Hot tubs have become a welcome addition to many people’s homes, providing a soothing option to combat daily stress and recharge after a long day.
Ensuring your hot tub water is properly balanced is crucial to creating an enjoyable spa experience, and this all starts with your pH levels.
pH increaser for hot tubs is key in maintaining the safety and quality of your spa water for you and your guests.
Hot tub maintenance is top of mind for many first-time hot tub owners, and even seasoned spa aficionados suddenly facing unwelcoming water, and water quality is often leading the charge.
But fret not; we’re here to wash away your worry!
In this article, we’re diving into the world of using pH increaser for hot tubs. From why it’s important and how Alkalinity fits in, to exactly how to use it, we’re covering it all!
Read on to become the master of your hot tub water!
What is pH, and Why is It Important?
Before we get into how to use your pH increaser, we first have to understand the role it plays in your water quality.
pH refers to the overall acidity of your water and is rated on a scale of 0 to 14, with the levels determining whether your water is too acidic, too basic, or just right.
This begs the question: what should your pH levels be? Ideally, you’ll want to keep your hot tub water’s pH levels between 7.2 and 7.8.
But what happens if they are either higher or lower than that threshold?
Let’s find out.
pH That’s Too High = Basic
If you’ve tested your water and discovered your pH levels have crept above 7.8, it means your water has become too basic.
While this may not seem too worrisome, basic water can become quite detrimental to your system, depositing hard water scale on your shell, in your pipes and filters, and even around your heating element!
This can result in a host of issues, ranging from poor water flow to cold water if left untreated.
pH That’s Too Low = Acidic
A low pH level, however, means your water has become too acidic, effectively making it corrosive.
Not only can this result in skin irritation after a soak, but the high acidity can actually begin eating away at everything it’s in contact with, from jets, your shell, and the heating element!
As you can see, maintaining the pH level in your hot tub is essential for both the longevity of your spa and its various parts, as well as the safety and enjoyment of everyone entering the water.
What About Alkalinity?
When testing your water, you may have noticed your pH test strips also provide a level for total alkalinity.
But what is it?
Alkalinity is essentially your water’s ability to neutralize acid, directly influencing your water’s ability to resist changes in your pH. This means that when it’s within the correct range; between 80 and 120 ppm; you’ll experience far fewer changes to your pH.
Furthermore, when balanced, your alkalinity allows you to make even minor changes to your pH levels to keep your water optimally balanced, ensuring a safe, comfortable experience for everyone!
How To Use pH Increaser For Hot Tubs – Balancing Your Water 101
Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s get into the real reason you’re reading this blog; how to keep your balanced.
You’ll be pleased to know the process isn’t difficult and will only need to be done a few times a week. Better yet, it only takes a couple of minutes to complete!
Grab a notebook or print out this easy step-by-step process for your next water change–and let’s dive in!
What You’ll Need:
- pH Test strips
- pH increaser
- pH decreaser
- Total Alkalinity increaser
- A bucket (optional)
Step 1: Run Your Jets
Getting an accurate reading is key to properly treating your water, and running your jets for a few minutes beforehand will help ensure you get the best reading possible.
See, while your water is still, the chemical makeup of your water can actually vary throughout the spa, with some areas having a higher level of concentration of product than others.
Running your jets on low for a few minutes before taking your test will help evenly distribute any chemicals in your water so you get an accurate reading.
Step 2: Test Your Water
Now that any product in your water has been evenly dispersed once again, it’s time to test your water.
For this step, you’ll want to turn your jets off once again and make sure your hands are dry.
Then, simply dip the test strip into the water 6” below the surface, waiting 2-3 seconds before taking it out.
Afterward, compare the results to the color guide on your test strip container to determine the current pH, alkalinity, and sanitizer levels of your water.
This step can also be done with a water test kit if you want a more comprehensive method, but test strips are by far the most commonly used method.
After testing your water, you’ll want to turn your jets back on low to ensure anything you add in the next steps is evenly distributed.
Furthermore, you’ll also want to keep your hot tub cover off to allow for any off-gassing.
Step 3: Add Your Total Alkalinity Increaser
As mentioned above, your alkalinity helps keep your pH levels from fluctuating too much. However, this also means it also has a significant effect on those levels.
By treating your alkalinity first, you’ll reduce the amount of chemicals needed to balance your water and make this process infinitely easier.
With that said, if your alkalinity is below 80 ppm and needs a boost, now is the time to add your total alkalinity increaser, closely following the instructions on the bottle.
But what if your alkalinity is above 120 ppm? How do you lower it?
Great question! Since there isn’t a product designed specifically to reduce your alkalinity, you’ll need to use your pH decreaser to bring your alkalinity levels down.
Yes, this will also cause your pH levels to drop. However, because pH products have such little influence on your alkalinity, you can simply use your pH increaser to bring your pH levels back up as needed.
Pro Tip: Dilute any powder product in a bucket of water prior to adding it to your water. This will help it better mix into the water and be evenly distributed throughout the spa.
Step 4. Add Your pH Increaser or Decreaser
Next up; add your pH increaser or decreaser.
Based on the pH levels determined by your test strip, add the necessary pH product to your water, again, closely following the directions on the bottle.
Then, simply wait for 30 minutes as the products dissolve into the water!
More of a visual learner? Checkout this short video instead:
Step 5. Re-Test & Adjust as Needed
While you might assume that because you followed the directions on your product bottles, your water will be perfectly balanced now, that’s not always the case.
Before climbing into your freshly treated water, you’ll want to retest it to ensure it’s, in fact, in balance.
Following steps two through five once again, retest your water and treat as necessary until your pH is between 7.2 and 7.8, and your alkalinity is between 80 and 120 ppm.
Common Signs Your pH Isn’t Balanced
Congratulations, you’ve just learned how to expertly balance your water!
Before we send you on your way to start managing your hot tub water like a pro, let’s cover some important signs to watch for that may signal your pH is out of balance.
Even with the best water care, there’s always a risk of an unpredictable change to your pH levels, resulting in some pretty unmissable warning signs.
Here are six of the most common ways a pH imbalance shows up in your spa:
- Cloudy Water
- Skin or Eye Irritation
- A Foamy Surface
- Foul Smelling Water
- Sanitizer Level Issues
- Corrosion or Scale
If you’ve lifted your cover and discovered any of these issues, step one in troubleshooting and repairing will be testing your water and treating it as necessary.
Buy pH Increaser for Hot Tubs in Scottsdale, AZ
Whether you’re just starting out on your hot tub journey, or have been enjoying yours for many years, finding quality products to keep your spa in pristine condition is non-negotiable.
At Imagine Backyard Living, we only stock the best products, ensuring every item on our shelves (and throughout our store) is of the highest quality.
We understand it’s not always easy making time to drive to the store to restock on your water care products, so we’ve ensured you can easily find premium supplies without ever leaving your home.
Our online shop has all the basics to keep your water crystal clear and your spa running smoothly. From pH increaser for hot tubs to genuine Jacuzzi®️ or Sundance®️ Spas filters, we’ve got you covered.
Shop online today, or visit our showroom in Scottsdale, and one of our expert staff will be happy to help you find the perfect products for your spa.