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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
so, i woke up this morning and i see that the two gauges on my regulator are both reading zero how could this be? do i have a leak somewhere in the system? do i have a busted regulator? what should i do from here :help:
 

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so, i woke up this morning and i see that the two gauges on my regulator are both reading zero how could this be? do i have a leak somewhere in the system? do i have a busted regulator? what should i do from here :help:
The regulator is good, its probably a leak. You will need to check all of the connections, including the one from the regulator to the tank with soapy water.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
yeh im wondering if it could be the co2 tank, take a look at the picture and tell me if that would cause a leak does there need to be a cap on the left side of the co2 tank? where there is no regulator attached?

also, when i intially set up the system the one tube popped off the solenoid for about 10 seconds before i could shut off the co2 flow from the tank. is that enough time for 99% of the co2 to escape?
 

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When I first set up my CO2 system the 5 pound tank lasted only a week or so, as I recall, and after refilling it I did a more thorough soapy water test. I used a lot of dish washing liquid soap in water, then brushed it liberally all over every single joint. No bubbles. So, I walked away and sat down for several minutes trying to think of something else to try. When I went back I had little mounds of tiny bubbles at about 3 places. Each mound was maybe a half inch in diameter, no more. I fixed those leaks, and did the test again, finding no mounds of bubbles this time. That bottle of CO2 lasted about 3-4 months. My point is that a serious leak in a CO2 system is still a very tiny leak, and it takes soapy water and waiting for bubbles to appear to find it.

I also learned the hard way that attaching the regulator to a very cold CO2 bottle isn't a good idea. That caused my connection to leak after an hour or so. I then found I could stop the leaks by retightening the nut about every half hour to an hour for the rest of the day. Later, I just waited until the bottle warmed up a bit more before attaching the regulator, and that worked a lot better. I also learned from that that that nut should be very tight - use a 12 inch long wrench and put a lot of weight on it to tighten it. (I used a nylon washer for a seal at that time.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
hmmm thanks hoppy should i use a nylon washer or a metal one? i have both and i used the nylon one.

ill do that soapy water test tomorrow once i refill the co2 and tighten it better this time. hopefully its just a case of me not tightening it up enough and not something more serious
 

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hmmm thanks hoppy should i use a nylon washer or a metal one? i have both and i used the nylon one.

ill do that soapy water test tomorrow once i refill the co2 and tighten it better this time. hopefully its just a case of me not tightening it up enough and not something more serious
Ideally you would use one of the permaseals, that use a rubber O-ring to seal the connection. But, my CO2 bottle wouldn't work with one when I tried it. Next best, in my opinion is the thick nylon washer. I also tried the red fiber thin washers, but I didn't like them because when I tightened the nut, it just came to a complete stop as it contacted the washer. I couldn't believe it would seal the CO2, so I didn't actually try it. Instead I reused the thick nylon washer, and found I could reuse that several times.
 

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so, i woke up this morning and i see that the two gauges on my regulator are both reading zero how could this be? do i have a leak somewhere in the system? do i have a busted regulator? what should i do from here :help:
Yep, you definitely have a leak.

does there need to be a cap on the left side of the co2 tank? where there is no regulator attached?
Yes, the cap on the left hand side of the CO2 tank is a pressure relief valve. This is normal.

also, when i intially set up the system the one tube popped off the solenoid for about 10 seconds before i could shut off the co2 flow from the tank. is that enough time for 99% of the co2 to escape?
What tube connected to the solenoid are you talking about? Could you take a picture of your current setup so that we can get a better understanding? From your picture, I can see that you purchased the Parker solenoid from eBay; have you removed the nipples and the extra parts that came with it, etc?

It is unlikely that in 10 seconds you can lose 99% of your CO2, unless you opened the valve on the tank directly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
i found the source of the leak it is between the 1/8 inch threading of the regulator that connects directly to my solenoid, im going to attempt to tighten it up first and then if that doenst work i guess ill need another part a 1/8 to 1/8 or something to connect the regulator body to the solenoid.

is there anyway i can put a sealant or a paint if tightening it does not work?
rubber cement perhaps?
 

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answered my own question used teflon tape seems to be working!! :flick:
Using Teflon tape on a regulator like we use isn't a very good idea. Pieces of the tape can break off and cause the solenoid to not close all the way. Also, you can get pieces of the tape in the needle/metering valve.

Using a non-hardening pipe joint compound is a better sealant to use. Here is what I use.

 

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Ideally you would use one of the permaseals, that use a rubber O-ring to seal the connection. But, my CO2 bottle wouldn't work with one when I tried it.
I bought a couple permaseals thinking they would be the best solution as well. The ones I got (not sure if they are all like this) have a male thread on them which fits into the female-threaded-outlet of the 5# CO2 bottle I have. The seals take a hex wrench internally, which when I "hand -tightened" it, immediately snapped the threads off :icon_frow. I removed the threaded part and used the seal anyway, and it still works fine-no leaks. The white plastic washers work fine as well, but as mentioned, it takes a large wrench and a strong will to get it tight. I understand that they are designed to be single-use. FWIW.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
needle valve is not an issue as it is a fabco and it is inline, so far it seems to be working guess we will see if any pieces break off :confused1:
 

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needle valve is not an issue as it is a fabco and it is inline, so far it seems to be working guess we will see if any pieces break off :confused1:
Several years ago I purchased what was called at the time "The Best" regulator from AquariumPlants.com. It was a Cornelius regulator with a Burkert solenoid, Clippard needle valve and JBJ bubble counter. They used Teflon tape for assembly. Twice my solenoid hung open from the pieces of Teflon tape. I hope that you have better luck than I did.
 
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