Review: Premium complete CO2 system (500 l) from CO2 Art

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Nathan Hill has been long-term testing this bit of kit, which he highly recommends.

I’ve been sat on this kit for ages, to the point where it’s now part of my furniture. CO2 Art deserves praise for packing so many goodies in to one bundle, and all you need to worry about tracking down on top of this is a supply of CO2 canisters. In my case, I’ve been using fire extinguishers, which have always worked for me. 

The kit comes as a bundle of solenoid valve and regulator, bubble counter, inline diffuser and drop checker with bromide solution, as well as 3m of CO2 resistant airline. You even get a handful of airline and tubing suckers to keep everything in place.

What strikes me as refreshing about using this kit is that I’ve never experienced the wayward gas leaks that I’ve had with some other regs, through perishing of the seal at the regulator/fire extinguisher interface. To date, I’ve not had the annoying 'deflation' of a cylinder way before its time. So that’s nice. 

The fine-tuning valve also behaves the way a fine tuning valve should, and doesn’t seem to take ages to bed down. Other models I’ve played with have required minor adjustments either way for the day following installation or cylinder replacement, but this model has been fast and accurate off of the line for me.

If I had to make a criticism, it’d be that the airline, like all airlines, eventually becomes brittle at the connections, and needs frequent clipping back. 

I’ll admit bias in a preference toward inline diffusers, and this one has behaved impeccably throughout. As a buyer, you get the option for a 12/16mm or 16/22mm diameter connection, so you can use the package with a smaller set-up if that’s your thing (the smaller is aimed of tanks up to 250 l, while the larger has a capacity of up to 500 l). 

Make a note to buy the UK plug when purchasing, because there are other options available. 

Installation takes minutes, the drop checker solution comes pre-mixed so there’s no messing about there, and the dual gauges — high pressure and low pressure — make monitoring of gas content simple. 

Get yourself a plug in timer for the solenoid, browse online for a cheap fire extinguisher, and you’ll be amongst the ranks of aquascapers in no time at all.

Verdict

Awesome kit, never lets me down, and as accurate now as when I got it a year ago. Absolute delight, and amazing value. Plenty of frills, each lashed with a dozen thrills. 

Ease of use:

5/5

Features:

5/5

Value for money:

5/5

Overall score:

5/5

Price:

£119.99 (current RRP)

More info:

www.co2art.co.uk

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