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Airstones


Guest Sacreligioushippie

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Guest Sacreligioushippie

Ok, I'm to the board and goldfish keeping. I think the last fish I had was 12 years ago (I was 9).

Anyway, I've had my tank for a week now and decided to put in an airstone. I have an Aqua Culture pump for a 5-15 gallon tank. (I have a 10 gallon tank). The box says it pumps up to 1200 cc per minute. I'm using a 6" airstone, also Aqua Culture. Here's my "problem", the airstone is pumping out a wall of bubbles that are racing to the top of the tank. I've read a couple articles and they've said that there should be a "slow, steady stream of bubbles floating to the top, not too big, not too small". So is my pump ok or should I get another one with an adjustable setting. I hate to have this thing running if it's not doing anything for my fish.

Thanks for your help,

Jessica

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  • Regular Member

A big welcome to Koko's! :D

The main use for a bubble bar or stone is to help circulate the water. It helps carry water from the bottom of the tank to the surface of the tank to help in oxygenation. Agitation of the surface of the water by the filter outflow also helps introduce oxygen into the water.

To a smaller degree, the bubbles will impart an amount of oxygen into the water, but unless the bubbles are exceptionally small -creating tremendous surface area of air to the water, the amount they really infuse is very small. This is why they say to have slow moving, tiny bubbles. So, yes, that is ideal. But it is not necessary. The fast bubbles will lift the water nicely to the surface so all is good.

Your fish will probably enjoy playing in the rising bubbles, also. Mine treat it like a carnival ride - they jump on at the bottom of the tank and float up with it. It seems to be a favorite game - I guess the bubbles tickle and feel good. :)

If you really do not like having the powerful bubbles gurgling away in there there is an easy and cheap way of controlling them - other than buying another air pump. There are valves that you can get at the fish/pet store - plastic or metal, that allow you to regulate the amount of air flow that goes to your bubble bar. Cut a piece of tubing that goes from the pump to the valve, and another length that goes from the valve to the bubble bar. Then turn it down until you like the effect.

(do not forget to tuck the check valve in between the tubing and the pump!)

:)

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Guest Sacreligioushippie

Thanks daryl.

I bought a penn plex "regulating valve", but for the life or me I can't figure our how to hook it up. I messed with the little "dials" after I hooked up the tubing but nothing's coming out of the stone. The valve didn't come with instructions, seemed pretty idiot proof. I proved them wrong. :D

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A regulating valve is a way of inserting something in the line of air hose that will allow you to squeeze the air off - a little or a lot. As you turn the valve, it closes off the air flow - just like when you turn a facet on and off.

You need to determine which end is the goesinto and which end is the comesouta - they are usually marked. Cut a small length of airhose that leads from your air pump outlet to the goesinto valve joint. Fasten the length of airhose the connects to the bubbler out the comesouta end. The lever on the valve should allow you to turn the air volume up and down.

Yours has a dial, correct? Did you say plural dials? You only want one unless you are splitting the air into two stones from one pump outlet. If you have two, you need to shut down the extra hole or outlet in the valve completely - the air will seek the easiest outlet with the least friction - and not blow through the one you want.

Aw - shoot, I know I had an extra one of those valves floating around somewhere in my fish kit, but I cannot find it.

I will look around some more.

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