As the cooler weather approaches in NJ ( and yes unfortunately it will), if you are like me then it is time to think about opening your hot tub for the Season. For many of my customers, this is right after their swimming pool closings.Those cool NJ nights in the hot tub really brings a family together, I know it does mine.  As a matter of fact, most hot tub owners say (me included) that their favorite time to use their hot tub is when it is cold enough for snow to fall ( I know I said a bad 4 letter word) while they are in the hot tub.

In this post, I plan on letting you know what you will need and how to prepare your hot tub for use.

What You Will Need

  1. New filter cartridge
  2. An acrylic cleaner ( or Soft Scrub ) and a soft cloth
  3. Chlorine or Bromine Shock
  4. Sanitizer of your choice (Nature’s 2, The Frog, etc.)
  5. Test strips
  6. Garden hose

Initial Inspection

After making sure the electricity is turned off to the hot tub,, you will want to check the following:

  1. Is there water or debris in the hot tub – if there is either using a submersible pump or a bucket, remove the water and debris.
  2. Connect garden hose to the drain out valve ( usually near spa pack) to run water away from the spa area.

Cleaning the Hot Tub

Did you know instead of buying that expensive specialty acrylic cleaner that it seems every pool/hot tub store wants to sell you for top dollar, you can just use Soft Scrub that you can buy from any local store for much less money? Most pool/hot tub stores won’t let you in on that little secret. SHHHHHH I didn’t tell you that!

Once you have wiped down the hot tub interior with the cleaner and a soft cloth be sure to remove all cleaner residue and water before refilling.

Hot Tub Equipment Hook Up

Now that the hot tub is clean you are ready to reconnect all equipment.

  1. Remove any plugs from the returns or skimmers (where applicable.)
  2. Remove access panel in order to expose plumbing lines and equipment or if you are lucky enough just move steps away from equipment.
  3. Check to make sure there are no little critters nesting as you both may get a surprise
  4. Check shut off valves are in the “ON” position
  5. Check the tightness of any drain plugs (pump and spa) , PVC unions, or filter housings
  6. Install your new filter cartridge, any jet fittings or spa accessories now

Refilling the Hot Tub

Now the time has come to refill the hot tub with water using your garden hose. You will want to fill your hot tub to the center of your skimmer or to the fill line as recommended by manufacturer. Once the hot tub has reached operating level you may now turn equipment on.

Hot Tub Start Up

Once the water is circulating , ensure there are no visible leaks located in plumbing or equipment access area. Let the hot tub run with access panel open for approximately 12-24 hours. Once you have determined that there are no leaks and the hot tub is heating properly, you may close the access panel. Next you will want to test the water chemistry and balance water.

If at any time you are unsure if you have opened your hot tub correctly or if there is a problem with the hot tub, don’t hesitate to contact a hot tub professional.

Now hopefully there were no issues and you are ready to sit back, relax and allow the soothing jets of the hot tub relieve your stress.