CO2 aquarium regulator- the device changing the view

CO2 aquarium regulator- the device changing the view

Planted tank by Matt Western

Nowadays , it's very popular among planted aquarium hobbyists to add carbon dioxide to their aquarium water, to assist with plant growth. The amount of different CO2 systems available to todays planted aquariums enthusiasts is so big that many can't decide on the right device for them. Let's see what we need to pay attention to while deciding on aquarium CO2 regulator for safe and efficient aquascaping!

Why is the CO2 injection so beneficial for aquarium life?

Every aquarium is an ecosystem where different physical, chemical and biological processes take place. In nature, aquatic plants absorb CO2 from the water or grow above the water surface to absorb CO2 from atmosphere and produce the "plant food" during photosynthesis. In home planted tanks, the tank water is not as rich in carbon dioxide compared to nature. Therefore, the plant growth is slower and coloration is less intense.

A common misconception is that aquarium plants can absorb enough carbon dioxide from fish breathing in the fish tank. Indeed, live organisms produce carbon dioxide while breathing out, but it's much too less for aquatic plants to benefit from effectively.

We also need to remember that plants absorb nitrates which are harmful for fish so the more dense and healthy plants we have, the less contamination we have.

Last but not least, every aquatic plant is a real natural decoration for any freshwater aquarium therefor better for the fish and the look of the fish tank. Isn't that what we all want after all?

Planted tank by Chandra Sekhar Veera

Dual stage CO2 regulator vs Single stage regulator

While looking for a safe CO2 regulator, the construction of the device is super important. It is equally important to know that a dual gauge co2 regulator is not the same as a dual stage co2 regulator . What is the dual stage co2 regulator greatest advantage? The dual stage minimise any increase in the co2 output as pressure drops in gas cylinder. They prevent the end of tank dump, keeping your fish safe and CO2 levels constant. A two stage regulator is regarded as the only safe option for controlling the output pressure and often come fitted with additional pressure relief valves.

What is the end of tank dump?

This is when the co2 tank pressure drops below a certain level suddenly as the carbon dioxide runs out and the co2 regulator is unable to maintain the pressure. This "phenomenon" takes place quite often in regulators without a multi stage design, therefore making the right choice to opt for a dual stage regulator is essential. There is a difference in the price but definitely worth it. A high quality device can serve us long years if maintained well.


The solenoid valve is attached to the CO2 regulator. The electric solenoid valve turns on and off the gas injection. This is a comfortable solution as turning on/off the cylinder manually is a real nightmare on daily basis. It can be connected to the timer which makes the process even more comfortable. Older designs of solenoids were renowned for becoming hot and hazardous but nowadays the cool touch solenoid makes life much easier and safer.

Power adapter

Pay attention to the voltage of the power adapter and the plug. Look for adapters with universal voltage and plugs compatible with your country plug standard. An energy efficient power adaptor will save money and keep everything running safely .


Aquarium hobby is addiction for many, especially those who like nano planted tanks. If you have one planted aquarium, you will eventually want another planted aquarium, and another planted aquarium and another planted aquarium. The ability to have multiple planted tanks should be definitely taken into consideration when it comes to your choice of regulator. Although, more planted aquariums does mean a greater need for carbon dioxide.

The Pro Elite Regulator from CO2Art allows you to run more than one diffuser thanks to an extendable manifold block option. Each additional manifold is integrated with its own bubble counter, in-built check valve and needle valve allowing the user to regulate the gas pressure in separate tanks individually. Consequently, such extendable aquarium CO2 regulators are a great solution while running multiple tanks- it saves money and space. This quality device has 10 years of warranty and lifetime support.

Bubble counter

A high quality bubble counter allows the user to see the amount of gas being injected into the tank by counting bubbles per minute. The precision needle valve helps to adjust the bubble speed to help provide the best rate suitable for each individual planted aquarium. Before running the aquarium CO2 regulator, the bubble counter should be filled 50-80% of water.

Compatibility with other CO2 devices

The system can't exist with just an aquarium CO2 regulator only. To set up the whole equipment, we need tubing, diffuser, filters, cylinder and sometimes a bit of other stuff. With so many devices and different sizes and standards (which are often very different in aquarium trade) it's essential match the correct size of products (mainly the diffuser) with the size and needs of your aquarium. Therefore it's worth buying a Complete Kit from one source matching the tank size and your diffusion preferences.

Warranty and support

Aquarium CO2 regulator and the whole equipment, the tank itself, plants and fish, lighting, filtration system, decorations, fertilizers... ... ... Nobody can deny that aquascaping has something in common with golf when we say it is an expensive hobby. It's worth choosing regulators with a long and inclusive warranty. That tells us the seller is certain of their product and we can enjoy a safe and long-lasting CO2 injection experience. Also, setting up a CO2 enriched planted tank often provides more questions that you may expect. Having the best CO2 experts in the world available 24/7 is surely helpful. The CO2Art Expert Team is ready to answer all your questions regarding planted aquariums and CO2 regulators. We also run a blog where you can find many interesting topics about running a planted tank.

Aquascape by Dimitrios Katsariotis

CO2Art regulators in the loop

Our high quality CO2 regulators are ready to show their best. Let's do the detailed comparison of our CO2 regulators and show you how custom your kit can be!



This model assists professionals all over the world during aquascaping events and on daily basis. Let's see why the PRO ELITE has convinced so many artists.

Installation and maintenance

This aquarium CO2 regulator is extremely easy to install. All you have to do is to fill the bubble counter with water, connect the tubing with the bubble counter and the diffuser, and connect the CO2 regulator's thread to the gas cylinder. You will only need a wrench and maybe some warm water to warm up the tubing for easier installation. Once installed, set the flow rate using the needle valve and appropriate bubble count and sit back and enjoy. the benefits of a co2 enriched aquarium. If you decide on an additional manifold block, the hex key will be attached to the package. The box with the regulator includes the CO2Art card with QR code thanks to which you can see tutorials and useful information about the regulator and the equipment maintenance. This is more than useful for the CO2 regulator safe installation. The daily maintenance of the PRO ELITE CO2 regulator can be limited by connecting the electricity source to an automatic timer. The CO2 regulator is dual gauge. High pressure gauge (on the right) of the CO2 regulator shows the remaining content of the cylinder (pressure inside the cylinder) and the low pressure gauge (on the left) shows the pressure being output to the tank. 

Precise control with many bubble counters

This model of CO2Art dual stage regulators allows to run multiple diffusers with only one regulator. The high precision needle valve attached to each bubble counter is easy to adjust and run a different flow rate in each separate tank with pressure stabilization about 1PSI. Each bubble counter is equipped with a check valve which prevents syphoning the water back protecting the CO2 regulator from damage.


Open door for future

Even if you're running only one tank, as we mentioned before, aquascaping is an addictive passion. Before choosing the model, it's worth considering if it's possible that you will be running more tanks in future. If yes, the PRO ELITE CO2 regulator can be extended at any moment of its work, so why not to start with a premium and safe CO2 regulator that can be always extended with a simple manifold block instead of buying another regulator for every new tank? This regulator is also a great choice for multi-tank-hobbyists who want to enrich their aquariums with high-tech solution.



The Pro-Se model is a great choice for any planted aquarium, providing aquatic plants with carbon dioxide fertilization on constant levels. Therefore the livestock is safe as if the regulators parameters are set well, the reliable work of the PRO SE CO2 regulator is a non-problematic background for outstanding plants growing healthy and fast.

Installation and maintenance

The installation process is very similar in both models. The QR card is also included to the box, however you can see plenty of Youtube videos presenting how to connect the equipment with CO2 regulator correctly and safely.

Modern design

The PRO SE CO2 regulator is designed to be a gentle hi-tech gadget instead of heavy-looking equipment spoiling the view. Black and white details look classic and together with the CO2 accessories made of durable and solid materials.

Compatibility with worldwide standards

Thanks to dual stage construction, the PRO SE CO2 regulator is compatible with any size of CO2 cylinders. The thread is made according to UK, Europe, Japan and Taiwan standard (BS341 / DIN477 / W21.8) or CGA320 for North America. The power adapter has universal voltage 100-200V. Moreover, in the box with power adapter, you will find 4 plugs fitting the electricity outlets all over the world. This surely facilitates the installation process and minimises the risk that something won't fit.



The reliable CO2 regulator is a key for safe CO2 fertilizing. We need to remember that carbon dioxide injection must go hand in hand with lighting and fertilizing with nutrients. This is necessary for balanced and healthy growth of aquarium plants. Precision of dosing is equally important. Therefore, the quality or the needle valve or the needle valves (in case of running multiple diffusers) is essential. It's best to control if CO2 levels are stable by the bubble counter method along with drop checker method for accuracy. CO2Art regulators allow the aquascapers to create they own custom equipment by choosing devices fitting their own preferences.

Not convinced yet?

Our support is more than happy to advise you what choice will be the best for you and your heavily planted aquarium.