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Hot Tub Maintenance

Maintenance on your hot tub is easy, requiring only a few moments to keep your hot tub always ready to enjoy. After the initial balancing of your water, it only needs to be sanitized periodically. To keep your hot tub looking vibrant and new, the following maintenance suggestions make it even easier to clean and maintain your hot tub.

Filter Maintenance

One of the most effective ways to keep your hot tub in first-class shape is through proper cleaning and maintenance of your filter. To ensure that your water filtered properly, you should clean the hot tub filter or change it out (depending on the filter type) at least every five to six weeks. This time period may vary slightly, based on hot tub usage.

When cleaning the filter, be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions. If your filter is replaceable, it’s a good idea to keep a second filter on hand for uninterrupted hot tub fun. This allows for a quick change-out so you can resume your hot tub activities without missing a beat.

Water Maintenance

Your hot tub water has a life of its own, and with that comes a unique set of challenges. Your authorized hot tub dealer can provide you with the guidance you need to select the appropriate chemicals to keep a sparkling clean hot tub under any conditions. There are three main components to water maintenance – water filtration, chemical balance/pH control and water sanitation.

Woman Relaxing in a Hot Tub

Water sanitation can be achieved through the regular addition of a sanitizer that has been recommended by your hot tub dealer. The sanitizer – typically a bromine- or chlorine-based product – controls the bacteria and algae in the hot tub water.

The introduction of the bacteria-fighting chemicals necessitates that you monitor the chemical balance of your water. You will have to add chemicals to maintain proper levels of Total Alkalinity (TA), Calcium Hardness (CH) and pH. Frequent testing of the water – preferably weekly – will allow you to maintain the balance and minimize such hot tub trouble makers as scale buildup and the corrosion of metals.

Your authorized hot tub dealer can point you toward the appropriate chemicals, but there are two types of testing methods recommended – Reagent Test kits and Test strips. The kit provides the greatest accuracy and is available in a liquid or tablet form. The strips offer greater convenience, but can be less precise.

Draining the Hot Tub

Most hot tub manufacturers also recommend that the hot tub be drained every two or three months. Your hot tub owner’s manual will provide detailed instructions on how to drain your model, or contact your authorized hot tub dealer. Here are some important tips to remember when draining a hot tub:

  • Always turn the power off and disconnect the hot tub from the power source.
  • Select a safe, suitable drainage area that is capable of safely assimilating several hundred gallons of water. This may include both unsanitary contaminants and chemical residue that could prove harmful to plants or grass.

Away From Home

When you are away from home, be sure to protect your hot tub as you would the other valuables in your home. With a few simple steps, you’ll keep your hot tub performing at peak capacity.

Short periods (3 to 5 days)

  • Adjust the pH
  • Sanitize the water
  • Lock the cover for safety

Long periods (5 to 14 days)

  • Set temperature to its lowest level (approximate water temperature of 80 degrees F)
  • Adjust the pH
  • Sanitize the water
  • Lock the cover for safety

When you return

  • Sanitize the water, following shock procedures
  • Return the water temperature to the original setting
  • Ensure that the chlorine level has dropped below 5 parts per million

If you plan to be gone longer than 14 days, follow the manufacturer’s suggestions for extended absences. In most cases, it is advisable to drain the hot tub and restart when you return.

Surface Maintenance

In addition to caring for the internal working parts, the exterior of your hot tub needs maintenance from time to time. Steer clear of household chemicals when cleaning the shell – your authorized hot tub dealer can give you some tips on safe solvents, if it becomes necessary. Be sure to rinse the hot tub shell with fresh water if you do use any cleaning agents.

The majority of the hot tub shells manufactured today are fashioned from acrylic, which makes them very resistant to dirt and stains. In most cases, a soft rag should suffice for buildup removal. If something more aggressive is needed, contact your authorized hot tub dealer for suggestions.

In some areas, water supplies have higher concentrations of iron or copper. These metals can stain the hot tub shell. Your authorized hot tub dealer will be able to provide you with a recommendation for a stain or scale inhibitor to use if your water falls into this category.

Many shell cabinets fall into the maintenance-free category. The only cleaning these outer surfaces should ever require is a quick rinse to remove any debris that has collected on the surface. In most cases, water will remove any buildup. If you do encounter a stubborn spot, lightly wash the area with mild soap and water. Do not use any chemicals - these may etch the surface.

Like the rest of the hot tub, the cover should be constructed of durable material designed to withstand the elements. However, it needs proper care as well to ensure a long life.

  • Do not sit or stand on the cover.
  • Do not let snow build up on your cover.
  • Periodically clean the cover as recommended by the manufacturer.
  • Do not drag your cover over rough surfaces.
  • Always lift by the handles.
  • Use tie down tabs to prevent the wind from lifting the cover from your outdoor hot tub.