Has the bitter cold of Alberta’s winter kept you from using your hot tub regularly? Have you been on a winter vacation leaving your hot tub unattended for several weeks? Did life get so busy that you haven’t taken the time to enjoy your spa for a month or more? Whatever the reason, a hot tub that has not been used in some time begins to grow biofilm, algae and/or bacterial colonies, rendering it unsafe. Wondering how to prepare your neglected tub for frequent spring usage? The following are some tips to help you do just that.
- Clean the filter: A hot tub filter removes unwanted particles, dirt, debris and microorganisms. If your spa is left unattended, the filter gets clogged and dirty. Rinse your filter under the garden hose or in the sink to remove large particles. Then, soak it in a filter cleanser, like Aqua Filter Free, to dissolve oils and mineral buildup. Consider getting the filter professionally cleaned to ensure it’s in excellent condition. For best results, allow the filter to dry before re-inserting.
- Test the filter and pump: Add water to bring the level up to the mid-skimmer, covering the filter. Check that all valves are open. Briefly run the spa pump on low speed and then high speed to help dislodge any debris in the pipes. If you have a circulation pump and a jet pump, test them both to ensure that they’re operational.
- Clean the pipes: To do this you’ll need a specialized plumbing cleaner like Purge. Add 1 full bottle to your existing spa water, run on high speed for 1 hour and then leave the cleanser in the spa for at least 23 hours.
- Drain the tub: Turn off the power to the hot tub. Attach your garden hose to the hot tub’s drain. Put the other end of the hose where you want the waste water to go and open the drain valve. Alternatively, use a small submersible pump.
- Check the hot tub carefully for damage. Cracks, mildew and mould in the tub’s shell can turn into costly problems if not repaired properly. Look at the rubber seals around the jets and note if there’s any erosion. If you need assistance with repairs, contact your hot tub dealer.
- Clean the hot tub: Once draining and checking are complete, use a shop vac to remove the remainder of the water in the bottom of the hot tub. Put the end of the shop vac hose up to the jets and suctions to remove the remaining water in the plumbing. Spray the shell and underside of the cover with a non-sudsing hot tub cleaner like Spa Life Clean. Remove it with a paper towel or a soft cloth.
- Refill the hot tub: Close the drain valve and remove your garden hose. Fill the spa from the filter area. This allows the pump to fill with water first, preventing potential airlock issues when you turn the hot tub on. When the hot tub is filled, turn the power back on and let the hot tub heat up.
- Add chemicals: When the hot tub has heated to approximately 20 degrees Celsius, add your initial chemicals.
Don’t let the look and smell of a neglected hot tub get you down! With a few simple steps, you can return your spa to sparkling condition and ensure it’s safe for spring usage.
Need advice on cleaning and refilling your spa? Interested in quality chemicals and accessories to improve your hot tub experience? Contact Calgary-based RnR hot tubs and spas. We carry a full line of hot tub accessories. Call (403) 203-0860 or fill out the contact request. RnR provides comprehensive service, expert knowledge, a wealth of field experience and the best products in the industry to help you maintain your hot tub/swim spa for years of enjoyment. RnR is Alberta’s premier hot tub/swim spa store specializing in the World’s First Steel Framed Spas from American Whirlpool, Vita Spas and MAAX Spas.