I'll look for a visual.

You know of any diy reactors with bypass valves that has pictures lol. I feel like a kid that can't read but I don't want to do this wrong.

I really want to make something like this
I built two DIY reactors. The first one was not large enough and had continuous CO2 bubbles being leaked out into the tank, so I went with my version 2 and so far it seems to not only do better with dissolving the CO2 into the water, but my pH drop is much better than my first one based on 10-minute readings with a pH meter (automatically). Not sure if these are overkill, but I thought I would share:

Version 1


Version 2


I have images of it being built if you want to try it on your own, it was not very hard. Having said that, I am working on Version 2.5 now with a modification to my existing Version 2 to add a second bypass valve to more accurately control water bypass amounts.
Your second one looks quite large, does it not work for you, is that why you are building a v 2.5? I'd certainly appreciate some pics of it being built, do you have a parts list as well?

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post #47 of 53 (permalink) Old 02-06-2020, 02:34 AM
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Is it suitable for use in a bedroom or is it noisy? Read some reviews in Amazon staying the turbine was noisy. What's the risk of using inline heater and diffusor on the same hose? I'm thinking about doing that very thing.
Noisy the first few hours because it takes time to slowly fill with water. But the next day completely silent. There is no turbine.

Inline heater and reactor on the same filter just to me is a headache with all the tubing and hookups and can cause priming problems with your filter but I imagine that might be different depending on which filter you use. There is also always going to be at least some disruption and loss of GPH with every new thing you add. Since I tend to run two filters on all my tanks I just do the heater on one and CO2 on the other.


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post #48 of 53 (permalink) Old 02-06-2020, 03:08 AM
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Your second one looks quite large, does it not work for you, is that why you are building a v 2.5? I'd certainly appreciate some pics of it being built, do you have a parts list as well?
Well, it actually seems to be working great however my design lacked a way to purge air from the top of the unit making priming it a royal (and messy) PITA. So we will be redoing the top and adding a small bleed valve to purge the air (or CO2) from the top. SH\hould only be necessary when taking it apart for cleaning. I was also toying with the idea of putting in two bypass valves as opposed to a single valve. With a single valve, you are limited in the amount of bypass you can achieve since opening the single valve simply provides a second, smaller path, but if I were to add a second valve and have my water intake come in between those two valves, I could achieve 100% reactor bypass should I choose to do so.

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post #49 of 53 (permalink) Old 02-06-2020, 04:36 AM Thread Starter
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Your second one looks quite large, does it not work for you, is that why you are building a v 2.5? I'd certainly appreciate some pics of it being built, do you have a parts list as well?
Well, it actually seems to be working great however my design lacked a way to purge air from the top of the unit making priming it a royal (and messy) PITA. So we will be redoing the top and adding a small bleed valve to purge the air (or CO2) from the top. SH\hould only be necessary when taking it apart for cleaning. I was also toying with the idea of putting in two bypass valves as opposed to a single valve. With a single valve, you are limited in the amount of bypass you can achieve since opening the single valve simply provides a second, smaller path, but if I were to add a second valve and have my water intake come in between those two valves, I could achieve 100% reactor bypass should I choose to do so.
Could you simply drill a hole in the top and add a purge valve? Without having to redo the entire thing?

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post #50 of 53 (permalink) Old 02-06-2020, 10:54 PM
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All in tank and in inline diffusers are subject to getting dirty or algae covered. So the CO2 flow rate can vary, and it will need cleaning or replacing over time.

IMO, do yourself a favor and just build a reactor. I messed around with other methods for a while, and to me they were a pain to manage. After I built the reactor, I wished I had just quit fooling around and did it from the beginning.

Personally I don't like bubbles in the tank, and my reactor leaves my water crystal clear no bubbles at all.

Besides Griggs, there are also Cerges reactors. That is what I use. Basically a home water filter housing adapted to a reactor. I use a 20" filter housing on my 120G. Brought the unit to the hardware store, and a guy helped me pick out the parts. Once I got the parts home, about 10 minutes to build it.



Research is your friend. Like most things, seems complicated at first, but the more you learn the easier it becomes.

Good luck and look forward to seeing what you come up with.
For what it's worth I second this. I build the cerges and it is fantastic. Using the 10" housing I can easily drop my pH by 1.4 or more on a 75 gallon in about an hour and a half or less.

I have never done anything to it since the initial build, which details can be found in my journal linked in my signature (need to be on desktop to see sigs).
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post #51 of 53 (permalink) Old 02-07-2020, 08:48 PM
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Could you simply drill a hole in the top and add a purge valve? Without having to redo the entire thing?
Didn't need to redo anything really - just added this to the top:




Works great as long as you open it slowly! :-)

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post #52 of 53 (permalink) Old 02-09-2020, 03:03 PM
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CO2 reactor

I'm using the Sera 500 inline with my sump return pump. Much improved dissolving of CO2 over pollen glass.
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post #53 of 53 (permalink) Old 02-09-2020, 08:30 PM
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I'm using the Sera 500 inline with my sump return pump. Much improved dissolving of CO2 over pollen glass.
I got the same one and had to do a little work to get mine running smoothly, but it seems to work well so far.

I had to sand the inside of the "impellers" and also ensure I had enough flow out of it. When I installed my inline heater, it had a 1/2" tubing intake. That step down was enough to make the impellers stop spinning. I changed it out to 5/8" and it all runs as it should.

Also, not sure why, but this reactor should be used with 5/8" ID tubing... The amazon listing has it wrong.

Last edited by Dirkomatic; 02-09-2020 at 08:31 PM. Reason: Forgot to mention hose size.
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