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Why won’t my diy co2 work?

wtusa17

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Last night I put 200g of citric acid and 600ml of water in bottle A. In bottle B I put 200g of baking soda and 200ml of water. I shook them and put the caps on. I primed it by squeezing bottle A into bottle B. After about 30 min it was still not primed and was only half the pressure needed. I opened the cap and released the pressure and started again. It eventually built up pressure. I hooked it up to the diffuser and nothing. What did I do wrong?
 

Colin_T

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There is probably too much back pressure caused by the diffuser, or the depth of the water. The bottles could also be leaking a bit.

You can test the bottle seals by putting some soapy water around them and see if they produce any bubbles. If they produce bubbles then air is leaking out of the bottle.
You can also put the bottle into a bucket of water and see if bubbles come out.

If the diffuser is blocked or has very fine holes it will put more back pressure on the bottles and possibly stop the gas going into the tank.

If the diffuser is at the bottom of the tank (where it should be), the water depth might be too much and the bottles won't produce enough pressure to force the gas down that far.
 
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wtusa17

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There is probably too much back pressure caused by the diffuser, or the depth of the water. The bottles could also be leaking a bit.

You can test the bottle seals by putting some soapy water around them and see if they produce any bubbles. If they produce bubbles then air is leaking out of the bottle.
You can also put the bottle into a bucket of water and see if bubbles come out.

If the diffuser is blocked or has very fine holes it will put more back pressure on the bottles and possibly stop the gas going into the tank.

If the diffuser is at the bottom of the tank (where it should be), the water depth might be too much and the bottles won't produce enough pressure to force the gas down that far.
Should I bring the diffuser to the top of the tank?
 

Colin_T

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You can try raising the diffuser so it's closer to the surface of the water. It might start bubbling as it gets closer to the top.
 

seangee

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Many years ago I tried DIY CO2. Honestly it was very hit and miss and keeping a stable concentration was almost impossible so I switched to gas bottles. These days I am more interested in the fish health so I just keep easy plants and don't bother with CO2.
 
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wtusa17

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Many years ago I tried DIY CO2. Honestly it was very hit and miss and keeping a stable concentration was almost impossible so I switched to gas bottles. These days I am more interested in the fish health so I just keep easy plants and don't bother with CO2.
I’m planning on getting a paintball co2 setup for my birthday which is in like 4 months.
 
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wtusa17

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Should I start the mixture over? The pressure won’t build up to the right amount anymore.
 

Colin_T

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Are you giving the plants a liquid iron based aquarium plant fertiliser?
 

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