CO2 Beginner - questions

Discussion in 'Advanced Cultivation' started by DXE, Dec 27, 2014.

  1. DXE

    DXE Moderator

    Looking to do CO2 in my small test space. Space is 5x4x8, led lit. Time from lights on this morning to 80F was about 1 hour so temp control is good and exhaust fans can be timed with no heat issues.

    I am looking for a good remote reading meter (wired is fine) must be digital and read PPM. Any suggestions?

    What PPM do you guys generally run??

    When in the plants flower cycle do you introduce CO2 and when do you stop (if you do stop)??

  2. CCrete

    CCrete Mr. Poopyfacepeepeehead

    The "Autopilot" brand is the best bang for your buck for a controller IMO, its a hydrofarm brand with a 3 year warranty. IT handles Co2, Cooling, humidity and another that I cant remember. they range from $250-190...depending on the supplier

    I run my Co2 from start to finish cuz I have to(multiple grow times) but most growers turn it off at about the week 6-7 mark for Indica strains, it doesn't seem to do much after that time frame, just waste of Co2.

    I also run mine at 1250ppm, I tried the 1500 and it fried a bunch of fan leaves, turned it back and they really took off correctly

    Co2 is by far the best thing for your garden IMO...I run a Sentinal CHHC-4 Controller which is a good bit more $$$ but has a few more options that I needed

    Also beware, your plants will EAT a hell of a lot more with Co2 and you'll need to keep an eye out for the first 2 weeks and make adjustments

    Good luck man!
  3. ResinRubber

    ResinRubber Civilly disobedient/Mod

    Not running CO2 at the moment. But when I do these are the guidelines and devices I use.

    * 1250-1350ppm. I Run 1250

    * 80F-86F is my target range for garden temps.

    * No need for CO2 the last week of flowering. I don't do this because I'm always rotating plants.

    * CO2 in veg is good but not necessary. If you do, you'll experience faster growth. Guess it comes down to garden timing and desired end results.

    *You won't need a remote digi readout. Just get a basic controller and be done with it. You can check settings whenever you would regularly check your garden.

    * Be sure you fully exchange the air in the garden at least once every 24 hour period. I ventilate 15 minutes during the dark time. Plants require less CO2 during lights out so this is the best time to schedule an air exchange then allow the ppm to rise again when the lights come on.

    Current basic CO2 controller in my tool box is a Titan Controls Atlas 3 Day/Night CO2 Monitor/Controller. This is a good choice for one room operations and is easy to use. It replaced a cheap C.A.P. unit which was flimsy and sucked.

    Current bottle solenoid and regulator is a Titan Controls CO2 Regulator. Again simple and easy to use.

    This will be replaced soon by a MiniGen which makes things more complex, but saves hassle refilling CO2 tanks

    You get the idea? Keep it as simple as possible. The idea with CO2 isn't to give yourself something else to worry about. It's to give you greater control of the garden's atmosphere and remove fluctuations. This, for me, is where the real dividends are.
  4. DXE

    DXE Moderator

    good info

    RR - thanks for the detail....

    Whats the story with these alternative CO2 "sources" - five gallon buckets of unknown substance, pads, etc...

    I figured I would start with an accurate meter - bought one for around $100 with remote probe. Should be here this week. I want to get some baseline readings before I start to do anything. - If you cant measure it, you cant talk about it :)

    Where do you get your CO2 cyls filled amd how long does a cyl. last??

    Once I get my meter up, I am going to try a few of these 'alternative CO2 sources to see whats in them and IF they effect the C02 level in my controlled space. WIll post readings.

    In the meantime I am shopping for a controller and regulator :)
  5. ResinRubber

    ResinRubber Civilly disobedient/Mod

    Alternative sources- Imho not worth the pennies they take to manufacture. You'll get equal results by simply increasing air turnover.

    Guessing you're gonna get 400-500 ppm (maybe less if you live in the country) as a baseline. Which doesn't matter anyway. It's always going to be well under what CO2 enrichment will give you. Who cares CO2 ppm tops the charts at a nasty 600ppm in downtown Mexico City? It's still not 1250ppm, which is your lowest target range if using CO2 supplementation.

    Using a 20lb cylinder for the Fridge lasts what seems like forever. It's small and tightly sealed. In an 8'x10' garden they seem to run out constantly. Bad seals and lots of cubic footage. ymmv.

    You can fill cylinders at (in order of relative expense) welding supply shops, hydro shops, beverage suppliers, and paintball supply shops. It's best to buy your own tank online and simply trade an empty for a full one with your vendor. When buying used tanks be sure to check the last inspection date on the tank. They need to be re-checked every 5 years. If it's out of date, the vendor won't fill or exchange the tank.
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 29, 2014
  6. friendlyfarmer

    friendlyfarmer Rollin' Coal

    Great info Res thanks.:thumbs-up:

    Out of two local beverage centers I just called, one fills tanks at $3 per pound. The grow shop exchanges them can't remember how much.

    I just acquired a CO2 regulator and controller/monitor and two tanks. Gonna set it up as soon as I get one filled/exchanged.

    Seems like every time I am at the grow shop (which is a couple times per month lately :icon_confused:) somebody is coming in exchanging tanks. I can't help but give those dudes a discreet eyeballin' cuz I feel inferior and behind the curve. But I don't want to be one of them, exchanging at the shop. Seems like a dead giveaway to me...

    I'm gonna hit the bev center. I brew beer so kegging is why. Exchange or fill don't matter to me. Gotta check the exp. date on the tanks tho - thanks Res.
  7. ResinRubber

    ResinRubber Civilly disobedient/Mod

    Lol....hydro shop "strangers".

    I'm the guy they all recognize, but have no idea who the fuck I am? Just the p.i.t.a. guy who knows *exactly* what he wants, haggles for the expensive shit, and always pays cash. Borrow the bro-in law's car for the run and pay cash baby. Always cash.

    Good luck with the set. If you get it right, your mind will be blown. :redbong:

    CREATIVE GARDENER Cured Fat Sticky Bud

    You're getting fucked at $3 a pound. The grow shop is your best bet. Here the exchange rate is 1/3 that. The 2 shops I go to also sell brewing supplies so they go thru a lot of tanks.

    Don't act like an under age kid trying to buy beer. Act like a customer not a criminal!! Just go in and get exactly what you need and exchange ALL your tanks, not just one. Treat it as a mutually beneficial business transaction. Like Res said, Pay cash and casually go on your way.

    Be Cool, CG
  9. friendlyfarmer

    friendlyfarmer Rollin' Coal

    Hmmmm duly noted. Danke.
  10. DXE

    DXE Moderator

    Been pricing CO2.....

    20 pound Tanks range from 75-150 used/new empty.

    My local gas supply place leases 50 gallon tanks - $48/year and $28 a swap

    Sounds safer to go to my local gas place than hydro shop for tanks ;)

    CREATIVE GARDENER Cured Fat Sticky Bud

    Do you have any idea how much a 50 gal tank full of CO2 weighs? At almost 8.5 lbs per gallon + the tank. You better be one big dude or hire you a gorilla.

    CREATIVE GARDENER Cured Fat Sticky Bud

    Now that is assuming it's been compressed into liquid form. That's why compressed gas in sold by weight (lbs) not volume (gals). The material will weigh more per volume under more pressure. So it's easier and more accurate to determine the amount buy it's weight than the containers volume and pressure.

    Be Cool, CG
  13. ResinRubber

    ResinRubber Civilly disobedient/Mod

    Think he was talking a 50lb tank. An aluminum 50lb tank should be about 100 lbs +/- when full. Still pretty fuckin' hefty. Steel tank weight? Got no idea, but I know I couldn't easily move one around when full.

    They only fill to a little less than 70% volume capacity so it will always be CO2 weight (not volume) plus tank weight.

    Here's a tip. Check local auction sales and local online auctions. Local auction houses move a lot of tools and shit. I picked up a half dozen tanks that had expired certification for $40. $12 per to get them tested. One failed. That worked out to 5 usable tanks for $100. Who cares if they look scabby if you're just trading them out?

    CREATIVE GARDENER Cured Fat Sticky Bud

    Probably, but if I could get 50 lbs of CO2 for 28 bucks, 56 cents a pound, I'd lug the big bastard. The gas companies here charge that much for 20 lbs. They asked me for my name and address insisting it's necessary info for their records. I gave them the Country club's name saying it was for an outdoor keg at a big party they were having the coming weekend and didn't go back. Couldn't tell them the name's "Nunya Bidness" glad to meet ya.

    Be Cool, CG
  15. CCrete

    CCrete Mr. Poopyfacepeepeehead

    Id go propane...same $ for the setups
  16. DXE

    DXE Moderator

    Dumb question of the day :)

    CO2 comes into the space from the regulator and controller - what is the best method to distribute/mix the gas in the room
  17. CCrete

    CCrete Mr. Poopyfacepeepeehead


    CREATIVE GARDENER Cured Fat Sticky Bud

    Fans are OK. But I prefer a good Particle Accelerator. :5obsessed:They're not cheap, but they're so fuckin' cool. Nothing like subatomic particles moving at near light speed to really stir shit up.

    Be Cool, CG
  19. skunky

    skunky labor smoke'n lumberjack

    If you have an oscillating fan that blows over the top of the canopy that would be your best bet. Just remember CO2 is more dense than our predominately nitrogen atmosphere so it will fall even with your exhaust running. Well Unless you're moving massive volumes of air.
  20. DXE

    DXE Moderator

    Where is the best place to put the CO2 probe/sensor for the regulator?

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