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Troubleshooting an ActivationUpdated 10 months ago

They can find activation instructions here.  Please note, they have switched the ratio to 1:1:18 - simply b/c the match is easier to figure out.

1. Check the pH of the original EM-1 and the pH of your activated product. The pH of EM1 should be below 3.6.  Make sure the customer has pH paper that can actually measure below 5.0.  Several do not.  If the pH of the original EM1 is below 3.6 but the activated product is not...move on

It is highly recommended that you buy pH strips, before activating, but you can also smell the product. Should smell the same as the original EM-1.

2.   Cooler temperatures slow down the activation and you may not see bubbling or hear fizzing. Ideally the first 3 days you would like for it to be 80+ degrees, without direct heat. Keep out of direct sunlight, but otherwise lighting does not matter. 

3.  What type of molasses did they use?  Organic molasses will cause activations to take longer.  Sugar beet molasses won't work.  Unsulfured Cane Molasses is the best.

4.  How warm was the water when they started the activation?  If it was 130 then the microbes would be okay.  Activating with warm water helps speed the process up!

5.  The Activation may not gas, especially if you are in a cooler climate.  pH is the key to knowing 100% if the activation is working.

6.  For each gallon of activated EM, if the pH is stagnated at around 4 and the customer has it at room temperature, you can suggest adding 1/2 cup of white vinegar and an additional 1/4 cup of molasses to the mixture.  Encourage them to get the bottle warmer than 80 degrees to encourage microbe activity.


*Soda bottles with screw tops are good first time activation containers.

*Using reverse osmosis should not be harmful to an activation.  You will just want to wait a least an hour before adding microbes to the water.

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