Metals can be terrible for your aquaponics water. Let’s make sure you avoid this common mistake.

A consulting experience with metals in aquaponics

As I approach the aquaponics system I can see it. Standing there like the nose in the middle of the face… I was expecting a demanding mission with water analysis, fish examination but no. I expected a nitrate problem but no. 10 seconds of inspection and the response was standing in front of me!

It was midday when I read an email from a customer. He was desperate as he had built his first aquaponics system and here was his story:

Everything went well at the beginning. He cycled the system and the fish were growing. But after few months he lost one fish. Nothing unusual but few weeks after he lost another one, and another one, and another one. He finally lost all the fish. 2 weeks later he added few gold fish and they died as well.

Reading his story I am already suspecting a problem in the water parameters. Or more tricky, a disease or parasites in the system…

I organized a visit 2 days later. When I approach the aquaponics system, guess what I see… A METAL TAP!

Don’t make this mistake, no metals please

Yes guys this is something that I have probably not emphasize enough in my videos. We can’t use metals in aquaponics. When you put a metal in contact with water, a multitude of reactions occur. Ions are released into the water. Even if it’s stainless metal, at the long run the water toxicity will increase and kill your fish and even in certain cases arm your plants. We have to remember that in aquaponics we are working in a closed system so when a metal release some particles, even if it’s at a very low concentration, it will accumulate and reach the maximum limit of acceptation of your fish!

The outcome of this video/article is: Avoid metals in aquaponics or you will expose your fish to serious issues in the long run.

The most common mistakes I have seen on this topic were about metal tap, metal tanks and metal pipes. Please use plastic/PVC alternatives 🙂

You will probably be interested to discover Jonathan’s six steps to build and manage an Aquaponics system. Click here to access for free! Thanks and good reading 🙂