Inflatable hot tubs are one of the coolest additions you could add to your backyard. No one will argue with that—unless you don’t know how to care for it.
Show of hands: Who wants to jump in a hot tub with murky algae-infested water that smells like a swamp? That’s right—no one! If you don’t put the right TLC in your inflatable hot tub, things take a rapid turn for the worst.
So, how should you go about keeping your water clean? This question is something that many inflatable hot tub guides skip. But not to worry! We’re here with the best tips you’ll want to know to keep your water in top condition. So don’t be afraid to join us as we’ll let you in on our secrets for keeping your inflatable hot tub water crystal clear and algae-free!
How to Take Care of an Inflatable Hot Tub
Maintaining your inflatable hot tub does not end with sanitisation. Instead, we’ve only just begun. So to keep your inflatable hot tub working as long as possible, make sure you follow these following steps.
Keep Your Water Clean
Here’s a step that’s not too hard. In fact, it’s downright easy so long as you stay on top of a few basic actions. You’ll even find that some of these feel more like basic hygiene than extra work. So be sure to follow these steps in order to prevent your water from becoming a disgusting and cloudy swamp.
You’ll want to start by keeping your water filters clean. These tend to get clogged pretty quickly. So to avoid this, be sure to rinse them under cold tap water. Also, you’ll want to replace your filters on a monthly basis.
Also, be sure to shower before jumping in your inflatable hot tub. Seriously, you’d be amazed to see how much gunk from your body enters (and damages) your spa. To give a basic idea—showering removes any excess oils, perfumes/ colognes, deodorant, makeup, shaving gels, astringents, moisturisers, and so much more.
Lastly, you can keep your water clean with routine water changes. If you’ve ever left water in a hot tub for too long, you already know how disgusting this will look—and if you don’t, let’s just say you won’t want to find out how it looks. So to prevent this disgusting water quality from appearing, you’ll want to change your water monthly. Also, be sure to wipe down your pool of residue and debris in between changes.
Testing Your Water
Here’s where you’ll want a water testing kit. As you’ll soon see, this step will prevent anything from going wrong as a result of poor water qualities.
Begin by checking your water’s alkalinity. As a rule of thumb, you’ll want a number between 80-110 ppm. The main purpose for checking alkalinity is to ensure your pH levels remain in check—once your pH values go awry, a slippery slope of damages soon incurs.
So, as you might have guessed, you’ll want to check your pH levels next. The testing kits for these look like mini chemistry kits you used in secondary school—only this time, your job becomes far easier. In most cases, you’ll put some water in a tube, add a few drops of a chemical, and you’ll get your pH level based on the water’s new colour.
You can also buy pH test strips. Simply dip these in water and get your result in a matter of seconds. Either way you look at it, both these tests will give you a reliable pH value.
Generally, you’ll want to aim for a pH level around 7-7.8. Anything out of this range will reduce the effectiveness of sanitizers in your spa. And you surely don’t want those to stop working—otherwise, everything else in your inflatable hot tub stops working.
Next, you’ll want to “shock” your water. Sounds like something dangerous, right? Thankfully, this process is completely safe—you’re simply oxidizing your spa. As a whole, this is the process to remove any natural garbage from your hot tub’s water. By this, we mean dead skin, hair, body oils, and anything else we naturally emit into the water. This is also a great means of killing algae and gross odours, fixing water discolouration, improving clarity, and plenty of other strange water issues.
Before you perform a shock, be sure to check your water balance. If necessary, adjust your spa’s water to acceptable levels. Then follow the instructions on the label for specifics on how to treat your water from here.
You’ll want to do this on a weekly basis to keep your water in the best shape possible. Even better, you can perform this task with chlorine or bromine granules. Just make sure you don’t jump in your inflatable hot tub during the oxidizing process—otherwise your skin might feel a burning sensation.
Calcium In Your Inflatable Hot Tub
Lastly, we cannot forget about the calcium. You’ll use this anytime your water becomes too soft. And when water becomes soft, damage to heating and jet systems soon occurs. So to prevent this from happening, you can add some calcium to your water supply. As a rule of thumb, you’ll want to add calcium if your hardness drops below 100 ppm. And ideally, you’ll want to raise this level to somewhere between 130-150 ppm. Some great products for this are calcium chloride and calcium increaser. If your water tests between 150-250 ppm, your calcium levels are fine—so you won’t need to raise your calcium levels with readings in that range.
On a helpful side note, you’ll want to take notice of the hardness of your area’s water. In hard water (high in calcium and minerals) areas, you’ll want to add some descaler to your hot tub. Doing this once a week will prevent any limescale buildup in your pipes, filters, and jets. And yes, this buildup will destroy your inflatable hot tub—so add some descaler to keep this from happening.
We have one last tip for hard water areas: fill your spa with water from a softener instead of a tap—this will prevent your calcium and scale from building too rapidly in your spa’s water.
Use A Vacuum Cleaner
Vacuum cleaners aren’t just for your carpets. In fact, you can buy vacuums, especially for your inflatable hot tub. But for the most part—the functionality is the same. You’re still cleaning–only this time, the vacuum is waterproof.
Most inflatable hot tub vacuums run on batteries. So you won’t need to worry about dangerous cords dropping in the water. Also, these cleaners usually come with a telescopic reach—so you can suck up that mildew and dirt at the bottom of your spa without getting wet!
Hot Tub Covers
Here’s our last tip for keeping your spa clean. And it also happens to be the easiest—invest in a hot tub cover.mThe name says it all here—this is a tarp that covers your inflatable hot tub. So you won’t need to worry about dust, dirt, leaves and other outdoor debris dropping into your water. And as an added bonus, these work great for keeping your water insulated. So you’re not only keeping your water clean, but you’ll also find some savings on your next energy bill.
All in all, managing an inflatable hot tub is not as simple as inflating and filling with water. You will need to perform some extra maintenance if you plan to keep your spa working past its first year—and to also keeping from looking utterly disgusting. But don’t worry—follow your included guides and you’ll find it’s really not much work keeping your water in optimal conditions. Keep in mind that everything here is only the start. If you’re curious about the best chemicals to use in your hot tub, we’ve got all the advice you’ll need for that as well. So be sure to check that out as well if you want clean and clear water.