Zagers Pool and Spa Blog


The Right Amount of Chlorine for Hot Tubs

Is There Too Much Chlorine in Your Hot Tub?

While having a sanitary spa is very important, there is a fine line between sanitization and chemical overload. Overpowering smells and itchy skin can lead to an unenjoyable hot tub experience. Aside from smell, skin irritation and red eyes, high levels can also cause damage to the spa. Not much chlorine is needed to sanitize a hot tub. Adding too much is a fairly common mistake, and can be fixed with a few quick steps. Below is a guide with tips on how to know when too much has been added, and how to fix it.

The best way to know for sure if there is too much chlorine in the spa is to check the levels with test strips. The CDC recommends that chlorine levels should be between 1.0 and 3.0 ppm. Also keep in mind that the addition of chlorine reduces pH, and vice-versa. After testing the water and determining that there is too much chlorine in the system, here’s what you can do to fix it.

Let the Hot Tub Reduce Levels on Its Own

While this isn’t the fastest option, not adding any chlorine and staying out of the hot tub for a couple days will most likely do the trick. After a few days free of chemical addition and spa use, the chlorine levels should return to normal. Exposing the hot tub to sunlight and running the jets will help expedite the process.

Add Fresh Water

Another option to consider is to drain most of the current water, and refill it with new water. While this option isn’t the most cost effective or timely, it will give you a clean slate to work with chemically. Keep in mind, removing all of the water may not be necessary. Sometimes it is enough to just remove the first couple inches of water. This will dilute the chlorine and make it more comfortable.


Using a chlorine neutralizer is the good option if there is a time constraint, or the levels are extremely high. If possible, try the methods mentioned above before using a neutralizer. It is recommended to try natural methods first to avoid any chemical staining to the shell. The most common neutralizer is Sodium Thiosulfate. When adding this chemical to the spa, it is important to first read the instructions and add it very gradually. As mentioned above, addition or depletion of chlorine can affect other chemical levels in the spa. So, after the tub has been adjusted, use test strips to make sure other chemical levels are in check.

Have a swimming pool or hot tub related question?  Contact Zagers Pool & Spa by email or phone at 616.896.1717 today!

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