Selecting CO2 Cartridges for Your Air Gun

co2 cartridges

Congratulations on your new air gun. Whether you’re going to use your air gun for competition or plinking, it won’t be of much use without CO2 cartridges.

Maybe you’ve had an air gun before, but the O-ring got too clogged from use or the frame got bent.

Did you know that the quality of the Co2 cartridges can reduce the performance and ultimately the operability of your air gun? To make your air gun last many years, it’s important that you select high-quality CO2 cartridges that fit properly and don’t leak.

The Not So Easy Way of Finding the Best CO2 Cartridges

Whether you want to ensure your new air gun will last a while or you want to squeeze in a few more years of your current air gun, here is some information about selecting the best CO2 cartridges:

It is quite difficult to assess the quality of CO2 cartridges. Most air gun owners don’t find out about the poor quality of their air gun’s cartridges until their guns begin lacking optimum performance. Poor quality cartridges will dirty the inside of the air gun with dirt and grease from CO2 leakage from the cartridge into the components of the gun. The dirt and grime build-up can greatly decrease the gun’s performance. In serious cases where the gun isn’t properly cleaned and maintained, the dirt build-up from bad CO2 cartridges can render the gun inoperable.

Unfortunately, there are no clues that indicate whether a CO2 cartridge is good or bad. There are no “things to look for” when it comes to shopping for CO2 cartridges.

There are many types of CO2 cartridges out there, which doesn’t make the purchasing decision easy.

Why is it that no specific brand or manufacturer has the edge on quality CO2 cartridges? Why is there no “go to” type of cartridge?

The main reason is that there are no worldwide quality control standards. There are dozens of CO2 cartridge manufacturers around the world and each of their respective country of operation have differing quality control protocols and requirements. Because of this there are differing standards of acceptable cleanliness of CO2 cartridges.

The only internationally recognized standards for air gun CO2 cartridges include those concerning the size, weight and temperature thresholds.

With the various standards of quality out there, the only true way of finding which cartridge will work best with your air gun is to test and experiment with each one. During the trial and error testing period, it is not uncommon to damage the gun’s O-ring and/or valve.

How to Tell Spot Bad Cartridges

The quickest way to see if you’ve been using poor-quality CO2 cartridges is to look inside the gun. Is there the smell of grime and dirt and grease build-up? If so, the bad cartridges you’ve been using are slowly clogging your air gun’s internal components, causing a gradual, steady decrease in its performance.

Dirty CO2 cartridges can’t be spotted by merely looking at their outward appearance. They must be cut opened. Using a Q-tip, swab the inside of the cartridge. The poorly made, dirty ones will yield a dirty, grime covered cotton swab. A clean one will have no residue on the Q-Tip.

How does a CO2 cartridge that is dirty on the inside get the inside of your air gun dirty? Through leaks.

Poorly made CO2 cartridges are more prone to leaking because of their bad tips. A bad cartridge tip creates a bad seal when it is secured against the O-ring of the gun.

There are three types of CO2 cartridge tips: those that are crimped on, those that are pressed on and those that have a smooth neck.

Generally, the cartridges with the smooth neck are the best ones to use and have the lowest chance of leaking. The proper cartridge tip to use will depend on one’s air gun. The cartridges with crimped and pressed tips have shorter necks than the one with a smooth neck. You’ll need the cartridge with the appropriate neck length. It is important to not use pliers to force a cartridge to fit. This can cause damage to the frame of your air gun.

There is no clear way to see if the CO2 cartridges you purchased for your air gun are good or bad. Only trial and error will reveal which ones are best for your gun. Poor-quality cartridges are dirty on the inside and are capped in a way that is conducive to leaks which dirty the inside of the gun, reducing its performance.

The CO2 cartridges sold by Kiehberg are Umarex, one of the largest CO2 cartridge manufacturers. These cartridges have a smooth neck reducing leakage.

Order clean, Umarex CO2 cartridges at today and receive free and convenient shipping!