Bought house with hot tub, know nothing

sharding

Member
Mar 1, 2012
20
Southern California
Hi. We bought a house that has an existing freestanding hot tub. This was not necessarily a feature we were looking for, but since we have it, I thought we might as well try to enjoy it (if we fail to enjoy it, or it ends up being too much trouble, I suppose we'll get rid of it)...

Unfortunately, I am 100% clueless about hot tubs, and I am not even sure of what the best starting point is for learning what this tub is, how it works, what condition it's in, and what I need to do to use it safely. I've started reading some of the posts and threads here, but they all seem to assume that I am having a new hot tub installed, know the equipment and chemicals being used, etc. But I'm starting from less knowledge than that. Should I be looking for some service provider to come out and do an initial inspection and setup (and teach me about it)? If so, am I just looking for the same companies who would install a hot tub like this new? A pool service? Someone else?

Thanks, and sorry for the cluelessness!!!!
 

YippeeSkippy

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 17, 2012
13,049
Evans, Georgia
I would second the suggestion of doing an Ahh-some purge. Old stagnant water and other stuff from the previous owners can be in the lines and you don't wanna soak in their ... stuff.

After you do the purge I'd suggest taking the Free Chlorine (FC) level up to 50ppm for 30 minutes and have all the jets/blowers running. Then drain again. If you can tell us the volume of the tub we can advise you on how much liquid chlorine to use to get that amount. Perhaps telling us the brand and model too, please.

When you fill it up make sure you put the hose in the filter space... if that is where your water enters the piping system. If you try to fill it by just putting the water into the tub itself you risk air locks, which can be one reason for "Flo" errors.

Maddie :flower:
 

dlleno

Well-known member
Sep 9, 2016
101
denver, CO
To add to the excellent advice already posted, and to "third" the recommendation of purging with Ahh-some, I have an additional tip and maybe a warning: with a used tub that has been sitting for a while, one purge with ahh-some may not be enough. What I highly recommend is, very simply, "purge until you can't get any more out" This can take some patience and where some give up. The goal is to achieve a running spa with all jets on, filters INSTALLED and the water dosed with ahh-some, and releasing no new material. this can be very difficult to achieve and requires multiple purges -- I have personally coached people through as many as 15 (thats right, filling up the spa 15 times), although that is an extreme case. The way to do this is as follows:

1. purge the first time, according to label directions, i.e. water "reasonably balanced" (in the ballpark) but not heated. dose with ahh-some and 20-ish ppm chlorine (use straight bleach). this will give you an idea of what you're up against (how much gunk you release). If you don't get much on the first purge, dose again (double the ahh-some dose) and control the production of foam with an ordinary "foam down" type product. This is somewhat unusual approach, but it does work and I recommend doing this with a used tub.

2. dump the water, fill and dose with ahh-some again. if you get no new (or very little) release, then start rejoicing. wipe up what you can with a microfiber cloth rinsed in a solution of ahh-some in a bucket. keep wiping until your spa is clean (no new release. walls stay clean). You're almost there.

3. now add your filters back into their normal positions. If they have already been in the vessel while purging, all the better (they will be clean).

4. keep the jets running. wipe up any material that accumulates on the vessel walls. you now have the cleanest spa known to man. it takes great patience but yields great satisfaction!
 

sharding

Member
Mar 1, 2012
20
Southern California
Thanks for the feedback so far! I haven't been ignoring it, I have just been busy with other "new house" projects, and also the weather has been bad. I ordered some Ahh-some and will try it out as soon as I can. I will also report back with more information about the tub as soon as I have a chance to go out there and look (i.e. as soon as I have the combination of it not raining, I'm not working, I'm home, and it's light out!).
 

BMK

Bronze Supporter
Mar 29, 2016
416
SW PA
It wasnt clear if you were given the owner's manual for your tub. If not, I would recommend downloading one for your make and model. It'll serve as a good reference and are usually written assuming you have no prior knowledge. Combine that with the vast and helpful knowledge base here and you'll be relaxing in your spa in no time.
 

sharding

Member
Mar 1, 2012
20
Southern California
I got a bunch of manuals and stuff from the prior owners, but I haven't found one for the hot tub yet. I haven't even found the make and model yet, but I assume it's printed somewhere on the tub...
 

Newdude

Well-known member
Jun 16, 2019
2,550
NY
but I assume it's printed somewhere on the tub...
Mine has a removable panel to access the motor/heater etc. the make/model/serial# should all be there somewhere.

Also want to throw in my $.02 and vote for multiple Ahh-some rounds. Keep going until it’s clean. Mine took many Refills over a week and I used the whole container. My hot tub made me rethink what I thought was ‘clean’. We were sanitary and all our clothing fresh from the washing machine. And full of residual soap/ shampoo/ conditioner/ laundry detergent / fabric softener. One of my daughters and my wife both have crazy thick long hair. If either of them went in the hot tub it was like putting half a bottle of detergent in the clothes washer. A foam/rave party. And believe me I often am late to events as they take 45 minutes to wash out their hair while showering before. So it’s not like they didn’t rinse enough.

Now add to that your body sweat/oils from all that heat. It was gross enough with my own families icky stuff. Being in somebody else’s ?? Ohhhhhhh no. Lol. Clean until clear my friend. !!!
 

sharding

Member
Mar 1, 2012
20
Southern California
I don't know if this is a taboo question in these parts, but would I be making a mistake to call the company who installed it (I have the original invoice) and have them come do a service and teach me how to do it? I definitely prefer to DIY things in general, but I'm feeling a little overwhelmed with tasks and would love to be able to use this hot tub sooner rather than later......
 

YippeeSkippy

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 17, 2012
13,049
Evans, Georgia
Not at all a taboo question! We have no problem with folks hiring others to help them. We just want you to be educated as to what is needed...and what is not.

Whether they offer that service is another mystery. <shrug>. Oddly enough when we bought our tub they never mentioned a need for it. :eek:

Maddie :flower:
 
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ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
16,467
Northern NJ
I suggest you discuss with any compa what they will do for spa startup and maintenance. Will they do Ahhsome cleaning like discussed Be an educated consumer based on this thread.
 
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