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Hot Tub Cleaning Guide

Exposed Hot Tub Filters

Having the right routine and using the correct products makes keeping your hot tub clean a breeze. Not to mention that keeping your hot tub nice and clean prolongs the life of your hot tub and keeps you and your hot tub guests healthy and safe.

This guide is designed to explain the easiest and safest way to clean your hot tub.

How Often Should I Clean My Hot Tub?

Different parts of your hot tub need cleaning at different points, but it all depends on how much you use the hot tub and the products you use for water care and maintenance.

  1. After each use:
    • Clean any tidelines using a clean damp cloth (or our tub scrubber for any more suborn marks)
    • Check pH levels and sanitiser (chlorine or bromine), adjust accordingly
  2. Weekly
    • Clean your filter
    • Check pH levels and sanitiser (chlorine or bromine), adjust accordingly
    • Shock dose the water
  3. Quarterly
    • Clean your pipes with a pipe cleaner
    • Drain and refill your hot tub
    • Clean the interior of your tub
  4. Annually

How do I clean my Hot Tub?

There are various parts of your hot tub that need to be cleaned and steps to take, see below for our recommendations.

Flush out pipes

In order to remove any dirt, bacteria or build up from your hot tub pipe lines you should flush the pipe lines before cleaning interior of your tub. Each line flush product will have a different usage procedure which should be followed carefully. Our range of recommended pipe cleaners include Swirl Away and Jacuzzi® Hot Tub Pipe Cleaner. Jacuzzi® recommend cleaning your hot tub pipes at least once a year, usually at the beginning of the season. Your hot tub will need to be drained once you have finished.

Drain the hot tub

Before you attempt to drain your hot tub it is important to remember to turn off it off at the isolator. Not doing so could be dangerous and as the water drains the pump could restart thinking there is not enough water which could cause damage to the pump motor and filter mechanism.

You should always follow the instructions that came with your hot tub. Most hot tubs have a drain valve either on the bottom of the cabinet or just inside the cabinet. You can also use a submersible pump to pump the water out. The power should not be turned back on until it has been refilled.

Cleaning your hot tub surface & jets

Once your tub is completely drained you will need to remove any sediment, dirt or debris from its surface, using a damp cloth wipe away as much of this as possible. We recommend you use a surface cleaner with a soft cloth or tub scrubber to remove any stubborn marks without damaging your hot tub. Do not use any regular household cleaning products as they are often not pH neutral and can cause issues in water maintenance and possible damage your shell.

Cleaning the hot tub pillows

The hot tub head rest cushion should be removed and wiped clean using water and a cloth. Take care to clean the acrylic behind it.

Cleaning your Hot Tub Cover

  1. Remove any loose dirt or debris using a high-powered hose pipe
  2. Using a non-abrasive cloth and water wipe down
  3. Use an approved hot tub cover cleaner ensuring you follow the instructions on the packaging

Cleaning Your Hot Tub Panels

Ensure that you use a non-abrasive cloth and neutral detergent solution to wipe panels clean ensuring all the solution is wiped off. You should never direct a hosepipe at the panels as there are electro-mechanical parts behind them and you could cause damage.

Refilling your hot tub

Do not turn your hot tub back on until it is filled to the fill line or touching the bottom of the pillows, your replacement filters have been correctly installed and any drain valves are securely closed. To fill the hot tub, position your hose pipe in the filter housing unit. This will fill all internal pipework first to prevent any airlocks. Your Hot Tub manufacturer guide will advise you on the best way to do this for your make and model.

Once you have refilled your hot tub you will then need to balance your pH and add your sanitiser.

Our Top Hot Tub Cleaning Safety Tips

  1. Always ensure your hot tub is turned off at the isolator before draining your hot tub
  2. Always use cleaning products and chemicals specifically designed for hot tub cleaning purposes
  3. Always follow manufacturers guidelines – both the hot tub and cleaning or chemical instructions
  4. Protect your skin and eyes - wear suitable clothing, rubber gloves and safety glasses
  5. Always keep cleaning products out of the reach of children and pets. Store away from other chemicals
  6. Do not mix chemicals or cleaning solutions together
  7. Do not allow people to use the hot tub whilst cleaning it

Hot Tub Cleaning Troubleshooting & Frequently Asked Questions

We are often asked many questions about hot tub cleaning and problems. You may find the following information useful:

Can I use bleach to clean my hot tub?

No, household cleaning products can cause damage to your hot tub and are not kind to the skin. We would always recommend that you used tried and tested cleaning products and chemicals developed specifically for this purpose. General household cleaning product can cause foaming and sway the balance of pH levels in the water.

Can I use vinegar to clean my hot tub?

Again, we would not recommend using anything including vinegar on your hot tub that has not been specifically designed for cleaning purposes. Using vinegar will have a drastic affect on the pH balance of your hot tub water.

My hot tub water is cloudy, what does this mean?

Water cloudiness is most commonly caused by soap or other small particles which are too fine for your filter to catch. We recommend using Jacuzzi Spa Clear, which is a flocculant. This promotes the clumping of particles so that your filter can easily catch it. Give your filters a good clean after using this product or replace them if required.

My hot tub water is green and smells, what should I do?

Green water is caused by algae. You should shock your hot tub, using a high dose of your sanitiser (chlorine or bromine) as algae only grows when you do not have enough sanitisation. Ensure that your pH is balanced so that your sanitiser can work effectively.

Why is their foam in my hot tub?

There are many common causes for foam including detergents and cosmetics introduced into the hot tub when in use. You should test the water for chemical imbalances including the chlorine or bromine level and pH levels. You may also need to use a no foam product to help remove any water pollutants that may be causing the problem. Our advice on why do I have foam in my hot tub explains the issue in more detail.

How often should I change the water in my hot tub?

We recommend changing the water quarterly. However, this is completely dependent on your hot tub use and the sanitation product you use. BISHTA are one of the leading bodies promoting safe hot tub standards and their recommendation is that your hot tub water should be changed a minimum of every month and an absolute maximum of three months to maintain water quality.

What should I use to clean my hot tub?

There are many products available on the market it is important to always use ones specifically designed to clean you hot tub. Our range of products have been specifically created for this purpose.

Should I clean my hot tub filter?

Your hot tub filter is an important part of the system, if not cleaned regularly dust and dirt particles will build up regularly and your filter will not perform to its optimum level and can often cause flow errors.

We recommend following a weekly cleaning schedule to ensure that you filter is well maintained. Our article on how to clean a hot tub filter offers a step by step guide along with many other handy tips.

When I refill my hot tub can I use warm water?

Many people choose to warm fill their hot tub so that they can start enjoying it quicker. Especially if you use your hot tub for business and have a quick turnaround for guests. We recommend using water no hotter than 40°C to fill the hot tub. Water any hotter than this will risk damaging the acrylic. Many customer choose to have a hot/cold bib tap fitted outside so that they can easily regular and monitor the temperature of water going into the hot tub.

For more information on hot tub chemicals, sanitation and maintenance read our guide on hot tub chemicals.

If you have any questions regarding cleaning your hot tub you can contact us by telephone on 0844 543 6121 or email us at online@outdoorlivinghottubs.co.uk.

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