system will help your plants grow and flourish by replenishing CO2 levels in your planted freshwater aquarium. CO2 will also help stabilize pH in your aquarium. Therefore, it is crucial to maintain the proper CO2 levels. Factors controlling the pH level in your aquarium include the amount of minerals present in the aquarium water (alkalinity) and the concentration of CO2 (acidity). Excess CO2 levels can lower the pH level dramatically and severely stress your fish. By adding an appropriate amount of CO2 to your aquarium (a level which you must determine by regularly monitoring water parameters), this system helps stabilize your water pH. If you achieve the desired CO2 level but your pH remains high, you can reduce the alkalinity by performing small water changes using mineral-free water that has been purified by reverse osmosis or distillation.
Please note: Because light is integral to photosynthesis and the creation of oxygen, your plants will stop using CO2 when aquarium lights turn off. Instead, they will start producing CO2. To avoid harmful CO2 overdose and harmful drop in pH levels, do not add CO2 to your aquarium when aquarium lights are off.
Additional tools/supplies you'll need:
If you need assistance with system assembly or use, please feel free to contact our Aquatic Technicians at 1-800-443-1160.
Putting your system together:
Setting your system timer:
Please note: If your aquarium lights aren't already on a timer, we recommend adding one so your light cycle and CO2 system cycle occur simultaneously.
Once you've successfully connected your CO2 regulator, bubble counter, and diffuser, you're ready to set the system's operation to coincide with your aquarium's lighting cycle. After you've set your system timer (see below), simply plug your pressure regulator into the timer outlet, and plug the timer into a nearby wall outlet. To set the included timer, turn the dial to the current time, push down the tabs for the hours you want your system to be on, and slide the timer's override switch to "AUTO." The timer will automatically shut off the CO2 system when your lights go off, provided that you specify the correct "lights out" time.
Starting your system:
To start your CO2 system, make sure it's plugged in (ideally, perform this step during the "lights on" phase of your timer setting), and adjust the output of the CO2 needle valve so you can start counting bubbles flowing through your bubble counter. As a general rule, 1-2 bubbles per second should be adequate.
Monitoring CO2 levels:
To determine the ideal level of CO2 for your aquarium, monitor pH, alkalinity, and CO2 levels in your aquarium using a quality test kit. Adjust the CO2 output as necessary until levels are safe/adequate.
As always, if you have any questions, please contact us at 1-800-443-1160.