Hot Tub Repair 101 – Pro Tips to Diagnose and Repair Common Hot Tub Problems

Owning a hot tub can be a delightful experience, providing relaxation and rejuvenation right in the comfort of your own home.

However, much like any other high-tech appliance, hot tubs require regular maintenance and occasional repairs to function at their best.

After all, with a typical lifespan of 15 to 20 years with proper care, you’re bound to face some hot tub repairs over the years.

Fear not, when issues arise, there are often easy steps to help you diagnose and repair them yourself.

Sure, there will come a time when professionals will need to get involved, especially if your hot tub is still under warranty, but for many common problems, with a little know-how, you can tackle yourself!

In this article, we’re going to give you everything you need to expertly diagnose and repair the most common hot tub issues, and help you determine when it’s time to call in the professionals.

Read on to master your future hot tub repairs!

The Most Common Hot Tub Issues

Hot tubs are complex units, and many of their parts are surrounded by water every day of the year.

This can lead to issues arising over the years, especially if your water isn’t frequently kept in balance.

Poorly balanced water can result in corrosion or scale buildup over time, which can wreak havoc on your entire system.

Some of the most common issues you can experience include:

  • Dirty water
  • Weak jet pressure
  • A loud pump
  • Error codes
  • Temperature fluctuations or cold water

The best way to reduce the risk of these issues occurring is simply maintaining a well-rounded maintenance schedule. However, even with the best of care, there’s bound to come a time when you discover one of these issues and need to diagnose and repair it.

Hot Tub Repair - Testing The Water

How To Diagnose The Cause of Your Hot Tub Issue

If you’ve discovered one of the issues above, don’t stress. Each one can often be treated on your own with a little gusto.

Upon discovering any issue with your hot tub, you’ll need to find the root cause before you can work towards rectifying it.

The most effective way to diagnose any issue includes four crucial steps to get you started.

Step 1: Test Your Water

If you’re experiencing any water quality issues, your first step should be to test your water. This will give you a clear picture of what’s going on with its chemical makeup.

Many issues stem from dirty water, and rebalancing it is often a great first step in solving the problem.

Some of the most common signs of poorly balanced water include:

  • A foul odor
  • A cloudy appearance
  • Foam on the surface

Step 2: Check Your Filters

Your filters play a crucial role in your hot tub’s basic functioning, and if they’re dirty and clogged, they lead to a wide range of issues.

Some common issues dirty filters may cause include:

  • Poor water pressure
  • Low water quality
  • Cold water
  • Reduced efficiency (resulting in rising energy bills!)

If you’ve experienced these issues, inspecting and cleaning your filters should be at the top of your to-do list.

Step 3: Check Your Control Panel

The control panel of your hot tub is how your spa will communicate potential issues with you.

While it can’t tell you when your water is poorly balanced, it tracks other crucial functions, such as the temperature of your water, or the water pressure.

Error codes are specific to the brand of hot tub you have, so if you discover codes appearing on our control panel, reference your owner’s manual to decipher what they are trying to communicate.

Step 4: Inspect your System

Finally, if you’ve completed the above steps and still can’t find the cause of your issue, it’s time to inspect your system.

Hot tubs are made up of various parts that all rely on one another to function smoothly.

If one is experiencing issues, it can result in a host of issues that affect everything else down the line.

Some aspects you may want to inspect includes:

  • Plumbing
  • Heating element
  • Pump
  • Water level

Hot Tub Repair - Foamy Water

5 DIY Hot Tub Repairs for Common Issues

For many minor issues, you can take on the challenge of a DIY hot tub repair, but this is limited to a few specific issues.

Below, you’ll discover five hot tub repairs you can take on yourself, and the steps you’ll need to take for each one.

1. Dirty, Cloudy, or Foul Smelling Water

If you’ve lifted your cover and come face to face with dirty water, you’ll want to ensure to diagnose and repair the issue before enjoying your soak.

The Most Common Culprit

Oftentimes, the most common factors that cause dirty water is a poor chemical makeup or dirty filters.

You can diagnose these issues by testing your water, and inspecting your filters for excess grime or any damage.

Potential Hot Tub Repairs

After finding out what your water’s pH, alkalinity, and sanitizer levels are, and inspecting your filters, you’ll be ready to start working towards clearing up your unwelcoming water!

First and foremost, treat your water as necessary based on your test results.

Afterward, thoroughly rinse your filters and inspect them for any rips or tears. If they have any damage, you’ll need to replace them with new ones.

If they’re in good condition, however, you’ll need to give them a good clean. To do this, you can dilute some filter cleaner with water and allow them to soak for 15 minutes.

This will help lift the heavy set debris, and leave you with clean, effective filters once again.

2. Cold Water

There’s nothing worse than planning on a relaxing soak only to discover your hot tub water has suddenly become icy cold!

If this happens, there are a handful of things that could be happening.

The Most Common Culprit

While your first thought may be that your heater isn’t working properly (and you may be right), there are actually a couple of other things that may be causing the issue.

A sudden change in your water temperature could also be coming from clogged filters or low water levels, reducing your circulation.

Potential Hot Tub Repairs

First things first, you’ll want to check your heating element. Because it’s always in contact with your water, there’s a likelihood that it’s experienced corrosion or scale buildup over time, reducing its efficiency.

This is an especially common issue if your water is often left improperly balanced.

If you discover any damage, you’ll want to consider calling in the professionals to change your heating element or replace your heater.

Next, you’ll want to check the filters and top up your water if it’s low. If your filters are dirty, clean them by following the direction above.

3. Poor Water Pressure

Changes in your water pressure often appear in two ways; weak jets, or a trickling waterfall.

The Most Common Culprit

Weak water pressure is most often caused by an issue with your circulation system, or your water pump.

To diagnose which one it is, inspect your filters, check your water levels, and check your control panel for any errors.

Potential Hot Tub Repairs

Because this can be caused by a variety of issues, how you handle the repair will depend on the root cause of your poor water pressure.

The first thing you’ll want to do is check your control panel for any error codes that may point to what’s causing the issue.

If there are no error codes, you’ll want to inspect your system to diagnose the issue.

If you have clogged filters, clean them using the steps listed above. If your water level is low, top it up with your garden hose and test and treat it as necessary.

If those two steps don’t seem to fix the issue, you may have a clog in your pipes that’s reducing the water flow throughout your system.

To combat this, add some line cleaner to your water, let your system run for 20 minutes to circulate the cleaner, then perform a water change.

4. A Loud Pump

Have you noticed your quiet moment of peace is being interrupted by a loud pump? This likely shows up in the form of a deep growl or high-pitched squealing, each signaling a different issue.

The Most Common Culprit

If your pump is growling, it’s likely that your pump isn’t receiving enough water.

However, if it’s squealing, then you’ll want to check your bearings since this often results from them being worn down or too dry.

Potential Hot Tub Repairs

To fix a growling pump, you’ll want to check your water levels and top them up. This will likely resolve the problem, ensuring your pump is able to get enough water to function properly.

For a squealing pump, check your bearings to determine if they need to be replaced. If they look like they’re still in good condition, add some lubricant to them. This will help them move more easily and should fix the issue.

5. Error Codes

Last on the list are those unique codes that show up on your control panel.

As mentioned above, if you’re facing a new error code, consult your manual to determine what it means. Alongside its meaning, you’ll find a series of next steps to follow to resolve the issue.

However, more often than not, when your hot tub throws an error code, you’ll need to schedule a service appointment to have the issue resolved.

When To Call a Professional Hot Tub Repair Service

There are many times when scheduling a professional hot tub repair may be your best best.

First and foremost, if you’re not comfortable repairing your own hot tub, or simply would prefer to leave it in the hands of trained professionals, scheduling a hot tub repair is often as simple as calling your dealership.

However, if you’re a hands-on person and enjoy taking a more active role in your hot tub repairs, there are some times when it’s best to yield to the experts.

Most importantly, if your hot tub is still under warranty, you should never perform any significant repairs on your own. If you do, you risk voiding your warranty and ending up with costly bills in the future.

Additionally, it’s always a good idea to include the professionals for more complex issues, such as a leaking hot tub, or when your diagnosis comes up blank.

Hot Tub Repair and Service in Patchogue, NY

Whether you’ve discovered one of the issues above or are experiencing another problem with your hot tub, the expert team at AJ Spa and Hot Tubs can help.

With over 40 years of serving the residents of Patchogue and Long Island, we’ve gained a reputation for expert service you can rely on.

Contact us today, and we’ll get your hot tub back up and running in no time!

Share :