Can You Use the Same Chemicals For Hot Tubs and Pools?

Various things can affect the chemistry levels of both a pool and hot tub’s water, but the way you address the issues or imbalances will be different from one and the other. While some might assume that the chemicals and water treatment for a pool, spa or hot tub will all generally be the same, this isn’t necessarily the case. Certain aspects come into play that requires you to take a different approach and use alternative chemicals. Here’s what you should know.  

The Different Chemical Composition Between a Hot Tub and Pool’s Water

Even though chemicals used in hot tubs and pools are similar in their ingredient list, certain aspects set them apart from one another that are important to note. For instance, the concentration of specific ingredients is different because the water it’s designed for is different, too. This is why it isn’t as easy as buying the first chemicals you see, assuming they are interchangeable for all hot tubs, spas or pools. There are certain aspects that require different chemical compositions for a hot tub over a pool. Here are a few of them;

Volume of Water 

It might go without saying that, of course, the volume of water in your hot tub will be much less than the volume in your pool, and will therefore play a role in how chemicals are created so that they can be effective for each. For instance, the chemicals you use for your pool will be much more concentrated than the ones for your hot tub, and therefore, if you try to use pool chemicals in your hot tub, you will see that it will be far too intense. Alternatively, if you do the opposite, you will likely see that the levels of your pool water won’t really change because of how diluted the hot tub chemicals will become in the water. 

Water Temperature and Evaporation

The differences in temperature between a hot tub and a swimming pool are significant. While a pool will generally run somewhere in the 70s to 80s, a hot tub will be well into the 90s or low 100s. Because of the much warmer water of a hot tub, chemical reactions will occur faster, meaning if you are putting the more concentrated pool chemicals in, it will likely become tough to bring the levels back to where they should be. 

The drastic change in temperature between one and the other also means that water is much more likely to evaporate faster in a hot tub than in a pool. Therefore, adding pool chemicals that are naturally much more concentrated to your hot tub will result in a chemical imbalance that is bound to come on rather quickly. However, with that said, one of the wonderful things about owning a hot tub is that you can always drain and refill the water if you find an imbalance that is too drastic. So don’t worry if you make a mistake with the chemicals and find that your water readings are not where they should be. 

The Jets 

While a pool will, of course, still have jets, the number of jets in a hot tub is far more significant in intensity and number. Therefore, not only will the water of a hot tub be able to stir the water up faster because of the jets, but the smaller body of water means the chemicals will be evenly distributed far quicker. This ties into the fact that if you’re using chemicals that aren’t designed for a hot tub but rather for a pool, you will quickly see issues arise. 

When it comes down to it, there is far more to lose from putting pool chemicals in a hot tub because of how much more concentrated they are, than putting hot tub chemicals into a pool. Regardless, it’s important to remember that each one deserves to have its own set of chemicals and they cannot be seen as interchangeable because they were not designed to be. If you have any questions about the best chemicals to have on hand to keep your hot tub in pristine condition, you can reach out to a dealer near you

To learn more about owning a hot tub and choosing the right one for you and your home, download our free buyer’s guide.


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