Hot Tub Chemistry 101

From Swim University

If you are a hot tub owner, you have realized by now that a hot tub is a much different animal than a typical swimming pool.  The super heated water along with the smaller gallonage makes for a cauldron of bacteria, and makes it difficult to keep chemistry in balance.  Where else would you turn to for a basic lesson in Hot Tub Chemistry other than Swim University?  This post from Matt Giovanisci provides a blog post called Hot Tub Chemistry 101, which is indeed a great primer on hot tubs and chemistry for the DIY'er.

Here is an excerpt from the post:

How to Maintain Your Spa or Hot Tub

from Wiki How

In large portions of the Country, the Hot Tub represents the only water recreation that one will experience until around June.  Hot tubs provide therapy, warmth, and relaxation to countless Americans during the winter months as well as the Summer months.  Unfortunately, due to the smaller volume of water compared to a swimming pool, as well as the super heated temperatures desired, the hot tub is a volatile entity that requires vigilance in the maintenance regimen.  Luckily, this post from Wiki How provides a simple-to-follow guide to hot tub maintenance that will make the daunting task manageable.

Here is an excerpt from the post:

10 Easy Hot Tub Maintenance Tips

from Swim University

In many parts of the country during the Winter months, the hot tub sees the only swimming pool activity.  Until Memorial day, hot tubs serve many purposes for people, including relaxation, therapy, and recreation.  Unfortunately, because the vessel of water is smaller, and the water is super-heated, hot tub care and maintenance is very different than a regular swimming pool.  This post from Matt Giovanisci at Swim University presents a handy guide to hot tub care and maintenance, and shows that armed with the proper knowledge, the hot tub can be a great winter distraction, free from issues.

Here is an excerpt from the post:

Several Reasons Why Your Hot Tub Is NOT Just a Tiny Swimming Pool

by Terry Arko via

Many who buy a hot tub often do so with a misconception that caring for a small hot tub will be easier and involve less chemical use and time than a swimming pool would. Those who have cared for spas/ hot tubs know that nothing is farther from the truth. These individuals have discovered that spas and hot tubs aren't just tiny swimming pools.

The Difference Between Pools and Hot Tubs

In fact a hot tub is much more than just a tiny swimming pool. There are many differences between a pool and hot tub and these differences call for a different and more strategic plan for care. Listed below are some of the major differences between hot tubs and pools.

Temperature – Most pools max temp 80° Spas/Hot tubs 92° to 104°

Higher evaporation rate – leads to more scale and increased calcium levels

Air jets and blowers cause quicker chemical reduction

Water balance – smaller body of water means greater effect on pH, total alkalinity, calcium hardness and TDS from added chemicals

Bather load ratio – 3 people in average spa/hot tub = 300 in a backyard swimming pool