Inflatable Hot Tubs â€“ Some Safe Cleaning Options
Everyone wantâ€™s a hassle free hot tub- right?
A hot tub with sparkling water thatâ€™s clean, clear and that doesnâ€™t require a mad chemist to keep it that way. The best way to achieve this is by starting from the inside. By that I mean making sure the vinyl surface of your inflatable hot tub is clean and germ free.
This is particularly important for those inflatables that have a ribbed wall structure like the Coleman Lay-Z-Spa, Intex PureSpa and many others. Calcium and other undesirable deposits can more easily build up in the gaps between these ribbed walls. Extra care should be taken to keep theses areas clean.
Donâ€™t be put off by what you have read so far though. To thoroughly clean the average sized inflatable hot tub should only take around 45 minutes, once the hot tub is drained. While the whole process only needs to be done once every 4 weeks.
Cleaning your inflatable hot tub is a healthy ritual and the more times you do it the quicker you will get.
Although there is no real substitute for regular hot tub cleaning, the good news is that you donâ€™t need lots of expensive cleaning products to get the job done. There are many household products that will work just fine to keep the walls of your inflatable in tip top condition.
What Not To Use
Even though most modern inflatable hot tubs are made from tough laminated vinyl, stay away from any harsh or abrasive cleaning products and only use a cloth, sponge or soft brush. That means, absolutely no scourers or hard bristles. Think of it this way, if you wouldnâ€™t rub your skin with it, then you wouldnâ€™t use in on your hot tub.
The Best Natural Options To Use
For general cleaning of your hot tub, that is when the inside walls donâ€™t have too much of a residue build up, plain old warm soapy water can be used. Ideally use a low suds detergent With a little elbow grease and a soft cloth or sponge you should be able to keep the inside of your hot tub both clean and bacteria free. To get into corners and other harder to reach areas use a soft brush.
Some website will tell you itâ€™s OK to clean your hot tub with a diluted bleach solution. While this may be true if you get the concentration right, our philosophy is to use as few chemicals as possible. If you really want to use bleach to clean your hot tub then do so cautiously. Apply a small amount first to test itâ€™s effect on the vinyl.
White Vinegar is a very versatile liquid. Diluted 50 â€“ 50 with water and placed in a spray bottle, you can use it to remove stubborn calcium or lime build-ups along with other common residues that may develop. Such residues come from skin tissue and oils along with foreign matter that may find its way into your hot tub. A soft brush can also be used here to remove more stubborn matter that does not come off easily.
White Vinegar can also be used to sanitize the inside walls of your inflatable hot tub. Research conducted by the U.S Food an Drug Administration indicates that many common bacteria can be renderer inactive by the acetic acid present in vinegar. In fact statistics indicate that white vinegar kills 82% of moulds, 99% of household bacteria and 80% of germs.
Rubbing Alcohol like Isopropyl can also be diluted and used in a similar way to white vinegar. Some evidence suggests such alcohol products may be even more effective at killing germs than white vinegar. However the cheapest option is white vinegar.
Hydrogen Peroxide will also kill germs. It is an effective antimicrobial agent that should kill most common bacteria that lurks on the wall of your tub. Concentrated hydrogen peroxide is extremely dangerous however and it is recommended to use concentrations no higher than 3%. As with bleach do a test first.
Baking Soda can also be used when you need to add a little abrasion to your cleaning. If you have a stubborn scum line ringing your hot tub, try sprinkling some baking soda onto your cloth or sponge. Itâ€™s also good for removing organic or chemical residues that may build up on the surface.
The Chemical Alternatives
Chemical cleaners are a popular option for many inflatable hot tub owners. Most do a good job of cleaning and removing stains. Make sure to check the product is specifically designed for pvc-vinyl, anything else may be too harsh and damage your liner.
Some popular chemical cleaners are:
- Aqua-Vinyl Products
AV2 cleaner is specifically designed for inflatable hot tubs. It combines natural oils for cleaning with a powerful biocide that eliminates algae and bacteria.
- Spa Choice
Spa Choice Clean N Fast is also safe to use on a vinyl spa. It effectively removes all that residue that builds up after regular spa use. Also proven effective at removing that ugly dark ring of grime that can accumulate at the water line.
- Nautical Technology
Although this product is designed to be used on boats. It also works well on pvc hot tubs. Itâ€™s non-toxic and biodegradable. Like the other chemical products listed, it removes grime and calcification residue. This product also conditions the vinyl and helps maintain pliability.
Key Points To Remember
- Natural cleaning products like white vinegar, baking soda and mild soap are all cheap and easy to obtain.
- Using chemical cleaners can be expensive.
- Whether use use a natural or a chemical cleaner, rinse the hot tub well and rub the surface dry with a soft cloth or old towel.
The Environmental Consideration
All natural cleaners are biodegradable. This means they won't harm the environment and that they are easy to dispose of. Chemical cleaners on ther other hand are not biodegradable. They are potentially harmful to the enivronment and not as easy to dispose of.
For instance say you have a lovely inflatable spa nestled in your leafy garden. If your using a chemical cleaner what are you going to do with all that run off rinse water. Remember it's chemical laden and simply letting it wash off into your carefully tended garden may not be wise.