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You are here: Home > Learning Center > Get to Know Your Spa Chemicals
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Spa chemicals have to be the most confusing aspect of owning a hot tub. There are many different products and brands of products that all do different things, so how do you know what you need and how to pick the right chemicals for your spa? Let us break it down for you, so you can understand all the different chemicals and the reason you put them in your spa water.

SPA CARE KITS

If you’re a new spa owner or you’ve wanted to try out a particular line of products, we carry a selection of Spa Care Kits with both sample size and full size chemicals. These kits come with a full range of chemicals to help you maintain perfect quality water in your spa at special prices. Included are instruction booklets or videos full of information, and bonus gifts.

TEST STRIPS

Test Strips are a necessary tool in ensuring clean spa water and the overall upkeep of your hot tub. Test strips are easy to use and made to determine the amount of chlorine and bromine in your water, as well as the pH, alkalinity, and calcium levels. Based on the reading of the test strip after it has been dipped in the spa water, you should proceed to add an appropriate amount of chemicals to balance your spa water. After you’ve added chemicals and let the spa cycle for a bit, it is good to test the water a second time to ensure you’ve reached the optimal water balance that keeps your water clean, and you healthy.

SANITIZERS

Sanitizers Hot tub Sanitizers are the most important aspect of maintaining clean spa water, which in turn guarantees you a healthy soak in your tub. Why are they so important? Sanitizers kill any germs and bacteria that can cause odor and contamination in spa water. You wouldn’t want to soak in anything but clean water, so make sure to remember to use the sanitizer. With so many options, the hard part is choosing which one. Here is a description of the sanitizers we offer to help you decide which one is the best choice for you.

Chlorine: Chlorine is the form of sanitation most people are familiar with due to its popular use in swimming pools. The specially formulated tablets and granules work specifically for hot tubs. Chlorine is an effective and inexpensive spa water sanitizer.

Bromine: Bromine tablets are the next most popular sanitizer for hot tubs, behind Chlorine. Bromine combines sodium bromide and chlorine, so don’t choose Bromine as an alternative to Chlorine if you don’t want it in your spa water at all. For the many who choose bromine as a chlorine alternative, the reason is often because the smell is not as strong. Bromine comes in tablet form and can be put in the spa water with a floating feeder, or a brominating box previously installed in various spas.

Mineral Purifier: Mineral Purifiers are used to reduce the need for stronger sanitizers like chlorine and bromine. Its job is the same as any sanitizer, to keep your hot tub clean from contamination, but a mineral purifier cannot replace the use of sanitizer completely. Using a mineral purifier merely reduces the amount of Chlorine/Bromine sanitizer you have to add on a regular basis, perhaps even simplifying your spa maintenance regimen. Mineral purifiers are typically put inside the filter cartridge or in a floating dispenser so the sanitizing minerals can be released over time into the water. If you choose one of these products, it typically needs replacement every few months.

Ozone: Go to our Ozone/Natural Spa Care section under Spa Parts to find more information about ozone and a selection of ozonators. This form of sanitation also reduces the need for chlorine and bromine. Some spas will come equipped with an ozonator, but it is also possible to install one as well. Many spa manufacturers will make your hot tub ozone ready, so if it doesn’t have an ozonator, one can be installed with a fair amount of ease. Remember, ozonators are a form of sanitation but still do not eliminate the use of chlorine or bromine. It is still necessary to treat your water with chemicals on a regular basis.

* Remember before you add any type of sanitizer of chemicals to your hot tub, you have to test your current levels using a water test strip.

MPS / SHOCK

Shock is also a crucial chemical used to maintain clean spa water.

Shock is an oxidizer that gets rid of dead organic matter in the water, like skin, skin oils, cosmetics, and lotions. Adding shock to your spa on a weekly basis can prevent all this organic matter from clouding your water and clogging up your system. Not only does it keep your water clean, it will help make sure your spa water is crystal clear.

BALANCERS

Balancers work to keep your hot tub’s water at all the right levels. They raise or lower pH and/or alkalinity. Calcium booster will also help raise water hardness levels. There are even some chemical balancers that will, after you initially balance your water after start up, lock all those water levels in place for an amount of time.

Your water’s pH is the concentration of hydrogen ions in your spa water. It is necessary to keep your spa’s pH within a small range (7.2-7.8), so the minerals and metals in your water do not begin to form deposits, and so the water does begin to irritate your skin in any way.

Alkalinity: Total alkalinity refers to the ability of the hot tub water to resist changes in pH. By controlling the alkalinity level of your water, you can lessen the need to balance your pH all the time.

CLARIFIERS

Everyone wants clear, sparkling water. When your water goes cloudy or even foamy, there are a number of reasons - oils, dirt, algae, even metal particles, for example. A clarifier will generally clump particles in the spa water so they can be more easily removed from the water by the filter to clear your hot tub water. When your water becomes foamy, there is also a simple solution: Foam Down or any other product made to get rid of excess bubbles in the spa.

CLEANERS

Filter: Cleaning your filter is one of the most important aspects of maintaining your hot tub. The filter keeps your water clean, protects your health, and even protects some expensive spa parts by keeping any excess contaminants from clogging up your system. It is up to you to decide when it’s time to change your filter, but we recommend you replace it on a yearly basis. However, you should still clean your filter on a monthly basis to ensure your spa water is clean. There are a variety of products to help you clean your filter.

Spa Instant Cartridge Cleaner: This spray on cleaner is good for using on your filter on a monthly basis. It will clean your filter without having to soak it overnight. If you’re always on the go, this is a great product for you. It makes the filter cleaning process quick, easy, and hassle free.

Filter Clean:This type of filter cleaner is for soaking the filter overnight, if you have the time. This type of product can be used every time you choose to clean the filter, but many people choose to use Instant Cartridge Cleaner instead because of its ease and quick use. However, you should deep clean your filter every few months to ensure that it receives the deep clean process only filter clean can offer.

Remember: Don’t forget to turn off the electricity to your hot tub when you soak your filter overnight. Letting the hot tub circulate without a filter could mean letting impurities into your pump and clogging it up. If you have time, also allow the filter to dry before replacing it in your hot tub. If you already have a scum line forming in your spa, we recommend you use a multi-purpose cleaner and a Tub Rub Pad . Check out our Cleaners section under Hot Tub Chemicals for a selection of recommended cleaners for the shell and cover of your spa

If you already have a scum line forming in your spa, we recommend you use a multi-purpose cleaner and a Tub Rub pad.

Check out our Cleaners section under Hot Tub Chemicals for a selection of recommended cleaners for the shell and cover of your spa.

NATURAL SPA CARE

Looking for an alternative to using harsh chemicals in your hot tub? Our natural spa care products are the answer to reducing and eliminating the use of chemicals like chlorine and bromine. The best way to ensure that your spa water is clean and clear is still by using a sanitizer like chlorine or bromine to prevent contamination of your water. However, we understand that the use of chemicals isn’t everyone’s first choice, so we wanted to provide you with some alternatives to meet your spa cleaning needs.

Our natural spa care products are the perfect solution for anyone with sensitive skin, chlorine allergies, or any hot tub owner searching for a new alternative to traditional sanitizers. These products are gentle on eyes, hair, and skin while still maintaining crystal clear and clean water.

There is an array of products you can use for natural spa care, but let us give you a run down on the most popular choices.

Natural Spa Care Mineral Purifier: Mineral purifiers are used to reduce the need for stronger sanitizers like chlorine and bromine. Its job is the same as any sanitizer, to keep your hot tub clean from contamination, but a mineral purifier cannot replace the use to sanitizer completely. They are typically put inside the filter cartridge or in a floating dispenser so the sanitizing minerals can be released over time into the water. It is still necessary to use a sanitizer in conjunction with this product, but it will lessen the need to add sanitizer as frequently and as heavily as one normally would.

Ozone: This form of sanitation requires that your hot tub is equipped with an ozonator. Even if your spa has an ozonator, it does not completely replace the use of sanitizers like bromine and chlorine. You will still have to use a small amount of bromine or chlorine on a regular basis to keep your hot tub completely clean. If your hot tub does not currently have an ozonator, you might still be able to purchase and install one. Many modern hot tubs come equipped with a place to install ozonators, making the installation process quick and easy for you.

This line of products is a biguanide based sanitizing system that is 100% chlorine and bromine free. It uses three main products that work together to keep your water crystal clean and clear. These products are great for anyone looking for an alternative to traditional sanitizers, and it is gentle on eyes, hair and skin. Not to mention, it is virtually odor free.

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Leisure Time Chlorine - Spa 56 Chlorinating Granules - 2 lb.
Leisure Time Chlorine - Spa 56 Chlorinating Granules - 2 lb.

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Rendezvous Chlorine - Chlorinating Concentrate Granular - 1.75 lb.
Rendezvous Chlorine - Chlorinating Concentrate Granular - 1.75 lb.

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Leisure Time Bright & Clear - Safe for Ozone - Does not cause build-up! - 32 oz.
Leisure Time Bright & Clear - Safe for Ozone - Does not cause build-up! - 32 oz.

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303 Aerospace Protectant - 16 oz.
303 Aerospace Protectant - 16 oz.

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Leisure Time Metal Gon - 16 oz.
Leisure Time Metal Gon - 16 oz.

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Leisure Time Foam Down - 16 oz.
Leisure Time Foam Down - 16 oz.

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Leisiure Time Renew Tabs - 1.75 lbs.
Leisiure Time Renew Tabs - 1.75 lbs.

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Leisure Time Deluxe Spa Care Kit with Video - Chlorine
Leisure Time Deluxe Spa Care Kit with Video - Chlorine

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