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How to Clean the Water in your Spa Pool

02 November, 2022

A question that is the avoided by spa salespeople the world over is “How do I care for my new spa?”. This question is hated because cleaning isn’t a fun topic. However, at Sapphire Spas we know it’s a question that all new spa owners need to ask to make sure that they get a long and enjoyable life from their new purchase. In fact, spa care is part of our new spa owner information pack and your local sales team can walk all first-time spa owners through everything they need to know. Once you know what you’re doing it’s really quite simple.

Steps to Spa Cleaning

Spa cleaning is an important part of spa ownership, some assume that spa cleaning and regular maintenance will be a chore, but this is largely because of the fearsome reputation that pool maintenance has. The truth is spas are much more simple and low-key to maintain, in part because they are much smaller and have a smaller volume of water. Because of their smaller size, some spa owners ignore maintenance and take a trial-and-error approach. While you can simply empty and refill your spa if it gets out of hand, this is wasteful and poorly maintained water can present a health hazard to users and damage the spa’s equipment.

 

Check your water balance

Spa water needs to be kept in check to make sure that it is clean and safe for use. Water that becomes out of balance may cause irritation to users or require excessive chemical use to sanitize. Water checks should be done weekly to make sure that your water is in balance. Your salesperson will provide you with information specific to your spa and how to check and balance your water, as a rule, spa water should have the following chemical balances:

  • Chlorine: 1.0–3.0 ppm
  • Bromine: 2.0–4.0 ppm
  • pH: 7.4–7.6
  • Total Alkalinity: 80–120 ppm
  • Calcium Hardness: 150–250 ppm

 

Keep your water level up

Over time with users getting in and out of your spa, splashing and evaporation your spa’s water level will go down. The less water that is in your spa the more concentrated any contaminants that enter the water will become. The best way to make sure you do not increase the contaminant load on the spa’s filter and sanitization systems is to top up your spa whenever you see the level becoming low. You should check this every two weeks to make sure the level doesn’t drop too much.

 

Shower first

Because of the small volume of water in a spa, any contamination that enters the water with you, including hair, dead skin, body oils, sunscreen, hair products or other residues will have a greater effect on the water quality than in a full-size pool. A great way you can reduce this problem is to shower before you enter your spa and when possible, avoid getting your hair wet under the water or applying sunscreen or lotions much below the water line.

 

Keep your water clean

Besides showering before getting into your spa, floating spa discs or other surface filters are available to assist your spa’s inbuilt filter. Most of these floating filters are cleanable and reusable providing many uses. They’re a cheap way to remove surface contaminants such as hairs and oils before they enter the spa’s filtration system.

 

Check your filters

Your spa comes with an inbuilt filter to remove physical contamination from the water, these filters need to be regularly checked. Some filters can be cleaned while others need to be replaced. Even cleanable filters should be replaced as they become worn out or damaged. You should check your filter every week or two and replace it annually for the best performance.

 

Drain and refill on schedule

Every 3-4 months it is ideal to drain your spa and refill it to ensure the water is completely clean and fresh, this may be slightly longer if your spa is only lightly used and your water quality is carefully maintained. Under heavy use, your spa water should be changed every 3 months to ensure continued performance and enjoyment.

 

Air out your spa

All of Sapphire Spa’s great range of spas are sold with lockable hard covers included. It is important that you do not leave the cover on for more than a week without being opened to air out. If you use your spa at least once a week you won’t need to air your spa out, but don’t recover the spa until the water has had time to settle after use.

 

Invest in quality water care and sanitation

Finally, while not a substitute for chemicals you can greatly reduce the chemical use of your spa by using a quality, in-built sanitisation system. The gold standard in water sanitisation is an ozone and UVC sanitation unit and the market leader for ozone-based systems is the Sapphire Spas Clearzone sanitisation system. While some ozone systems require manual operation, Sapphire Spa’s products offer automated spa cleaning so you can spend as little time as possible maintaining your spa.

Not All Water Care Products Are Created Equal

While you will still need to invest in spa chemicals to top up, maintain and balance your spa water, you can reduce this with a quality sanitisation system. There are many providers of spa sanitation systems, but how do you decide which is the best?

 

CD Ozone

Ozone is the current preferred water sanitisation method for spas. Ozone is an oxygen molecule with 3 oxygen atoms instead of two, it’s highly reactive with organic matter and will absorb and kill bio-organic matter and disintegrate in the process. Corona discharge (CD) creates ozone using highly ionised air (similar to how ozone is created during a lightning strike). CD is widely considered to create the best volume and distribution of ozone and results in better sanitisation.

Good CD ozone generator suppliers also provide UV sterilisation built into their ozone units. The combination of ozone and UV creates a 1-2 punch of powerful sanitisation action giving you confidence that your spa water is clean and safe. Sapphire's Purewater Ozone is a reputable brand and a high quality baseline that is used in all our spas. While our Purewater Ozone system is a reliable and trusted system, the current market leader is Clearzone. These double-dose ozone & UVC water cleansing systems have been demonstrated to reduce the need for the addition of chemicals by up to 70%!

 

Salt

Salt is often advertised as natural, low cost and easy. This sadly is not the case. Salt sanitisation systems require a salt unit to convert the salt water to chlorine. These units are prone to breaking and cost over $600 each to replace and we’ve had customers need to replace them multiple times in a year, while under warranty this is a nuisance, but outside of warranty, it’s a prohibitive and aggravating expense. Further, salt requires manually activated cleansing cycles and you, the owner, needs to adjust the salt unit manually. While salt is natural, ozone is too, it’s a naturally occurring molecule in the earth’s atmosphere and it has a greater sanitisation effect than salt.

 

Automation

All the Sapphire Spas ozone sanitisation systems are low-effort; they can be scheduled to cleanse on a cycle to prevent the need to manually schedule or complete this task yourself. Our systems also use smart filtration to run filtration when the pump is already circulating water for heating, reducing energy consumption. Cheaper brands often operate filtration cycles on a fixed time and will run even when the water is not flowing, wasting power and producing no result. Programmable filtration means that depending on the volume of your spa and the chemicals you use, you can create a filtration program to optimise your spa health and reduce operating costs and chemicals used. When needed our One-Touch sanitise feature allows you to touch one button and start a 20-minute cleanse cycle, which includes running the pumps and jets to recycle and purge the water from the pipes, this leaves your spa in the best possible condition for your next use.

 

Cheaper brands

When looking at sanitisation systems, beware of cheaper brands. Cheap systems often do not include UV sanitisation to boost performance. They also often produce low-quality or insufficient volumes of ozone for adequate cleansing which is a major concern. Finally, a key part of an ozone system is a carefully designed ozone injector like the Clearzone injectors which fully disperse the ozone into the water stream to ensure it is fully used before bubbling to the surface.

Conclusion

With spa brands using low-quality or even no sanitation system, you are left to manually add large amounts of chlorine to your spa. This is a large cause of the common expectation that spa care is an intensive and time-consuming task involving large amounts of chemicals. When you buy a spa from Sapphire Spas your spa will always be ready to use with just a couple of minutes a week and very few chemicals. This is thanks to our insistence on ozone + UV automated sanitisation systems.

If you think a spa might be for you visit a Sapphire Spas store near you and ask our friendly experts how they can help you. They’ll be more than happy to provide help and advice and they can answer any spa care question you might have too!

myExtravagancePREMIUM from our Luxurious spa pool range, shown below, comes standard with Clearzone ultimate sanitisation system.

Luxurious

myExtravagance luxurious spa shown above is highly spec'd with Clearzone sanitisation from our Luxurious Range

Our flagship spa, the myExtravagance offers an experience like no other. It easily fits six adults and is just over 2.3m square. This large amount of space is the perfect size to offer comfortable and relaxing seats for every person in the spa. This spa provides back and neck massages for five out of six seats. The sixth and final seat is a luxury like no other. This last seat is a recliner that offers a full body massage featuring 16 jets that has its own personal control panel can control.

Some of our installs to give you inspiration for your own backyard

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