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Freshwater Salt System


John999
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Hi,

All my readings are OK according to Hot Springs multi test strips. Salt level is OK too. I have had two cartridges supplied free by the company, none of which lasted over 2 months. One barely lasted a month. The latest lasted 7 weeks. Getting fed up with this now.

I don't have ozone or UV.

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Is this a new spa delivered this summer? I don't know much about the freshwater system itself but  Im curious about the first time startup routine and if the high chlorine demand might be real.    I'm also assuming (since you said all your numbers are good) that this includes CA.  My understanding is that nearly soft water is required (50 ppm CA). 

you could rule out contaminants unrelated to the Freshwater system itself by purging with ahh-some.  I only say this because my Hot Spring Grandee was delivered to me contaminated with biofilms, and I didn't clear this up until I purged with ahh-some

 

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Hi,

Thanks for your reply. Hot tub is about a year old now. I don't think the issue is with the water chemistry, because everything is OK until the cartridge fails. Replacing the cartridge resolves the error on the tub LEDs (Flashing Yellow light as opposed to green).

I have had a technician out twice now and he can't find any reason for short lifespan of cartridges. I have heard indirectly that Hot Springs are reducing the stated life expectancy to 2 months.

I am starting to wonder if the cartridge life expectancy was over-rated at time of sale to make it more palatable. (Cartridges cost around £70 each). At my current rate of use I would need 8 a year (£560 plus postage).

Looks like I am going back to Chlorine / Bromine granules / tablets.

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On 9/22/2020 at 5:29 AM, dlleno said:

Is this a new spa delivered this summer? I don't know much about the freshwater system itself but  Im curious about the first time startup routine and if the high chlorine demand might be real.    I'm also assuming (since you said all your numbers are good) that this includes CA.  My understanding is that nearly soft water is required (50 ppm CA). 

you could rule out contaminants unrelated to the Freshwater system itself by purging with ahh-some.  I only say this because my Hot Spring Grandee was delivered to me contaminated with biofilms, and I didn't clear this up until I purged with ahh-some

 

This.  My initial cartridge lasted less than 3 months.  I was a new tub owner and was not aware that biofilm comes 'pre-loaded' in all new tubs.  

Prior to the first drain, I used ahh-some and have done so ever since then each time.  Cartridges last at least 4 months now, sometimes longer.  Adding an Ag cartridge helped extend it as well, but the real killer for these things is the biofilm, at least in my experience.

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Bingo.  Folks (and mfgs) tend to look the other way and just over sanitize to cover up the problem.   

Search for "boise diesel spa purge" and you will find my work on biofilm and purge solutions.   In addition i am now a believer in 'hot tub serum' a maintenance product from the makers of ahh- some with a lower concentration of the primary active ingredient and without all the surfactants.   

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Yep, after only nine weeks with my brand new Jetsetter LX I had to change the cartridge. At $70 a pop I'm questioning the integrity of this company after they assured me that the cartridge would have to be replaced every four months. I WILL NOT be happy if I have to replace this perishable component six times a year at a cost of $38 a month.

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Hahaha. They don't do it on purpose. Every spa built gets filled and tested at the factory. This leaves a small amount of residual water in the pipes. Then it is put in storage in a warehouse or lot, shipped across country on a truck, possibly stored by the dealer, then delivered to you. And it has had plenty of time to acquire and grow all kinds of nasties in that water trapped in the pipes. 

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  OK, I read the spa-purge blog re biofilms . I'm wondering if with all the different harsh chemicals used to flush your pipes so many times you may have degraded some seals and or other components throughout the plumbing creating what you describe as biofilms.  This may not biofilms at all. This residue may be material etched off of the inside of your pipes, pumps etc that is the actual walls, seals etc of such components. 

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Hi Aero:  I would like to address your concerns regarding the possibility of plumbing purges affecting hot tub components such as rubber, plastic and metal fittings and o'rings.  Now in our 25th. year  in business I want to assure you and others who may be reading this post that our plumbing and jet cleaner does not affect, degrade or ruin any surface it comes in contact with.  I have very little information on other brands but I would maintain that they are not damaging any parts as well.  We are all in the business of helping hot Tub owners. We have successfully eliminated barrels and barrels and umpteen more barrels of bio-contaminants from hundreds of thousands and possibly millions of hot tubs and jetted baths without one incident taking place of any degradation or destruction of any infrastructure components.  We've heard it all before.  When some people purge their hot tubs they think that the product itself adds the gunk, slime and discoloration that they see within minutes. They think we do this for effect. There are non believers for sure.  What we try to do is provide the single best product that will perform a plumbing colonoscopy in an easy to use formulation and one that does the job quickly and effectively.  Even today there are many dealers who haven't a clue about biofilms in their vessels.  Sad but true. So, we fully understand the reluctance of some hot tub owners to acknowledge that biofilms can and do exist in hot tub plumbing.  Bottom line is this.  Biofilms grow and colonize in all hot tubs no matter how well you maintain them.  Enjoying a healthy soaking environment week after week can be attained if you practice good chemical and maintenance protocols and purge the plumbing and drain the water twice a year directly AFTER the purge process has been completed.  Aero, thank you for your post.  This forum is a great way to communicate with hot tub owners.  We are all here to assist you.

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Thanks "Aero"  for your input. At least I am not alone in this short life cartridge situation. I am still waiting on a reply from my nearest Hot Spring agent as to what action they are going to take next. I am still under warranty. Meanwhile  I am waiting on salt arriving before I treat the tub with Ahh-some and refill. It will be interesting to see what comes out of the pipe-work and if I get 4 months out of the next (and last) cartridge.

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Ahhsomeguy. If you read the "Spa purge Blog" you will see that the test was conducted using multiple drains and re fills using many different products similar to "Ahhsome".  My point was I do not believe that a hot tub or a flush product is designed to conduct multiple frequent system flushes over a short period of time. Conducting a high frequency test in this manner may cause the degradation of the internal components. (Please correct if I'm nuts:)

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Latest update from Watkins (who own Hot Springs). They have supplied me with another free cartridge (3 now), asked the dealer for my technical service history (not much)...two visits from a technician who tried to say my water chemistry was off. I suspect they will say the problem is with me and not the cartridge lifespan.

I have asked the dealer to contact Watkins about treating with Ahh-some or similar products. Apparently e-mails take about two weeks to get to the US, so I will wait again on a reply. I am holding back on emptying the tub and purging it until they reply. I'll update when I get a response.

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Watkins, the Hot Spring manufacturer, is very much aware of the Ahh-Some product(s).  Customer Service personnel at Watkins have been recommending Ahh-Some for many years when their customers experience " out of the ordinary sanitizer decay" conditions.  Watkins is one of the top manufacturers in the industry.  Our dealing with them over the years has shown us that they really do care about their customers and dealers alike.  On a scale of 1-10, they are a 10.  I strongly recommend that you purge your tub ASAP.  This is not a "Watkins Only" situation.  Higher than normal sanitizer decay rate is telling you something.  Reduce or eliminate the bio-fouling contaminants colonizing in your plumbing and jets.  Purge baby Purge.  
 

To ALL hot tub owners.  If you want the healthiest, clearest and easiest to maintain hot tub water, you MUST periodically apply an effective plumbing and jet cleaner.  Just dumping the water and refilling will not do it folks.  Doing that is like just rinsing off your dinner dishes and putting them back in the cupboard without physically washing them or using a dishwasher with a detergent.  We don't care what brand product you use.  They all do something better than doing nothing at all.

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On 10/5/2020 at 8:27 PM, Aero said:

I do not believe that a hot tub or a flush product is designed to conduct multiple frequent system flushes over a short period of time.

You do understand that you are talking to the guy who makes this stuff, right? Ask him what it was designed for if you would like to know. But unless you also make spa flush products for a living, I would say your beliefs are irrelevant. 

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8 hours ago, RDspaguy said:

You do understand that you are talking to the guy who makes this stuff, right? Ask him what it was designed for if you would like to know. But unless you also make spa flush products for a living, I would say your beliefs are irrelevant. 

Yes sir I do understand.  I also believe that an "Ahh-Some" treatment, (or similar product) is prudent prior to each drain & refill. (i.e. every four months or annually etc) not 27 consecutive times in a row in one week using nine different similar products. Did you read his actual blog? I did.

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Skimmed through it and discussed it at length with the author. And, in all fairness, expressed a similar concern as I presumed the products to be acidic. But given the time that has elapsed since then any damage would have been apparent in heater and gasket failures by now. Filters too, as @dlleno soaks his in the Ahh-Some treated tub. 

Plus, @Ahhsomeguysays it's not, and he seems to be a pretty stand-up guy from what I have seen.

I'm an old guy and have been fixing spas a long time (25 years), so I used acid and superchlorination for cleanout. That's what you did back then. It had disappointing results, but at least there wasn't much mess. I tried a few "purge" products over the years but didn't care for the disappointing results and mess, so did not use or recommend them since I could get disappointing results without the mess. I first heard of Ahh-Some about 5 years ago from another tech who swore by it, but I remained unconvinced. It was not until I discovered this forum stuff last year (like I said, old guy 😉) and had the chance to discuss this product and his experiment with dlleno that I became a fan. Since then, I have heard from many people here and on other forums I frequent that use it, and have seen it solve many problems from sanitizer depletion to mystery rashes. I am picking up a flip tub or three next week and will be sure to use it on each before they leave.

Just don't anybody tell Marty, or I'll never live it down. 🤫🤣

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Hi Aero:  I am responding to concerns regarding successive purges and what this may do to components within the plumbing system and jets.  I would like to say upfront that I have never met Mr. Leno, the gentleman associated with a blog delineating his results from using our product, Ahh-Some, and numerous other cleaners to gauge their effectiveness in eliminating bio-fouling in "closed loop" plumbing networks.  Nor have I instructed him or paid him to perform his testing on his own personal hot tub.  Just wanted to make sure that the readers in this forum understand that these are Mr. Leno's views and test results.  I would like to thank Mr. Leno for taking it upon himself to spend the time, money and effort needed to perform all these comparison tests over the years.  I believe that the forum community  has benefitted greatly from his writings.  Unique Solutions, as the manufacturer, is not allowed to toot it's own horn in this forum or any other unbiased forum, and this is a very good rule.  This forum's purpose is to give the pool, hot tub, swim spa and whirlpool bath owners invaluable information so they can maintain a healthy and happy soaking environment.  I want to make it perfectly clear that we have never once encountered any user of our products that have experienced any damage to fittings, o'rings, gaskets, sealers, shells, covers or other components associated with their recreational water vessel.  Ahh-Some products have a pH of 8.2-9.0.  This is basic and not acidic.  When you consider that these vessels use all the caustic and acidic chemicals that are recommended for proper maintenance and see that they, in itself, cause little or no breaches or failures, it is no wonder that our product, and  I believe our competitor's plumbing cleaners, are generally much easier on the components built into the units.  We have had jetted tubs with 60 plus consecutive purges with zero component failure.  So, a typical hot tub with 2 or 3 purges a year is not going to affect any parts or components.

Mr.Leno, I appreciate what you have done for the hot tub community and I am sure that the people you have helped appreciate your time and dedication.  Because of your testing and writings, you have assisted a great number of people in helping them to maintain a healthy hot tub with the finest and best water ever.  One thing I know for sure.  The hot tub in Mr. Leno's yard is one of the healthiest and cleanest hot tubs known to mankind.

 

 

 

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