Hot tub error codes are a fantastic troubleshooting tool, if you know what they mean. Today, we will explore the most common hot tub error codes, and discuss what those codes mean.
By far the most common hot tub error codes are flow errors. These errors are caused when the hot tub’s sensors detect a lack of water flow through the heater’s element. Depending on the brand, the water flow will be measured directly using a single sensor, or by measuring the temperature difference between two sensors.
Common causes of flow errors include:
- Low water levels. If the water level is too low there simply may not be enough water flowing through the filtration system.
- Dirty filters. Dirty filters restrict the amount of water flowing through the filtration system and can cause flow errors in more extreme circumstances.
- Faulty sensors. Flow errors can sometimes be caused by faulty or incorrectly installed sensors.
- A faulty spa pack. In rare cases faulty spa packs can cause flow errors.
Flow errors will most commonly appear as FLO, FLO, FL1 or LF on your hot tub’s display.
Low Water Errors
Low water errors indicate a lack of water in the hot tub pump. These errors are usually a sign that there is not enough water in the hot tub, although they also display if there is air trapped in the pump (known as an “air lock”). If the water level is between 1/2 and 2/3 of the way up the skimmer hole in the hot tub and you have a low water error, chances are that you’ve got an air lock.
Air locks commonly occur after refilling the hot tub. To get rid of an air lock in your hot tub pump, simply loosen one of the pump connections. You should hear air escaping. When there is no more air being released, tighten up the connection and restart the hot tub. If the error code is still displaying, consult a professional.
Depending on the brand of your hot tub, low water errors will display as either DR, DY, DRY or H20.
High Limit Errors
High limit errors are caused when the temperature sensor in your hot tub has measured a temperature well over the set temperature; typically 110 degrees Fahrenheit.
If you notice a high limit error on your hot tub’s control panel get a thermometer and check the water temperature manually. If the hot tub is indeed 110 degrees or more you may have a problem with your heater or spa pack. If the hot tub temperature is normal, you’re likely dealing with a faulty temperature sensor.
High limit errors will typically display as either ***, —, HILI, HL, HOT, OH, SP-OT, SN1 or SN; depending on the control system used in your hot tub.
Cold Water Errors
These hot tub error codes are triggered when the temperature sensor detects that the water is much colder than the set temperature. As with high limit errors, to troubleshoot this issue you should get a thermometer out and check the water temperature. If the hot tub is indeed significantly colder than the set temperature (more than 10 degrees less) you likely have a problem with your heater. If the hot tub temperature is normal, you’re likely dealing with a faulty temperature sensor or spa pack.
These error codes will typically display as COL, COLD, COOL, FP, FR, FRE or LO.
Frozen Water Errors
These hot tub errors codes indicate that the water is so cold that it is in danger of freezing and the hot tub’s freeze protection feature has been activated to try and prevent this. If you see one of these errors, contact a professional to diagnose and repair the issue as soon as possible. You can also place a small space heater in the hot tub cabinet on it’s lowest setting to help ensure that the water in the pipes doesn’t freeze while you’re waiting for the problem to be fixed.
If you see either ICE or ICE2 on your hot tub’s display panel, your hot tub is in freeze protection mode and needs to be looked at as soon as possible.
These hot tub error codes are much more general than other errors that we’ve discussed, and are usually an indication of a broken electronic component. Depending on the exact code, this could be anything from a broken sensor to a blown fuse to a malfunctioning spa pack. If your hot tub is showing one of these panel errors, consult a professional to help you properly diagnose and fix the issue.
Common panel error codes include PNL, OP, EO, SA, SNA, SNB, SH, SNH, SEoP, SESH, SN1, SN2 and SN3.
Hot Tub Display Codes That Aren’t Errors
Fortunately, not all hot tub panel codes are error codes. Some are system status codes which are used to provide you with information on how your hot tub is set to run. Here’s a list of a few of the more common hot tub system status codes that aren’t errors.
ScLN – Used by older generation Self-Cleaning Hydropool Hot Tubs to tell you when the hot tub is in its Self-Cleaning filtration mode.
Pr – Displayed when the pumps are priming, usually when the hot tub has just been powered on or reset.
Econ, Ecn or SE – Displayed by some hot tubs when they are running in economy mode (only heating the water when the hot tub is already running a filtration cycle).
Std or Flon – Displayed by some hot tubs when they are running in standard mode (heating the water anytime the hot tub dips 2 degrees below the set temperature).
F2, F4 or F6 – Displayed by some hot tubs to show how long they are set to filter. F2 = 4 hours, F4 = 8 hours and F6 = 12 hours.
Hold – Displayed when panels buttons have been hit too many times, or too quickly.
LOC, L1 or L2 – Indicate that the panel has been locked. Enter the code that was used to lock the panel to unlock it and resume normal operation.
Do You Have A Different Code?
There are hundreds of different spa packs that have been used over the years by the various hot tub manufacturers; many with their own set of error codes. If your hot tub is showing an error code that is not on this list, give us a call. One of our associates can help you diagnose the issue and get your hot tub back up and running as soon as possible!