Jump to content

Chemicals Needed Really


Tubber McGee
 Share

Recommended Posts

Hello,

I have a HS Vanguard with the salt ACE system - a couple months ago my cell quite working (thank you Hot Springs for sending me a new cell), as they do go bad.

Because I do not use my tub in the warm summer months much and the fact that these cells have a limited life span, I decided to wait to replace my cell until the cold weather hit. I posed the question on this forum about not balancing my water chemistry and just shocking forl the couple months until I replace the cell. I was told that I should still balance my water for sure for many reasons!

Balancing the water was my plan, but due to my work schedule, vacations, kids sports and my drinking problem (joking), i didnt have get to it. I ended up just shocking the water once a week or so.

Well, I am about to replace the cell and get ready for the busy winter usage, but I have to say that I am really questioning the need to spend all the money on chemicals and to balance the water. My water is currently crystal clear and has been for well over 2 months. The tub did get used a small amount by the kids and we had zero skin/rash issues.

I am sure I will not be too popular with people that make a living selling all these chemicals to make sure water is 100% perfect, but I am really questioning if all this time, money and work is really necessary. I am thinking a ozonator and some shock once a week and boom - good to go!

Please help me understand why I may be way off base here!

Thanks

Tubber (I just saved a couple hundred bucks in chemicals) McGee

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you do not have a disinfectant residual in the water, then bacteria can grow on surfaces and such bacteria never get circulated to any UV, ozone, or other system that operates primarily in the circulation system. ACE is different since it actually generates chlorine so provides a residual. Clear water is not necessarily safe water. Are your spa surfaces slimy at all? Biofilm can form and be very chlorine resistant.

It's possible that your shocking lasted through the week if your spa was not used -- especially if you lowered the water temperature. There's nothing wrong with that and in that case you WERE maintaining your spa -- just making sure the chlorine didn't get to zero.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for the reply

The Spa surface is not slimy at all - the temp has been around 100 degrees and the kids have used the tub approx once a week. I know I should be balalncing the water and i will in the future when i install the salt cell - just very suprised at how my water and tub are doing with only shocking periodically.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Damage to components from improper chemical balance does not occur overnight. It slowly degrades things. You may not see an issue now, but you are certainly reducing the life of components by not balancing ph, alk, hardness, etc.... Bather load significantly effects the amount of sanitizer needed. If you are using it once per week, you may only need to add sanitizer that often. If the kids used it every day, the water would most certainly not be clear with a once per week dose, unless it was a huge one.

Adding chemicals is really not that big of a deal. I'm not sure why people seem to bothered by it. With most spas that have an ozonator, a teaspoon of dichlor per person after each use is enough. Test and balance PH, alk, hardness, when you fill it and maybe every month or 2. None of those products are expensive.

Also, I don't think too many dealers make their living selling chemicals. If that's all we sold, we would have gone out of business a long time ago. Chemicals account for significantly less revenue than you may think.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'd like to 2nd your concern of people on the board being far too concerned with testing & chemical levels every day or two. I have been called out a few times on the boards for taking a more relaxed stance. I even earned a "warning point" for not towing the line and bursting someone's bubble. I don't come around much anymore due to the climate created by many (and all the pop ups!).

After a season or so... all the testing & micro levels don't mean much. I have now owned 3 tubs, over 25 years, with very few problems... NONE chemical related. Maybe I'm just lucky.

I own my tub to relax... not to give me another chore or full time job. Use the KISS principle.

Happy Tubbing!

Link to comment
Share on other sites


In this thread I compiled a list of hot tub rash/itch/lung incidents reported on this forum and you can see that most of them are due to letting the disinfectant level get to zero, a few of them due to use of "alternative" sanitizers, and the rest due to multiple months of Dichlor-only use. It was from this pattern that I suggested the Dichlor-then-bleach method and emphasized the use of a proper test kit frequently enough to ensure that one never let the disinfectant level get to near-zero (for too long).

I also spoke personally with one user who nearly died from Legionnaire's Disease.

So yes, we do emphasize the importance of properly maintaining one's spa. However, once you get used to your spa's chlorine demand, you don't necessarily have to test every time. Since the promotion of proper water care, the number of these reported incidents plummeted except for a few new forum users, but the Dichlor-then-bleach method has so far proven to prevent the problems listed in that table.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think what you have discovered isn't the need for no chemicals, but the chemicals necessary are much less than you, and many others, originally suspected, anticipated, or were taught. The sun has an enourmous impact on a pool. On your spa, in the dark, as long as nothing can bloom- you'll be fine. But it's important to oxidize any bather waste as soon as it's introduced. It's very simple. And the fewer chemicals you use to sanitize, the less the PH and ALk will drift. A good test kit will tell you all you need to know :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...