It’s a good idea to start your CO2 roughly an hour or so before your lights come on. The reason for this is simple.
When your lights come on, you want your plants to hit for floor running. What I mean by that is you want your plants to begin growing instantly. As the CO2 build up over the 60 minutes before the lights are on your levels begin to rise (remembering the carbon dioxide has been off for maybe 16 hours) and your plants take complete advantage of this. Good levels of CO2 and lighting (don’t forget your fertilisers) = happy planted aquarium.
By contrast, having your CO2 come on when your lights start up, you delay the growing process as it takes roughly 1 hour for CO2 levels to hit that perfect 30ppm level.
In addition, turn your CO2 off 1 hour before your lights go off. There will be sufficient CO2 in your tank for that time for your plants to continue growing.
When do you turn your CO2 on and off?
It got me thinking just the other day about electricity consumption with a planted aquarium. Now we use a lot of lights with our plants as you might expect. We also use LED lights because of their lower electric consumption but have some T5s which use a fair bit more as you might guess. Quite how much I don’t know but it got me thinking about consumption and when hobbyists have their lights on and for how long.
Our electric meter has day and night time setting and night time is almost half the price of the day time. I then quite literally had a light bulb moment…
wouldn’t it be better to use electricity at night when the price is cheaper than during the day?
Although not always practical, we have started running some of our lights at night (between 11pm – 7am), thereby cutting our costs.
Do you think this is a good idea for you at home and your planted tank?
Lets say you arrive home at 6pm, so you could have lights come on then, and go off at 2am in the morning, this way you too could be using cheaper electric (assuming you have the same set up as us), and run your lighting for the normal 8 hours a day.
What do you think? I would live to hear your thoughts.
p.s. if you want to check out our excellent LED lighting click here.