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A Step by Step Guide to Completely Cleaning Your Hot Tub

hot tub care

May 22, 2018 by Chris Chapman

Clean Your Hot Tub Sides, Rails, Filter, Pipes and Every Nook and Cranny

A hot tub is a perfect way to relax over the summer. If you’ve got a hot tub, or you’re thinking of getting one, you’ll want to know how to clean it so you can get the most out of it. As hot tubs are meant for relaxing, the last thing you want is to have it cause you stress. Hot tubs are complex things, and there are a lot of different parts that can become clogged or damaged if you’re not careful, leading to unpleasant smells, dirty water, or a hot tub full of foam.

Each different part of your hot tub, including the water, needs a slightly different treatment, so we’ll walk you through every step of the process below. Follow our no-nonsense guide and you’ll guarantee yourself a sparkling spa session every time!

jacuzzi cleaning

Relax and let us take care of your hot tub!

Jump to section:
Parts of Your Hot Tub
Cleaning the Tub
Cleaning Your Hot Tub Tiles, Grouting or Wood Spa Skirt
Cleaning Your Pump System
Cleaning Your Pipes and Jets
Cleaning Your Filter
Water Maintenance
Water Cleaning
Chlorine and Disinfecting Your Water
Acidity Regulators and pH
Regular Maintenance

Parts of Your Hot Tub

It’s important to understand every part of your hot tub and what it does for you. Here’s a quick rundown of each part of your hot tub that will need some attention.

The Tub

The surface of your tub. This is the bit you actually sit in!

Why You Need to Clean Your Tub


hot tub cleaner

Hot Tub and Spa Surface Cleaner

The surface of the tub itself will need cleaning regularly to remove dirt and limescale. Limescale will naturally build up over time, particularly in hard water areas, and will result in potentially blocked pipes (more on this later) as well as cloudy and uninviting water. Also, dirt, bits of skin, hair, fake tan, and other cosmetic products will wash off the people in the tub and can stick to the side, leading to dirty and unhygienic water as well as water lines around the edge of your tub.


How to Clean the Tub

Use some Hot Tub and Spa Surface Cleaner the same way you would any other hard surface cleaner. Make sure the tub is empty and spray some of the cleaner onto the whole surface of the tub, which will kill bacteria and soften grease and grime. You can then wipe off the surface of your jacuzzi with a sponge or cloth for a sparkling finish.

Tiles, Grouting, or Wood Spa Skirt

The outer shell of your hot tub may be made of tiles, wood, glass, carbon fibre, metal, or another material. They all have different standards for durability, but no matter what your hot tub housing is made of, you will need to clean it eventually.

Why You Need to Clean Your Hot Tub Casing

hot tub tiles

Hot tub and jacuzzi tiles can be cleaned quite easily, but it’s important to keep on top of it

Water splashing onto the outer shell of your hot tub can lead the shell to become corroded. Your hot tub will generally also accumulate scuffs and marks over time anyway but also the constant sunlight can lead certain materials to warp, crack, and become discoloured if they are left uncovered.

How to Clean Your Hot Tub Casing

You can use Hot Tub and Spa Surface Cleaner the same way you did on the inside of your tub, but there’s an extra layer of protection you can provide after this. Pro-Kleen’s UV Protect and Polish will give the exterior of your hot tub a protective, dust-repelling layer to keep it free from dust and marks. It’ll also keep sunlight from damaging or discolouring your hot tub surface.

Simply spray a generous layer onto your hot tub exterior and leave it to dry to help protect it from scuffs, grime, and UV light! Re-apply every few months to keep your hot tub looking its best.

Pump System

This is what pumps the water around your hot tub, heating it up with a heating element, before pushing it out of jets into the tub to create those warm bubbles.

Why You Need to Clean Your Pump System

You always want your pump in pristine condition to get the best hot tub experience

The pump system can get clogged with dirt and sticky layers of bacteria so will need to be flushed regularly. If you don’t, you’ll not only have dirty and potentially disease-ridden water, but you risk damaging your pipes if the pump system gets blocked.

How to Clean Your Pump System

First, pick up some Pro-Kleen Complete System Flush for your hot tub. Fill your hot tub (or whirlpool) up so that all the jets are underneath the water.

Add between 500ml and 1L of System Flush to your water and run your hot tub for 15-30 minutes. The System Flush will power through any debris and blockages that might be forming inside your hot tub system. Empty your hot tub and rinse it out with clean water.

Do this every 3 months to ensure your hot tub is always operating at peak performance.

You can also add 100ml of ScaleStop to your water every week to help prevent the buildup of limescale and prolong the life of your pump system.

Pipes and Jets

The pipes carry water around your hot tub, through your filter, past a heated element to heat it up, and into the jets to create your bubbles. This means that if you have problems in your pipework, it can affect every part of your hot tub!

Why You Need to Clean Your Pipes

Your pipes, much like your pump system, can be blocked by body film such as grease and skin cells, as well as limescale that builds up over time (particularly in hard water areas).

How to Clean Your Pipes and Jets

Hot Tub, Spa and Whirlpool Cleaner

Investing in some Complete System Flush will help, but for best results you should also carry out a clean with some Hot Tub, Spa and Whirlpool Cleaner. This will completely flush out bacteria, dirt, and limescale from your hot tub pipework, and will complement your system flush perfectly.

If your hot tub has an internal cleaning system, simply fill that system with the cleaner and follow your hot tub’s instructions.

If your hot tub doesn’t have an internal cleaning system, fill your tub up so that all the jets are beneath the water. Then add 50-75ml of the cleaner into the water.

Run the system for 15 minutes to let the cleaner power through your system and remove any limescale, dirt, or bacteria from your pipes. Once that time is up, empty your hot tub and rinse it down. Repeat this every 2-3 weeks, especially if you live in a hard water area, to keep your pipes clear from any blockages and your hot tub free from limescale buildup.


Your hot tub filter catches particles of grease and dirt that flow through your pipes. Even if you’re keeping your pipes free from dirt and bacteria, when you actually get in your hot tub, oils and sweat from your body, as well as deodorant, makeup and so on, will wash off, which can make your water cloudy and foamy. Your filter catches these particles as they travel around your pipes to keep your water clean and clear.

Why You Need to Clean Your Hot Tub Filter

Your hot tub filter uses cartridges that fit into the filter, where they collect small particles of debris that get sucked through the pipes. Naturally, this can lead to the filter becoming clogged with dirt if it’s not cleaned regularly. If your filter is dirty, it won’t work effectively, and you’ll end up with dirty, cloudy water.

How to Clean Your Hot Tub Filter

You will need to remove your filter, so make sure your hot tub is empty and follow your instruction manual to do so.

Make sure any large bits of debris, like clumps of hair or leaves, are removed from the filter. Mix 500ml of Filter Cleaner with 10L of warm water in a bucket and soak the filter in this solution overnight.

In the morning, rinse off the filter with clean water and put it back into your hot tub to make sure you have a clean hot tub experience every time!

Water Maintenance

hot tub water

Get crystal clear water every time by following our step by step guide

You have a lot of machinery in your hot tub to help with water, but you still need to make things a bit easier for your hot tub to work efficiently with some hot tub chemicals. This is because, even though you can clear away limescale and filter out dirt, you can still end up with harmful bacteria in your hot tub. The acidity of your water will also need to be regulated – if your water is too acidic, it can corrode the parts of your hot tub. If it’s too alkaline, it’ll encourage limescale to form. Luckily, there’s plenty you can do to easily keep on top of this while you’re cleaning your hot tub.

Water Cleaning

When you get in your hot tub, any deodorant, makeup, or hair product you’re wearing will end up in your water along with natural things like skin cells and sweat. Your hot tub filter will catch some of these particles, but some bits of dirt are just too small to be picked up by your filter. If you leave these particles to gather they’ll result in a cloudy, dirty hot tub as well as dirtier pipes that are harder to clean. Pro-Kleen Spa Clarifier contains an agent that causes dirt particles to stick together, making it easy for your filter to pick up these dirty particles, leaving your hot tub water looking crystal clear.

How to Use Spa Clarifier

Add 2 capfuls of Spa Clarifier to your hot tub water every time you use it, or every two weeks for spas. That’s all there is to it!

Chlorine and Disinfecting Your Water

Helping keep your water free of bacteria will help you keep the rest of your pool clean, too

Spa Clarifier will keep your pool clear, but you’ll also need some chlorine granules to keep your water free of bacteria. Chlorine kills bacteria and keeps your pool fresh and clean. You probably know chlorine is used in swimming pools, but if you’re worried about it causing that chemical smell or stinging your eyes, don’t be! Chlorine doesn’t actually cause these things. It’s actually a chemical called chloramine that does, which is the result of a reaction between chlorine and urine. If you’re keeping your hot tub clean and hygienic, you won’t even notice the chlorine is in there.

How to Use Chlorine in Your Hot Tub

Add around 5g of chlorine granules (about a teaspoon’s worth) for every person who’s sitting in your spa. Do be aware that chlorine only gets rid of bacteria, it won’t keep your hot tub water clear and it won’t prevent your pipes from getting blocked on its own.

Acidity Regulators

You’ll also need to regulate the acidity of the water in your pool to make sure it’s at the perfect level. The acidity of your water can vary depending on where in the country you are, so make sure to pick up a cheap pH (the unit of measurement for acidity) testing kit to check what your pH levels are.

Your water should be between 7.2 And 7.6 pH. If the pH is in that range, you don’t need to do anything! If it’s too low, use some Soda Ash to increase the pH. If it’s too high, use some Sodium Bisulphate pH Reducer to decrease it.

How to Increase and Decrease Your Hot Tub pH Levels

jacuzzi acidity

Getting your pH right is good for you and good for your hot tub

It sounds like a lot of chemistry, but there’s really not a lot to it. Make sure nobody is in your hot tub, then fill it and set the water circulation system running.

Take your Soda Ash or pH Reducer and mix it with warm water before pouring it into your hot tub. Generally, you’ll need about 5-10g (1-2 teaspoons) to regulate your water acidity depending on how acidic your water is.

Keep testing your water until it’s right and allow 30 minutes for the Soda Ash or pH Reducer to dissolve fully before you let anyone get into the hot tub.

Regular Maintenance

It can seem like a lot of work to look after a hot tub, but the key is regular maintenance. Carrying out every step of this guide on a regular basis will save you a lot of time in the long run! It’s better to spend a couple of hours every few weeks cleaning out your hot tub than to spend much more time and money fixing it in the event of damage.

You can cover all your bases in one fell swoop with our complete hot tub care starter kit, which contains everything you need for keeping your hot tub clean and efficient. If you have any more questions about hot tub care, please don’t hesitate to call our team of experts on 0800 091 3171 for more personal advice. You can also use the live chat function on to send us a message.

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One response to “A Step by Step Guide to Completely Cleaning Your Hot Tub”

  1. Teresa Wardrobe says:

    Can you use system flush and cleaner at the same time or do I have to empty after each individual treatment?

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