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Chemicals for Inflatable Hot Tub


Every inflatable hot tub, regardless of the features installed, requires one thing in common. A clean and properly-treated water. You will need to use the right chemicals for inflatable hot tub to achieve this.

We have narrowed down these chemicals into 4 types so they can be easily understood.

Whether you’re using your inflatable spa all year round or only during summer, you need to make sure that the water is free from harmful bacteria or chemicals. In this article, you will learn what each of them does. By the time you’re done reading this, you’ll have a clear idea on how to maintain your hot tub water.

Chemicals for Inflatable Hot Tub

The table below will give you a quick idea of the group of chemicals you will need. As you continue reading this guide, we will be recommending specific items for each group to make it easier for you.

At any rate that you find yourself overwhelmed by the chemicals you need to use, there’s a solution that handles all of these for you. The SilkBalance Natural Hot Tub solution maintains the water’s PH and alkalinity effectively and more.

It softens the skin and spa water similar to built-in hard water treatment. It also eliminates the chlorine smell similar to a built-in saltwater treatment.

Chemical TypePurpose
Water TesterDetermines the current chemical composition
pH AdjustersIncreases or decreases water’s acidity level
Water SanitizersTreats the water of bacteria
Shock ChemicalsDestroys residue from lotions and even algae

These chemicals are primarily used for keeping the water clean. We need to make sure that there are no thriving bacteria that may cause hot tub rashes. Consequentially, clean water can also help in
prolonging your inflatable spas lifetime.

Testing The Water

Before anything else, you will need to test the water first. You don’t want to be adding more when too much chlorine is already present. Even with these chemicals, it has to be done in moderation.

This process is very easy, almost anyone can do it. Make sure that your inflatable spa’s massage system is turned off before doing so.

It only involves dipping a test strip in the water for 2 seconds. You then shake off excess water and specific colors will appear on the strip. Colors will appear on the strip and all you have to do is compare it with the color chart on the bottle.

While there are 7-Way or 6-Way test strips available, we recommend that you get only the 4-Way option, as you’re only concerned with pH level, alkalinity, and bromine/chlorine levels.

The Poolmaster 22211 Smart Test 4-Way Swimming Pool and Spa Water Chemistry Test Strips is the best product for this. A lot of pool experts are using this too plus it comes with 50 test strips.

Do the testing at least twice a week to make sure your water’s chemistry is on the right level. With 50 strips, it can take around 3 months before you purchase another pack of strips. Why just 3 months? Well, you’ll be using some more strips for testing as you add chemicals.

The image below is what you’re aiming for with regards to your hot tub water’s chemistry.
Test Strip Ideal Levels

pH and Alkalinity

Would you soak in acidic water? Of course not. High water acidity may not literally melt your skin away but it is damaging nonetheless. It can irritate the skin or the eye, can damage your hair, and shorten your hot tub’s life.

In addition, when your hot tub water is on the acidic side, your water sanitizers become less effective. That’s why it’s necessary to keep your pH level optimal to avoid this cascading negative effects. The idea is that a high pH level means the water is on the alkaline side while a lower value means it’s too acidic.

Leisure Time Spa Up and Spa Down are great choices for adjusting your water’s pH level. Use your water testing strips above to see if you have reached the neutral point. Your aim is not to make your hot tub water too alkaline, but to hit an optimal pH of 7.2 to 7.8.

In case you ended up adding too much with the Spa Up, you can lower down the pH level by adding the Spa Down. You can also add some water to the tub to get it back to optimal level.

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Water Sanitizers

Sanitizers are very important in keeping a hot tub water clean. They are used to kill bacteria which can easily thrive in warm untreated water of a spa.

Chlorine and bromine are the most commonly used sanitizing chemicals. They are both very effective so choosing between the two is a matter of preference.

In general, bromine like the Brominating Concentrate Granules from Spa Essentials is more expensive than chlorine. However, bromine does not leave that distinct chlorine smell and lasts longer. In addition, you need a much lesser quantity of bromine to keep your hot tub water clean than with chlorine.

On the other hand, chlorine chemicals like the Swim Best 50 lbs Bucket 3″ Swimming Pool Chlorine Tablets is a lot cheaper. It offers a much lower maintenance cost in the longer run. That is why this is widely used in public pools and spa centers.

In case you’re allergic to chlorine or want a more natural approach, a saltwater inflatable spa can treat the water with less chemicals. The system makes use of salt and converts it to a natural water sanitizer.

Shock Chemicals

These chemicals are your second line of defense against water contaminants. It destroys those impurities that were able to escape your standard water sanitizers. Hence, the shock (and awe) approach.

It works best in clearing body materials like dead skin particles, oils, lotions. It also clears out microorganisms and algae. That is why if you find your water cloudy, even after adding your water sanitizers, what you actually need is a shock chemical

Not all hot tub chemicals of this type are compatible with both chlorine and bromine. You will need to make sure to read from the label about its compatibility.

We highly recommend Leisure Time Spa Cleaner since it’s compatible with a wide range of sanitizers. It also helps to improve the performance of your spa filters.

Wrapping It Up

Keeping your spa water clean is not just essential for your inflatable hot tub’s longevity but for your health and continuous enjoyment too. This is an inevitable part of your responsibility as an owner, and your knowledge of the right chemicals for inflatable hot tub will make the maintaining it a lot easier.



  1. Honestly, hot tub maintenance was something that kept me and my spouse from getting one in the past. You made it a lot simpler and less overwhelming here. We’re very much excited to finally have one this month.