on March 7, 2014 in Care & Maintenance
Using test strips in your hot tub is the best way to understand and analyze the chemistry of your water. Maintaining water chemistry not only ensures maximum enjoyment and chemical effectiveness but also helps to minimize bacteria.That’s why it is important to understand why we use test strips and how they work.
Luckily, test strips are one of the simplest procedures for testing the chemical balance of your hot tub, and with a little instruction and practice, anyone can easily learn how to use test strips for their hot tub.
Why Use Test Strips
Testing your hot tub water is extremely important. The main reason we test our hot tub water is to analyze the chemical balance and determine if the properties are too alkaline or too acidic. The aim is to keep both acidic and alkaline at very even and safe levels. After we analyze the test strip, whatever properties are of concern, we are able to balance with the use of our chemicals.
The Testing Procedure
The procedure to test the chemical level of your hot tub is simple. For basic chemical sanitizers such as chlorine and bromine, you should plan to check your levels once a week. With any sanitizer or chemical you use, you should read all instructions and warnings on the bottle to fully understand how the chemical works and how to best maintain. As well, testing strips’ instructions can also vary in steps, so be sure to read instructions carefully.
That said, the basic procedure to prepare your hot tub along with how testing strips function should be the same:
- Start by allowing your spa water to circulate by using your bubbling system or jets for 1 to 2 minutes. Once you believe your water is properly circulated, use a clean plastic bucket to take a sample of the water.
- Use your testing strip by dipping the test pad into the water, and let sit in water for about 15 seconds. Be careful as to where you place your fingers so you do not contaminate the test pad.
- Remove the strip from the bucket and shake off any excess water still on the strip.
- The strip’s pad will change in color. Compare this color to your bottle’s testing chart.
- The testing chart will help you understand the chemical level of your water, if it be too acidic or alkaline.
- Once you determined the chemical level of your water, you can adjust using appropriate chemicals.
When adjusted, we recommend allowing at least an hour for your chemicals to calibrate. It is best to wait overnight before using your hot tub when adding new chemicals to the water.
Remember, it’s okay if your hot tub’s chemical balance isn’t perfect. Bacteria tends to only develop after long term neglect. If you’re checking your water’s level once a week and doing your best to adjust appropriately, you can free your worry of causing serious health concerns with your hot tub.
If you have more questions about testing your hot tub levels, or are interested in an easier way to test your waters, consider a Digital Tester, that delivers accurate levels or chemicals every time you test.
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