Maintenance is an important part of hot tub ownership and is the only way to ensure your spa will last you for many years to come.
One of the most vital aspects of your routine should be cleaning your hot tub filters.
Your filters are the defenders of your water, protecting your pipes from getting clogged with debris and stripping contaminants out of your water so that you can enjoy a therapeutic soak session in crystal-clear water.
With such an important role, they require expert-level care, which is easier than you may think!
By the end of this article, you’ll be able to maintain your hot tub filters like a pro and be confident your water is in good condition every time you jump in!
In This Article, You’ll Find:
- How Often Should Hot Tub Filters Be Replaced
- How to Clean Your Hot Tub Filters
- Optional Filter Cleaning Tools
- Expert tips to keep your hot tub clean
How Often Should Hot Tub Filters Be Replaced?
Filters have an impressive lifespan, generally lasting a whole year!
There are however some considerations to keep in mind that may result in changing your filters sooner than planned.
Because your hot tub filter’s main role is to pull small debris out of your water, they need to be in perfect condition. That means no rips or tears of any kind, no matter how small.
If you discover any damage to your filters during your regular cleaning routine, replace them immediately to ensure your water is always properly cleaned and no debris can gather in your circulation system.
How To Clean Your Hot Tub Filters
With such a long lifespan, cleaning your hot tub filters is a multistep process that spans throughout the course of the year.
While some of these tasks are fairly quick and easy, such as your weekly rinse, others require some pre-planning to ensure you have the time in your schedule to properly clean them.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Something to keep in mind when cleaning your filters is to never use a pressure washer or power hose attachment on your hot tub filters. High-pressure water can damage the pleats, removing them from their end caps or creating tears in them.
On that note, let’s get started!
A Weekly Rinse
Being the most frequent clean in your routine, this is naturally one of the easiest cleans to perform. The purpose of this step is to rinse off any minor buildup of debris to avoid heavy buildup.
Remove your filters from your hot tub each week and rinse them under cool, gently running water. As you do, gently pull the pleats apart with your fingers to allow water to rinse between them.
Not only will this step help the water clean your filters more effectively, but also allow you to easily check for any damage.
Alternatively, you can use a filter sprayer, as mentioned below, to spray in between the pleats.
Once they’re clean, set them aside to dry before returning them to your hot tub.
A Monthly Clean
You’ll need to perform a slightly deeper clean on your hot tub filters each month.
While your weekly rinse will keep heavy buildup from occurring, there will always be some debris that clings to the filer pleats and doesn’t wash off.
Your monthly clean will help remove this stubborn buildup.
You’ll want to ensure you have a high-quality filter cleaner and some gloves for this step.
When you’re ready, remove your filters from your hot tub, and spray them with the filter cleaner, gently pulling the pleats apart as you do.
Allow the cleaner to soak into the pleats for ten minutes to loosen up any buildup of debris, then rinse them under cool water until all the cleaner is washed off.
Set your filters aside to dry before putting them back into your hot tub.
A Quarterly Soak
Every three months, you’ll need to soak your filters in a diluted filter cleaner.
This helps the cleaner deeply penetrate the pleats and reach the core of the filters, breaking down any grime that’s been slowly accumulating over the last few months.
This step is easily the longest of the three and should only be completed when you’re not going to be using your hot tub for 24 hours.
For this step, fill a bucket with a dilated mixture of filter cleaner and water (as per the directions on your filter cleaner bottle).
Once your bucket is ready, remove your filters from your hot tub, rinse them off, then put them into the diluted filter cleaner to soak for 12 to 24 hours.
This will give the cleaner plenty of time to soak into the pleats, breaking up oils and debris that’s been absorbed into them over the last three months.
Once you’ve checked your filters and are confident they’re clean and ready to maintain your water once again, thoroughly rinse all the filter cleaner off, gently pulling the pleats apart to rinse between them.
As in previous steps, set them aside to dry before returning to your hot tub.
Optional Hot Tub Filter Cleaning Tools
As you can see, cleaning your filters is a fairly simple process when you maintain a proper maintenance routine.
While you can certainly clean your filters by simply using the basic necessities listed above, there are some additional products on the market that can make your cleaning routine much easier.
Here are some of the best ones we recommend including in your arsenal.
A Gentle Filter Sprayer
Filters can get pretty grimy, and while rinsing them weekly will remove the surface buildup, the core isn’t being properly cleaned.
You only really wash away the buildup on the core during your quarterly soak, so it’s building up for months on end between those cleans.
The good news is there’s a way for you to easily clean deep into the pleats, targeting the core and washing away that buildup more regularly without soaking it!
This is where a filter sprayer attachment for your garden hose comes in. With this, you’ll be able to separate the water into small streams that can get in between the pleats and hit that center core with some gentle pressure.
Instant Spa Filter Cleaner
If you’re short on time and can’t give your filters the time to soak, this is a great product to have on hand.
Pair this with the filter spray attachment, and you’ll be able to easily tackle that oily buildup, quickly breaking it down and washing it off your filters!
Simply spray the instant cleaner on your hot tub filters, let them sit for a few minutes, then rinse them off, and your filters will be ready to defend your water once again.
An Automatic Filter Cleaner
Are you the type of person who likes to multitask as you move through your hot tub care routine?
Efficiency is key, and including an automatic filter cleaner to take over rinsing your filters while you tend to your water chemistry or clean up your cover is a great way to get everything done quickly.
These filter cleaners hook up to your garden hose, and will slowly rotate the filter for you, so it’s as easy as putting your filter on the unit and letting it go to work!
5 Expert Tips to Keep Your Hot Tub Filters Clean
With your filters doing so much work to keep your water clean and clear, taking some easy precautions to reduce the amount of debris that ends up in your hot tub can go a long way and make your regular maintenance on them even easier.
Here are some of the best ways to keep your hot tub filters clean
1. Shower Before You Soak
Each time you step into your hot tub, everything that’s on your skin is being washed off into the water.
This includes perfumes, lotions, and even dead skin cells.
These oils are called “organic matter” and cannot be broken down by your regular sanitizer (we’ll tell you what does below!)
The best way to minimize the amount of organic matter that’s getting into your water is by having a quick shower before you climb into your hot tub. This will wash off any oils on your skin and help maintain your water much easier.
2. Put Your Hair Up
Just as lotions on your body wash off into your water, any products in your hair do the same, creating an oily film!
While washing your hair every time you want to use your spa isn’t the most convenient option to combat this, putting your hair up or tucking it under a ballcap will keep it out of the water.
To make this easy, keep a small bowl of hair ties and a couple of hats near your spa for guests to easily access each time they visit and enjoy some quality time in your hot tub with you!
3. Use Tennis Balls
You may be wondering what tennis balls have to do with keeping your water clean, and the answer is actually quite simple.
Tennis balls are naturally absorbent, and any oils that end up in your hot tub will float on the surface of your water.
Throwing some tennis balls into your spa after each soak will help remove these oils as the tennis balls float around and absorb them!
This will dramatically reduce the oils that build up on your filters, keeping them functioning much more effectively between deep cleans.
4. Include an Oxidizer
Were you curious how you break down organic matter if your sanitizer can’t do it?
This is where an oxidizer treatment comes in.
Simply add a dose to your hot tub each week, and it’ll combat the oils that have accumulated in your water, allowing your sanitizer to effectively clean your water and rid it of bacteria.
Oxidizers aren’t only a great way to support your filters and your water chemistry. Including this in your regular routine will also help you avoid the dreadful discovery of foam building up on the surface of your water.
Foam occurs when there’s an abundance of organic matter in your water, and it can be difficult to get rid of once it occurs, often resulting in a complete water change!
5. Use a Hose Filter When Refilling Your Hot Tub
Lastly, the cleaner the water going into your hot tub is, the less work your filters will have to do.
Anytime you’re topping up your water or refilling your spa after a water change, including a filter attachment on your hose will help strip contaminants out of your local water before they can enter your hot tub.
This will easily give you the best starting point anytime you have to add water to your spa and support your filters from one water change to the next!
Keeping Your Filters Clean Is Vital to Your Water’s Health
As you can see, your filters are a vital part of your system and are the first line of defense between your water and every contaminant that enters it.
This means keeping them clean and working effectively is essential to the health of your water.
Including a weekly rinse, monthly clean, and quarterly soak will ensure your filters are always in their best condition.
Additionally, taking some proactive steps, like showering before each spa session, putting your hair up, or including an oxidizer in your regular maintenance routine, can be great ways to support the health of your filters and water between cleanings.
Hot Tubs in Granite Bay, Sacramento
With five convenient locations across Northern California, including Granite Bay, Roseville, Shingle Springs, North Auburn, and Grass Valley, we’ve proudly served your communities for over 30 years and are experts in our field.
If your existing hot tub needs service, you need guidance on which hot tub filters you need, or are ready to invest in or upgrade your spa, our team is here to help.
Contact us, or visit your local showroom to get started!
Hot Tub Filter FAQs
1. Is It OK To Run My Hot Tub Without a Filter?
Never run your hot tub without the filters in place! This would allow debris to make it past your filtration system and into your pipes, not only resulting in extra work as potential clogs form but also ruining your water quality.
2. Can I use Vinegar to Clean My Hot Tub Filters
We don’t recommend using any household product on your filters or any other part of your hot tub.
While it may seem like a great natural disinfectant, household items can quickly become a problem for your water, throwing it out of balance or resulting in suds forming!
3. How Do I Know What Filters to Get For My Hot Tub?
The best way to ensure you get the right filters for your hot tub is by either working with your local hot tub supply store (or directly with your dealership) or checking in your hot tub manual.
Can’t find yours? No problem! Your dealer should have a list of resources on their site for you to easily reference when you need it.