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How does one know when an  ozonator / ozone generator stops working In a hot tub ? I know with some spa models , you’ll see tiny bubbles when the jets aren’t on, but with our model it only  comes in when the jets are on. 
The reason it seems important to me to know is because we were told the bromine level only needs to be at 1-2 with an ozonator but otherwise at 3-5 ppm.
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It depends on the system. Most I have seen the manufacturer recommends replacing the UV bulb every 1-2 years but I have never replaced one in all the years. Some have a small window and at night you can seen the purplish glow. Do you know what brand the ozonater is? Can you post a photo 

Some spas use a circulation pump that runs 24 hours and so you will see the bubbles. Some spas use one of the main pumps for heat and filtering so the bubbles will only be there when the pump is running during a heat or filter cycle.

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Our first one had a five year lifespan but we think it died after three years . This one says two-year lifespan and it’s been one year . It’s a JED 103 CDO cell type. 

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If you disconnect the ozone injector tube from the ozonator or check valve while it is on you should smell the ozone. It should have an indicator light so you know when it is on. I am not sure if the indicator will work when the ozonator is bad, but it should run during a filter cycle when no button has been pressed on the control for a set period, which can vary by spas control system. So go check it during a filter cycle but don't press any buttons or it will turn off. Be careful removing tube, as ozone makes plastic brittle and the barb it is on could break.

The jed 103 is rated for 20,000 hours according to the specs.

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  • 2 weeks later...

All ozonators are UV, corona discharge generate an arc like a welder to produce UV light, others use a light bulb like a blacklight on steroids. There is no way to produce ozone without ultraviolet light. Some CD ozonators have a replaceable "cartridge", others require disassembly and rewiring to replace the cartridge. Some that use a light bulb have a replaceable bulb, others not. You should always use the type that was originally in it, as the ozone injection system is sized to that ozonators output. If you use a higher output unit you must also change the injector (mazzei valve) to avoid nitric acid buildup in the tube, check valve, and mazzei, as well as possible equipment damage from ozone in the equipment area.

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On 5/13/2020 at 9:02 PM, RDspaguy said:

The jed 103 is rated for 20,000 hours according to the specs.

 

44 minutes ago, d1dennis2009 said:

Ozone generators only last determinate  amount of hours, so it would depends on if you are using CD or UV type generator.

There is a bit more to it than that, as each model has a different hour rating. The old rule of thumb does not really apply anymore. Check the specs on the unit and the approximate usage of the spa. Those with a 24/7 operation will not last as long as a spa without a 24/7 circulation pump that only runs the ozone during programmed filter cycles.

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Ours only runs during programmed filtration cycles which  is generally  only about 4 hours a day. But the spa salesman told us the first one we had that came with the spa when new (a Monarch) was good for 5 years and we think it lasted 3. He also told me the replacement they sold us was good for 3 years . 

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That is the rule of thumb. The manufacturers specifications are in hours, not years. How did you determine that your old one was bad? Only running 4 hours per day is not going to have nearly the effect on the water as a 24/7 system. It may be nearly unnoticeable. 

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I will have to look next time I am there-it is at a vacation rental-but I don't think we can run our filtration system 24/7. Are you saying we should? I think the default is 1 1/2 hours , twice a day. 

 We weren't positive it had stopped working but someone had told us they only last a few years and the person who usually maintains it  thought she noticed a difference.
That Monarch unit from Watkins that you showed was our original (1st)  one. Well, I know it was Monarch brand but it may not have been that unit because they list 3 spas it is for and doesn't show ours-Caldera Vanto.
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Caldera, Hot Springs, Tiger River, and Hot Spot are all made by Watkins manufacturing.

If you have a Caldera, you almost certainly have a 24/7 circulation system. I have never seen one that doesn't. I owned one myself for 3 years, loved that spa.

Your ozonator was probably bad. Your new one is rated for a little over 2 years. 

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