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Many people dream of having a hot tub in their backyard, but few know just how much work it can require. Keeping a hot tub in working condition throughout multiple seasons of use can be a challenge, and the most important part of that is cleaning and draining a hot tub. Fortunately, draining and cleaning a hot tub is not as difficult as you might think. With a few steps, anyone can do it and keep their hot tub in optimal condition.

1. Gather Everything You Need

Before starting this process, it’s important to make sure you have everything that you need. This includes things like a plastic hose, long wand cleaner, shock chlorinating, algaecide, test strips, and a clean bath towel. Once you have your supplies ready, it is time to get started.

Step 1: Disconnect the Water and Power

Regardless of the type of hot tub, the first step of the draining and cleaning process is to disconnect the power and water supplies. This should be done carefully and with the help of a professional, if necessary. To ensure your safety, the hot tub should always be disconnected from its power source before draining.

Step 2: Move the Hot Tub Away from the Wall

Once the water and power have been disconnected, the hot tub should be moved away from the wall and into a better open area. This will make the entire process of draining and cleaning the hot tub much easier and safer.

Step 3: Drain the Hot Tub

Once the hot tub has been moved away from the wall, the next step is to drain the spa. This process will vary a bit depending on the type of hot tub you are dealing with. If your hot tub has a plug in the bottom, simply unscrew it and wait for the entire spa to drain. If your hot tub does not have a plug, you will need to use a submersible utility pump to drain the water.

2. Clean the Hot Tub Interior

Just draining the hot tub is not enough to keep it in top condition. You will also need to take the time to deep clean the hot tub’s interior. Before starting this process, make sure to check the instructions in your user manual to know what type of cleaning chemicals to use.

Step 1: Get the Proper Supplies

Before beginning to clean the spa, make sure you have the proper supplies. This includes supplies like an algae brush, scrubbing brush, algaecide, test strips, and long-handled net. Once you have your supplies ready, it’s time to get to work.

Step 2: Clean the Hot Tubs Walls and Floor

The next step is to start cleaning the walls and floor of your hot tub. First, use an algae brush to scrub any algae that is visible. For tougher stains, you can also use a scrubbing brush. After scrubbing off any visible algae, it’s time to apply algaecide. This process should be done according to instructions in the user manual.

Step 3: Clean the Filter

Cleaning the filter is an important aspect of keeping your hot tub in top shape. First, fill the filter up with the hot tub water. Then, add some filter cleaner, according to the directions on the product. After about 15 minutes, rinse off the filter with a garden hose and make sure to let it air dry before installing it back onto your hot tub.

3. Refill and Treat the Hot Tub Water

Once your hot tub is clean and dry, it’s time to refill it with fresh water and treat it accordingly. Before refilling the tub, make sure to check the pH levels with the test strips. If the pH levels are not within the recommended range, add in a pH balancing and alkalinity increasing chemicals to get it where it needs to be.

Step 1: Fill With Water

The first step is to fill the hot tub with clean and clear water. Make sure to fill it up to the suggested water line, which will be outlined in the user manual for your particular hot tub.

Step 2: Test The Water pH

Once the hot tub is filled with water, it is important to test the water’s pH levels. This should be done with a pH test strip, which can be purchased from any home improvement store.

Step 3: Add Sanitizer and Algaecide

The next step is to add chlorine or bromine based sanitizer and algaecide to the hot tub. Both of these products can be found at nearly any home improvement store. It’s important to apply these products according to the instructions on the product labels. This will help ensure your hot tub’s water is safe and clear.

4. Rinse, Test, and Balance

Once the hot tub is filled and treated, it is time to rinse, test and balance the water.

Step 1: Rinse the Hot Tub Walls and Floor

The first step of this process is to rinse off the walls and floor of the hot tub. This can be done by turning on the jets and using a hose to rinse off the walls. This will help get rid of any cleaning chemicals, dirt or debris that may have been missed during the scrubbing process.

Step 2: Test the Water

Once the hot tub is rinsed off, it is time to test the water one last time to make sure it is balanced and safe to use. This can be done with pH test strips and should be done according to the instructions in the user manual.

Step 3: Balance the Water

Finally, if the pH levels are not within the suggested range, add in pH balancing and alkalinity increasing chemicals to get it where it needs to be. This should be done according to the instructions on the product labels.

5. People Also Ask

How Often Should I Drain and Clean My Hot Tub?

Your hot tub should be drained and cleaned at least once every 3-4 months. It’s also important to check your hot tub’s pH levels at least once a week and add in any necessary chemicals to keep the water safe and balanced.

Can I Hose Down My Hot Tub?

Yes, it is possible to hose down your hot tub as part of the cleaning process. However, it is important to make sure that the jet system is turned off and that the hose is not directly spraying the jets or other electrical components.

How Can I Keep My Hot Tub Clean?

In order to keep your hot tub clean, it is important to follow best practices such as routinely draining and cleaning the interior, regularly testing the water pH levels, and adding in the appropriate chemicals when needed.


Cleaning and draining a hot tub does not have to be a daunting task. With the right supplies and knowledge, anyone can keep their hot tub in top condition. Make sure to have the proper supplies on hand before starting the process, and don’t forget to check your user manual for specific instructions. Following a few simple steps can help you keep your hot tub in optimal condition throughout multiple seasons of use.