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Checking co2 is correct before adding fish.

4 Jan 2021
I’ve recently added pressurised co2 to my tank. Initially the diffuser was at the front of the tank But I read that for best results the diffuser should be in the flow of the filter to circulate the co2 round the tank so I placed it below the outlet of my HOB filter. The drop checker is in the front corner. I started out at about 1 bubble/sec but the checker was blue so I increased it to 2 bubble/sec. That changed the checker to a darkish green. I have upped it again to see how many bubbles it takes to turn the checker lime green. (No livestock at the moment) it’s currently at 3/sec. does this sound right for a 55l nano or have I got it wrong?

Tom Delattre

6 Oct 2020
France, Avignon
Bubbles per second aren't a really accurate way to compare CO2 amounts between tanks, because bubble size may change between equipments. That being said, 3 bps sounds about right, if not a bit high, for a 55L tanks. Your diffuser and drop checker placements are ok.
The best ways to check if your CO2 amount is enough for your plants are
  • a drop in pH before lights on (ideally 1° drop, but I personnally never achieved this without gasping fish at the end of the day: I'm not good enough with water circulation yet)
  • your plant health, especially the carpeting ones.

Anyway, with 3bps I think your largely safe for your fish, and if not you're safely in position to turn it down in time if you see them gasping. They'll be out with a headache, that's all. Just put them in the tank when CO2 is off, check on them regularly when CO2 turns on, and adapt if needed.

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