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How best to use a pH controller for pressurized CO2

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by ShadowMac, Apr 16, 2015.

  1. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Shawn

    That is great information you have posted, it should be very helpful to many members.

    Keith
     
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  2. ShadowMac

    ShadowMac Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm sorry, I'm not sure what you mean
     
  3. nicpapa

    nicpapa Aspiring Aquascaper

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    just wondering, all those members in aquascaping world all agry with this method?
    No ones reply why you do that, or any qusetions???

    I can say that this is a good method , of using ph probes.

    I want to translate it for Greek forums , if you allows to do.. .

    Just a question. ...
    For an example ...
    If you setup a new tank with akadama or ada soil your kh is 3 , and the ph going to 6.4 ( without co2 ) , what ph is your target to the ph controller?
     
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  4. nicpapa

    nicpapa Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Shadow you dont answer me :)
    Can i translate your method and use your photos for greek forums, i am a admin in one of those.
    If you can answer and the question that i post before .
    If you setup a new tank with akadama or ada soil your kh is 3 , and the ph going to 6.4 ( without co2 ) , what ph is your target to the ph controller?
    Thanks.
     
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  5. ShadowMac

    ShadowMac Moderator Staff Member

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    Sorry nicpapa, yes you certainly can. Use anything you would like from the thread.

    I would use the chart just as I would any other time and reduce the pH to hit a target ppm one or two boxes below my desired ppm. The low kh will put the pH into the low to mid 5's. As always I would observe and double check target with another handheld pH meter and drop checker to ensure I was not injecting too much or too little. I would also test my kh twice: once before water change and once after, so I know the range kh will most likely fluctuate between. Unfortunately we cannot estimate a range of other acids impacting the pH, so this is the reason for selecting a target pH below my target CO2 ppm in the chart. If it is a scape with wood I would expect more of an impact on pH than if it was just stone. It is important I think to think about how the hardscape and soil impact the water chemistry.

    Basically, the method doesn't change. The only thing that changes is where I would expect to see pH with a low buffering capacity.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2015
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  6. nicpapa

    nicpapa Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Thanks a lot Shadow..
    Your asnwer is analytical.
     
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  7. ShadowMac

    ShadowMac Moderator Staff Member

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    pH probe went bad. Re-calibrated and tested using my methods today after water change. I generally re-calibrate every 3-4 weeks when I clean my filter. It behaved as nicpapa described. Calibrated so the reading was correct for the reference solution, however its readings did not corroborate with the handheld pH probe in the tank. The handheld meter read around 7.1 which is what I would expect right after a water change, however the pH probe was reading around 6.43.

    This was at the 12 month mark for this probe. Given its questionable handling history prior to my use I wasn't surprised to see its life end earlier than the max 18 month mark. While my new probe is being delivered I will run CO2 on the standard timer.
     
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  8. nicpapa

    nicpapa Aspiring Aquascaper

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    This is the good of using 2 ph probes. :)
    Most people , and me before i check wiht other probes, i believe that if the probe calibrate corect and read correct ther reference solution, it measure right.
    So ph probes if its bad measure always lower Ph ---) lower co2 in aqurium , low grow and algae appear.
    Shadow any algae ?
    Nick...
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2015
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  9. greenfinger 2

    greenfinger 2 Active Aquascaper

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    Hi, Fantastic thread full of great info (y)
     
  10. ShadowMac

    ShadowMac Moderator Staff Member

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    Generally it would lower the CO2 ppm. But in my tanks case, I have the kh that increases over time due to the seiryu stone leaching into the water column. This counteracts the misread and also most likely any additional acids in the water, so it did not end up reducing my CO2 ppm. The drop checker was drifting into the yellow more than usual so I thought I would recalibrate. Another week of only one water change so the kh increased to the upper end of the range. I think the effect would be greater in a tank without stones effecting the water column. Wood hardscape or even inert stones.

    I did notice a little bit of BBA show up on a stone, this also made me think something wasn't quite right. My stones have a lot of algae on them due to the high light. The green algae adds to the look of the scape however. It makes it look "aged". BBA is what I would expect if CO2 was going funky. I didn't see anything with the growth, but I pulled the Pogostemon stellatus and this would have been the more sensitive plant.
     
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  11. MarcelM

    MarcelM Aspiring Aquascaper

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    A little footnote on the use of some PH controlers is, electrical interfearence, since many aquascapers use powerheads in their tanks or just an internal filter. And there are some PH controlers which are very susceptible to static electrical and magnetic interfearence and give there for false readings. I myself experienced it with the Milwaukee sms122 controler which almost dropped a full unit when the probe is placed near an elektro motor srpeading a magnetic field. Also when the controler is to near to disturbing fields the readings are not only inacurate it actualy jumps constanly between small values which the display doesn't show, when you reach your shut off value the internal relay starts to buzz like crazy, constantly switching on and off in the frequency of the interfearance.

    I've red articals on the internet where people complained about this and sended the controler back to Milwaukee for repair or replacemenet or bought a new probe, without realizing it's an other electrical device near the probe causing it.

    Whit some devices the interfearance is constanly other devices the controler fluctuates in measurments.

    so it's a good idea to keep your probe away from electrical devices.. Maybe even better if you use internal pumps to place the probe in line outside the tank. Like this. :)
    DSCN3981 (Kopie).JPG
    With a IP68 cable/tube gland like this
    www.hummel.com/en/products/online-catalogue/s/elektrotechnik/f/ex-industriekabelverschraubungen/g/hsk-ex-e-standardkabelverschraubungen.html?tx_pim_pi2[300][400]=09_variante%3A06_produgrp_id%3A38&cHash=94e34f626e85e48ed10492c965eb070e

    Cost total - less then € 5,-

    :)
     
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  12. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Marcel

    A very interesting posting.

    Keith:):)
     
  13. MarcelM

    MarcelM Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Keith i first noticed with an airpump i use to vacuum, when it's switched on the PH controler sometimes gets crazy within a radius of a several feet..

    Since
    So people first look around carefully what electrical divices are near the PH probe before you start blaming the controler.. ;) Could be the cell phone in your pocket.. Maybe just your own static electricity when you stick a finger in the tank.. You wouldn''t be the first person on earth damaging a computer chip by just touching it with your finger.. ;)
     
  14. ShadowMac

    ShadowMac Moderator Staff Member

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    Thanks Marcel! I can see how that could happen. Never crossed my mind.
     
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  15. ShadowMac

    ShadowMac Moderator Staff Member

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    I am wondering if a Twinstar would effect a PH probe? I am going back to my pH probe here soon, so I will see and post here.
     
  16. ShadowMac

    ShadowMac Moderator Staff Member

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    Updated the original post with a link to a nice write up on The Barr Report.
     
  17. MarcelM

    MarcelM Aspiring Aquascaper

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    I use 2 different kinds of permanent Ph meters in 2 different tanks of course. One is the Milwaukee sms122 to control co2.. This meter only uses the probe with the glass ball, this one is most susceptible to interference.

    The second one is a hanna instruments Gro check which measures over a 2 point reference. It has a glass ball probe and a ground probe. This one is always rock steady and never interfered with. Where the Milwaukee goes nuts at the same time.

    The pocket models I've used, (3 different models) also make use of a second little metal ground penn and also stay steady.

    I guess it's the technique of measuring between an Anode and Katode from the device itself which prevents the interference..

    The milwaukee probably/obviously does measure a bit different, i can't say it's searching for ground somewhere else because my tanks are not grounded. I have yet not found a decent explanation what the differences are and why Milwaukee only uses one electrode.

    So if you have a Ph meter using the 2 point measurement technique it is most likely not affected by this.. :)
     
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  18. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    MarcelM

    A very interesting post.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
  19. ShadowMac

    ShadowMac Moderator Staff Member

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    Since having switched back to this method I am again very happy with the response from the tank. It makes managing my CO2 easier and consistent.
     
  20. yudagas

    yudagas Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Wow that was new thing and device for me seems like my old set up ruined because of this ph swing here i got my old photos before rescape[​IMG] and also my friend suggesting to stay open the co2 24/7 but half the dosages also use 2 checker to ensure the flow is good...is this good to be followed in my new set?

    Sent from my EG98 using Tapatalk
     

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