Water Care can be complex. A little understanding of it can go a long way. Tap water or for that matter, well water may be good enough to drink but that does not necessarily make it ideal for your hot tub. You may be an expect when it comes to your pool and this certainly helps, however hot tub water care is slightly different as it has:
- Extremely rapid bacteria reproduction at normal spa temperatures
- Increases in pH, due to aeration, higher temperatures and speed flow through piping
- Less active chlorine/bromine, thanks to the tendency for higher pH values
- More organic-nitrogen compounds from bathers sweat, skin oils and skin exfoliation
- Less water available to dilute contaminants introduced by bathers
- Increased calcium carbonate scale due to higher temperatures and increased pH
Hotter water equals faster bacterial reproduction which means how important it is to use sanitizers . With less volume of water per bather this means higher amounts of bather contamination for the sanitizer to deal with. For example 1 person in a 1000 litre tub is equivalent to 50 swimmers in a small 50,000 litre pool
Bromine is a far more effective sanitizer compared to chlorine because bromine is still an effective sanitizer when pH levels rise, whereas chlorine becomes less effective as pH goes up. It’s very important to check pH levels and sanitizer levels frequently to keep in in ideal range. Total Alkalinity is a sort of buffer to ensure pH bounces less.
Calcium Hardness is also a concern especially on well water. Water naturally craves calcium, if it’s not given in the water it will seek it out. This is why often time if on city water there is a need to add calcium to the water gradually. Well water tends to be more calcium rich and may not require additional calcium. On that note however, there can be times when calcium is too high which can cause calcium deposits and even a sandpaper feel if it falls out of solution when pH levels drop or rise.
It is always best to test your spa water frequently using test strips so that minor corrections can be made. When in doubt, always have your water tested by a professional. I recommend you have your water tested by a water care specialist every 4-6 weeks.
As the water gets older, it tends to get harder to manage. Changing your water every 3 months or so is ideal.
All the best in your water care. We are here and happy to help with questions and or water care. We offer an on site water care service. Give us a call and book a time to have your water tested.