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Comprehensive Guide on How to Prepare the SNAP Working Solution

a solution with a slightly yellow and cloudy appearance.

The correct mixture of water and SNAP Nutrient Solution for Hydroponics A and B is called the working solution. This diluted mixture contains all the nutrients a plant needs in order to grow. The working solution also regulates its own pH making sure it is in the proper range for optimal nutrient uptake.

How to Prepare the SNAP Working Solution

Start with ten liters (10L) of clean water. Water from regular sources, tap water, well water, etc., works well. The use of pure rain water and pure distilled (reverse osmosis) water is discouraged because pure rain water and pure distilled water has a neutral pH. Sometimes they are even slightly acidic due to the presence of dissolved carbon dioxide gas.

water being poured on a grow box.
Adding ten liters of clean water.

SNAP is designed for regular water sources which in the Philippines are often slightly alkaline. If the working solution is prepared from water with neutral to slightly acidic pH the resulting working solution will be ineffective because the resulting solution will have a pH level that is way below the optimal range. Please see this video that demonstrates the effect of water quality to the pH of the resulting working solution for more information.

Add 25mL of SNAP A. Mix well. Add 25mL of SNAP B. Mix well. Please note the emphasis on mixing well after adding SNAP A and SNAP B. Either SNAP A or SNAP B can go into the mixture first but do not add both at the same time nor mix SNAP A and SNAP B together before adding them in water. This is because the components of SNAP A and SNAP B will react with each other and will render the resulting solution useless. This is also the reason why SNAP A and SNAP B are in separate bottles.

When properly mixed the resulting working solution has a slightly yellow and cloudy appearance.

a solution with a slightly yellow and cloudy appearance.
Ten liters of properly mixed SNAP working solution.

Additional Notes

Different volumes of working solution can be prepared by mixing SNAP A/B and water in a 2.5mL per L ratio, i.e, 2.5mL of SNAP A and 2.5mL of SNAP B for every liter of water.

To prepare one (1) liter of working solution half a teaspoon may be used because one teaspoon is equivalent to 2.46mL.

SNAP nutrient solution sets from authorized resellers usually comes with measuring cups. To use them fill up the cup with nutrient solution up to the level indicated in the picture below.

picture of cup with 25mL level indicator.
The line in the picture above is at 25mL.

White and powdery precipitates may appear in the working solution just after mixing or after a few days or weeks after transplanting seedlings onto the working solution. This is normal, it is not harmful and in will not effect the growth of the plants.

For larger applications, the use of a large 200L drum is recommended. A drum with a 200L capacity can be used to prepare a 201L working solution by simply mixing 500mL of SNAP A (the whole bottle) and 500mL of SNAP B (again, the whole bottle). This 200L working solution is enough for 20 styrofoam boxes which can grow a total of 160 heads of lettuce or other leafy vegetables.

a large blue 200L container
A generic 200L container.

That’s it! If you have any questions please feel free to leave a comment below. Good luck and happy growing!

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Checking the pH of Freshly Mixed SNAP Hydroponics Working Solution

The SNAP Hydroponics working solution is the water and nutrient solution mixture that is used together with growboxes and seedling plugs to grow plants. This set of pictures shows how the pH of the solution starts initially and how it performs overtime.

pH checks are not required to run a SNAP Hydroponics system. This grow is for experimental purposes.

We are trying to grow Kale Red Redbor by Ramgo seeds. Seeds were sown on the 28th of June and were transferred to seedling plugs on the 14th of July.

pH meter reading 8.2
The water from the tap is basic.

The water from the tap is very basic. It is full of carbonates and other materials. Our municipal water supply is of poor quality. It is taken directly from a creek and fed through the pipes often without any filtration. We don’t drink water from the tap.

Measuring cup with 5mL graduations
Measuring cup with 5mL graduations
pH checks.-5
Measuring cup with 12mL graduations on the other side.

Above is the measuring cup I use. SNAP Hydroponics nutrient solution is added to water at 2.5mL per liter.

jug with 50mL graduations containing 2L of water.
Two liters of tap water
Adding 5ml of SNAP A to 2L of tap water
Adding 5ml of SNAP A to 2L of tap water
dipping and rising the measuring cup
I dip and rinse the measuring cup to get it ready for SNAP B.
mixing SNAP solution well.
Mixing the solution well. SNAP B follows and it is important that SNAP A is diluted well.
thermometer and pH meter showing readings of the SNAP working solution
After adding SNAP A and SNAP B. This is the working solution. It has a slight yellow color.

As you can see from the pictures above. SNAP is acidic enough to pull the pH from 8.2 down to 6.4. A fresh mix of SNAP working solution has a pH of 6.4. This measurement is consistent with the pH of the solution in the growbox I’m growing kale in.

The measurements below are taken nine days after the system is setup.

pH meter reading 7.6
The pH of this solution was 6.4. Nine days later it went up to 7.6.
digital thermometer displaying 33?C
Ambient temperature
laboratory thermometer reading 30?C
The temperature of the solution is just 30°C.

I rechecked the pH a couple of days later and it reads 7.2pH. I’ll continue to post updates about this grow.