When it comes to hot tubs, all chlorine is not created equal!

November 7, 2017 – When our Service Center fields water care questions from customers, and our techs visit customers’ homes on service calls, it’s stunning how many have drifted from what we have recommended and gone “water care rogue”.

One of the most alarming things we find is a departure from the right kind of chlorine to use for their tub. A lot of things can cause this: a friend who is suddenly a water care aficionado offers an opinion; a visit to a big box store lures someone to chlorine in the garden department sold seasonally; seeing something online that’s cheaper…and so on.

Your hot tub does a lot of great things to improve your health & well-being. Straying from the right kind of sanitizer for hot water doesn’t do your body good. In fact, if you end up contracting hot tub folliculitis, you may have no one other than yourself to thank for trying to short cut it on water care.

Here are some notes about different types of chlorine

  • Calcium Hypochlorite—This is NOT for the hot tub. This is a product designed to be used in pools, and can do a good job of killing bacteria in colder water. 100+ degree water? Not so much. This is a no-no for the hot tub.
  • Bleach—This is also not for the hot tub. Now, there are plenty of folks out there who will argue otherwise. However, the concentration of true chlorine is diluted to the point where it is nearly inert after an incredibly short period and evaporates. It has no hot tub “shelf life”. If you want to kill the bacteria in your tub left behind after soaks, this is not the way to do it. Not only can it set you up for an under-sanitized tub, it is also absolutely not pH stable. And—guess what? A tub with incorrect pH left unchecked can help bacteria breed away. It’s also not smart if you have sensitive skin, either.
  • Chlorine Tablets in a Floater—Definitely wrong for the hot tub. First, chlorine tablets are not for hot tubs. Second, leaving a chlorine floater in a tub with sanitizer flowing away into water could cause components to corrode and again wreak havoc on pH. And, not good for those with sensitive skin.
  • Sodium Dichlor—Ding ding! We have a winner. THIS is the correct formulation of chlorine for use in a hot tub. It can KILL bacteria that could otherwise thrive in 100+ degree water, and a small amount will go a long way. Is it more expensive? Yes. Is it the correct safest smartest thing to put in your hot tub if you’re using chlorine as a sanitizer? Yes. Is it the right way to protect your hot tub investment? Yes.

Our goal is to set our customers up with the right water care products to give them happy healthy soaking and NOT cause a lot of water care drama. If you ever have a question regarding the safe way to take care of your hot tub, we’re happy to help, or direct you to one of the water care specialists connected to the brands we carry.  

 Happy HEALTHY soaking!


Don Riling

Author: Don Riling

Don Riling is the President of Olympic Hot Tub and has been an active member of the hot tub industry for over 20 years. As the company’s owner since 2016, he has continued Olympic’s legacy of promoting health & wellness through hot water & sauna therapy.

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