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Thread: New Spa Questions

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Join Date
    May 2016

    Question New Spa Questions

    Hi Everyone,

    I am prepping for the arrival of my new (used) Hot Spring vanguard spa next week. I have a kit of chemicals and instructions from the very well regarded vendor in our area and just want to check if there is anything I am missing. Here is what they recommended:

    • PH and Alkaline up/down to balance at 7.5ish (this is the same as older spas I have maintained, so does not seem new)
    • Silver ion insert (Nature2)
    • 1 tbsp per person of MPS shock + "cleaning cycle" after use plus test occasionally and adjust as needed
    • couple tbsp Diclor shock each week

    In addition the previous owner was using SilkBalance, but my searches here and elsewhere make me think this is not worth the crazy price they are asking. Additionally the vendor said it does not do much.

    As for the spa itself it is only a couple years old and has an ozonator, separate constant circulation pump, and larger filter set. It will live on a concrete pad in my side yard without an overhang (if this matters much).

    Questions I have are:
    • What should I do for startup? (The spa is super clean and well maintained right now, but will obviously be refilled when moved)
    • Do I need anything additional such as Calcium, Borates or a water "softener"?
    • Any other tips you may have...

    I have reviewed the Chlorine/Bromine instructions here, but would like to give the Nature2 system a shot as some of the family does not like chlorine smell/feel and has enjoyed a friends spa using silver ion.


  2. Back To Top    #2
    Mod Squad JVTrain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Central Minnesota

    Re: New Spa Questions

    Welcome to TFP!

    I would recommend a deep cleaning of the spa before operation. There are many products out there, but the best one I've seen and used myself is Ahh-some jetted spa and tub cleaner. It's a high powered surfactant (detergent) that will remove residual biofilms. Biofilms is a fancy term for bacterial colonies that grow protective films in stagnant or unsanitized regions of plumbing and resist sanitation. Just getting the nasty that you may have inherited with the spa is worth it. This is when I did it the first time on my inherited ("well-maintained") spa: Ahh-some treatment

    You will likely not need alkaline up. If you do, it's repackaged and repriced baking soda. Cheaper at the supermarket. pH down powder is fine for spas as it's very convenient and spas are routinely drained so no worries about sulfates build up from that product. pH up you likely won't need... and borax is cheaper.

    Calcium is irrelevant in fiberglass spas unless EXTREMELY low.

    I would follow the sticky instructions. Nature2 can help in a spa as a secondary sanitizer but it MUST be used in conjunction with chlorine or bromine. It is not approved by the EPA as a sanitizer by itself.
    Joel - TFP Moderator - Minnesota - **Become a TFP Supporter!** Helpful Links: ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry - SLAM Procedure - Chlorine/CYA Chart
    40x20 Pool: 32K Gallons * Vinyl * Bleach Chlorination * Hayward S270T Sand Filter * Pentair SuperFlo 1 HP * Teledyne/Laars Heater * AquaVac Tigershark * TF-100 w/ SpeedStir
    Isolated Spa - 345 Gallons

  3. Back To Top    #3

    Join Date
    May 2016

    Re: New Spa Questions

    Thanks Joel,

    I thought the dichlor/MPS shocks in conjunction with the Nature2 covered sanitizing. I have even seen a couple threads here that look like similar steps. Is there something wrong with this method? As I said i would like to avoid as much chlorine/bromine as I can.

    Good tip on the ahh-some, I will probably order in a jar of it for arrival.

  4. Back To Top    #4
    Mod Squad
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    DFW, TX

    Re: New Spa Questions

    One more plug for using TFP methods. I have been using this process to maintain my tub for several years and it is great, How do I use Chlorine in my Spa (or pool)?. The problem people have with chlorine is tubs (and pools) is due to lack of understanding of the relationship between chlorine and CYA. Using CYA in your tub will eliminate any discomfort associated with chlorine.
    TFP Moderator
    If TFP helped you or saved you money - Become a TFP Supporter! <--Click here
    2012 build and pics, 20k gal gunite, black onyx pebblesheen, OK flagstone, IntellifoVS, cart filter w/Pleatco, IC40 SWG, Solartouch, 5 12'x4' solar panels, HP50HA heat pump, 8mil solar cover, borates, TF-100 test kit, SONOS, Doheny's Discovery Robot, hot tub on bleach

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