Hot tubs can quickly become breeding grounds for bacteria and other microorganisms, making them a source of odor, algae, and potential disease. If you’ve got a hot tub that’s getting a little too stinky or cloudy from natural mineral deposits, you may have a high-pH problem. High-pH levels in water are caused by the presence of acids and alkaline substances; in short, they are caused by high levels of carbon dioxide (CO2) and low levels of hydrogen (H2). Read on to learn more about how to lower your hot tub’s pH naturally.
How To Lower Hot Tub Ph Levels Naturally?
Add an alkaline buffer
If your hot tub’s pH level is too low and causing it to become hard, you can easily add an alkaline buffer to raise the pH levels. Alkaline buffers can often be purchased at a local pool store and added to your hot tub’s water. These are readily available and relatively inexpensive. Alkaline buffers are effective in raising the pH of the water, which makes it less acidic. They are also generally safer than other pH-lowering methods because they don’t affect the pH of the hot tub’s interior or exterior. Alkaline buffers typically contain a base such as sodium hydroxide or potassium hydroxide, which are strong alkaline substances. They are specifically designed to lower the pH of water. They are more expensive than other pH-lowering methods, but they also have fewer side effects and don’t affect the pH of the hot tub’s water.
Use a non-chemical sanitizer
Non-chemical sanitizers such as pH-balanced, non-toxic chlorine, bromine, and iodine are a great alternative to traditional sanitizers. They don’t interact with the hot tub’s structure in any way, and they can also be used to sanitize the plastic, resin, and vinyl liners inside your hot tub. Some non-chemical sanitizers also come with a built-in pH buffer that can help restore the pH level of your hot tub’s water. Non-chemical sanitizing agents are a great choice for both keeping your hot tub clean and lowering the pH of the water in order to keep it softer for longer. You can find non-chemical sanitizers at your local pool store, online retailer, or even your local grocery store.
Change the water often
While chlorine and other traditional hot tub sanitizers are effective in killing bacteria, they can also build up in your hot tub’s water over time. This can leave your hot tub’s water with a slightly medicinal taste and smell. To avoid this, it’s important to change the water in your tub as often as possible. This can be done by draining and refilling the hot tub when it’s time to do so, or by adding fresh water on a regular basis with a hot tub water filter. It’s also important to sanitize the water in your hot tub on a regular basis, especially if you have young children that could possibly get into the tub and splash around. You can easily sanitize the water in your hot tub with a non-chemical sanitizer, or you can also add a bit of chlorine to the water on a regular basis.
Balance your pH with a chemical sanitizer
If your hot tub’s water is too low in pH, you can easily raise its pH level with a chemical sanitizer. These are available from your local pool store, or you can also buy them online. If your hot tub’s pH is too low and causing it to become hard, you can easily add a chemical pH buffer to raise the pH levels. Many chemical sanitizers contain a buffer that increases the pH of the water while also killing bacteria. It’s important to note that chemical sanitizers can also build up over time, so it’s also important to change the water in your hot tub as often as possible.
Decrease hardness with a carbon filter
If your hot tub’s water is too hard, you can easily lower its hardness with a carbon filter. Carbon filters reduce the hardness of your hot tub’s water, and they can be used to lower the pH of your tub as well. These are readily available at your local pool store or online. Carbon filters are safe for your hot tub’s interior and exterior, and they can be used to lower the pH levels of your hot tub as well. It’s important to note that carbon filters can build up over time, so it’s also important to sanitize the water in your hot tub on a regular basis.
Use a commercial filter
If you’re looking to lower the pH of your hot tub even further, you can use a commercial filter to do so. This can be done by choosing a commercial filter such as a carbon block filter. These are designed to remove impurities such as contaminants, chemicals, and toxins from your hot tub’s water. They can be used to lower the pH of your tub as well. Carbon block filters are the most effective at lowering the pH levels, and they are generally the most expensive option as well.
What Is A Ph Level?
pH is an indication of the level of acidity or alkalinity in a solution. The pH scale arches from 0 to 14 with 0 being highly acidic and 14 being highly basic. At pH 7 an electrode reaction occurs between hydrogen and hydroxide ions, forming water and protons (H+). At pH 7, no ions are added or removed from the solution. Water then dissociates into hydrogen and oxygen atoms, forming H2O
Why Does Ph Matter In A Hot Tub?
Ph Balance Keeps Water Clean and Tastable
When you immerse your body in warm water, it has to go somewhere—and it does that by traveling through your plumbing system. That can lead to a number of potential issues, from potential odors to potential clogging. When you add an alkaline mineral additive, as a pH buffer, you can keep your water clean and, importantly, alkaline. Without the buffer, the water in your hot tub will gradually become more acidic as it sits unused and becomes more acidic over time. If you have a spa with a built-in pH buffer, as many hot tubs and spas do, it helps maintain a stable pH between 7.5 and 8.5. But if it’s built into your hot tub, it’s best to check the pH level periodically to make sure it’s staying constant.
The Right Balance Boosts Skin Care Benefits
When you step into your hot tub, you’re also getting a dose of water’s natural minerals, like magnesium, sodium, chlorine, and potassium. The right mineral levels in your water can have a number of benefits for your skin, namely an increase in hydration; an improvement in acne; even an increase in collagen and elastin production. A high mineral content also helps to keep your skin soft and elastic—and it also helps to keep your water clean and clear as it travels through your plumbing system. Most hot tubs have a built-in mineral dispenser to keep the minerals added evenly throughout the water. But if your hot tub doesn’t, you can add a mineral additive, like a pH buffer, to keep it stable.
A Mismatched pH Is Harmful To Resins In Your System
Your hot tub’s water needs to be between a pH of 6 and 8 to keep the right amount of minerals in the water and to protect your hot tub’s resins. That’s why it’s a good idea to check the pH level in your hot tub and add an alkaline mineral additive if it’s low. If your hot tub water’s pH is low—below 6—it can damage your hot tub’s resins. Resins are the chemicals that are used to keep your hot tub’s walls and floor strong. When the pH is low, the minerals in the water start to dissolve the resins. That eventually causes the walls and floor of your hot tub to weaken and eventually collapse.
The Importance Of Maintaining Hot Tub Ph
- Knowing that the pH level of your hot tub water is important will help ensure that you maintain the appropriate pH level in your hot tub and prevent unwanted buildup of scale.
- If you notice a decrease in the pH level in your hot tub, you can use any of the above-mentioned methods to add baking soda, vinegar, or other acids to reduce the pH level.
- However, you should avoid using chlorine bleach; chlorine-based sanitizers are not effective at lowering the pH level. Instead, you should add a mineral additive that is designed to neutralize chlorine and sanitize your hot tub’s water at the same time.
- The best mineral additive is a blend of crushed natural rock, known as an ion-exchange water conditioner. Water conditioners are designed to bond with the minerals in your hot tub water and reduce their concentration, effectively lowering the pH level.
- Maintenance of correct pH levels is important for maintaining the health and beauty of your hot tub.
Lowering the pH level of your hot tub water can help to eliminate smelly odors and prevent scale build-up that can lead to rusting and corrosion. You can lower your hot tub’s pH level by adding one cup of baking soda to six gallons of hot tub water and then letting it sit for 24 hours at room temperature. When your hot tub water’s pH level drops too low, you’ll see a buildup of unwanted minerals on your hot tub’s surfaces, including a thick, white film. This build-up can cause your hot tub to feel warm to the touch and smell.