Get to Know Your Hot Tub
Before using your hot tub, it’s so important to understand how it works and the different functions it has. This will make it much easier to understand if things go wrong, but it also means you’ll be able to make the most of every single one of it’s features. So make sure you have a read of the manual, or visit the manufacturer’s website for detailed information.
Sanitise the Water
Sanitising your hot tub water is essential to prevent bacteria and germs, and generally makes it safe to use. The most commonly used sanitisers are either Bromine or Chlorine. Chlorine is an effective and efficient sanitiser for your hot tub and is what is commonly used in swimming pools. However it does have a very distinctive smell and can cause irritation to the eyes and skin. Bromine is a great option if you need something that’s gentler on the skin and it also has a less powerful smell, while being just as effective.
Test Your Hot Tub Water
Test strips are a quick and accurate way to determine the sanitiser, pH and alkalinity levels of water and will allow you to make any chemical adjustments to the water as needed. Our options include the Insta Test 4 pack of 40 tests, the FROG pack of 50 test strips, or we also offer a range of digital hot tub testers. It’s best practice to test your hot tub water on a daily basis, even if you’re not using it. The ideal pH level will depend on what sanitiser you’ve chosen to use. If you’re using Bromine, the ideal pH levels are between 7.2 – 7.4 and between 7.2-7.6 if you’re using Chlorine – although generally anything between 7.2 and 7.8 is considered safe. Your hot tub’s pH levels are important to get right. A reading of 7.2 and below is considered too acidic, which can make your sanitiser less effective, eventually cause corrosion to hot tub parts and can cause issues such as eye and skin irritation such as itchiness and dryness. Similarly, having too high of a pH (7.8 or above) can also reduce sanitiser efficiency, cause scale build up on the spa surface and components, and can cause cloudy water and foaming. If you’re having trouble getting the pH levels of your hot tub water balanced correctly, don’t worry, we have a range of products to help correct it!
Cleaning the Filter
The filter plays a key role in keeping your hot tub clean alongside the sanitiser. Gradually as you use your hot tub, the filter will get dirty and can eventually end up clogging, which can disrupt the water clarity and cleanliness. We recommend cleaning the filter at least once a month – or more often if you use your hot tub regularly. The Lo-Chlor Instant Filter Cleaner is a great option to quickly remove debris, oil, body fats and dirt using a unique ‘No Soak’ formula and is suitable for all cartridge filters. Generally speaking your filter should last between 1-2 years, however it can last longer if you clean it on a regular basis (i.e. every week). If the material on the filter starts to break up, or the filter is damaged, then that’s how you know you need to swap it for a new one. It’s best practice to always keep a spare filter so you can swap it straight away when you need to!
Cleaning Your Hot Tub
Just like your bath or shower, it’s important to keep your hot tub clean to prevent any buildup of dirt. While it depends on how regularly you use your hot tub, giving it a thorough clean on the inside and out every three months should do the trick. Once you’ve drained your hot tub, take out any removable parts such as headrests, cushions and seats so that they can be cleaned thoroughly. Use a damp cloth to wipe down any dirt in the inner and outer shell of the hot tub, not forgetting to clean the waterline and pipes. Be sure not to use any abrasive cleaning equipment or harsh chemicals as these can damage the surfaces of the hot tub. It’s equally as important to take good care of your hot tub cover – it’s the most exposed part of your hot tub, making it particularly prone to damage from sunlight and dirt. Keep it clean with some mild detergent and invest in some vinyl protectant to prevent the material from cracking.
Setting the Ideal Temperature
On most hot tubs you can set the temperature anywhere between 26°C-40°C, so you’re free to set it to suit your personal preference. However generally speaking, anywhere between 37°C – 40°C is considered by most to be the ideal temperature. Anything below 37°C may feel a bit chilly because it’s lower than body temperature – which is ideal if you’re trying to cool off in the summer but not if you’re after a warm soak!. It’s also definitely worth knowing that if children under 5 are using the hot tub, then for safety reasons the temperature should be a maximum of 35°C and they shouldn’t be in there for any longer than 10 minutes.
Invest in Good Cleaning Tools and Products
Cleaning your hot tub is really easy when you’ve got the right tools for the job! We have a variety of cleaning tools and products that make taking care of your hot tub a breeze. Some of our favourites are the Life Spa Brush – designed to be efficient and safeguards against scuffing when cleaning your tub, the Grit Gritter, an easy-to-use vacuum that effortlessly removes sand and grit from the bottom of your spa and the Hand Skimmer – a hand-held net ideal for scooping up leaves, bugs, grass, or anything else floating on the surface of the water.
Invest in a High Quality Cover
Covers are essential for keeping the heat in and the elements out. It’s worth looking into hardtop covers if you have young children or pets as they’re much stronger and can support more weight than standard soft covers. Otherwise investing in a good quality thermal cover is a great way to make your hot tub much more efficient by keeping the water warm rather than reheating it every time you use it. To give your cover the longest life possible, we recommend protecting it with a conditioner or vinyl protector every 3 months.
What to do While You’re Away
If you’re going away on holiday, or know that you won’t be using your hot tub for a while, there’s a few things you need to do to make sure it stays in the best possible condition while it’s out of use. Firstly make sure the water is correctly balanced and as clean as possible. This includes making sure the pH levels are where they should be, use a non-chlorine shock to remove any contaminants from the water and clean the filter before you go. It’s also worth upping the sanitizer levels so that there’s less chance of any nasties surviving in there while you’re away – just be sure to check it’s back at a safe level before you use it again! And while turning off your hot tub completely might seem like the logical thing to do, having no water circulation could do more harm than good, such as the water going stagnant as well as issues with the pipework. The best thing to do is either switch your hot tub into ‘Sleep’ or ‘Away’ mode, or if your tub doesn’t have that option, then simply turning the temperature down by 5°C will be sufficient.
Now that’s all the maintenance out the way, it’s time to get in! Here’s how to use your hot tub for maximum benefits:
Improve Sleep Quality: Using a hot tub around two hours before bedtime can actually promote significantly deeper and more peaceful sleep.
Reduce Stress: Hot tubs are a great way to get away from the real world and unwind from work. The warm water alone is enough to relieve any physical, mental and emotional stress. This effect can be boosted by having low lighting, playing calming music and you could even try aromatherapy treatment. Doing this regularly can have a great impact on reducing stress levels, which in turn will have really positive effects on your physical and mental health.
Muscle Relaxation: If you’re a gym-goer, have a physically demanding job or just need help relaxing, then switching on your hot tub jets can do wonders for soothing tense muscles, as well as calming any aches and pains.
With all these great ways of using your hot tub, there’s no reason not to make it part of your daily routine and start reaping all the benefits your hot tub can offer!
There may seem to be a lot to think about when you first get your hot tub but we promise you’ll get the hang of it in no time! We have plenty of tools and products to help take care of your hot tub and our friendly customer care team are always happy to help with any questions. Now go and enjoy your first soak!