Planted Aquarium CO2 System Set Up: CO2 Kit Method
If you’ve got a large planted aquarium, use a bright lighting system, or have plants that consume a lot of CO2, a traditional gas cylinder is the way to go. These are the same gas cylinders used for beverage dispensers. They’re available in 5 and 10-pound sizes, based on the weight of the filled cylinder. You’ll also need a CO2 regulator with a fine needle adjustment valve to set the gas flow rate, and a gas diffuser to make the CO2 to dissolve into the water. The great thing is that CO2 cylinders are easy to refill by just bringing it to your local beverage distributor – a 5-pound cylinder can last several months depending on your gas usage.
Tip: If you’re building your own CO2 system, be sure to use CO2-compatible tubing. Regular airline will become brittle and leak gas. CO2-safe tubing will remain flexible and won’t leak gas through the wall of the tubing.
Bio Fermentation CO2 System for Planted Aquarium
The Dennerle Bio CO2 set for planted aquariums uses fermentation inside a bottle utilizing a special slow-release sugar gel, which regulates the fermentation process and continuously produces CO2 for about 30 days. The gas is sent into the aquarium through a CO2 proof airline tube, bubble counter and diffuser. When the bottle starts to decline in production (seen through the bubble counter), you install a new fermentation bottle.
Aquatic plants need proper nutrition to grow and develop colorful foliage. Carbon is one of at least 17 essential nutrients required by plants which they convert into energy-rich protein, sugars, fats and starches. Research the plants you plan on keeping to see what kind of requirements they need, low maintenance vs. high maintenance to see if CO2 dosing is right for you.