When it comes to owning a hot tub, one of the most common concerns is how much work goes into maintaining them. Since the whole idea of a hot tub is to provide you with a way to relax, most people do not want to spend a lot of time preparing their tub. So, how hard are hot tubs to maintain?
Although owning a hot tub comes with the responsibility of keeping it in good working order, they are relatively easy to maintain. All you have to do is take the time to set up your hot tub correctly, then regularly change and treat the water, clean the filter, and monitor the chemicals.
Knowing how to maintain your hot tub appropriately will depend on your level of expertise when it comes to setting it up. Let’s look at some factors you should consider before investing in a hot tub.
Is a Hot Tub a Lot of Maintenance?
Like many additions you purchase for your home, a hot tub only functions as well as the maintenance that is put into it. This means that if you decide to invest in one, you have to be aware of the regular maintenance it requires.
If you are like some people, you may not want to take on the task of keeping your hot tub in good working order. In this case, you may want to consider hiring a professional service to come in and maintain your hot tub.
However, with a few simple steps, you could be taking care of your hot tub without the added expense of someone else doing it. The steps are relatively simple if you take the time to learn them correctly.
Hot Tub Initial Setup
One of the most important steps in making sure your hot tub stays in proper working order is when you first set it up. Proper installation and setup can make the difference between simple maintenance from time to time and more tedious tasks along the way.
While many people think that all you have to do is fill the hot tub with water, heat it, and climb in, there is much more to it. Without the appropriate amount of work at the beginning, you may find yourself with a breeding ground for bacteria.
Here are some of the initial setup procedures you should follow to make sure your hot tub water is completely balanced:
- Allow your hot tub to heat the water thoroughly to allow for better acceptance of the chemicals.
- Check your hot tub for metals, treat it if needed with an appropriate solution, and allow it to circulate for about 30 minutes or so.
- Test the hardness of the water and treat it with calcium chloride, if needed. Remember that calcium levels should be 150-250 ppm (parts per million). Allow the calcium carbonate to circulate for about 20 minutes or so.
- Test the pH levels of the water to ensure that they are balanced appropriately. You will check the alkalinity, pH, and calcium levels and then treat the water if needed. If anything is added to the water, give it time to circulate before moving to the next step.
- Add your chosen sanitizing system. Whether you use chemicals such as chlorine and bromine or a mineral sanitizing system, this is the appropriate time to get this going.
- Shock your spa with a product designed to jump-start the sanitizing process.
Once you have taken the appropriate steps above, you should be ready to use your hot tub as you see fit.
After the initial setup of your hot tub, you will want to ensure that you are checking the levels from the previous section often. This is because you must ensure that the water maintains its balance and that the appropriate amount of the various components stays within normal limits.
While the time it took to do these steps initially was quite some time, when you are making the checks as a part of your regular maintenance using a kit like this one (on Amazon), it should take only a few minutes. This is, of course, dependent on whether or not you have to make any adjustments along the way.
If you have to adjust to any of the levels listed above, it should still not take a lot of time. This is because hot tubs are set up to mostly maintain the initial levels set during the installation process.
Another step in regular maintenance of your hot tub is to ensure that harmful bacteria do not have a chance to grow. While your sanitizing system does a great job of taking care of this step, it doesn’t hurt to give it some help along the way.
Most manufacturers recommend giving your hot tub a shock treatment after every use or at least once weekly. But, of course, this depends entirely on how much use your hot tub is regularly getting.
Since your sanitizing system’s job is to grab onto any particles or other invaders that may come into your system, they sometimes need help to rid themselves of these things. This is where your shock treatments can help.
Shock treatments are a product that contains certain minerals and chemicals that are designed to clean out your sanitizing system. Regular shock treatments will ensure that your sanitizer works to the best of its ability in keeping your hot tub clean.
Along with regular maintenance of your hot tub, there may be times when you need to do some troubleshooting to fix specific problems. This can happen with any water feature you add to your home.
Whether you set up your hot tub according to the manufacturer’s recommendations or not, some things can happen from time to time. When these issues arise, you must ensure that you take care of them promptly.
Making sure that your hot tub stays in perfect overall condition is a top priority if you plan to use it regularly. Because of this, you may want to consider researching experts in hot tub repair in your area.
Water and Filter Changes
In addition to the above suggestions on maintaining your hot tub, you must also ensure you are changing the filters and/or water when appropriate. This will ensure that your hot tub continues to function correctly.
Whether using a mineral system with your hot tub system or not, you must ensure that all filters are changed regularly. Doing so will keep your hot tub clean and ensure it works correctly.
Another essential part of hot tub ownership is making sure the water in the tub is completely changed from time to time. It is an excellent idea to do this and align it with the changing of filters so that it can all be done simultaneously, which allows for fewer disruptions of your soaking time.
Hot Tub Cover Maintenance
While maintaining the water and the inside of the hot tub is the most crucial factor of hot tub ownership, keeping the cover in good condition is also essential. This is because the cover helps keep the water hot and keeps critters and other things out of the unit.
Regular inspection of your cover will ensure that it stays in good condition for years to come. However, if the cover is worn down, you may consider replacing it with a newer one.
Prepare for the Winter
If you live in a place that stays relatively temperate most of the year, you may want to consider keeping your hot tub functioning. However, if you are somewhere where it freezes in the winter, you may want to consider shutting it down during this time.
If you choose to winterize your hot tub, you must drain the water from the tub and filter completely. You should also consider adding an antifreeze solution after ensuring all the water is gone. Once this is done, replace the cover and unplug the unit entirely to save on electricity over the winter.
Hot Tub Maintenance Schedule
With all the steps listed previously about maintaining your hot tub to ensure it stays in good working condition, you may consider setting up a maintenance schedule. Doing this will ensure you do not miss a step in keeping your hot tub functioning properly.
Here are some suggestions on how to set up a maintenance schedule for your hot tub based on what needs to be done and how often:
As a weekly maintenance chore, you should add a shock treatment to your hot tub to ensure that any particles are cleaned out of your sanitizing system. It is important to note that you may want to do this after every use.
Take the time weekly to wipe down your hot tub to remove any scum or other buildup around the surface above the water. You should use a bleach-type solution to do this.
Multiple Times Per Week
You should ensure that your hot tub is balanced appropriately throughout the week. This will keep the alkalinity, pH, and calcium levels at the appropriate amount to ensure it is ready to use anytime you would like.
Every Two Weeks
Take the time every couple of weeks to remove the filter and rinse it off with your water hose. This will remove any impurities that may be building up. In addition, this is also an excellent time to clean and inspect the cover for any buildup or damage.
Once a month, you should perform a deep cleaning on the filter in your hot tub. This means soaking your filter in a chemical solution to ensure that all bacteria and particles are removed. If you do not want to take the time to do this, you can always change the filter if you have an extra.
Every 3-4 months
Since the sanitizing systems are typically good for about 3-4 months, this is a good time to perform maintenance on your entire hot tub. This means changing out the sticks or cartridges in your sanitizing system to keep it working correctly.
This is also a great time to drain your hot tub entirely and flush out the plumbing lines to ensure buildup is eliminated. Since you are doing general maintenance, you may also want to take the time to clean and sanitize your entire unit before refilling it.
Once a year, it is a good idea to do a complete inspection of your hot tub unit as a whole. This means changing filters if needed and ensuring your cabinets and areas around the hot tub are free of leaks, pests, and other potential issues.
Which Hot Tubs are Easiest to Maintain?
Choosing the right hot tub means finding the ones that are easier to maintain to reduce the amount of time you have to spend working on your hot tub. This is because the whole idea of having a hot tub is so that you can relax from the stresses of the day.
Many hot tub manufacturers exist on the market today, which can make choosing the right one for you a daunting task. However, since they are not all created equally, it is important to understand their differences to make the best decision for your home.
Bullfrog Spas are some of the easiest hot tubs to maintain since they are constructed to endure the many conditions a unit provides. They come in a wood-free cabinet that keeps them from buckling under moist conditions and are easy to maintain.
Take a look at a couple of the recommended Bullfrog hot tubs that are easiest to maintain:
- Bullfrog X Series hot tubs are said to be quality units but with affordable pricing that makes purchasing one incredibly doable. In addition, the series comes equipped with all of the standard features that make it simple to maintain over time.
- Bullfrog R Series hot tubs are also extremely affordable than many other hot tub models. This series is considered to have premium models but one that fits your budgetary needs. In addition, due to the construction, they are really easy to maintain.
Final Thoughts on are Hot Tubs Hard to Maintain
Overall, following the simple steps mentioned above is essential when maintaining a hot tub for more prolonged use. Keep in mind that the goal of hot tub ownership is to have a place to relax and soak in a clean, sanitary environment, which can only happen if you perform regular maintenance on the unit.