For the Love of Your Tub (hot tub that is)

The hot tub ownership journey is a rewarding, albeit at times frustrating experience from the moment you think “I want one” until you must say “goodbye dear friend”. The goal of this blog is to enlighten and hopefully entertain you with information about ownership and anecdotes of my journey. Posts will not be in chronological order of the ownership journey, rather as I feel inspired to write about them.

The first topic I need to write about is the hot tub industry's dirty little secret - hot tub scum. Retailers won’t talk about it when you are buying a  tub. Friends with tubs don’t say anything about it when you are relaxing in theirs. It’s like the subject is taboo.

The truth is that hot tubbing strips your body of oils, cosmetics and lotions while you are kicking back. The more people using the tub puts more “stuff” in the tub. This is referred to as loading. All of that “stuff” turns into hot tub scum as it reacts with sanitizers and has to go somewhere. You may think that sanitizer and filters look after this but that is not the case.

Flashback: New Years eve, 2000 and something, the whole family is with friends in their tub having a great time, the snow falling and the drinks flowing. The next day with a level 4 hangover dominating (my own rating system out of 5), my personal hygiene regime lapsed and I didn’t shower. January 2nd is when I met the red burning ring that encircled my chest. 

This dermatological condition, created by scum in that tub, stayed with me for longer than I like to remember. It also started my own personal, obsessive battle with hot tub scum that saw me develop “ScumRay”, a product that continually removes body oils and scum from your hot tub. Follow this link if you want learn more about it

Here are the facts: filters take out a small amount of the scum but the pump system continually is sucking it through the filter and sending it back into the tub. You can see it as foam or brown bubbles when your jets are on high. Sooner or later the loading gets so high that the scum starts to deposit at the water line and in the plumbing. The majority of hot tub owners are unaware of the build up inside the plumbing that you can’t see. These biofilm deposits continue to grow until you do something about it. Sanitizers only keep the bacteria growing on the film in check, but do not remove it. You may end up finding that you can’t add enough sanitizer to even do that.

In my next blog I will get into the weeds on how to win your battle with hot tub scum so you won’t have to live with the industry's dirty little secret.