Idea for tank setup, will this work?
Hello all, I'm thinking of setting up a 55 to 90 gallon planted tank, and as usual I'm making things more complicated than they have to be. Meh, that's half the fun, right? Anyways, I'm wanting to build as much of the system as possible, using some of the DIY setups I've seen around the internet. I really like how everything is hidden in the stand in saltwater setups, and having the separate sump for testing and water changes. I want to run a sump/overflow setup, but I'd also like to hide the air and CO2 injection if possible. I know that I cant just inject them into the sump itself, because most of it will be outgassed before it gets back to the tank. However, could I inject both air and CO2 into the return line to the tank? At this point the gasses cannot escape into the air, so I think it would work. I'm thinking also I would need a way to meter the amoung going in. I could also build in diffusers, if it winds up bubbling out too fast. This is the simplified version of what I'm planning, not showing bubble counters or diffusers. The filter setup would most likely be a gravel/wool setup.
Anyone? Someone has to have a planted tank using a sump...
if done right i dont see why you couldnt do it this way but my only worry would be that you might not get enough diffusion of air/co2 as they may stay as bubbles and just rise straight up from your return from the sump. i have little experience with planted tanks,especially heavily planted tanks. in your current set up how many O2/CO2 lines do you run to keep the plants healthy and do you have it in one place or spead out. i only ask because if you currently have them in one place and your plants are fine i dont see any reason why this wouldnt work. i have no sump experience just trying to help and put in my thoughts.
it could work, but I think you really wouldnt be getting much benefit from the CO2. Sumps usually turn the water over way more often than regular filtration, and though I have just started with CO2 injection, it takes a lot of time, hours even, to get the CO2 saturation in the water where you want it even with heavy pressurized injection and absolutely no surface agitation. It might work, I dont know, I'm not trying to dash your plans; If I had to place money on it though, I would bet that you wont be able to get even close to the CO2 levels you are wanting. Also with the way you have it set up, CO2 generally isnt going to get into the water properly without some kind of reactor, so a slight adjustment would be to split the return and use an inline reactor. Also, I would not inject air if I was doing CO2 except maybe on a timer at night starting a couple hours after I turned off the lights till a couple hours before they turned back on.
An alternative option would be to use one of the liquid products that put in available carbon.
I think your plants will do A-OK without CO2 really, surface agitation will get CO2 out of the water, but I would think only to the point where it equalizes with the air above the water. Trees and whatnot do fine with the amount of CO2 in the air so your plants should too, maybe just grow a bit slower, and an occaisional dose of flourish can give them a jump start.
Since you're going plants and a sump, have you considered a freshwater refugium? I think that would be a really neat idea.
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