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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
HI all.

Setting up a 23gal high tank soon. I cant really afford pressurised co2 yet. So which is the better option, DIY co2 or flourish excel? Or should I use both in combination??

Will have 3wpg of t5 6500k lighting, eco-complete substrate, and learning about all the fertilisers and stuff now :) Should be dosing most stuff once I learn it lol.

thanks

ken
 

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If money is really tight you have to consider that Excel is not cheap. With the lighting level you have, CO2 is not an option; it's a necessity. DIY will work fine for 23 gallons. That's the way I would go. I don't have any personal experience with Excel on other than low-to-medium light tanks.
 

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Definately go with the DIY CO2 and save up for the Press. system. Excel only really works well on low to medium light small tanks. It does add a carbon source but it is not a replacement for CO2. It will not increase photosynthesis because plants need CO2 for that.

HOpe that helps.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Okay thanks a tonne guys. WIll go for the diy for now then, with my hagen ladder. saves me the cost of excel too ;)

ken
 

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The diy will work for you, however, I would add a word of caution. With that much light, you need to make sure your co2 remains at a decent level. I would use 2 - 2liter bottles hooked up and change one every 2 weeks. That way you maintain a better level of gas flowing more constantly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
good point - I was wondering bout that. it wont be for too long, bday in august and guess whats top of my wishlist ;)
 

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So then does your tank get addicted to Co2 or something? Then how do you "break the habit"? :lol:


I'd like to try Diy, but the 2 main fears are ph crashing and the above.
 

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A pH crash is not really an issue with DIY if you have KH of 4 or above. The plants don't get addicted; CO2 is food, the carbon source. There's always carbon in the water in the form of CO2. The concentration is around 3% or so IIRC, and it dissolves in the water from the atmosphere. Fish also provide it through respiration. When you put 3wpg or more of light over the tank, the unsupplemented CO2 is too little to support the photosythesis you could get from all that light, so we inject CO2. Without it, at that light level, algae will happen. So the choice is to keep the light level below ~2.5wpg or use CO2. CO2 is also useful to increase growth at lower light levels, but not using it will not cause algae, only less plant growth. Quoted light levels are approximations.

Like anything, there is some maintenance involved. CO2 levels have to be monitored, and DIY on a smaller tank can overdose the tank under some conditions. You will need to be familiar with the conditions that affect it, e.g. water chemistry, surface agitation, etc. It's all part of the fun of a planted tank :)
 
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