JBL ProFlora U502 with Inline Diffuser

bobkennedy

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Hello,

Ill start with Im brand new to proper CO2, So decided to start with an off the shelf kit, tank is 90L, Plants and fish.

I have a few questions about the setup, Im looking to run in at around a bubble every 6 seconds (so 10 per min) and then ramp up to suit, However i seem to only be able to get the counter to run at 4seconds or else flat out... anyone had any issues? Is it just a case of wait longer for the pressure to build? (Is my impatience getting the better of me?

Also, Inside the diffuser, when the gas is off should it be empty or filled or have a small amount of water in it? I only steeped the diffuser material for about 18 hours, so have the gas disconnected and it out steeping until after work tomorrow again before giving this another go at setup.

Thanks for taking the time

bob
 

Siege

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Hi bob,

I won’t be able to answer your questions I’m afraid but your kit is very expensive and even more expensive to run. Especially in your sized tank,

If you can, return it as faulty and buy a decent ‘proper’ co2 kit for £150 with gas costing £25 for 3kg of gas.

Exactly the same as your ‘easy’ kit but a lot cheaper!

Bit of a no brainier? :)

Ps. On your sized tank you should be starting with 1 to 2 bubbles per second and going from there.

Pps. There are lots of threads on here about what co2 kit to buy! Or you could start your own. No probs.
 
Last edited:

bobkennedy

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Unfortunately at this stage returning it isnt possible, Pipes cut etc and its all setup ready to go. Plus I like the guys in my local aquatics shop, and happy to give them the business and support them on this build. I have another aquarium that Im going to redo in a few months time, and once Ive got the hang of this Ill give something more custom a go.

From reading online most places 10 bubbles per min per 100l seems to be the starting point reccomended, but your saying 60? I should add there are fish in this tank as well
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
From reading online most places 10 bubbles per min per 100l seems to be the starting point reccomended, but your saying 60? I should add there are fish in this tank as well
You really need a drop checker and/or a pH profile.

Have a look at <"Clay Pellets and CO2.....">

If you just use bubble rate you run the real risk of asphyxiating your fish (if you end with too much CO2).

I'm not a CO2 user, but others <"will be able to advise you">.

cheers Darrel
 

bobkennedy

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Hi. I have the JBL drop checker that cake with the kit so will be running with that

this is more about having the correct rate to build from. As there’s some difference between what I’ve read on line and said above

cheers!
 

Kalum

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As mentioned every system is different (bubble size) and you need to match what suits you, starting low is always a good idea and you'll be more than fine at what you propose without gassing fish as it's very low

Every tank (hardscape and plants) and the flow around it will also impact your co2 delivery

For example i have moved from my 90L to a 140L but went from 3bps to 8bps to achieve lime green DC at lights on and stable through photo period, same co2 setup and filter

Drop checker AND pH profile is the only way of (semi)accurately dialing it in to what suits your setup
 

bobkennedy

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Yeah cool. I think I’ll start the gas on about an hour before light tomorrow at the low rate and gradually build it up over a number of days until I get the drop check to turn green.
With it taking a number of hours to register change on the drop check I reckon it’ll take some time, but I’m happy with that.
Thanks for the input. Appreciate it.
 

bobkennedy

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So. Progress update.

steady bubbles over night for the run in period and finally getting some fine co2 bubbles into the water. Dispersion seems pretty good with bubbles making it almost to the opposite corner of the tank from the spray pay. Pretty happy with that.

Will see if the colour has changed at all after work today, and if not I’ll up the flow of co2
 

jaypeecee

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Hi Bob,

I see that you are injecting CO2 overnight. That could put your fish at risk as the CO2 concentration could get well in excess of 30ppm. Your setup would appear to include a solenoid valve. If you use that in combination with a timer, you can set it to ensure that CO2 is off overnight, i.e. when the tank lighting is off.

JPC
 

bobkennedy

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Hi. So I am using the solenoid to switch off overnight no issues there.
The issue I’m now experiencing is that the section between the reactor and the outer shell is back filling with water, which is ok once the co2 pressure builds up as it pushes the water back up, but I’ve noticed the gas taking longer and longer to do this. Could it be that this kit isn’t putting out enough pressure to start the build up of gas?

I’m a bit baffled now.
 

jaypeecee

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Hi Bob,

From your description, I guess you are using the inline reactor/diffuser as opposed to a diffuser in the tank itself. I'm slightly confused as the picture of the JBL Proflora U502 shows an in-tank spiral diffuser. In answer to your question about enough pressure, it looks as though that is where the problem lies. But this wouldn't be the case if you were using the simple spiral diffuser. What is the right-hand pressure gauge showing on your regulator? If you let me have this information, we can then go to the next stage.

JPC
 

bobkennedy

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So yes. I am using the inline diffuser. As opposed to the one that came with the kit. The right hand one is showing 1bar, the other around 60.
I have removed the diffuser and opened the gas and can hear it. So looks like the pressure isn’t building high enough to activate the one way valve on the diffuser and allow the gas into the reactor chamber?
 

bobkennedy

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Just home from work and I’ve noticed today that the diffuser hasn’t backfilled with water today, however the gas has been on for over an hour now and no bubbles have started. Leading me more to thinking the one way valve on the reactor has stopped working.
 

jaypeecee

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Hi Bob,

Thanks for the extra information.

The problem is not likely to be the one-way valve on the diffuser. I suspect the diffuser element inside the JBL in-line diffuser is a ceramic rod but it is not shown on the JBL website. I'm surprised that the instructions that came with this diffuser did not mention a suggested working pressure. Usually, these ceramic elements (if that's what you've got) need a higher working pressure. I have a ceramic in-tank diffuser (not JBL) and I run it at 2.0 bar. If your right-hand gauge is only showing 1 bar, that is too low. You can increase this working pressure. It looks as if your regulator is the same as mine. If so, you should be able to prise off the black plastic cap on the front of it. Check your U502 instructions first. When removed, you should see a nut/screw for which you will need the appropriate Allen key. Adjusting this will either reduce or increase the working pressure. Increase it gradually until CO2 bubbles appear. As you have the in-line diffuser, I guess you'll have to temporarily immerse it in a bowl of water or your tank. When you're happy with this, adjust the needle valve to get the bubble rate that you want.

Please be careful with pressurized gas. If necessary, wear eye protection.

Good luck and keep us updated.

JPC
 

bobkennedy

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After doing a bit more research too the JBL website recommends an operating pressure of 1-1.5 bar also.

this is all pointing me towards the one way valve being stuck, however I am open to other ideas before I dismantle everything to go get it returned under warranty.
 

jaypeecee

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Hi Bob,

Without being able to see the construction of your diffuser assembly, it is not possible for me to advise any further. Perhaps you could post a close-up photograph of this unit? Your best bet may well be to return it under warranty as you said.

JPC
 

bobkennedy

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So I have replaced the cup section which also acts as a bubble counter, and stop check valve for water return into the gas tank and it’s working again.

I’m not sure if it’s supposed too but when the gas is off the section between the white reactor element and the outer casing seems to back fill with water, and then the gas pressure has to build in order to ouch that back through to the other side. And back into the tank.

I may have to rebuild and see if that stops the outer side filling with water
 

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