The Planted Tank Forum banner

Problem installing CO2 canister

7703 Views 17 Replies 10 Participants Last post by  ojomiron
Hello all,

I was at Petco the other day and saw an ISTA CO2 disposable supply set and figured I would give it a shot. I know the ease and benefits of a DIY CO2 system, but I wanted to give a pressurized set a shot. I tried to install the 'threaded' canister into the regulator but couldn't seem to tighten enough to puncture the canister. I figured it was faulty and returned it for another set.

Guess what? Same thing, so now I figure I must be doing something wrong. The instructions say I need to thread the canister and then tighten the regulator. I just assumed that means screw the canister in until the seal breaks.

Anyone have any idea what I am doing wrong?
1 - 18 of 18 Posts
1) Make sure the regulator valve is closed, (knob valve turned fully clockwise)

2)Thread regulator to the CO2 cartridge and hand tighten until the valve pierces the cylinder.

Can you see then point that is supposed to pierce the CO2 cylinder when you look into the bottom of the regulator?
Yeah I can see the point/needle and the canister gets a small indention, but there is no piercing.
Returning my ISTA 45g CO2. The needle is about 2mm too short to pierce the cartridge cap.

Manufacturing defect? Or just not enough forethought?

Guess they don't do sample testing, otherwise there wouldn't be so many people having the same problem of the needle not piercing the canisters.

Having the same problem as we speak. :thumbsdow. I even tried with a wrench but it just makes a deeper indentation without piercing. WeK.
Has anyone figured this out? Unfortunately I can't find my receipt... :icon_redf
Looks like I'm sticking with DIY for now.
I tried two different units and both had the same problem. I eventually gave up and went with the Fluval 88g kit. Worked like a charm.

I even contacted ISTA support about the issue and their response was just to repeat the instructions on the card.
The problem, as far as I can deduce from reported probs over internet, is that the needle valve is a fraction too short.

Capping the CO2 bottles gives a slight variation in how much of a dimple there is--something that apparently was not taken into consideration by ISTA. (Type "CO2 How It's Made" on YouTube.)

If ISTA made their needle valve 2mm longer, it would puncture the cartridges. Airgun manufacturers use longer needles because people would swear off that company's products if they encountered such problems.

ISTA has to redesign their needle valve.
That's exactly the problem and it baffles me that they can continue to produce these without testing them.
i'm not real familiar with that set up however i am familiar with thread areasol cans onto valves and fitting that are similar. I have a quick question. With the regulator off the cylinder, does the regulator valve move the piercing needle in or out ? ( up and down if attached on cylinder) On Automotive refrigerant cans you must turn valve all the way in till it bottoms out (piercing the seal) then back the valve out to allow gas to travel out of the can around the needle. the needle is tampered like a sharpened pencil so the more you turn out the more the volume and pressure is released. OR...... i have no idea what i'm talking about. only good intentions.
The regulator doesn't move the needle at all.
Boo. Probably a massed produced in china and shipped here in such large quantity that they couldn't scrap or rework them without going bankrupt.
I just bought this at petco and the same thing is happening with me. Its not puncturing it at all.
Boo. Probably a massed produced in china and shipped here in such large quantity that they couldn't scrap or rework them without going bankrupt.
It's scary how true this is. You can produce a batch of quality parts, get a good name going and just mass produce the rest. Then come out with a newer updated model, rinse and repeat.
I just bought this the other day... Had the same problem with not getting the needle to puncture the CO2 bottle. I took it back and exchanged it for another one. I opened the box to the new setup and noticed it was a totally different instructions page. The step 1 had a piece of paper stapled to it and the warning labels were different. Well push come to shove I noticed that the O Ring inside the regulator was clear this time instead if black. They did have a recall on this item because of the wrong O Ring fittings. So check it out. if you notice that it is black, contact Petco on there web site and explain your problem. They will more than likely send you a replacement and let you keep the old one... :)
I just use the Fluval 88g CO2 kits now on my smaller tanks and they work without any issues.
I am having the same problem. These things are not cheap and some places in the internet say that with good water turbulence enough CO2 is taken from the air near the surface. So...
1 - 18 of 18 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.