Can some one help with my Drop Checker....?

Vito

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I set my tank today, the drop checker has been in there for over 5 hours now, but it seems to stay orange... I have a rhinox 2000 difuser placed under my inlet, I baught my drop checker from Aquatic Magic on ebay and it came with a small bit of solution, could some one shed some light please...? :?:

Thanks

Vito.
 

ceg4048

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Orange sounds like the color of the Bromo reagent only. Did you add a few ml of 4 dhk water in the dropchecker as well? Need some details on what unit you have and how you installed it.

Cheers,
 

Vito

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ceg4048 said:
Orange sounds like the color of the Bromo reagent only. Did you add a few ml of 4 dhk water in the dropchecker as well? Need some details on what unit you have and how you installed it.

Cheers,
I didnt add anything other than this sulution the drop checker came with.... what solutions do i need to buy? I thought there was only one, also how oftern do i have to change it?

Vito
 

ulster exile

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My drop checker came from HK and it only had orange coloured reagent to use (sent in an API test tube ;) ). Do you know if yours contains Bromothymol Blue?

You need a reagent with Bromothymol Blue - the low range Hagen PH test contains this and you also need a 4dKH reference solution which AE sell. Have a read at the drop checker thread in the tutorials section for more info.

I used to change my solution every water change, but read on here that I don't have to so now I only change it when the colour of the solution inside the DC becomes less vivid or when the checker needs cleaning (of algae :rolleyes: ).
 

Vito

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hey guys thanks for the replies, I didnt add any water.... I orderd a bottle of 4dhk, ill try with water today... ill let you know the outcome.

Thanks again,

Vito
 

Vito

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ok i tried it with some de-clorinated tap water yesterday, the colour seems to stay the same it was at 1 bubble per sec but Ive just upped it to 3 bubbles because the solution was a dark green blue'ish colour. Ive got Hair grass, glosso and HC in there I haven't seen them pearling but im also told not all plants do this.... im doing dry ferts too! any ideas what the ideal bubble rate is for 120 litre tank?
 

JamesM

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It varies depending on light, that's why we use the drop checker with 4dhk. This gives us a rough idea of the ppm of co2 for the tank. This reading will also always be an hour or three behind, so don't increase the bubble count too much too quickly.
 

ceg4048

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Vito said:
ok i tried it with some de-clorinated tap water yesterday, the colour seems to stay the same it was at 1 bubble per sec but Ive just upped it to 3 bubbles because the solution was a dark green blue'ish colour. Ive got Hair grass, glosso and HC in there I haven't seen them pearling but im also told not all plants do this.... im doing dry ferts too! any ideas what the ideal bubble rate is for 120 litre tank?
Vito,
The dropchecker will lie through it's teeth if you use any water other than what we specified. As stated in the article, the reagent is nothing more than a pH test reagent. Without knowing the kH of the water and without knowing what other acids or alkaline substances are in the water you have no reference to understand why the colour changes. It must be distilled or RO water that is free of any other chemicals and acidic influences and adjusted to a known kH value, otherwise the reading you get is just a lottery. You can get false highs which will mean CO2 related algae or you can get false lows which can make you unwittingly add too much CO2 and kill your fish.

Cheers,
 

Egmel

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There isn't really such a thing as the 'ideal bubble rate' everyone's kit produces different size bubbles and has different diffusion rates (how much of the CO2 makes it into the water vs how much was put into the tank) so we have to use a calibrated drop checker. (Calibrated = use 4dHk water instead of tap)

I'd advise you wait until your 4dHk water arrives before using your drop checker as an indication of CO2 levels, otherwise as Clive says, it wont really tell you anything. One thing to note is that if your water is normally harder than 7.6 (the top range of the Bromothymol Blue test kit) which isn't unlikely for uk tap water then you may not see any change at all as it may be off range.

For now the best option is to watch your fish, if they start gasping or acting strangely then you're probably adding too much CO2. Don't try to change it too quickly either as these sorts of things take a while to filter through. I'd recommend sticking with a low bubble count until you can measure it properly... of course if you don't have any live animals in your tank then you can add as much CO2 as you like and your plants will most likely thank you :)

Good Luck
 

LondonDragon

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Vito said:
hey guys thanks for the replies, I didnt add any water.... I orderd a bottle of 4dhk, ill try with water today... ill let you know the outcome.
Thanks again,
Vito
Only had 3 drops of the "orange solution" to about 10ml of 4dhk water. Keep adjustung once every morning if the colour is still blueish, I did this for about a week before I got the right level, and as your plant mass increase so must CO2 and ferts, so its not a quick sort and that will always work fine.
The bubble counter I have found just to tell me if CO2 is coming out of the bottle, for what I need the bubble rate is so fast I would have to record it and play it back frame by frame in order to count my bubble rate lol completly useless but does look nice LOL ;)
 

Vito

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Thanks for all your help guys, the 4dhk arrived, I added it and the colour is limeade green ive slightly lowerd the bubble rate to try and achive a more green colour, thanks again you've all been very helpful.

Vito.
 

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