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Hot Tub Cleaning Guide

Your hot tub might not literally be a time machine, but it can make you feel younger. There’s nothing like slipping into it after a tough day and feeling muscle aches and stress melt away. 

But part of that enjoyment depends on keeping the hot tub clean. This will help keep your water more healthy and looking better. It can also prolong the life of your hot tub.

Like most cleaning rituals, there are both easy, frequent steps to take as well as more extensive cleanings to do periodically. Sure, it’s a bit of work – but the enjoyment is definitely worth it!

Routine Maintenance

Some basic care whenever you use your hot tub will help cut down on how hard and how often the “big” cleanings are. These tasks are quick, but make a huge difference!

Use A Skimmer

After each use of the hot tub, we suggest using a skimmer to pick up any debris. If your hot tub is in the yard or on the deck and you forgot to cover it, you’ll want to do this before hopping in, too!

A pool skimmer net works fine for this. Use it to fish out any hairs, leaves, or other objects that may have fallen in. It will also catch some of the oils that come off your body. 

By removing this debris from the tub, you keep the water looking better and reduce stress on the filter!

Keep It Covered

It’s always a good job to cover up the hot tub when it’s not being used, too. This is particularly important outdoors, but helps inside, too!

This will keep debris out – but it’ll also discourage animals from coming by for a drink. Of course, a secure lid should always be used if there is any risk that a child could fall in.

Treat The Water

About once a week, you’ll need to add chlorine (or an alternative like bromine) to your hot tub’s water. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for how to do so! These chemicals help keep bacteria levels to a minimum. And that means the water is healthier to relax in!

Clean The Filter

While you’re adding that water treatment, take a moment to pop the filter out of the pump and rinse it. This will help keep water flowing through it smoothly. 

Again, follow the manufacturer’s instructions for removing and reinstalling your filter.

Deep Cleaning Your Hot Tub

The basic care steps above help keep the hot tub in good shape for regular use. But every few months, you should do a deeper clean.

This will help get rid of visible marks but also invisible grime on the tub and its components. And bacteria love the hot water, so these steps will help keep them at bay!

Going through this process every three to four months will keep things in tip-top shape!

Flush The Lines

Over time, debris can build up in the pipes that feed and drain your hot tub. To keep them cleaned out, part of your general cleaning should be to flush them.

That’s easier than it sounds. You simply add a hot tub line flush product to the tub and let it run. 

If the tub is especially dirty or you’ve never flushed the pipes before, let this circulate at least overnight.

It shouldn’t need to be said, but you can’t use the hot tub during this process. Only add the line flush when you’re going to be able to drain the tub before you want to use it again! 

Empty The Hot Tub

Once you’ve let the line flush run through the system, it’s time to drain the tub completely.

The first step is to unplug the tub or turn off its circuit breaker. Don’t run the risk of the jets or pump coming back on while you’re draining it! That could quickly burn them out.

To drain the water from the tub, follow the instructions for your tub.

Also, be sure to check on any local laws and use common sense. Since you use chemicals in the water, it’s never a good idea to drain it into your lawn or a storm drain. Instead, direct the water to a sewer line.

Clean The Tub

Once the tub is empty, it’s time to get down to scrubbing! Remember to always wear gloves. Safety goggles are encouraged, too.

There are cleaners specially designed for hot tubs, but you could also use non-abrasive bathtub cleaners. 

You could also use bleach, but remember to never mix bleach with anything other than water! It can be highly dangerous when mixed with other chemicals.

Spray water in along with the cleaner. Use a soft scrub brush or a pool brush to help remove grime from all around the pool. Be sure to rinse it thoroughly as you go.

The outside of the hot tub and the lid can be wiped off with some cleaner and water, too.

Clean Or Replace The Filter

Your hot tub filter will probably only need to be replaced once a year. Other than that, you can hose it off to clean it. 

If it’s time to replace it, be sure to purchase the right one for your pump!


The hard part’s done, so now it’s time to fill the tub again! Usually, that just means placing the hose in your tub. But be sure to check the instructions in case your model should be filled differently.

Once the tub is full, plug it back in and add your chemicals. Let it run for a good 12 hours and test the water before using it!


Taking care of your hot tub doesn’t take much time, and it helps provide a ton of relaxation! With some simple steps each time you use it and occasional thorough cleanings, it will stay in great shape. It’s not expensive or time-consuming, and you’ll feel so much better about it! 

About Us

Tom and Sarah Greenwood are the dynamic duo behind “Yards Improved,” dedicated to the joys and challenges of gardening, pool maintenance, and lawn and patio care. With Tom’s passion for landscape design and Sarah’s enthusiastic approach to gardening, they share their journey of transforming their backyard into a thriving retreat. We strive to offer practical advice aimed at helping you enhance your outdoor space.