Complete C02 Setup Kit For Beginners?

  1. Cruise Member Member

    Hi guys, I looked on the forum but couldn't find an answer to my specific question.

    I am looking at getting a CO2 setup for my 4 ft tank. Since I have no clue what to buy I was hoping there was a complete kit I could buy that came with everything I would need and clear setup instructions too.
     
  2. tommywantfishy Well Known Member Member

    Budget? Can go crazy and spend 300 or are you just wanting healthier plants? Could get one of these and run at .25 bubbles per second


    Or you could do:
    Co2 Advanced System

    There are many areas in between, but I would not fool with diy co2.

    You would need a large tank like a paintball tank or a regular traditional co2 tank you can fill at a sporting goods store in most cases. Need a solenoid (which I do not have yet) that is basically electrical shutoff via a timer for your co2. They are about 60-80 for just the tank. Solenoid 40-100, diffuser (Jardli is a good brand), regulator 100+ which could include a bubble counter and solenoid for a good one. But beginner I would go fluval 88 to get your feet wet. 75 bucks on amazon I think.
     

  3. -Mak- Well Known Member Member

    No fluval kit is enough for a 4 ft tank....

    Honestly for such a large tank you probably won't find a kit that suitable, I know CO2 arts sells sets of CO2 equipment but they're in the UK. You might have to get your own parts for this.
     
  4. tommywantfishy Well Known Member Member

    With the fluval kit you can get a paintball adapter and use big tanks. Also, upgrade the diffiser.
     

  5. Tarlyn Initiate Member

    I recommend setting up your own CO2 system. The kits (like the Fluval suggested above) don't last very long, and the single use containers end up being costly over time. Setting up a CO2 system with a large tank isn't too difficult, but it does have a higher upfront cost. The biggest issue you'll run into is finding somewhere to refill your CO2 tank.

    What you need:
    CO2 diffuser
    Bubble counter
    CO2 tank (5# is a good size)
    CO2 Regulator (can get these with a built in relay, so it'll automatically turn on and off)
    CO2 indicator
    A couple check valves to prevent water flowing to your CO2 tank
    Standard aquarium hose

    Set it up:
    Get your tank filled
    Put the regulator on the CO2 tank
    Fill the bubble counter with tank water
    Connect aquarium tube from regulator -> bubble counter -> diffuser
    Put diffuser into aquarium
    Use this: Aquarium CO2 Calculator to get an idea of how many bubbles/second to start with
    Use the indicator to fine tune it
    NOTE: CO2 lowers pH by (from my experience)

    I don't think I left anything out. If you have any questions just ask :)
     
  6. tommywantfishy Well Known Member Member

    I have fluval kit, however I am upgrading with these items:
    Rhinox Brass Check Valve for Aquariums (1 pc) - Sturdy, Reliable, Anti-Leak, Anti-Backflow, Non-Return CO2 Air Valve That Ensures One Directional Water Flow, Perfect for Sensitive Fish Amazon.com : Rhinox Brass Check Valve for Aquariums (1 pc) - Sturdy, Reliable, Anti-Leak, Anti-Backflow, Non-Return CO2 Air Valve That Ensures One Directional Water Flow, Perfect for Sensitive Fish : Pet Supplies

    Glass Inline CO2 Atomizer Diffuser System for Aquarium Planted Tank (13mm for 12/16mm (1/2'' ID) Hose) Amazon.com : Glass Inline CO2 Atomizer Diffuser System for Aquarium Planted Tank (13mm for 12/16mm (1/2'' ID) Hose) : Pet Supplies

    150w/300w/500w In-Line External Heater AQUARIUM HEATER - 150/300/500 WATT 1/2"-5/8" (150 Watt 1/2"(12/16mm) Hose) Amazon.com : 150w/300w/500w In-Line External Heater AQUARIUM HEATER - 150/300/500 WATT 1/2"-5/8" (150 Watt 1/2"(12/16mm) Hose) : Pet Supplies

    Milwaukee Instruments MA955 Solenoid Valve for Co2 Dosing Milwaukee Instruments MA955 Solenoid Valve for Co2 Dosing: Science Lab Multiparameter Meters: Amazon.com: Industrial & Scientific

    Hydra Aquatic CO2 Paintball Adapter Amazon.com : Hydra Aquatic CO2 Paintball Adapter : Pet Supplies

    Empire Paintball 24oz CO2 Tank Amazon.com : Empire Co2 Tank : Paintball Equipment : Sports & Outdoors

    That is $150 counting the Fluval 88 system (comes with regulator, bubble counter, as well as diffuser if you do not upgrade it) 130 if you dont upgrade regulator.
     
  7. dcutl002 Well Known Member Member


  8. Awaken_Riceball_ Member Member

    I did extensive research on pressurized CO2 setups, and I finally settled on a setup which is working exceptionally well. First, here is a video that helped me a lot.



    I went with the following setup for my 4ft (48") 60G Aquarium.
    1. CO2 regulator (The most important) - I went with CO2Art due to 10 years warranty, they hand build it, then test it for several days to assure no leaks, super low solenoid power consumption and precision SMC which allows to fine tune low bubble count that other regulators may struggle with it. Lastly, the best part, configure it once, and it stays the same. I had it for two months now, and I never had to mess with it after I fine tuned it. https://www.co2art.co.uk/collection...gulator-and-solenoid-magnetic-valve-smc-valve
    2. Co2 Resistant Tubing - It stops CO2 leaks from the tube so that your CO2 tank will last longer and stop pressure fluctuation compared to standard airline tubing. https://www.co2art.co.uk/products/co2-tubing-1m-of-aquarium-polyurethane-co2-resistant-4-6mm
    3. Bubble Counter - A way to measure how much CO2 is going into the aquarium through bubbles. In addition, a way to fine tune the amount of CO2 based on the bubbles. https://www.co2art.co.uk/products/aluminium-aquarium-co2-bubble-counter-for-solenoids-and-regulators
    4. Connector - A holder for the Bubble Counter. It's a requirement; otherwise, you will not be able to connect the Bubble Counter to the regulator. https://www.co2art.co.uk/collection...ble-counter-fitting-for-6mm-push-in-connector
    5. Drop Checker - A true way to measure and optimize the amount of CO2 inside the aquarium. It is a must have to know if you are putting to much or to little CO2. Amazon.com : Quickest, Most Accurate & Easiest to Use Co2 Drop Checker With 4dKH Drop Checker Solution | NilocG Aquatics | Glass Co2 Drop Checker with 4dKH/Ph Reagent Most Accurate Monitoring of Your Co2 Levels : Pet Supplies
    6. 5lbs CO2 Tank - Expensive initial cost; however, refills are extremely cheap, and it will last several months. I had mine for 2 months, running at 4 bubble counts per second, and it barely used 1/8th of the tank. Can pick up from your local air supplier or online like Amazon. Amazon.com: Zebra DNA Luxfer L6X Aluminum CO2 Tanks with CGA320 on/off Valve (5 LB, Brushed): Industrial & Scientific
    7. Co2 Diffuser - Different variations, so choose wisely. I went with inline to hide the CO2 diffuser. This allows the CO2 bubbles to become super small to stay and diffuse in the water and greatly reduce the amount of CO2 escaping to the air through surface agitation which gas exchanges occurs. Amazon.com : Glass Inline CO2 Atomizer Diffuser System for Aquarium Planted Tank (17mm for 16/22mm (5/8'' ID) Hose) : Pet Supplies
    8. Check Value - Required to stop water from siphoning back to the regulator or CO2 line. It won't be a pretty scenario. Amazon.com : Rhinox Brass Check Valve for Aquariums (1 pc) - Sturdy, Reliable, Anti-Leak, Anti-Backflow, Non-Return CO2 Air Valve That Ensures One Directional Water Flow, Perfect for Sensitive Fish : Pet Supplies
    I hopes this help and feel free to ask me any questions!
     
  9. tommywantfishy Well Known Member Member

    Almost what I have except for the regulator & the 5 lb tank. I have 2 1.5 lb tanks.

    Largest tank is 29g
     
  10. colourblonde Member Member

    I bought a Co2 kit from Green Leaf Aquariums. I've had it for 4 months now and I am very pleased with it. I'm not sure how many litres your tank is but they have many options. I bought the GRO CO2 system for my 200 litre tank. It was about $300 U.S.
    Not cheap but very good quality.
     

  11. Jrsyhomegrown87 Member Member

    I'm looking into gla for my setup. Was looking at the gla gro advanced system.
     
  12. Awaken_Riceball_ Member Member

    Update on my comment. CO2Art is no longer accepting online purchases at this time. According to their Facebook page, they are in the middle of a major business upgrade which unfortunately caused a temporary halt on online orders. If you live in the UK, then you are still able to purchase at their retail stores.