Hot springs hot tub used and black flecks (tiny rocks?) immediately

Cathyinww

Active member
Jul 9, 2020
35
Wa state
We just bought a used hot spring spa and there are sinking black flecks (seem like tiny rocks). They don’t disintegrate upon touching. Any insight? Happened before we even got in it but was clean when we loaded the water. They treated/flushed it before delivery. Thanks in advance!
 
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mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
36,408
Laughlin, NV
Pool Size
6000
Surface
Fiberglass
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Did you flush the spa with Ahhsome? The tub likely has old biofilm in the plumbing that needs to be cleaned out.
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
23,987
Northern NJ
Pool Size
35000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-60
Clean any new or used hot tub with Ahhsome before use...


Used hot tubs have bioflms in the pipes from use and even new hot tubs can have biofilms from the water leftover during testing.
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
36,408
Laughlin, NV
Pool Size
6000
Surface
Fiberglass
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Had the spa been sitting dry for a long time?
 

Cathyinww

Active member
Jul 9, 2020
35
Wa state
Had the spa been sitting dry for a long time?
No not at all. It had water in it when we viewed it and I saw black flecks and asked about it and he said must have been from the warehouse ceiling??? He did a flush. We filled it up and it was clear until it wasn’t.
this was an expensive hot tub for us (our first) so we are Stressed!
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
36,408
Laughlin, NV
Pool Size
6000
Surface
Fiberglass
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
I would still recommend an Ahhsome flush. Biofilm can present in many ways.
 

RDspaguy

In The Industry
Mar 21, 2020
1,187
Cabool, Mo
I see that fairly often in tubs when the owner or neighbors have had their roof shingles replaced. The grit will get in the tub, sucked up by the pump suctions in the footwell, and end up all over inside the plumbing. Slightly irritating but mostly harmless. They are usually large enough not to get lodged in the spinner jets or diverter valves.
I wouldn't let it ruin your new spa experience. They are easily removed with a spa vac and should mostly clear out in a few weeks at most. There is nothing that I know of in the spa that will cause this.
I agree wholeheartedly with the advice to use Ahhsome on any new-to-you spa. And, since the "rocks" could be sticking in the biofilm, it could very well take care of the problem.
 

Cathyinww

Active member
Jul 9, 2020
35
Wa state
Thanks for taking the time to respond. I am seeing others posts saying the black flecks happen before the motor quits. Someone else said it happens when the cell system dies. I do not know what a cell system is. The company that sold it did a flush. The black flecks happened again.
 

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RDspaguy

In The Industry
Mar 21, 2020
1,187
Cabool, Mo
The cell is a salt water generator, which I am not very familiar with in a spa, but have not ever known to produce black anything in a pool, failing or not.
There is nothing in the pump that will produce what you describe. Those parts are plastic, with the exception of the seal. The seal does have a graphite component, but if it were damaged it would be pouring water all over the equipment bay and ground around the spa.
I have been fixing spas for a living for 26 years, so am pretty confident in this assessment. Not sure what you have been reading, but I assure you it is not the pump.
 
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RDspaguy

In The Industry
Mar 21, 2020
1,187
Cabool, Mo
company that sold it did a flush.
I am not even sure what that means. But, if you meant "purge", not all products are created equal. I only recommend Ahhsome, having had poor results from every other brand I have ever used, or heard about from others. In fact, only a year or so ago I wouldn't have recommended any of them, including Ahhsome. Then I challenged @Ahhsomeguy with testing his product on a flip tub I was doing plumbing repairs on that had visible biofilm in the pipes I was cutting. I did a visual inspection after by cutting the pipes open, and have posted before/after pics in my thread. Now I am a definite proponent of Ahhsome.
 
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