How to Clean a Hot Tub That Has Been Sitting

To clean a hot tub that has been sitting, drain the water and remove any debris, scrub the surface with a mild cleaner, rinse thoroughly, and refill with fresh water. Cleaning a hot tub that has been sitting requires draining and removing debris, followed by scrubbing the surface with a mild cleaner, thorough rinsing, and refilling with fresh water.

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Neglected hot tubs can accumulate dirt and bacteria, so proper cleaning is essential before use. Taking these steps will help ensure a clean and safe hot tub experience.

Assessing The Condition Of The Hot Tub

Assessing the condition of a hot tub that has been sitting requires a thorough examination of the water quality, filter, and overall cleanliness. Regular maintenance, such as draining and cleaning, as well as checking for any damage or leaks, should be done to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience.

Whether you’ve recently moved into a new home with a neglected hot tub or you’ve let yours sit unused for an extended period, it’s important to assess its condition before diving into the cleaning process. By taking the time to inspect the hot tub, you can identify signs of neglect and damage, as well as evaluate the water quality.

Here are some key steps to follow when assessing the condition of a hot tub:

Signs Of Neglect And Damage:

  • Check for any visible signs of neglect, such as accumulations of dirt, leaves, or debris.
  • Look for cracks, chips, or peeling in the hot tub shell.
  • Examine the cover for signs of wear and tear, such as fading, sagging, or torn straps.
  • Inspect the control panel and electrical components for any signs of damage or malfunction.
  • Take note of any strange odors or discoloration in the water.

Inspecting The Water Quality:

  • Use a pool test kit to check the pH level of the water. Ideally, it should be between 7.2 and 7.8.
  • Test the sanitizer levels to ensure they are within the recommended range, usually between 1-3 parts per million (ppm) for chlorine or 2-4 ppm for bromine.
  • Look out for cloudy water, which may indicate a problem with filtration or improper chemical balance.
  • Check the water for excessive foam, which could be a result of detergents, oils, or other contaminants.
  • Pay attention to any unusual sounds coming from the filtration or heating system.

By thoroughly assessing the condition of your hot tub, you’ll be better equipped to determine the appropriate cleaning and maintenance steps required. Keep in mind that if you encounter any major issues or feel unsure about the condition, it’s always a good idea to consult a professional to ensure the safety and longevity of your hot tub.

Draining And Cleaning The Hot Tub

To clean a hot tub that has been sitting, start by draining the water completely. Scrub the tub with a non-abrasive cleaner and rinse it thoroughly. Refill the hot tub with fresh water, adding the necessary chemicals to maintain cleanliness.

Regular maintenance will help prevent the buildup of dirt and bacteria.

Preparing For Draining And Cleaning

Before you start to drain and clean your hot tub that has been sitting for a while, it’s essential to prepare yourself and gather the necessary tools. Here are the steps you should follow:

  • Gather your supplies:
  • A hose
  • A submersible pump (if available)
  • A bucket or large containers for water disposal
  • Non-abrasive cleaning products suitable for hot tubs
  • Soft cloths or sponges for cleaning
  • A garden hose attachment for filling the tub
  • Turn off the power:
  • Locate the power supply for your hot tub and switch it off. Safety first!
  • Prepare the drainage area:
  • Ensure that the area where the water will drain is suitable. It should be sloped away from your house, plants, or other sensitive areas.
  • Prepare the drainage tube:
  • If you’re using a submersible pump, attach the drainage tube to the pump and ensure it reaches your desired drainage area. If using a regular hose, attach it securely.

Steps To Drain The Hot Tub

Once you’re all set up and ready, it’s time to drain your hot tub. Follow these straightforward steps:

  • Locate the drain valve:
  • Check your hot tub manual or consult the manufacturer’s website to find the exact location of the drain valve. It’s usually located at the bottom of the tub.
  • Attach the hose or pump:
  • If you have a hose, ensure it is firmly attached to the drain valve. If using a submersible pump, place it inside the tub, ensuring the drainage tube is connected securely.
  • Open the drain valve:
  • Slowly open the drain valve, allowing the water to flow out. If you’re using a submersible pump, turn it on. Be patient, and let gravity or the pump do its job.
  • Clean the interior surfaces:
  • While the hot tub is draining, take the opportunity to clean the interior surfaces. Use non-abrasive cleaning products and soft cloths or sponges to remove any dirt, grime, or residue. Pay attention to corners and hard-to-reach areas.
  • Rinse and wipe down:
  • Once the water has completely drained, use a garden hose with a gentle spray attachment to rinse off any remaining cleaning product. Wipe down the surfaces with a clean, dry cloth.

Congratulations! You’ve successfully drained and cleaned your hot tub that has been sitting. Stay tuned for the next steps in our blog post, where we’ll cover refilling and maintaining your spa.

Cleaning The Interior Surfaces

Learn how to effectively clean the interior surfaces of a hot tub that has been sitting unused. Maintain proper hygiene and restore the tub to its pristine condition with these easy steps.

Maintaining the cleanliness of your hot tub is crucial for ensuring a pleasant and relaxing soaking experience. Over time, hot tubs that have been sitting unused can accumulate debris and dirt, which can impact the water quality and overall enjoyment.

In this section, we will explore effective methods and tools to clean the interior surfaces of a hot tub that has been sitting idle.

Removing Debris And Dirt:

  • Start by removing any visible debris, such as leaves or twigs, from the water.
  • Drain the hot tub completely to access the interior surfaces.
  • Use a soft-bristle brush to scrub the walls, seats, and floor of the hot tub, focusing on areas that appear dirty or stained.
  • For stubborn dirt or grime, gently scrub with a non-abrasive sponge or cloth.
  • Pay extra attention to the waterline, which can accumulate dirt and scum. Use a designated hot tub cleaner or a vinegar-water solution to effectively remove these deposits.
  • Rinse the interior surfaces thoroughly to remove any remaining dirt or residue.

Using Appropriate Cleaners And Tools:

  • When selecting a cleaner for your hot tub, avoid household cleaning products that contain harsh chemicals, as they can damage the hot tub’s surfaces. Instead, opt for cleaners specifically formulated for hot tub use.
  • Follow the instructions on the cleaner’s packaging to ensure proper usage and dilution.
  • If you prefer natural alternatives, vinegar-water solutions can be effective for general cleaning purposes.
  • Always wear protective gloves when using cleaners to avoid skin irritation.
  • Utilize soft-bristle brushes, non-abrasive sponges, or dedicated hot tub cleaning tools to clean the interior surfaces.
  • Avoid using abrasive scrub brushes or scouring pads, as they can scratch or damage the hot tub’s finish.

By implementing these cleaning techniques and using suitable cleaners and tools, you can effectively remove debris and dirt from the interior surfaces of your hot tub. Regular cleaning and maintenance will extend the lifespan of your hot tub and ensure a clean and enjoyable experience each time you soak.

Keep reading to learn more about maintaining other essential aspects of your hot tub, such as the water quality and filters.

Refreshing The Water And Balancing Chemicals

One important step in cleaning a hot tub that has been sitting is to refresh the water and balance the chemicals. This ensures a clean and safe environment for your hot tub experience.

After a hot tub has been sitting unused for a while, it’s important to properly refresh the water and bring it back to a clean and balanced state. This will ensure that your hot tub is not only hygienic but also that it provides a safe and enjoyable experience for you and your guests.

Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to refresh the water and balance the chemicals in your hot tub:

Filling The Hot Tub With Clean Water

To start the process of refreshing your hot tub, you’ll need to drain out the old water and fill it with clean, fresh water. Follow these steps:

  • Carefully remove the hot tub cover and locate the drain plug.
  • Attach a garden hose to the drain and open it to allow the water to flow out. Make sure the hose is directed away from any plants or sensitive areas.
  • Once all the water has drained out, close the drain and remove the hose.
  • Fill the hot tub with fresh water using a garden hose or other clean water source. Take care not to overfill it as the water level should be below the top edge of the tub.

Balancing The Ph Levels And Adding Necessary Chemicals

The next crucial step is to balance the pH levels and add necessary chemicals to ensure the water is safe and clean. Follow these steps:

  • Test the pH levels of the water using a testing kit. The ideal pH range for a hot tub is between 7.2 and 7.8.
  • If the pH level is too high, add a pH reducer according to the instructions on the product. If it’s too low, add a pH increaser.
  • After adjusting the pH, test the total alkalinity (TA) levels. The recommended range for TA is between 80 and 120 parts per million (ppm).
  • If the TA levels are too high, add a total alkalinity reducer. If they are too low, add a total alkalinity increaser.
  • Now, check the sanitizer levels in the water. The sanitizer (such as chlorine or bromine) helps kill bacteria and maintain water quality. The ideal level of sanitizer varies depending on the type you are using, so refer to the product instructions for the appropriate dosage.
  • After adding the sanitizer, circulate the water to ensure thorough mixing and distribution.
  • Lastly, check the calcium hardness levels. Ideally, the calcium hardness should be between 150 and 250 ppm. Adjust the calcium hardness using a calcium increaser or a calcium reducer if needed.

Remember, maintaining the proper balance of chemicals is vital to ensure a safe and enjoyable hot tub experience. Regularly test the water and make necessary adjustments to keep the pH, alkalinity, sanitizer, and calcium levels within the appropriate ranges.

By following these steps to refresh the water and balance the chemicals, you can enjoy your hot tub with peace of mind, knowing that it’s clean, inviting, and ready for relaxing moments. Feel free to explore more hot tub maintenance tips in our next section on cleaning and maintaining the hot tub filters.

Maintaining And Preventing Future Issues

Maintain and prevent future issues with your hot tub by properly cleaning a neglected one. Follow these steps to restore it to its former glory.

Regular Maintenance Tips

Regular maintenance is crucial to ensure your hot tub stays clean and in optimal condition. By following these simple tips, you can keep your hot tub looking and functioning its best:

  • Clean the filters regularly: Filters play a vital role in trapping debris and keeping your hot tub water clean. Rinse the filters with fresh water every 4-6 weeks, or as recommended by the manufacturer, to remove any accumulated dirt and debris.
  • Test the water quality: Regularly test the water using a testing kit to ensure proper chemical balance. Adjust the pH and sanitizer levels accordingly to maintain a clean and hygienic environment in the hot tub.
  • Drain and refill water periodically: Over time, contaminants can build up in the water, making it harder to keep the hot tub clean. To prevent this, drain and refill the water every 3-4 months, or as recommended by the manufacturer, to maintain freshness and cleanliness.

Preventive Measures To Keep The Hot Tub Clean

Preventing future issues and maintaining a clean hot tub is essential for its longevity and your enjoyment. Here are some preventive measures you can take to ensure your hot tub stays in pristine condition:

  • Cover it when not in use: Using a hot tub cover is crucial to keep out debris, leaves, and other unwanted elements. This not only helps in maintaining water cleanliness but also helps in conserving energy by retaining heat.
  • Shower before entering: Encourage everyone using the hot tub to rinse off before getting in. This simple step helps remove body oils, lotions, and dirt, reducing the amount of contaminants in the water.
  • Regularly clean the shell: Wipe down the interior of the hot tub regularly using a non-abrasive cleaner approved by the manufacturer. This helps prevent the buildup of dirt, bacteria, and other grime.
  • Avoid using oils and lotions: While it may be tempting to add scented oils or lotions to enhance the hot tub experience, these products can leave a residue and potentially clog filters. It’s best to avoid using them or use water-soluble alternatives.
  • Inspect and maintain the cover: Check the hot tub cover regularly for any signs of wear or damage. Replace worn-out covers to ensure proper insulation and protection from external elements.

By following these regular maintenance tips and preventive measures, you can keep your hot tub clean and functioning smoothly for years to come. Take the necessary steps to maintain your hot tub, and you’ll be rewarded with a refreshing and enjoyable soaking experience every time.

Safety Precautions

Safely clean a hot tub that has been sitting with these essential precautions. Follow these guidelines for a thorough and effective cleaning process, ensuring your hot tub is ready for use.

Ensuring Safety While Cleaning The Hot Tub

Cleaning a hot tub that has been sitting requires careful attention to safety precautions. Before embarking on the cleaning process, it is important to take specific measures to ensure your personal safety. By following these safety guidelines, you can effectively clean your hot tub without any mishaps.

Protective Gear And Equipment

To protect yourself during the cleaning process, it is crucial to wear proper protective gear and use appropriate equipment. Here are the necessary safety measures to consider:

  • Gloves: Wear durable and waterproof gloves to protect your hands from harsh chemicals and potential skin irritants.
  • Eye protection: Wear safety goggles or protective eyewear to shield your eyes from splashes or fumes.
  • Long-sleeved clothing: Opt for long-sleeved shirts and pants to provide an additional barrier between your skin and the cleaning agents.
  • Respiratory protection: Consider wearing a respiratory mask to prevent inhalation of chemical fumes or dust particles.
  • Sturdy footwear: Wear closed-toe shoes with non-slip soles to avoid slipping or accidents on wet surfaces around the hot tub.

Remember, wearing the proper protective gear is essential to ensure your safety while working with cleaning agents.

Cleaning Agents And Chemicals

Choosing the right cleaning agents and chemicals is vital for both the cleanliness of your hot tub and your personal safety. Here are a few points to keep in mind:

  • Read the labels: Always read and understand the instructions and safety precautions on the labels of cleaning agents and chemicals before use.
  • Use approved products: Ensure that the cleaning agents you select are specifically formulated and recommended for hot tubs.
  • Handle with care: Follow the proper dilution ratios and recommended usage guidelines to minimize any risks.
  • Store securely: After use, store cleaning agents and chemicals in a secure location, away from children or pets.

By adhering to these safety precautions, you can confidently clean your hot tub and enjoy a hygienic and relaxing experience. Remember, your safety is paramount, so always prioritize precautionary measures when dealing with cleaning agents and chemicals.

Troubleshooting And Problem-Solving

Do you have a hot tub that’s been sitting unused for a while? Learn how to troubleshoot and solve common cleaning issues to get your hot tub sparkling clean and ready to enjoy.

Has your hot tub been sitting unused for a while and now you’re ready to get it back up and running? It’s common to encounter some issues when dealing with a neglected hot tub. But don’t worry – we’ve got you covered! In this section, we’ll discuss common problems that can arise and provide solutions to help troubleshoot and solve these issues.

Common Problems And Solutions:

  • Water quality issues:
  • Cloudy water: This can be caused by low sanitizer levels or high levels of dissolved solids. To fix this, test the water and adjust sanitizer levels as necessary. You may also need to shock the water or use a clarifier to improve clarity.
  • Foamy water: Foam can accumulate due to excessive use of soaps, lotions, or oils. To remedy this, remove any debris from the water and use a defoamer to reduce foam.
  • Algae growth: Algae can flourish in untreated water. Treat the water with an algaecide and thoroughly clean the hot tub to remove any existing algae.
  • Heating issues:
  • Inadequate heat: If the water is not heating up properly, check the thermostat settings and ensure the heater is functioning correctly. Additionally, inspect the filters and clean or replace them if necessary to improve water flow.
  • Overheating: If the water becomes too hot, it may be due to a malfunctioning thermostat or temperature sensor. Replace any faulty components and monitor the temperature closely to prevent overheating.
  • Plumbing issues:
  • Leaks: Inspect the hot tub for any visible leaks and repair them promptly. Check the connections, pipes, and seals for damage and replace or fix as needed.
  • Low water pressure: If you notice a decrease in water pressure, check the filter for clogs and clean or replace it. Ensure that the water supply is fully open and inspect the pump for any issues.

Dealing With Persistent Issues:

If you encounter persistent problems with your hot tub, here are a few additional steps you can take to resolve them:

  • Seek professional assistance: If you’re unable to troubleshoot or solve the issue on your own, consider hiring a professional hot tub technician. They have the expertise and experience to diagnose and fix complex problems.
  • Regular maintenance: To prevent future issues, establish a regular maintenance routine. This includes regular water testing, cleaning the filter, and periodic draining and refilling of the hot tub.
  • Educate yourself: Take the time to learn about proper hot tub maintenance and troubleshooting techniques. Understanding the intricacies of your hot tub will help you address issues more effectively and potentially prevent them altogether.

Remember, keeping your hot tub well-maintained is essential for optimal performance and longevity. By following these troubleshooting tips and taking proactive measures, you can ensure that your hot tub remains a relaxing oasis for years to come.

How To Clean A Hot Tub That Has Been Sitting


Tips For Extending The Lifespan Of The Hot Tub

Proper maintenance is key to extending the lifespan of a hot tub that has been sitting. Regular cleaning, including draining and sanitizing, along with checking and balancing the chemicals, will prevent damage and ensure a long life for your hot tub.

Proper Care And Maintenance Guidelines

To ensure that your hot tub stays in excellent condition and lasts for years to come, it’s crucial to follow proper care and maintenance guidelines. Here are some tips to help you extend the lifespan of your hot tub:

  • Regular cleaning: Clean your hot tub regularly to prevent the buildup of dirt, debris, and bacteria. This will ensure that your spa water remains clean and safe for use.
  • Drain and refill: It’s recommended to drain and refill your hot tub every three to four months. This helps eliminate any built-up contaminants that may affect water quality.
  • Filter maintenance: Check and clean your hot tub’s filters regularly. Clogged or dirty filters can impact water circulation and diminish the hot tub’s performance. To clean the filter, simply remove it, rinse off debris, and soak it in a filter cleaning solution.
  • Water chemistry balance: Keep an eye on the water chemistry in your hot tub. Test the water regularly and adjust the levels of chemicals such as pH, alkalinity, and sanitizer to maintain proper balance. This will ensure that the water remains clean and safe for soaking.
  • Cover usage: Use a sturdy cover for your hot tub when not in use. This helps to keep out debris, dirt, and sunlight, which can affect the water’s quality and damage the hot tub’s components.
  • Prevent freezing: In colder climates, take steps to prevent freezing in your hot tub. This includes insulating the tub, using a freeze protection system, and maintaining a suitable water temperature during winter months.
  • Addressing leaks: If you notice any leaks in your hot tub, it’s important to address them promptly. Leaks can lead to water damage and damage to the hot tub’s structure. Consult a professional to fix any leaks and prevent further issues.
  • Regular servicing: Schedule regular servicing of your hot tub with a qualified technician. They can inspect and maintain the components, identify any potential problems, and address them before they worsen.
  • Educate yourself: Take the time to learn about the specific care requirements for your hot tub model. Refer to the manufacturer’s manual or consult with a hot tub professional to ensure you are following the recommended maintenance practices.
  • Keep it covered in storage: If you need to store your hot tub for an extended period, make sure it is covered and protected from the elements. This will help preserve its condition during storage.

By following these care and maintenance guidelines, you can keep your hot tub in optimal condition and enjoy its relaxation benefits for many years to come. Regular cleaning, proper water chemistry, and addressing any issues promptly will help extend the lifespan of your hot tub.

Frequently Asked Questions On How To Clean A Hot Tub That Has Been Sitting

How Do You Clean A Hot Tub That Has Not Been Used In Years?

To clean a hot tub unused for years, follow these steps: 1. Drain the water fully and remove any debris or dirt using a vacuum or a net. 2. Use a hot tub cleaner or a mixture of bleach and water to sanitize the surfaces.

3. Scrub the interior, jets, and filters with a non-abrasive brush or sponge. 4. Rinse thoroughly, refill with fresh water, and balance the chemicals to ensure safe and clean usage.

How Do You Clean A Hot Tub After A Long Time?

To clean a hot tub after a long time, drain the water, scrub the surface, clean the filters, and refill with fresh water.

How Long Can A Hot Tub Sit Unused?

A hot tub can sit unused for a long time without precautions, causing water quality issues.

How Do You Clean A Tub That Has Been Sitting?

To clean a tub that has been sitting, follow these steps: 1. Fill the tub with hot water and add a mixture of cleaning solution and baking soda. 2. Scrub the tub using a non-abrasive sponge or brush. 3. Rinse the tub thoroughly with water.

4. Dry the tub with a clean cloth or towel to prevent water spots and mildew.


Keeping your hot tub clean and well-maintained is essential for ensuring its longevity and the health of those who use it. By following a few simple steps, you can easily clean a hot tub that has been sitting, even if it has accumulated dirt, algae, or other debris.

First, drain the water completely and scrub the surfaces with a non-abrasive cleaner. Pay special attention to the jets, filters, and any visible debris. Once the tub is clean, refill it with fresh water and add the appropriate chemicals to balance the pH levels.

Regularly check and clean the filters to maintain proper water circulation. Finally, cover the hot tub when not in use to prevent debris from falling in. By regularly cleaning and properly maintaining your hot tub, you can ensure a relaxing and enjoyable experience for years to come.

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