Hot Tub Filters 101

Hot tub filters are one of the most crucial components of any hot tub. In this article, we will cover everything you need to know about hot tub filters; from why you need them to how to prolong their life.

What Do Hot Tub Filters Actually Do?

Hot tub filters are designed to perform two functions:

  1. They trap debris like leaves, bugs and sand before they make it to the hot tub pump. This not only helps to clean the water, it also protects the pumps from sucking in debris that could clog or damage them.
  2. Hot tub filters trap oils and lotions that build up in the water through regular use. By removing these from the water, the filter helps to keep the water cleaner, clearer and easier to maintain.

Why Are Hot Tub Filters Important?

Sanitizing chemicals like chlorine and bromine are used in hot tubs to keep the water clean and safe to use. Even if you regularly add these chemicals to your hot tub, however, if you don’t have filters the water will still quickly become dirty; filling up with oils, lotions, as well as small debris like sand and leaves. This not only looks bad but also causes water quality issues like foamy or cloudy water.

Hot tub filters assist your sanitizing chemicals by helping to remove organic waste that can deplete your sanitizer levels, while also reducing the amount of cleaning you’ll need to do to keep the water free of dirt and debris.

Why Do You Need To Clean Hot Tub Filters?

Over time, the amount of debris trapped in your hot tub filter increases to the point where it can no longer effectively do its job and it will need to be cleaned to restore it to its peak working condition. If filters are not cleaned when they’re filled with debris, they can cause your hot tub pump to work harder than it needs to. This can damage the pump over time.

How Often Should You Clean Your Hot Tub Filter?

We recommend rinsing your filters off with a hose or in your laundry tub to remove any dirt and debris caught in it every 2-4 weeks. If you find that there is dirt and debris caught deep in the filter pleats that simply won’t come out, you can buy a tool like the Filter Flosser to provide a deeper clean of the filter.

Along with these basic cleanings, you should also chemically clean the hot tub filters every 3-4 months to remove trapped oils and lotions. To chemically clean a hot tub filter you will need to purchase a specialty hot tub filter cleaner.

Add the filter cleaner to a bucket of water large enough to fully submerge the filter. Place your filter in the bucket with the cleaning solution and let sit for at least 3-4 hours. When the time is up, remove the filter and rinse it with a garden hose to wash off any cleaner and debris left on the filter.

For best results, let the filter fully dry after a chemical cleaning before putting it back into the hot tub. To ensure that your hot tub doesn’t run without a filter during this time, we recommend rotating between two sets of filters. While you clean one, the other can be put into the hot tub. When it is time to chemically clean that filter, the original can be put back in the hot tub and so on.

Why Do Hot Tub Filter Need To Be Replaced?

Over time the fibres that make up hot tub filters begin to stretch, allowing larger and larger debris to pass through them. For this reason, your hot tub filters will eventually need to be replaced (even with regular cleaning). Letting the filter dry after a chemical cleaning will help to tighten the filter fibres again but they never quite go back to the way they were when new. Eventually the filter fibres will loosen to the point that they can no longer effectively keep the water clear and will need to be replaced.

How Often Should Your Replace Your Hot Tub Filter?

Your hot tubs filters should be replaced after 18-24 months of use, depending on how often you use your hot tub. If the hot tub water is fresh but still has a hard time staying clear, chances are your filters are ready to be replaced.

Note: If you’re rotating between 2 sets of filters you will only need to replace your filters every 36-48 months as each filter will only have been working for half the amount of time.

How Can You Extend The Life Of Your Filter?

The key to a longer hot tub filter life is regular cleanings and well balanced water. Following the cleaning schedule outlined above is the single best way that you can increase the lifespan of your filters. Even well maintained filters can be damaged by poor water balance, however, so make sure to also regular test and balance your water; paying special attention to the level of sanitizer in the water.

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