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What’s the best liquid co2?

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I know it has a limited effect compared to a typical set up, but that’s outside my ability for several different reasons. I tried looking this up already but they were all results from before 2020 and I don’t know if it holds true anymore.

The only one I’ve used before was Flourish Excel, but I really hated the bottle so I’d prefer to try another one. I know about the API one and the one from Aquarium Co-op, but are there any others that are good?

Thanks
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I know it has a limited effect compared to a typical set up, but that’s outside my ability for several different reasons. I tried looking this up already but they were all results from before 2020 and I don’t know if it holds true anymore.

The only one I’ve used before was Flourish Excel, but I really hated the bottle so I’d prefer to try another one. I know about the API one and the one from Aquarium Co-op, but are there any others that are good?

Thanks
Products marketed as liquid carbon are not actually liquid carbon. Karen Randall wrote quite an informative article about it here: The Myth of "Liquid CO2" and the Dangers of Glutaraldehyde - Redux — Sunken Gardens

Supposedly, such products are just glutaraldehyde. I think there are some folks that will buy straight glutaraldehyde but I wouldn't recommend it.

I think Excel is alright. What do you not like about the bottle?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I have arthritis and nerve damage in my hands, and getting the child safe lid off and then being able to dose with the cap without them shaking and spilling on my fingers is really hard for me.

I saw that article, but some of the plants I want to get are known for growing algae on the leaves, so it'd still be useful to me.
 

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I have arthritis and nerve damage in my hands, and getting the child safe lid off and then being able to dose with the cap without them shaking and spilling on my fingers is really hard for me.

I saw that article, but some of the plants I want to get are known for growing algae on the leaves, so it'd still be useful to me.
Oh, will this be for a new tank? You could try growing without any additives first and see if it works. I ran my tank without CO2 and Excel for a very long time and during that time had just negligible amounts of algae.
 

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Excel is still the best because it's the only one (to my knowledge) that is not just straight glut. Excel uses a different version that is supposedly not as dangerous as regular glut. You still need to not get it on you or breathe in the fumes.

How dangerous exactly is glut? Well whenever an actual chemist gets on the forums to talk about it they say things like they won't handle it in the lab without a full hood, face protection and full hand/arm protection. Sooooooooo yeah, be careful with the stuff.

It works by piercing the cell walls of plants (and humans for that matter) and bringing carbon along for the ride. IF it actually works at all that is.

If you are using it purely for algae fighting ability you may wish to use hydrogen peroxide instead.

If you still wish to use excel but hate the bottle, consider buying an empty pump bottle and transferring the contents to the new bottle.

Good luck!
 

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Polycycloglutaracetal or whatever isn't even a real chemical.

Seachem sends out more detailed SDSes to its dealers because the regulations governing SDSes are actually from OSHA. Seachem is less inclined to play games with the government than consumers.
Supposedly it's an isomer of glutaraldehyde. /shrug. I mean I guess it could be pure fraud. But it's what we have to go on.
 

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These days I only use it to spot treat algae but I ran a Excel only tank for a couple of years. Excel at 2x the recommended dose for 75 gal got expensive quick so I started using Metricide, which is straight gluteraldehyde (diluted to a % of course)

I forget the exact number but it's a little stronger than Excel (30% maybe?). I never diluted it or anything, just straight Metricide at 2x the recommended Excel dose

Fish were fine, didnt have shrimp

At this dose my experience is that its about like halfway between real co2 and none at all. It definitely helps the plants, and I could grow a few things that wouldnt grow without it (or w/o real co2) Probably an old journal around here with pics from that time

But it is nothing close to the real thing. And obviously it is a harsh chemical that you should be very careful with. Not everyone is comfortable using it, and thats fine too I dont blame anyone who doesnt want to mess with it
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
These days I only use it to spot treat algae but I ran a Excel only tank for a couple of years. Excel at 2x the recommended dose for 75 gal got expensive quick so I started using Metricide, which is straight gluteraldehyde (diluted to a % of course)

I forget the exact number but it's a little stronger than Excel (30% maybe?). I never diluted it or anything, just straight Metricide at 2x the recommended Excel dose

Fish were fine, didnt have shrimp

At this dose my experience is that its about like halfway between real co2 and none at all. It definitely helps the plants, and I could grow a few things that wouldnt grow without it (or w/o real co2) Probably an old journal around here with pics from that time

But it is nothing close to the real thing. And obviously it is a harsh chemical that you should be very careful with. Not everyone is comfortable using it, and thats fine too I dont blame anyone who doesnt want to mess with it
Thanks for your reply! I admit this is closer to what my relationship with Excel has been like in the past.
 
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