Tag Archives: Co2

CO2 regulator & solenoid

Save money with a CO2 Solenoid Valve!

If you really want your plants to perform at their best then you will know by now that injecting CO2 into your planted aquarium is the way to go. But did you know your plants don’t always need this CO2 in the aquarium 24/7!?

That’s right, during light out your plants stop photosynthesising. Without light, there is nothing to trigger their growth. Therefore, CO2 (the other vital component needed for growth) is no longer required until the lights come back on again.

This means we can turn our CO2 off after the lights go out and back on again when the lights come on. Sounds like a boring task to do everyday doesn’t it!? Your bound to forget sometimes, and eventually you might end up just leaving it on all the time.

Well that’s unless you have a Solenoid valve to do the work for you. The Solenoid valve when attached to a electric timer will shut the CO2 on or off at the times you’ve pre set on your electric timer. Why waste good CO2 when the lights are out that is costing you money? More to the point, leaving your CO2 on over night can put your fish at risk. Whilst your plant aren’t using the CO2, levels of CO2 could build up in your aquarium so much that it could affect the health of your fish.


This piece of kit is so essential, we have attached one to all our regulators. We do not see the need to go without one.

If you would like to take a further look at our regulators with solenoid valve then click here.

Plants Dying? Try using liquid carbon

We are getting lots of questions each week asking why your aquarium plants are dying or suffering from poor/unhealthy growth. The first thing we address is always Co2 levels. Carbon is one of the most important elements required by your aquatic plants for growth. The most common reason for poor plant growth is down to lack of carbon. Before I tell you how to address your co2 levels, let’s look into why plants need carbon:

How plants use Co2

Plants source the Carbon from CO2 absorbed through the leaves. Most plants contain chlorophyll – the pigment which makes plants green. The chlorophyll absorbs light and the plant uses the energy from the light to convert the Carbon together with water (H2O) into sugars and carbohydrates (CH2O) – a process known as photosynthesis.
The sugars and carbohydrates provide the energy for the plant to grow.

Many aquarium plants are cultivated emersed by producers. As there is much more co2 in the air than in your aquarium the plants grow much quicker and are in very good health. In your aquarium the available co2 underwater is far less, so you can see why it is important you have a co2 supply. It is especially important if you have medium to high lighting, as with more light becomes a higher demand for nutrients and co2 to fuel the plants growth.

Carbon Sources

Carbon can be supplied by: injecting Co2 into your water from a pressurized co2 bottle , using a yeast based co2 system, a DIY yeast based system or by using Liquid Carbon. If your new to planted aquariums we would recommend trying liquid carbon to start with. Pressurised co2 systems can seem expensive to the new aquarist. It may be something you want to invest in the future, once you become more confident with planted aquariums.

Here were going to focus on using Liquid Carbon.

If you cannot afford the initial expense of Co2 injection kits/regulators/solenoids, liquid carbon is an excellent alternative. It’s particularly great for smaller aquariums, say smaller than 100L as it can work out to be a cost effective method of supplementing Carbon.

You have to be prepared for daily dosing, however this only takes a matter of seconds and most liquid carbons only require you to dose 1ml per 50L of aquarium water per day. It is important to dose every day as the carbon is only active for 24 hours.

At Aquarium Gardens we supply TNC Carbon, at very competitive prices compared to other brands on the market.

Give it a go, you will the difference it makes very soon!