Maintaining a hot tub
Hot tub service and repair: when to hire a professional
High-quality home spas are built with durability and reliability in mind, but every so often you might see an error message on your hot tub's control panel. It's a rare occurrence, but if you experience an issue with your spa's performance, you're faced with a decision: Should you call your local dealer for service or should you attempt to fix the issue yourself? Knowing what type of repairs you can safely manage yourself and the fixes best carried out by a professional will help you make the smart choice.
The biggest determining factor when considering hot tub service and repair is your safety, but it is closely followed by protecting the investment you've made in your home spa. If your hot tub is still under warranty, you will want to contact your dealer to ensure a manufacturer-approved service representative is scheduled to take care of repairs. Attempting to fix the spa yourself could void the warranty. It could also mean more expensive repairs down the road.
Regular maintenance reduces the need for hot tub service and repairs
The most expensive spa is one that isn't used regularly. Daily use and regular maintenance will not only provide you with all of the amazing benefits of your hot tub, it will help to ensure your spa runs properly for as long as you own it. Maintenance that is delayed or, worse, ignored can lead to serious damage.
The best way to prevent issues from occurring is to maintain your hot tub's filters and water care system at regular intervals. Alternatively, you can ensure proper upkeep through your local hot tub dealer, who can help you set a maintenance schedule and advise you on the best course of action should issues occur. Some dealers will even take care of spa cleaning and maintenance for you.
Diy hot tub maintenance and repair
Several issues that may arise can easily be detected during hot tub use and easily handled by you. These include water system, control panel, and power supply issues.
Water system issues
After frequent spa use, you might notice the following:
- Cloudy spa water.
- Weak or erratically surging jets.
- No heat, even though your spa is fully powered and the jets operate.
Each issue above points to one culprit: a dirty filter. Your filters help ensure your spa's long life, but when a filter is clogged due to minerals or oils in the water, your spa won't run as it should. Hot tubs are designed with safety mechanisms in place to protect users and prevent damage to the spa jets, pumps, and other systems. For example, slow or sluggish jet water flow will automatically shut down the heater or the pump to avoid damaging them.
Cleaning your spa filter is easy: Simply remove the filter, apply the recommended cleaner, and then rinse with a garden hose. The video below demonstrates how to properly clean the Tri-X Filter in a Hot Spring® spa.
Your hot tub controls assure that your spa is always ready for a relaxing soak. Control issues, including non-responsive controls, are easily diagnosed and can be repaired by you. Typically, these issues are the result of an interruption in communication between the control unit and the system it operates. Resetting the control panel will often remedy the problem. To reset, press and hold the touchscreen in any blank area until it turns black.
Similarly, if your spa has a remote control that is non-responsive, it, too, has to be reset. First, check to see if it is fully charged. If it's not, recharge it. Then, reboot the control panel with the remote in its dock (or in close proximity to it) to re-establish the connection between the two.
If control from the remote is sporadic, the issue may be due to signal interference from another device. Changing the frequency of the remote can remedy the problem. To change the frequency on Hot Spring® spa remote controls, press and hold the button that turns on the spa's LED lights until all the buttons on the remote flash and you see the Channel Select screen. From that screen, choose a new frequency.
Power supply issues
If your spa won't turn on, simply resetting a switch might fix it. Spas are equipped with Ground Fault Connection Interrupters (GFCIs), fast-acting circuit breakers. If a GFCI detects an imbalance between the power being drawn out a circuit compared to what is going in, it automatically breaks the circuit. Power surges and power dips can both cause a GFCI to automatically break the connection. To restore power to your spa, locate the breaker in the breaker box and switch it to the “On” position. Just remember that if the issue persists with no clear cause (e.g., an electrical storm or a power outage), it can indicate a more serious problem, such as a fault or a short. Both represent a serious risk of shock in or around the hot tub. Do not attempt to fix this issue yourself. Instead, call an authorized spa service representative.
When to call a hot tub service and repair professional
Your hot tub's pumps and its heating, water purification, and control systems all work together to create a great experience every time you use your spa. The fact that each system is easy to maintain is a testament to the engineering and craftsmanship of your spa. While there are some issues that you can fix yourself, the interplay of these different systems means that sometimes an expert is required to handle the problem.
Issues that require expert service
- Repeated power shutdowns or losses. Repeated shutdowns may not only be due to GFCI shutdowns, but also to safety switches disconnecting. If you need to reset power often to operate the spa, call a service technician to determine the source of the problem.
- The spa repeatedly stops heating. Hot tubs are equipped with an internal thermostat to ensure that the spa water remains at a safe operating temperature. If the heater repeatedly shuts down or if the circulation pump constantly runs, it could indicate that the thermostat is working improperly.
- Controls repeatedly shut down or the remote refuses to connect. Recurring control issues require the attention of a professional spa technician. The battery or another component in the remote control or control panel may need replacement.
- Water level drops or water is noticeable around the hot tub. A water leak, especially one into the cabinet near the electrical systems and relays, is a serious but repairable problem. Disconnect the power, drain the hot tub following the instructions in your owner's manual, and then call a specialist to repair the leak and inspect the tub to ensure that no systems were damaged.
For a complete overview of spa issues and how to address them, see our Hot Tub Troubleshooting Guide.
Your hot tub is designed to last a decade or more when well-maintained and serviced regularly. Simple filter and water care maintenance can be handled by you with the help of your owner's manual. Your local hot tub dealer is always ready to handle more serious issues quickly and help you take steps to prevent other problems in the future.
With a network of dealerships around the world, Hot Spring takes pride in knowing our customers are served with comprehensive service plans and straightforward warranties. A Hot Spring dealer near you is uniquely qualified to service your spa as long as you own it.