Imagine a world where you can own a hot tub, use it every day and never have to worry about bacteria, pH levels or chlorine. Magical, right?
Unfortunately, that world is a fantasy and will be for the foreseeable future. Even with the high-tech hot tubs available today, there is no such thing as a truly zero-maintenance hot tub.
However, there is something called a self-cleaning hot tub. What are these hot tubs, are they actually self-cleaning and are they worth the cost?
Keep reading to find out.
What Does a Self-Cleaning Hot Tub Do?
Keep in mind that any hot tub with a filtration system is technically “self-cleaning” in one way or another. That is to say, any modern hot tub will clean itself to some extent by circulating its water through its filters.
However, even a hot tub with the best filtration system in the world will need to be manually cared for on a regular basis.
If you own your own hot tub, this means adding chemicals, performing pH tests, replacing the filters and swapping out the water, among other things (click here to check out our guide to hot tub chemicals).
Hot tubs marketed as being self-cleaning aren’t miracle-workers, and you’ll still have to do many of those things.
What do self-cleaning hot tubs do, then? They:
● Automatically add chemicals to the hot tub’s water.
● Utilize extra-efficient filtration.
● Remove debris from the hot tub’s floor.
What Does a Self-Cleaning Hot Tub NOT Do?
As with any other product, self-cleaning hot tubs have their limits, and they’re not a one-stop solution to all your hot tub maintenance woes.
After all, people who own self-cleaning hot tubs will still need to:
● Rinse and replace filters.
● Drain and refill the water.
● Test pH levels.
● Manually clean the hot tub’s surfaces.
That’s because self-cleaning hot tubs can add chemicals and remove a great deal of debris, but they can’t remove clogs, drain the water, replace their own filters or analyze pH levels.
Plus, even with automatic chemical systems, you’ll still have to regularly check your hot tub’s chemical levels just to be safe, and will likely have to add chemicals yourself on occasion.
Unfortunately for those trying to avoid maintenance, all those things are absolutely essential. There’s simply no way to get around them without sacrificing the cleanliness of the hot tub and jeopardizing the health of your family.
Should I Buy a Self-Cleaning Hot Tub?
So, now that you know what a self-cleaning hot tub can (and can’t) do, should you spring for one despite the extra cost, or pass on purchasing one altogether?
Here’s the bottom line: If you’re looking to avoid as much maintenance as possible and can afford the extra cost, a self-cleaning hot tub may be exactly what you’re looking for.
If you don’t mind performing maintenance, however, or simply can’t afford the extra cost, a self-cleaning hot tub will only be an unnecessary burden.
How Can I Cut Down on Maintenance Without a Self-Cleaning Hot Tub?
If you’re hesitant to buy a self-cleaning hot tub, no worries: There are plenty of ways you can cut down on maintenance without dropping the extra cash.
Here are some of our best time-saving tips:
● Clean and replace your filters regularly. Keeping your filters fresh will reduce the workload on your hot tub’s pump, and will also make your filters easier and quicker to clean (check out our hot tub filter cleaning guide here).
● Shower before using your hot tub. By taking a quick shower before getting in your hot tub, you’ll remove debris, oil and residue that could dirty the water and clog up your hot tub’s sanitation system.
● Use a hot tub cover whenever your hot tub isn’t in use. This will not only help keep your hot tub clean but will also prevent excess energy use. For more information on the benefits of hot tub covers, take a look at our previous blog post on the topic here.
Whether you have a self-cleaning hot tub or not, those tips can help you reduce the amount of time you spend maintaining your hot tub and increase the amount of time you spend enjoying it.
Interested in more ways to keep your hot tub squeaky clean? Check out our selection of premium spa chemicals here.