Home - Hot Tub Chemical Instructions A Guide to Spa Water Chemistry

Hot Tub Chemical Instructions A Guide to Spa Water Chemistry

Hot Tub Chemical Instructions A Guide to Spa Water Chemistry

Cleaning your hot tub

  1. Drain your spa water every 3 to 4 months, depending on use. If your spa has an ozonator, changing your spa water may only be necessary every 8 - 12 months.
  2. Add 1/2 cup bleach to 3 gallons of water and sponge clean your spa shell. Rinse with fresh water and dry spa with large towels.
  3. The filter should be cleaned every month or more frequently for high bather loads. Soak overnight in filter fresh and rinse well before replacing in spa.
  4. Rinse off Scum Bugs with fresh water and wring out.
  5. Refill spa with fresh water to the recommended level. The water line should be approximately half way up the top skimmer.
  6. You may want to bleed air from the filter canister and pumps to ensure the pumps will be primed. Look for tiny plastic thumb screws on your filter and your pumps and unscrew briefly to let the air escape.
  7. If you have a timer, set your spa to filter on low speed for a minimum of 3 hours for every twelve hour period.

Initial treatment to fresh water

  1. Once the temperature of your hot tub reaches about 80 degrees Fahrenheit (30 degrees Celsius), you can start adding chemicals. Warm water will allow the granular chemicals to dissolve properly.
  2. Test and adjust the pH of the water to 7.6 - 8.2 by adding either a capful of pH up or pH down (add pH up if the pH tests low and vice versa). Allow the water to filter for 30 minutes before retesting the pH.
  3. Add 1 capful of a stain and scale control product like protect plus and 1 capful of spa water clarifier. Adding 2 ounces of an enzyme based product like natural clear will clarify the water and also reduce scum-lines and odors caused by body oils and cosmetic products.
  4. Test and adjust the alkalinity of the water to 100. Add alkalinity up to raise the alkalinity of the water or add spa decrease to lower the alkalinity.
  5. Sanitizing the spa water - there are 3 different methods, choose only 1. Never use both bromine and chlorine.
  • 2 - part bromine (100% Chlorine Free) system: Add 2 fluid ounces of Enhance and 2 oz. of Activate. Add Enhance weekly and an ounce of Activate every few days to activate the 100% chlorine free bromine salts in Enhance. Add each part more frequently if testing indicates low bromine levels.
  • Bromine tablets system: Fill floating dispenser with pucks (chlorine or bromine) and place in spa water. Add 2 oz. of non chlorine Activate (spa shock). Floater should always contain pucks and remain in the water. Shock every few days or after a large bather load. Check floater every week and shock more frequently if testing detects low sanitization levels.
  • Granular chlorine system: Add 1 capful of granular chlorine. Repeat every couple days or more frequently if testing requires. Add 2 oz. of non chlorine Activate (spa shock).

***If you are new to water maintenance, test your spa water daily to ensure you have a proper sanitizer level. If you are using an ozonator, you can keep the bromine or chlorine level at the low end of 'ideal' on your test kit scale. You will find that your spa will use less of your sanitizer because the ozone is killing most of the bacteria and viruses. Because you are using less chemicals with an ozonator, balancing becomes easier and less time consuming.

Weekly maintenance

  1. Test water for bromine (or chlorine), pH and alkalinity.
  2. Adjust pH to 7.6 - 8.2 and alkalinity to 100.
  3. Add 1 capful of stain and scale control and 1 ounce of a spa clarifier like Natural Clear. If your spa has an ozonator, you may find that you don't need to use a spa clarifier because ozone acts as a flocculent, allowing smaller particles to be filtered out.
  4. Repeat sanitation as in the "initial treatment" (add bromine or chlorine as needed).
  5. Rinse off the filter cartridge with fresh water. Soak the filter in cartridge cleaner monthly, or more frequently if you have a large bather load.
  6. Squeeze out scum bags or Bobs (not in hot tub water) and rinse with fresh water.

Happy Hot Tubbing!