Good Karma Aquaponics Ammonia is designed to initiate the Nitrification Cycle in your aquaponic system. It is meant to be used WITHOUT FISH, also known as “fishless cycling”. This method of kick starting the nitrification cycle in your system is safer for your fish. It allows bacteria and microbes to establish themselves before placing your fish into a changing, potentially harmful system. The ammonia is absolutely not meant to be used with fish, it will harm them if you do!
DIRECTIONS: Start by running your system with just water for the first week or two. If possible borrow a small amount of media or water from a friends aquaponic system in order to introduce small amounts of beneficial bacteria. If this is not available to you don’t worry, the bacteria will eventually come on there own it may just take a little longer.
Add 1 tablespoon GKA Ammonia per 100 gallons of water. This will achieve roughly 3.5 PPM of ammonia in your system. Record how much ammonia is the proper amount for your particular system. Make sure to always check ammonia levels before adding more, the powder is a very strong, concentrated formula. Use your API Freshwater Master Test Kit to test the water. Continue adding your recorded amount daily until NITRITES appear. Once Nitrites appear add half the amount of ammonia on a daily basis. At this time begin to test for NITRATES in your system. You may also add plants at this time because you should be about halfway through the cycling process. Once Nitrates appear stop adding ammonia. Wait a few days then test again. The system is safe for your fish once Ammonia and Nitrites reach zero and your Nitrates are around 5PPM. This process can take 2-4 weeks. When you measure these correct numbers it means that the “cycling” process is complete. Test your pH at this point, the ideal range is 6.8-7.0. Your pH will most likely not be perfect in the beginning and it may fluctuate slightly, this is totally normally for a newly running system. If the pH is at an acceptable level (6.5-7.5) it is now safe to add your fish.