If you really want a flourishing planted tank, you have to ensure that they are getting the right co2 levels. Not sufficient, and they will die. Excessive, and you risk murdering your fish and promoting the growth of algae. That is the reason purchasing a quality Co2 regulator for aquarium is a great way to ensure that you provide the ideal co2 level, without putting your aquarium at risk. However, you need to know that not all regulators are the same.
Fortunately for you, we have carried out plenty of research into finding the best aquarium co2 regulator, for planted aquarium and at a reasonable price. In this article, will share with you some of the tips on choosing the right co2 regulator and how to use them, then we will review some of the best models for you. But first, let’s check out the benefit of using a co2 regulator.
Table of Contents
- Benefits of using co2 regulator in fish tank
- Best aquarium co2 regulator reviews
- 1. CO2 Regulator Aquarium Mini Stainless Steel Dual Gauge Display Bubble Counter and Check Valve
- 2. Up Aqua CO2 Regulator with 2 Gauges and Adjustable Valve
- 3. VIVOSUN Hydroponics CO2 Regulator Emitter System with Solenoid
- 4. Aquarium CO2 Regulator – Dual Gauge Display Bubble Counter and Check Valve
- 5. S.T. International Aquarium 2-Gauge Professional CO2 Regulator
- How to choose the best CO2 regulator aquarium
- What is the best co2 regulator for aquarium
- How to use co2 regulator aquarium
Benefits of using co2 regulator in fish tank
Against normal advice, a lot of aquarium owners are yet to install a co2 system or regulator inside their aquarium or fish tank. Indeed, many of them see this regulator as an extra and irrelevant expense. Although they may be advised over and over again to buy a co2 regulator and install it into their aquarium, they fail to see what the system can do for them.
For example, in a tank without the right decent co2 regulator, the plants may look sickly or pale, or the waters cloudy. People likewise find it difficult to believe that they should get co2 if they have numerous fish: after all, when fish breathe, they filter co2.
However, this isn’t the manner by which the typical water systems keep up their co2 level. There are some other natural events that affect the levels of co2, for example, moving water and soil erosion which you don’t get in a still tank. All things considered, a good co2 regulator comes with the following advantages:
1. Healthy plant life
A well-known fact is that plant life and fish need to exist together in balance. The plants flourish on the carbon dioxide (co2) that is filtered out by the fish. In return, the fish feast upon plant matter and also seek shelter underneath the plant. However, too little or too much co2 level will affect both fish and plants.
Side effects of the absence of carbon dioxide include plants that have stunted growth or pale stems and leaves. This likewise implies that the plants won’t be able to provide the right supplements to the fish nor correctly aerate the environment. Such negative circumstances are best prevented by the installation of a good co2 system or regulator.
2. Healthy fish
Carbon dioxide plays an indispensable part in the life of fish and other aquatic habitats. Too little or too small may harm your fish and possibly lead to their untimely death. Fish filter out carbon dioxide when breathing. An excessive level of carbon dioxide in the water increases the toxic level, thereby affecting the PH balance. However, unless you are exceptionally skilled in noticing or detecting the level of co2, what you are likely going to see is dead or sickly fish. A co2 system helps in putting the co2 at a moderate level thus reducing the negative impacts.
3. Combating algae growth
Algae is indeed one of the greatest threats to fish. It affects the life of fish by producing an unhealthy condition that can cause infection on the fish and other plant life. Studies prove that co2 contributes to algae growth and likewise leads to abundance ammonia which is risky for fish. Installing a co2 regulator in the aquarium for monitoring the level of carbon dioxide helps battle the negative impact.
Truly, it might look quite easy, however, the value of a decent co2 regulator is clear. It enhances the quality of water, boosts the wellbeing of both plants and fish, and likewise keep the growth of algae and other related control under control. Nonetheless, you need to know that all co2 systems aren’t the same. This is why you need to buy quality co2 systems and regulator from reputable dealers.
Best aquarium co2 regulator reviews
A co2 regulator or system can be risky to just buy randomly, so it is better to always check around. Some of the best co2 regulator brands are reviewed below:
1. CO2 Regulator Aquarium Mini Stainless Steel Dual Gauge Display Bubble Counter and Check Valve
Help your plants in their development cycle with this co2 aquarium regulator from PRO. Always inject only the appropriate amount at the appropriate time in order to keep your plants happy and healthy. With its inbuilt precision, you can rely on having the capacity to fine-tune the measure of co2, adjusting as vital, so as to create an ideal environment for your plant life and fish.
Built with excellent stainless steel, this co2 system is designed to keep going for a long time. Durable and strong steel is particularly designed to convey precision measures of CO2 in weights from 150-2000 PSI.
This co2 system is highly compatible with several high-density tubing brands to inject your fish tank with co2 easily and quickly. It is likewise compatible with several brands of co2 diffusers and atomizers. The maker of this system designed it in such a way that will allow it to fit easily into your laid down set up. The smaller dual display allows you to read your settings easily so as to make sure that they are always at the right place.
- Great quality
- Easy to install
- Needle valve is precise
- Well design
- Bubble counter works well
- Comes with its own gears
- The psi cannot be controlled
- It doesn’t come with any manual
2. Up Aqua CO2 Regulator with 2 Gauges and Adjustable Valve
Extremely durable, the Up Aqua Co2 Regulator is built with heavy-duty metal, so it is designed to last long. The needle valve requires some fine adjustment, but once you have located the spot, it gives a reliable and consistent output. Featuring a customizable valve is an absolute necessity if you are planning to use it for numerous tanks.
This co2 regulator comes with a high precision valve and an electronic solenoid. It likewise utilizes the CGA320 Connector. It also features a customizable working pressure and there is a decompress weight valve. The gauge units are accessible in kg/cm3 and psi. It works well with the standard US co2 barrels. The electronic solenoid is rated at 110V and with the high precision valve, you can adjust the flow rate.
The solenoid valve has great quality but completes a “break-in” period of some weeks. You will have to purchase the check valve, bubble counter, and other important equipment. But the uplifting news is, this co2 system is highly compatible with most. A great choice if you have a bigger tank.
- Consistent and reliable output
- Easy to use
- Very durable
- Compatible with CGA320 Connector
- Comes with manual
- May experience a “break-in” period
3. VIVOSUN Hydroponics CO2 Regulator Emitter System with Solenoid
Carbon dioxide is necessary for photosynthesis to take place and is usually the most disregarded component limiting the growth of plant. Plants can likely use up to 5 times more carbon dioxide than normally happens in the air. Treating the air with carbon dioxide can reduce the time of growth and increase your harvest. The co2 regulator from VIVOSUN will enable you to maintain an optimal level of CO2 for ideal growth and also help you quicken the growth rate of your plant.
VIVOSUN is an organization well known for producing hydroponic grow tents, however, they do provide an option on the co2 system as well. This unit is more affordable compared to others, yet it is the same in design and quality. It is built mostly with metal and has an electric solenoid valve.
The high-pressure flow measurement of 1.58″ is precise and built with a durable material that can operate at 0 to 4000 PSI. This co2 regulator has an inlet connection of CGA-320 and a flow meter ranging from 0.5-15 CFH. Inside the regulator’s package, you will likewise find a standard power cord and a plastic air hose (10’). The hose tail is measured at 4.2mm.
- Easy to install
- Complete control of the flow
- Can function for years
- Fair price
- Boisterous humming noises
4. Aquarium CO2 Regulator – Dual Gauge Display Bubble Counter and Check Valve
This Aquarium Co2 Regulator from DoubleSun is created with top-notch material, designed for durability and long-lasting dependability. Strong and sturdy steel is specifically made to convey precision measures of CO2 in weights from 150-2000 PSI. This co2 system is built with decompressing pressure gate which makes it stable, accurate and easy to adjust.
Fine tune the release of carbon dioxide into your aquarium with the precision designed discharge valve. Easily customizable for the appropriate flow every time so as to create an ideal environment for your aquatic habitats.
The valve framework is produced using an industrial electric solenoid, and the body is made from top-notch metal. This co2 regulator also comes with a pressure meter and a nylon washer. Just ensure that you connect all the parts together and secure your aquarium co2 regulator strongly in place.
- Double stage (for safety)
- Consistent and reliable
- Simple to set up and use
- High build quality
- Comes with the needed tools
- Easy to adjust
- A bit expensive
5. S.T. International Aquarium 2-Gauge Professional CO2 Regulator
The S.T. international Co2 regulator is built with a decompression pressure gauge that is easy to adjust. The work of the gauge is to give steady and precise co2 yield. In case the connector has been removed, the co2 system can be utilized with expendable cartridges. It has a licensed solenoid valve, it is energy efficient and highly effective, it works discreetly and doesn’t create heat and is made for a long-term use.
Equipped with all-inclusive voltage (220v and 110v) for global use, this co2 regulator has been granted PSE and CE accreditation and International Patent endorsement to guarantee safety. You can make use of the co2 system with large US barrels or littler dispensable ones
The pressure gauge utilizes the rainbow colors. However, it is actually down to individual inclination on what makes it readable for you. Unluckily, the size of the washers is unusual and there is no light pointer indicating whether it is on or off. You can consider this co2 aquarium regulator if you have a larger tank with more stock.
- Easily adjustable bubbles
- Solid build
- Can make use of small or large cylinders
- Reliable output
- Uncommon washer size
- No light indicator
- No manual
How to choose the best CO2 regulator aquarium
We will now show you what we believe to be the main features to consider when looking for the best co2 regulator aquarium. Discussed below are some of the features to consider:
Generally, installing a co2 regulator is quite simple. It tends to be as easy as connecting a couple of tubes and turning a couple of knobs. However, you may want to spend some hours adjusting and twisting the knobs to get the ideal amount of co2. It is good to know that even the best co2 system will need some good finger work. However, you won’t want to go extreme with this.
This is talking about how easy you are able to read the gauges. If you know that your eyesight isn’t as good as it was before, we suggest that you go for a co2 regulator with a gauge that is quite easy to read.
3. Is the system dual stage?
In case you are a newbie when it comes to co2 regulators, it is better to know about this factor. The dual-stage co2 system is two regulators made into one. The primary stage thumps the pressure down to a consistent PSI for the second one.
This prevents variations because of changing PSI in the aquarium. Both stages will provide extra protection. To say the truth, single-stage co2 regulators are more affordable and are often used without any issues. Nonetheless, it can be risky and can be quite difficult to obtain a consistent and reliable output.
This will depend solely on your circumstance. If you are going to use your co2 system for different tanks, you will need to get one that very compatible with the co2 cylinders (5lb). Or on the other hand, you will be replacing your regulator always.
Then again, if you find it difficult to get the co2 cylinders or you simply need it for a single tank. You might need to search for one that is highly compatible with the normal paintball cylinders (24oz). These, incidentally, are quite easy to acquire.
Top notch materials mean that it will last for a long time. And most people would prefer not to put resources into a gear that can easily break. Brass and stainless steel are your best choices.
Some of the kits discussed below are more of a bonus package and some are absolute necessities. We will let you know which kits as we discuss each of them.
- Needle valve
This is also known as a pressure relief valve. If you need a quality and safe co2 regulator, this kit is very important. It gives you exact control over the measure of carbon dioxide entering your fish tank. Needle valves enable you to exquisitely tune and control the rate of flow (i.e. the co2 bubbles at each second) at your preferred level. It is essential to buy a top-notch pressure relief valve since it enables you to stay away from the scary dumps at the base of the tank.
- Bubble counter
The bubble counter is a visual apparatus, making it simple for you to gauge the quantity of bubbles entering your aquarium at every second. This kit is not a deal-breaker, as most co2 regulators do exclude one. Yet, we would suggest that acquire one as it enables you to make exquisite adjustments to the rate of flow.
- Solenoid valve
Solenoid valves save you some money by preventing the wastage of co2 amid the “lights-off” periods when your plants are no longer in need of carbon dioxide because they enable you to put the regulator on a programmed timer. It is much better if the co2 system comes with a light indicator a to let you know whether it is on or off. So, you can just manually turn off the supply of carbon dioxide on a co2 system without one. But in many homes, there is not always people around at the appropriate time to do this and that where the solenoid valve comes in to provide aid.
A good co2 regulator must come with two gauges i.e. one for low pressure and the other for high pressure. The gauge for high pressure must read no less than 1000 PSI as majority of co2 aquariums comes with 800 PSI. The gauge with low pressure should read no less than 15 to 30 PSI and a maximum estimate of 200 psi. Note, a co2 regulator with dual gauge doesn’t mean that it is a dual stage.
- Check valve
If the check valve is excluded in the co2 regulator kit, then you will need to get one. This is a vital safety feature, safeguarding against a reverse-flow of aquarium water into your CO2 system. At the point when your CO2 breaks down in water, it enters into the tubing again once the infusion of CO2 has ceased. If you do not don’t own a check-valve kit, the water could get to your co2 system and destroy it.
- The washers
This may appear to be little. However, if the washers come with an irregular size, it can be a big issue trying to discover replacements. Washers of regular sizes are standard and very simple to find.
What is the best co2 regulator for aquarium
All the brands of co2 regulator that we have reviewed so far aren’t really different from one another. They are all built with brass, they have almost the same PSI grading and they all come with a similar solenoid valve pattern. The final choice truly comes down to personal preference and budget.
Obviously, there are some differences between organizations, majorly in terms of extras and warranties. Additionally, it should be noted that some of the co2 system reviewed above are only compatible with electrical outlets of 110V. However, our top choice here will be the Up Aqua CO2 Regulator.
To start with, the manufacturing organization is highly versatile regarding their products. The co2 system is exactly as functional and sturdy just like the other products reviewed. However, this co2 regulator takes the cake due to its CGA320 Connector. It likewise comes with a top-notch gauge and directions on the best way to utilize the co2 system in fish tanks.
How to use co2 regulator aquarium
After purchasing your co2 regulator and all the equipment needed for its installation, you can assemble them by following this guideline.
Step one: Attach your co2 system to the cartridge. You don’t need to stress yourself, most co2 regulators are made to exquisitely fit with the cartridges available today and you don’t need to purchase any connector to link them. At some point, a paintball connector will provide some aid.
Step two: Using suitable CO2 carrier tubing to link the air outlet directly from the co2 system with a check valve and afterward with a diffuser. In case your co2 isn’t properly designed with a bubble counter, then you need to get one and interface it with the air outlet directly from the system. The diffuser is usually positioned at the rear end of the regulator where CO2 is transformed into good-looking bubbles which are then infused in the water inside the tank.
Step three: Positioning the diffuser in the right place in your fish tank, where there is constant circulation of water, by utilizing suction containers.
Step four: Assemble a drop checker for co2 and then place it in the fish tank with a suction container. This gear helps to detect the exact concentration of co2 in your planted aquarium. By adjusting the co2 system with the use of a drop checker, it is possible for you to get an optimum concentration of co2 in your planted aquarium. The recommended co2 level for a planted aquarium is roughly 26 to 35 PPM.
It is essential to the look for the right co2 system or regulator in order to make your fish or plant life more comfortable in their home. We are glad to show you our rundown of the best co2 regulator on the market today. We considered – overall review score and affordability. We know that finding the ideal co2 regulator for a planted aquarium isn’t a simple task with a lot of brands out there and we believe that our top choices above will narrow your path in making the right decision.