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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The bubble rate from my regulator is very inconsistent. If I have it under 1 bubble per second, it would eventually slow down to a stop. So I would have to loosen the needle valve even more, only to have it come to a stop again. When the timer turns the regulator off, and then on again the next day, the rate would be very high. If I don't slow it down, it would continue on with this rate through out the day. But if I slowed it down to a desired rate, it would slow to a stop again.
So my points: high rate = constant flow; low rate (desired) = slows down to a stop. What can be done to correct this problem?
My cylinder is full, regulator gauges register at 50 and 2 when on (the black readings). I don't use a pH controller, and the regulator runs on my timer.
I'm using a DIY reactor that works very much like a vortex reactor. Could that possibly cause inconsistent rate? Temperature?
Your help is very much appreciated.
 

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Have you tested your regulator for leaks? Brushing the joints with soapy (but not sudsy) water should reveal any leaks in the form of bubbling.
 

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Possibly, if the regulator gets cold over night and the tank is cold it could have some bearing on the problem. I have a similar problem with a Milwaukee system which wanders somewhat. That does get cold at night. The JBJ system I had did not wander - it was in a warmer place. The JBJ needle valve was easier to finely adjust than the Milwaukee too.

Andrew Cribb
 

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I had a similar issue with my JBJ after I refilled my bubble counter the first time. The rubber gasket between the needlel valve and bubble counter had fallen out. Once I replace it everything was fine.

I also had the same issue with another JBJ regulator that came without the gasket. I put a DIY gasket on it and it has been fine. Double check that the gasket is in place or that the bubble counter is screwed on to the needle valve tight.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The problem did come from the bubble counter. Apparently, I didn't tighten it enough. The rate seems to be normal now. Although, I noticed that when the powerhead is off, the rate is alot faster than when the powerhead is on. Could this potentially lead to any problems?
The powerhead is part of my DIY reactor (works very similarly to a vortex reactor).
 

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I just bought the JBJ regulator and found like you guys, the bps is inconsistent from the time it shuts off to the next time it turns back on. It could be slower, or it could be faster, but it never remains the same.

I've taken some pics of the needle valve, as well as the bubble counter disassembled. Should the needle valve have anything else on it? It looks like there is a rubber washer/O-ring inside the bottom of the bubble counter and one at the top as well. What worries me is the nozzle part on the top of the bubble counter. Notice how short/small it is. I can connect the CO2 tubing and screw on the nut, but the CO2 tubing can still be easily pulled off. Am I supposed to take the rubber ring off the top of the nozzle and slip it OVER the CO2 tubing, push the CO2 tubing all the way down, and then slide the rubber ring over? Up until now I've just let my CO2 tubing rest on top of the rubber thing.

Also, I think it is from condensation but it looks like water ends up being pushed through the tubing and then there is water in the bottom of my glass diffuser underneath the ceramic disk. Is this okay?

This has been very frustrating and any help you guys can provide would be greatly appreciated!





 

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That is exactly what I thought the problem was when you PM'd me about it :) The O-ring you have circled in red should be on the needle valve nipple. Then you can screw the bubble counter to the needle valve and make a tight seal between the two. That was exactly the issue I had back when I first posted in this thread. The O-ring should not be on the top nipple of the bubble counter as it does not allow enough room for the CO2 tubing to make a seal around the nipple. The CO2 tubing will provide a very tight seal once the top nut is screwed to the top of the bubble counter.

As long as you do not have any other leaks in your system, this should get your bubble counter back to normal operation and not have to mess with it every day. Without the o-ring around the nipple on the needle valve, CO2 leaks from this connection. Give it a shot and let us know how it works.

Thanks for the pics also, I'm sure it will be a big help to others who are having the same problem ;)
 

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I've moved the rubber O-ring to the needle valve nipple. It was not a snug fit and moved around, but hopefully after screwing on the bubble counter, it made a tight seal. I'll give it a go for a few days and report back to see if it fixed the problem!

:p
 

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So it has been around 5 days and I'd like to report that my bubble rate is now constant. Previously, I would get inconsistent bps (sometimes less, sometimes more) between each time the solenoid turned on.

I'm not sure if this is because I moved the rubber o-ring to the needle valve nipple, or because with the o-ring gone, my CO2 tubing can now make a better and more secure connection to the bubble counter, or a combination of both. I'm kind of scared of touching it again for fear my problems will come back ;)

I hope this post will help out future JBJ regulator owners who have problems and save them some frustration. If you anyone wants a picture of where I moved the o-ring to, just msg me and I'll post one here. Thanks again patmat!
 
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