This Weeks Sale
Mon-Fri - 7am-7pm CT
Sat-Sun - 8am-5pm CT

Archive for March, 2011

Top Ten Spa Cover Care Tips




One of the most frequently asked questions I get from our customers is how to take care of a new spa cover. Here’s my list of ten tips to increase the lifespan of a new spa cover.

If you have any spa cover care tips of your own, leave them below in the comments! Or, make your own list of Do’s and Dont’s for hot tub covers, ways to increase their lifespan.


Ten Hot Tub Cover Care Tips

  1. Clean your spa cover monthly with mild liquid dish soap or hand soap diluted in water. Hose the cover off, and use an old towel to dry.
  2. Use cover wipes like our 303 Spa Cover Wipes, or apply a vinyl conditioner like Vinyl Protectant or Spa Cover Conditioner and Protector.
  3. Do not use an abrasive sponge. Use a small, clean hand towel, regular sponge or soft bristled brush.
  4. Use a Spa Cover lifter, to avoid damage while moving it, or while stored.
  5. Keep your spa cover latched while it’s on; use Wind Straps in areas of high winds or hurricanes.
  6. Remove your spa cover for an hour, at least twice weekly, to allow it to “gas off” and dry out.
  7. If you have Tree Sap on the cover you can remove this by rubbing some vegetable oil on the sap.
  8. Mildew can be removed with a vinegar solution cleaning, rinsing, and a thorough drying.
  9. Don’t allow kids or large animals to stand or sit on the spa cover.
  10. Remove snow accumulation of more than 12 inches.

Mildew Growth in Spa Covers

Vinyl protectants have ingredients designed to protect your cover from the sun’s rays so that your spa cover will look great for many years. But beneath the vinyl, mildew can appear on spa covers, when conditions are right.

The underside of the cover is made to withstand the harsh chemical environment it is exposed to but should be removed weekly from the spa, to allow it to dry. It is also important to keep the spa water balanced, and with proper sanitizer levels. These two things will inhibit growth of mildew.

Most hot tub owners use their hot tub at least 3 times a week which allows the cover to be exposed to air. If you do not use your tub as often make sure to open the cover up at least twice a week and allow the cover as well as the water to breathe.

There is nothing organic in the spa cover to grow mildew, so if mildew does appear it is due to improper chemical levels or not airing out the tub cover enough. If you do get mildew try swabbing the area with vinegar and laying the cover in the sun for a day.

In extreme cases, you’ll want to unzip the cover, to allow cleaning inside of the fabric and of the foam core, applying the vinegar solution internally. Stand the spa cover in an upside-down “V” shape. preferably in the sun, on a warm and dry day.

With simple maintenance you can further extend the life of your new spa cover.


Planting Claymores! Gamers



The majority of employees here at Hot Tub Works enjoy playing video games. Lately, we have all been playing Call of Duty: Black Ops after work. It can be described as a virtual paint ball game that uses modern weaponry.

It makes for great conversation the next day, when one of your work mates has a really bad game the previous night. Nothing can be worse than getting stuck by a Tomahawk or Semtex tipped crossbow bolt, you will hear about it at work the next day!

These games are played online, with other players, both work buddies, and unknown strangers from all over the world. If you want to join us, look for my screen name: BLACKFOOTED.


Pseudomonas and Hot Tub Folliculitis

Leisure Time Free System 6 Month Kit

Itching to get into your Hot Tub?

With spring just days away many of us are just “itching” to get into our hot tubs. Longer days and warmer weather is perfect hot tub weather.

On a serious note; we may be itching to get into our tubs but we really do not want to come out of the tub all itchy! If you have not drained your water in over three months it really is a good idea to hold off the first soak until you drain the old stale water and do some spring cleaning.

Spring is a great time to give the tub a good cleaning. Flush out your jets with Leisure Time Jet Clean, give the shell a good scrub with Leisure Time Citrabright All-Purpose Spa Cleaner , protect and shine to the shell with Leisure Time Fast Gloss Spa Polish , deep clean your filters with Leisure Time Spa Filter Clean. Now you can safely enjoy a nice soak!

If you could not wait and you decided to get a soak or two in before draining and cleaning the tub and you find you are itchy when you get out, or see a rash develop,  DO NOT GET BACK INTO THE WATER UNTIL YOU DRAIN AND CLEAN THE TUB. Most people think that the chemicals in the water cause their skin to be dry and itchy, this is true only if the sanitizer level is way too high or if pH and Alkalinity are way out of balance.

The most likely cause for a rash from a spa is low sanitation. Using a hot tub with low or no sanitation can cause a condition called Folliculitis. Folloculitis is inflammation of the hair follicle caused by infection, chemical irritation, or physical injury. There are several different types of folliculitis, but a common type is called “hot tub” folliculitis, or pseudomonas folliculitis.

The rash of hot tub folliculitis consists of several small .5 – 3 cm red papules or wheals with a central pustule. The rash can erupt anywhere on the body that has been in contact with the contaminated water. Areas that are in contact with wet clothing tend to have more lesions. The rash usually resolves on its own in 7 to 10 days leaving a hyperpigmented lesion that resolves over months.

Some people experience fatigue in the first few days of the rash, but fever is uncommon. We strongly recommend seeing a doctor as soon as possible for proper diagnoses and not using the hot tub until it is properly sanitized.

We have a complete “how to” section on how to take care of your hot tub on the site.

The Difference Between Spa Filters



One common question that I get about spa filters is the difference between different cartridge numbers that have the same measurements. An example of this would be the difference between the HTF-0196 and HTF-0195.

When you look at the description of the HTF-0196 you will see it says 35 SF and under the HTF-0195 you will see 50 SF. What that is referring to is the square footage of fabric that the spa filter contains.The HTF-0195, with 50 sq ft. of fabric, has more pleats per inch, and more surface area for which to filter with.

So if you look at the pictures of both spa filters you will notice that the HTF-0195 has more pleats (folds) than the HTF-0196. This means that the HTF-0195 will filter more efficiently.

This situation comes up with a lot of other filters on our site so keep this in mind when you’re searching for the correct spa filter.

And as always don’t hesitate to call in; we are always here to help you.



Bear Eats Spa Cover


We hear many great stories of how spa covers meet their demise but rarely do we see or hear of bears munching on our hot tub covers.

These pics come to us from a client who “loved” their spa cover from and unfortunately a big furry friend from the forest liked it too.

A new spa cover is on the way……

bear eats spa cover

bear eats hot tub cover

Getting Ready for Summer!


It would seem that spring has finally sprung here. The blue skies and warmer weather woke me from my winter coma and I realize it’s almost ‘shorts and bathing suit’ season. You know that feeling when you wake up from a deep sleep and realize you have overslept? That instantaneous panic that hits before you are fully awake? That’s how I felt.

So I decided to begin (again…) an exercise and diet program. I am 2 days in and my legs are so sore – let’s just say I am very thankful that there is a ‘handicap’ rail in the ladies room here at Hot Tub Works. I’m hopeful to look like the lovely lady below, very soon!


Speaking of summer coming, I want to share with you two of my favorite products that we carry. The Outdoor Solar Shower and Towel Rack are awesome. I do not have a spa, but I do live near the beach. These items are a life-saver when it comes to keeping sand out of the house. The kids rinse off outside, towel off with clean towels, then hang the beach towels up to dry. And most of the time, the system works. Teenagers, you know?

Hmmm….I wonder if I could get someone from shipping to help me out of my chair?

– Julie

Great Spa Covers Make Winter Fun


This is a fun example of some hard working spa covers that did the job! Spa covers not only keep heat but they also provide needed protection from harsh winter elements.




Those are some great snow storms, which we don’t see here in Orange County, California!

For you hardy souls in the North, you should try to keep heavy snow off of the spa cover. A few inches, maybe up to a foot of dry and light snow is OK, but excess snow (especially wet snow) can be heavy, and could break your spa cover.

Use a regular snow shovel to remove the snow, but leave an inch or two on the hot tub cover, so you don’t risk tearing the vinyl fabric. Or use a push broom – or maybe a big leaf blower? How about a blow torch? No, maybe not…


Jerry is helping our customers’ save money



Here at hottubworks – we want to help our customers’ save money any way we can. One way we do this is by suggesting less expensive alternatives to maintain your hot tub.

For example; Replacement Spa Filters can be expensive. Especially when you feel stuck buying an OEM filter. Many spa manufactures’ tell their new spa owners that they must buy the OEM filter. Big secret… this is not the case and there is a cheaper way!


I was speaking to a new customer today who has been using the Eco-Pur filtration system (This is a two part spa filter system which can be very expensive). I suggested she use a one piece replacement cartridge filter instead of the two piece Eco-Pur and purchase a mineral cartridge like Nature2 separately, which can be placed inside of the one piece substitute . This combination will do the same thing as the Eco-Pur and save her lots of money! She was so excited.

We can sell you the OEM filter cartridge if you prefer, or if you are looking to save up to 50%, consider a quality replacement spa filter. They are constructed the same, with the same weight and density of fabric,  just without the designer name!

Call any of us here in customer service for suggestions on how you can save money! We love to help!


Winterizing a Spa or Hot Tub


How to winterize your spa or hot tub

Blow Out the Spa Pipes

If you plan on draining your spa or hot tub for the winter, be sure to use a wet / dry vac to suck out any residual water in the plumbing lines and equipment.

Water will expand about 9 times it size when it freezes and will easily crack plumbing fittings, manifolds, and spa pump wet-ends.

To remove water from spa or hot tub pipes, place the vacuum nozzle over the jets, suction fittings, filter plumbing, and equipment to quickly remove the access water and prevent a huge repair when Spring comes around. You can make special hose attachments by using various fittings, and duct tape, to make the best seal against skimmers, spa jets and pumps.

You can also use the wet dry vac as a blower, to blow out the spa pipes. Connect to your skimmer pipe to blow air through the spa pack. Turn on your spa blower while you are blowing out the hot tub pipes. Move the vac or blower, around to different parts of the spa, to try to get air into every possible area.

This is also important to prevent standing water from growing bacteria inside of the pipes. Keep blowing air through all of the spa jets, until all of the moisture has been blown out of the pipes and equipment.

For this reason, it is also recommended to use a Spa Purge product before draining the spa, to clear the pipes and equipment of biofilm bacteria. We have two excellent hot tub pipe cleaners – Rendezvous Spa Rinse or Leisure Time Jet Clean.

To complete your hot tub winterization, remove any drain plugs on the pump and filter and open the drain valve all the way. Get the last little bit of water out with a sponge and bucket.

Shut off the power to the spa, so the pumps don’t accidentally turn on while the hot tub is winterized.

Secure your spa cover for winter with Wind Straps if you have high winds. Use the Cover Cap, to protect hot tub covers from weather all winter long.

~ brian

Identify Your Spa Part or Hot Tub Part


spa pumps and motors


One of the hardest things about selling spa parts for the spa industry is that there are 1,000s upon 1,000s of spa parts from all kinds of different manufacturers. Because of this, it has been very difficult to have all of those parts listed on our site.

In most circumstances, however, we can get you the spa part you need, even when you can’t find it on our website, or even on any website.For example. most Hot Springs, Sundance, Jacuzzi, and Balboa parts aren’t listed on our site but we have extensive catalogs and databases we can use to locate these parts for you.

Another place on our site that doesn’t always have every part listed is the Spa Jet section. Most jets come in a variety of colors and textures. Because of that we don’t have the ability to have all of these jets on our site but if you happen to be in this section and find a jet that looks similar to yours but perhaps isn’t the right color don’t hesitate to call in or send us an email. Most likely we will have the jet that you need available.

We can even obtain parts officially de-listed as Obsolete, when stock still exists in distribution. Many times, a comparable part used and made by a different manufacturer may work for older, de-listed and obsolete spa parts.

And then there are just those hot tub parts that are from smaller manufacturers, from very old spas or maybe you just don’t know where to look. The best thing to do in those situations is to email us a picture along with the measurements and any numbers that happen to be listed on the part. From there our experienced technicians and staff should be able to match the part for you.

So again – if you’re looking for a hot tub part, no matter how rare, or difficult it is to find – we are here to help you find the correct spa parts – fast!