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Seven-steps Hot Tub Opening Guide For Newbies

New hot tub owners are gearing up for the colder months when they can sit back and find some much-needed warmth from their luxurious hot tubs and custom spas. However, there’s one problem: many first-time owners are unsure how to start a hot tub and ensure everything is good to go before kicking back and relaxing. If you find yourself in this position, worry no more–this article will cover everything you need to know about the hot tub start-up process.

There are seven general steps to opening your hot tub for the first time, and each step is described in detail below to guide you through your setup and get your tub ready for relaxation.

Step 1: Rinse & Drain

The first step to starting your hot tub is to rinse and drain the tub. Different requirements for this step depend on whether your hot tub is new or if you are restarting your current tub.

Starting New Hot Tubs

Starting your hot tub for the first time requires rinsing and draining to get rid of lingering antifreeze in your tub’s plumbing. To successfully rinse and drain your new hot tub, complete the following steps.

  • Fill the bottom of your tub with hot water.
  • Run the pump of your new hot tub for several minutes to flush out any antifreeze.
  • Once you have thoroughly rinsed the tub, you are ready to drain the hot tub.

Re-Starting Existing Hot Tubs

If you have a hot tub, then you have some idea of the hot tub chemical start-up process. However, it’s essential to continue using a guide so you don’t overlook or forget any details.

  • Drain the old water out of your hot tub. The old water is full of bacteria that could make you sick if you don’t clean your tub.
  • Once you have drained the old water, continue starting up. Hot tub maintenance is crucial for enjoying your downtime.
  • Fill the tub with new water. Use a high-quality jet and drain cleaner for a thorough cleaning.
  • Drain the tub again.

For Winterized Hot Tubs

If you winterized your hot tub when you used it last to prevent any freezing, you will have to rinse it this year to ensure everything runs smoothly and all connections are in place. The following are vital steps for rinsing a winterized hot tub.

  • Close the drain valves and tighten up any quick-disconnect fittings.
  • Put slice valves in an open or up position.
  • Check that the front and top of your tub’s pump are connected.
  • Inspect your heater for missing plugs or loose connections.
  • Check that the air blower is appropriately connected.
  • Close open drain valves.


Read More: Frequently Asked Questions About Backyard Spas & Hot Tubs  

Step 2: Turn Off Power & Clean Empty Hot Tub

Once you have adequately rinsed and drained the tub, you can move on to step two. In this step, you will shut off the power to your tub and clean the empty tub. For a new hot tub, you can complete this in the following steps:

  • Spray the shell of your hot tub and wipe it down. Make sure your cleaner is non-abrasive, and wipe down with a cloth or sponge.
  • Rinse your hot tub thoroughly to guarantee the water won’t foam later.

If you are restarting your hot tub for the season, you should approach step two differently:

  • Drain the stagnant water in your tub.
  • Perform a deep clean of the tub’s jets and drains as described in step one.

Step 3: Inspect for Damage

The next step for starting up your hot tub is inspecting it for any damage. Possible damage might include stains, discolouration, mildew, or cracks. Additionally, you might notice loose wiring in your hot tub. If you notice loose or frayed wires, consult an electrician.

Read More: When’s The Best Time To Get A Hot Tub Or Spa?

Step 4: Install & Clean the Filter

Step four involves installing and cleaning your hot tub’s or spa’s filter. Similar to previous steps, step four will have different guidelines for a new hot tub versus one you are restarting. Follow these steps to install and clean your filter for new hot tubs.

  • Install filter cartridges into all filter wells. Your hot tub might only have one filter well–check the user manual to be sure.

If you are restarting your hot tub, you should install and clean the filter with the following steps:

  • Remove any filter cartridges in your hot tub.
  • Inspect and clean the filter cartridges by spraying them with filter cleaner. You can also use an overnight chemical soak to clean your filters.
  • Once your filters are clean, inspect them again to see if replacement is necessary.

Step 5: Fill Hot Tub

Now that your tub is clean, you can fill it with new water. Use a hose filter for this step in case there are impurities in your water source, including harmful minerals, calcium, and metals. Use your hose to fill the water to the recommended level in your user manual. Ensure that the water is above the jets. Don’t overfill your hot tub.

Step 6: Prime the Pump & Add Start-Up Chemicals

Next, you should prime the pump on your hot tub. Priming the pump involves checking to ensure all air is out of your spa’s lines. Check your owner’s manual for details on priming your hot tub–some tubs offer self-priming features.

Once you have primed the pump, add start-up chemicals to your tub. Don’t move on to this step until the water has reached 30 degrees Celsius or 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Measure chemicals depending on the size of your hot tub and the instructions in your user manual. Be sure to add each chemical separately. Then, run the pump on high speed for at least 10 minutes to ensure the chemicals are evenly distributed in the water.

Step 7: Test – Set – Test

For step seven, start by testing your water chemistry to ensure it is balanced and safe for use. If you don’t test your water, you risk ignoring harmful chemicals that could damage your skin and hot tub. Test your hot tub water weekly and get it professionally tested monthly. Next, you can use the following steps to set and test your water before use.

  • Set the temperature of your hot tub. Ideally, the temperature should fall between 36 and 38 degrees Celsius or 98 and 102 degrees Fahrenheit. Do not exceed 40 degrees Celsius or 104 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Let the water circulate for about ten minutes after you set the temperature.
  • Cover your hot tub for 24 hours minimum to help the temperature rise while preventing water loss and chemical loss.
  • After 24 hours, test the water again. If necessary, rebalance the chemical levels.

Step 8: Enjoy Your Hot Tub

Now that you have finished the seven-step setup process, you are ready to sit back, relax, and enjoy your hot tub! Allow yourself some well-deserved rest and let your body relax in the hot tub’s soothing water.

Read More: 5 Tips For Using Your Spa Or Hot Tub In Winter

The Takeaway

Starting a hot tub for the first time or restarting your spa doesn’t have to be confusing or tedious. Knowing the best practices for safely setting up your hot tub can prevent hassle and guarantee a relaxing soak.

You can consider making the most of your hot tub spa by adding extra accessories and upgrades. If you are seeking a new hot tub or spa, you can find beautiful options from Edgewater Pools.

Read More: The Complete Guide To Hot Tubs Vs. Spas For Homeowners