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Found 16 results

  1. So after months of online research, visiting local vendors, wet-testing, etc. I finally pulled the trigger on a 2019 Caldera Geneva spa and couldn't be happier. I have waited several months to post this because I tend to be dismissive of product reviews that people post with limited trial periods. I'm much more trustful of reviews from people who have owned something for enough time to truly test a product and live with it. My spa research and shopping and decision making is really a topic for a separate post and I want to keep this related to the Freshwater Salt System, which is the 2019 replacement of the previous Ace System by Watkins. To be clear, this is my first hot tub, so I have no experience with the Ace system or any other system. I can only comment on my experience with the new Freshwater Salt System. The primary reason for posting this is that in my own research, I could find no reviews of the system, presumably because it is new for this year. My research pointed me in the direction of wanting to go with a saltwater spa and the Ace system has been around for several years, so I figured that the Freshwater Salt System was an incremental improvement of the previous system. I will begin by saying that my initial opinion of the system was lackluster at best. I attribute this to the fact that my vendor, who shall remain anonymous for now, sent a technician to install my spa who was unfamiliar with the Freshwater Salt System. He claimed he had never set one up before. Fortunately, I had done some reading of the manual and stepped through the process with him. He seemed surprised by some of the steps such as adding the salt and reducing the calcium hardness. I learned later, after about 2 months, that we missed a critical first step in the filling of the new spa that made my initial experience frustrating. We failed to shock the spa with superchlorination at the beginning like we should have. Surprisingly, and I blame Watkins for this, this critical step is mentioned in the more detailed ownership manual, but not mentioned in the QuickStart guide that we were relying on for the initial setup. The result of missing this first step is that the Saltwater chlorination failed to produce chlorine at the proper levels. Frequent water testing showed that my chlorine levels were not keeping up with demand and from the very outset, I started balancing the water manually. I was testing and balancing the water once or twice a day. To exacerbate the condition, since the spa was new, my teenage boys had friends over frequently for hot tub parties, which I'm sure was adversely affecting the water chemistry. After a few weeks the water developed a slight odor on the skin. The spa water itself didn't really smell badly, but if you put your hand in and then smelled your hand it was musty smelling, almost like a mild dirty feet smell. I found myself adding more and more chlorine to keep up with demand. Also, I seemed to have a difficult time balancing the PH and Alkalinity. It was very difficult trying to precisely match up the colors on the test strips. Suffice it to say that I was somewhat unimpressed with the Freshwater Salt System and wishing I had just gone with a traditional chlorine system with an ozonator or UV sanitation device. But before throwing in the towel, I re-read the owner's manual and decided to give the Freshwater Salt System one more try. I began by draining the spa and refilling with fresh water. I followed all the steps in the manual, including precise salt measurement, replaced the cartridge and performed the critical superchlorination step. That was now over a month ago, and I have barely had to touch the water. The water has stayed in virtually perfect balance. I use the spa almost every night for about 30 minutes. My wife and kids use the spa a couple times a week. I will admit that the bather load has been reduced since the first month or two of spa ownership, but the spa is still used daily. The Freshwater Salt System has kept the water virtually perfect since I drained the tub and started over. There is no musty odor, and the water is crystal clear. I still test the water daily because I'm a bit fanatical about wanting to soak in clean, clear water. My PH levels have been holding very steadily. I have not been dealing with foam and scale like I was previously when the system wasn't functioning properly. I am a very satisfied and happy spa owner. In conclusion, I am extremely pleased with the function of the Freshwater Salt System. To reiterate, it is critical that all setup steps are followed carefully, especially the initial superchlorination (shock) step in order for proper chlorine production to be established. I'm extremely pleased with my purchase of the Caldera Utopia Series (Geneva model) spa. I would purchase this model again in a heartbeat and I would recommend it to others. It has been a game-changer in our household. It is so relaxing at night before bed and on weekend mornings. It's like living the resort life at home. Depending on the response to this forum post, I will probably create a post that details my spa shopping experience and how I decided to chose this model. I hope that others who are considering the new Freshwater Salt System will find this post helpful. And I hope that others who are already using this system will share their own experience.
  2. Greetings, here's my first post on the forum. I have a 2007 Tiger River Sumatran that developed a bartop crack in the past month. I've order a Watkins Binding Resin Bartop Kit and a Watkins Acrylic Filler Kit. Before I dig into the spa and use the two products, I was wondering if I should drill a hole into where the crack terminates at the top to prevent further migration. An internet search reveals some people recommending this but I'd like to hear from an professional if this is a technique used. If this a viable way to help stop the crack from growing, what diameter drill bit would apply to this size crack. Any advice on this would be welcomed, including any pro tips about the binding resin or acrylic filler. Thanks in advance.
  3. Hello, I have an IQ 2020 control board that I am trying to replace for my Watkins Prodigy hot tub. My current IQ 2020 has the label that reads Watkins PN: 0974201 REV C. I found an IQ 2020 control board with PN: 1302501 REV F. Does anyone know what the difference is between these two IQ 2020's and will both work on my hot tub???
  4. I have a 2006 Watkins’s vanguard vv2h2936. I just got it hooked up and can only get jet 1 to come on. If I plug the leads from jet 2 into the terminals for jet 1 jet 2 will work. I’m not getting any voltage to the leads on jet two. There is also no jet display on the control head coming on like it does when I turn on jet one. Also I have no voltage to the heater. Heater ohms out at about 17. Incoming voltage is correct and landed correctly. Control jumpers are on jp1, jp8,jp9. Could the problem be in the control head? I pulled it out and looked it over and the only thing I seen was the wires for the control light was damaged but nothing else. The IQ2020 board doesn’t appear to be damaged. Any trouble shooting tips would be great!
  5. I need to know if it is possible to reset the control panel. The temp got set to the max ut4 which is 107 and is too hot. The down button for temp doesn't work at all, but all other buttons work. Aside from replacing the control head which is difficult to find the old one that goes with the IQ2000, I want to know if I can reset to the 102 factory setting? Unplugging just remembers the last set temp but there but be some way to clear the memory. Thanks!
  6. We bought a house in South Dakota that had this Bengal Hot Tub. It worked fine for 5 years. Last year we spent the winter in warmer latitudes so we decided to leave it empty. Drained it and used a shop vac to suck out any remaining water. Filled it back up in May and noticed that it was leaking. Tried using that spa stop-leak stuff - didn't work. Using a car screw-jack, jack stands and a few blocks of wood, I stood it up on its' side. Found an old repair site and dug through the foam. Couldn't find a crack so I made a couple of repairs where I found hardened stop-leak. That wasn't it. I shot water though the nearest jet to find the crack in the check-valve and both fittings. Now, my question is - What's that fitting on the right? Notice the smooth barb on the bottom. A 1/4" line was connected to it. Looking inside the fitting it looks like a small patch was glued over the hole. Maybe it was debris but it's firmly attached. What's that line for? Looks like an air line to me. But no check valve and there was no water in the 1/4" line. And I can't find a matching pvc fitting anywhere. It's 2" x 1.5" x 1.5" x 1/4". I also had to replace most of the rotted base and corners with treated wood. I'll also have to come up with something to replace the siding that I removed. It didn't come off easily and broke in several places. I also replaced the o-rings on all but the mini-jets.
  7. How does one remove the Jet Face (#2 in diagram)???? Directions say… Remove the jet by grasping the jet faceplate and pulling it away from the spa shell. With jet in hand, two o-rings should be on the rear portion of the faceplate. If either o-ring is not present, inspect the inside of the front wallfitting and remove the missing o-ring. To reinstall the jet, reverse steps 1 to 3.Important: Make sure that the o-rings are properly seated. It rotates cw and ccw and comes to a dead stop, but it won't pull out. I tried prying it off with a plastic panel remover with no luck. I have a leak there and need to remove the body to make a clean repair. I also want to change-out all the o-rings in this 20 yr old tub. 1998 Hot Spring/Tiger River Bengal® Model M
  8. Went out to hot tub running, but no heat. Recently replaced heater, been running fine for a few months. See picture below. Thank God house didn't burn down! Thinking maybe electrician didn't hook these up very well, as it looks like maybe that's what caused this? This doesn't look like the normal relay burned out normal problems, does it? https://www.dropbox.com/s/lgn7630cx9osmhs/2017-12-21 21.55.46.jpg?dl=0
  9. I have a 2016 Hot Spring Spa Vanguard. When I have more than a few people in tub, the 30 amp breaker will trip. When I'm in by myself or with one person, there are no issues. Hot Spring replaced my 30 amp breaker -- but the issue is still happening. Has anyone experienced this?? I'm trying to figure out how bather load could make the breaker trip.
  10. Just wanted to share my experience with the community repairing motomassage jets on my Hot Springs Grandee 92-95 by Watkins, which came in "as is" condition with the house we bought. Besides of few other problems (that I fixed earlier), both motomassage jets had their "spine cords" broken, with some pieces pushed away and floating on the surface. All related tubes were in more or less good shape. A recommended jet replacement of "73307 Hot Spring Spas Moto Massage Jet Assembly" would cost me around $100 each. Spending $200 to replace these plastic pieces didn't seem to be fair, so I was looking for a cheaper option, and finally found "Moto Jet DX HG 14-C 77242" for $40 on ebay, which looked exactly as 73307, but without an air tube and o-ring. I decided to give it a try and ordered one - the risk was worse it, they turned out to be the same. I re-used my old air tube with o-ring, and my first jet started working immediately. Shortly I ordered another one and now I have both jets fully repaired for $80, rather than $200. P.S. I don't know the exact year when this Grandee was manufactured, because the serial of "G-05354" on it doesn't match the pattern they used. If someone has a knowledge - please, share. Vlad.
  11. Hi I have a 2000 hotsprings jetsetter model j that I'm attempting to repair. So far I replaced the heater circulation pump which got the hot tub working after 2 or 3 years of sitting for about 5 days after which it started to blow the gfci plug. I ohm'd the heater and it reads 10.8 ohms. When I reset the gfci it starts up Until it hits the heater and trips. With the heater unplugged it operated normally. What could cause the problem in the heater if the resistance is In spec?
  12. Hello, I bought a house 1 year ago, and it came with a HotSprings Grandee Spa, which worked great even after I refilled it back in April 2016. From the looks of it, it was manufacturd in 1999 or 2000. Anyway, I recently refilled the spa, and noticed that the heater wasn't working. TO be honest, I am not sure if the heater had been working before the refill, or if it stopped once I'd refilled it, because we hadn't used the spa in a couple of months. When I reset the heater, it clicks and clacks, I can see water moving through the inlet and outlet lines, but it kind of moves back and forth. Then, the high limit sensor trips, everything shuts off, and the power light flashes until I turn the breaker off for a minute or so, then turn it back on. Here is what I have done so far, for troubleshooting: 1. I tried resetting the spa and heater, with the filters removed. 2. I checked the water line coming from the heater for blockages or air...when I loosened the hose, water flowed freely from both the heater end, and the spa end. 3. I checked the voltage on the heater relay board, and it was perfectly fine. I noticed that when I hit the reset button on the heater, I hear the sound of water flowing, I see water move through the tubed going to and from the heater, there is clicking and clacking, the green "ready light" lights up, for a second, then the high limit sensor trips. What do you folks think? Is it the entire heater? THe high limit sensors? The thermostats? A blockage of buildup somewhere? I'm hoping to diagnose this without having to hire a tech. Putting this out on the forums is my last resort. -Chad
  13. I've got a Caldera Geneva hot tub that I bought new in the fall of 2012. Aside from replacing the cover this year, I've really not had any major issues with it up until now. Yesterday, I noticed water on the ground around the edge of the spa. I pulled the side panel off to check things out. There was water around the circulation pump. It was leaking out slowly. It appears to be leaking from the large ring that you can tighten with a pair of channel lock pliers. I tightened the ring but it did nothing to stop the leak. My questions are: Is there an O ring that I can change within the large ring in the middle that I tried to tighten? If there is an O ring, where can I buy it? If there is no O ring, do I need to replace the whole pump? If I need to replace the whole pump, where is a good place to buy one? I've attached pictures to show you what I'm dealing with.
  14. He ya'll, its my first post altough i've been following the forum for a few years now. I have A HOTSPRING VANGUARD, serial VV3M2392, which I bought used, I'm not sure what year is it, and I have been using it for maybe 18 months, but recently it began to shut off itself more often, a message on the screen says "protection mode" or something like that because is in spanish, and says to check filters for cleanliness, to reset main switch or to call service. At first I fixed it temporarily by cleanning filters more often, but then I began to shut down more and more often. on the manual says that when spa does not heat, green logo and blue logo blinking only two probable causes can be: Integrated pressure switch open or circulation pump overheating, since filters are clean, I would think the pressure switch is not working properly. I removed the filter from the circulation pump to be sure and still have same problem I live down in Mexico right now and its not easy to get proper spa service here, I have a friend that was helping me, but he has not answer for quite a few weeks now, he told me to first change the temperature sensors on the heater, there's two, one for the high limit and one for control, and to try this before changing the whole heater. I sent him money for the sensors but he still has not send them to me, its been 8 weeks since that and the spa its losing the best season for use. Since its not easy either to get parts over here, I took the heater off the spa this morning and I am checking it on my work table for cleanliness and to see if I can take it apart to change or clean more thoroughly. From what I've read, I think the pressure switch its not working properly, I'm trying everything before having to replace the whole heater which I think its about 400 bucks and I have to get someone to bring it down to me here in Mexico. Can the pressure switch be replaced?, How can I test it? or can it be jumped? I saw some replacement heaters that doesnt have pressure switch and come with a jumper. Can the temperature sensors do this? BTW I tried to remove the pressure switch from the heater and broke it from the thread, I think I can fix this with some glue but may be I should just replace the whole heater. I forgot to tell that the circuit breaker for the heater some times tripped its the 30 amp I think. Please Advice Eugene
  15. Recently acquired my parents Hotspring Sovereign 2003 model. Had to replace heater relay board and small circulation pump. Panel lights operating as they shoukd now, spa is properly primed from what I can tell, ozone with bubbles working as they should. Now when I turned on heater breaker, set temp to 102, after about 5 minutes the breaker trips. I feel the water warm where the bubbles rise so it seems to be heating. Heater is Watkins no fault 6000. Any suggestions or advice would be helpful.
  16. I recently came across a Caldera Hawaiian Spa from a friend who said it didnt heat anymore...thus the cheap price. When I filled it up...everything worked except the heat. I thought it was strange because the heater itself wasnt bad...it just wasnt getting a full 240V. I rapped on the relay and thats when I saw the spark. I removed the board and sure enough...the soldering joint had melted off the relay. When I researched the internet I found out that the Caldera and Hot Springs IQ2020 first generation boards werent powerful enough to handle the heater. I mean, just looking at the relays, they are rated for 20A open but only 10A closed. The far left relay was the only relay rated for the 16A it requires for the heater...that still leaves the other relays...underpowered. Referring to OHMS Law, we note that I = E/R. In laymons terms; if voltage goes up, current goes down and when voltage goes down, current goes up! On a day when demand for electricity spikes, this is when we see electronics like this exceed its rated amperage. Line voltage goes down and VOILA...your amperage spikes! The new generation of Heater Boards fixed this problem with beefier relays and better current carriers. However, for me, it would cost me $200 or more. I spent that just getting the GFCI's. I didnt have the money! That night, I had a dream...no, literally...I dreamt this. The main problem with these old boards wasnt that they were faulty...they just couldnt handle the load demands. So it hit me...why not have something ELSE bear the burden? So, I found an old water resistant plastic box, an old relay with a 240V coil, and some oven wire. The relay was from an old convection oven that was 3 phase...but voltage is voltage and hey, the coil wasnt three phase. This modification for these tubs will almost eliminate any load on the heater relay board...and still operate safely! Materials: Watertight project box, 240V Coil Contactor, 12 Gauge braided wire (solid is too hard to work with), Wire Nuts, Electrical Tape, and Replacement board relays (or solder). Step 1: You'll need a watertight project box big enough to fit in the control area...dont let it or any other wires rest on the heater pipe. Youll also need a contactor with a good amerage rating with a 240V coil...the coil being the most important element. Step 2: Replace the relays if they are burnt up (about $3 online and get the right ones, the models are listed on the part itself) or in my case, resolder the bad joint. Chances are, the rest of the board is ok but not in every case so dont quote me on this. This would involve the removal of the board if not already done. Step 3. Re-Install the board into the box and reinstall the wires BUT do not wire up the wires to the heater. Step 4. The terminals that formerly went directly to the heater from the board, will instead be routed to the coil on your relay (which should be mounted inside your box securely. Step 5. Split incoming power from the 20A GFCI via a wire nut so that the 240V is going to the circuit board but also 240V can be diverted to one side of your contactor. Dont try to pair up the wires on the board...it just wont work...use a wire nut. Step 6. I used oven wire but 12 GA should be fine. From the other side of your contactor, wire it to your heater (this would involve removing the old wires from the existing terminal block). The main key is to take the burden off the relays on the heater board...when installed, it will pull almost 0 current through the board...the current will come directly from the breaker but will still be controlled by the board. Step 7: Even after you have removed the old wires from the heater element, DO NOT LEAVE THE GROUND WIRE OFF...reinstall a ground from the heater to the board...especially when working with water, you can never have enough grounds! If the old board is still salvageable and you wired it correctly, she'll take right off! Tape up all loose wires, bundle wires as well as possible, and install in an area as far away from water as possible. I hope this saved you a few hundred bucks! It worked well for me and it is still safe! The tub is well out of warranty anyways. If you liked this article, tell me about it! Thanks for reading...and happy soaking!
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