Frequently Asked Questions
To better assist our customers, we’ve put together a list of the most frequently asked questions by new tub owners. If you have a question not covered here, please call us at 800-996-TUBS (8827) and we’ll be happy to help! You may also download the full list of frequently asked questions below.
We want you to enjoy and get the most out of your Softub® – the soft-sided, truly portable hot tub!
The chemicals in the kit will be used up at different rates. Depending on your tub size and usage, the granular chlorine is what you’re going to use the most of and should last approximately 1-2 months. The pH Up and pH Down can easily last up to a full year. Depending on your water source, the Softcare Gon (metal & scale remover) should last about two months. Once your Softub Spa Frog® mineral purifier is exposed to water, it is active for four months only. After that it can no longer oxidize contaminants and must be replaced. Your test strips should last 3-4 months as you should be testing your water no more than 1-2 times per week unless you are working on a water balance issue.
Make sure your tub water is heated prior to trying to remove your filter as this makes the plastic cuff much more pliable. Feel around the cuff of your filter until you locate the notch and then align that notch with the ‘3 o’clock’ position. Push/pull the filter towards the ‘9 o’clock’ position and it should come off. Before putting your filter on, soak it in your heated tub or a bucket of hot water for several minutes as this will make the plastic cuff more pliable.
You may not have connected the light wires. There are two wires, one from your power pack and one from your tub. The wires are sometimes protruding from the pack and tub, sometimes wrapped around the tubes and occasionally, you will find a wire just under the vinyl on the tub side. Once you have exposed both the wires, connect them by pushing the two end pieces together until you feel them click and then your light should work.
Please reference your bottle of test strips where all four water balance parameters are listed along the side, with their OK levels marked. Your spa should be tested at least once or twice per week.
The kit does not come with a chemical to adjust alkalinity because most times it can be adjusted easily with the chemicals you already have. If your alkalinity level is not in the “ok” range, please contact our office so that we can assist you with correcting it.
Chlorine dissipates rapidly, so it’s important to add it after each use or on a daily basis. Also, it may be time to replace your Spa Frog. They need to be replaced every four months and if yours is older than that, it’s no longer active and is leaving just the chlorine to kill all the bacteria in the spa. Since people are the primary source of new bacteria introduction, it is advisable to add chlorine just after getting out. If you are adding the recommended amount of chlorine but you are still not able to get a residual reading, it is time to super-chlorinate your tub by adding double the recommended dosage. Continue to add this doubled amount daily until you are able to maintain a reading above 1.0ppm. It is also possible that if you have not changed your water within the last 4-6 months, that the water in your tub is saturated with the “used up” chemicals and cannot “take in” or process anymore chlorine. If this is the case, you’ll need to drain and refill your tub.
Water can be cloudy for several different reasons. Have you recently checked the water’s chlorine, pH and alkalinity levels to be sure these are balanced? If not then please do that first. Most often this problem can be solved by adding chlorine and keeping the pH properly balanced. Also, when was the last time you cleaned or changed your filter? To ensure proper filtration you need to rinse your filter monthly or after particularly heavy use, chemically clean your filter every other month, and replace your filter yearly. We recommend that you clean your filter with BaquaSpa Filter Cleaner because it does a great job of dissolving body oils off the filter cartridge.
Water that is 4-6 months old may be saturated in which case none of the above will help. If the above fixes do not clear the water and the water is 4-6 months old or the spa was recently used heavily, we recommend changing the water and cleaning the filter.
This is a simple case of unsanitary water due to not enough chlorine being added. When the chlorine level drops below 1.0ppm, bacteria can grow rapidly in the spa. To resolve this please take an old washcloth or similar, gently rub the sidewalls and bottom of your tub, and then super-chlorinate by doubling your normal recommended dosage of granular chlorine. There is no need to drain the spa and start over unless you really want to. Maintain your chlorine levels on a daily basis and remember that the more you use your spa the more chlorine you will need.
Foamy or sudsy water can be caused by a few different things. Your calcium hardness level may be too low, the pH may be too high, or people may have been using the spa with swimsuits on that contain residual laundry detergent. It’s even possible to have foamy water because of a dirty filter. Check the calcium and pH, clean the filter and rinse all swimsuits in plain water (chlorine will kill any bacteria on swimsuits). If the foam persists, you can purchase a product called Defoamer.
Mold and mildew can appear on your liner if your tub is not properly sanitized. It can also appear if you’ve drained your tub and left it completely covered for an extended period of time, as it’s nearly impossible to get 100% of the water out of all the lines so moisture will be present. We always recommend placing folded towels under each side of your lid so it is propped up to allow for air flow, or leaving it partially uncovered. Use a Tub Scrubber or a Teflon safe scrubbie and a super diluted bleach solution (1 part bleach to 5 parts water) to clean your liner. Unfortunately, mold and mildew can cause permanent staining. The best prevention is keeping your tub properly sanitized or stored properly.
Mold and mildew can grow on the underside of your lid when water becomes trapped in the cracks. Take your lid off your tub prior to treating it. You can use a diluted bleach solution (1 part bleach to 5 parts water) or Clorox Clean Up on the underside of your lid. DO NOT use Clorox Clean Up on your liner or on the exterior portion of your tub or lid as it can cause discoloration in these areas. The best mold/mildew prevention is allowing the lid to dry out once every couple of months.
There are a few reasons that this can happen. First, there could be a build-up of body oils, lotions or detergents. You can use BaquaSpa Surface Cleaner and a Tub Scrubber to clean it. If this is a re-occurring problem for you, make sure that you are rinsing off prior to using the tub to remove any lotions, soaps, deodorants or perfumes. You should also rinse bathing suits rather than washing them (chlorine will kill any bacteria on bathing suits). You may want to consider using a scum sponge in your tub as well. Second, bacteria build up can also cause a ring around your tub. You can clean it using the above method and you’ll want to be sure that you are properly sanitizing your tub. If the ring is sticky, you may need to use SwirlAway to clean out your plumbing. SwirlAway is added to the tub prior to draining and re-filling, and we recommend using SwirlAway at least once a year. Third, it is possible that the sticky ring is being caused by one or more of the gaskets in your tub breaking down, which is usually normal wear and tear but may also signify a serious chemical imbalance. If that is the case, they will need to be replaced the next time you empty your tub. Please contact our office for assistance with this.
Don’t panic. This is a fairly common occurrence among all spa owners and is most likely folliculitis, an infection of the hair follicle caused by unsanitary water. Folliculitis usually appears as small, white-headed pimples around one or more hair follicles — the tiny pockets from which each hair grows. Most infections are superficial, and they may itch, but on occasion they’re painful. Superficial folliculitis often clears by itself in a few days, but deep or recurring folliculitis may need medical treatment. We would recommend that you see your family doctor to be safe. Each person reacts differently to being exposed to higher than normal levels of bacteria, so it’s possible for one person to come down with folliculitis while another person using the tub at the exact same time is fine.
Regardless of this, your tub has too much bacteria in it and you will want to super-chlorinate your tub by adding double the recommended dosage. Continue to add this doubled amount daily until you are able to maintain a reading above 1.0ppm. We also advise removing and cleaning your filter. If it has been more than 4 months since you changed your water, it might be best to drain and refill your tub.
Before you leave, dissolve the recommended amount of granular chlorine in hot water then add the resulting slurry to your tub.
- 4 tbsp for a 300
- 3 tbsp for a 220
- 2 tbsp for a 140
When you return, dissolve the same amount listed above of granular chlorine in hot water then add the slurry to your tub. Wait until the next day to test the chlorine level (it can take a little bit to level out). If the walls feel slimy, please wipe down the walls and floor with an old washcloth or similar before adding chlorine.
Make sure you leave the lid open/off for 30 minutes after adding the chlorine!
It is a good idea to turn the temperature of your tub down (90’s) to stop the chlorine from burning off too quickly. Chlorine is a heat sensitive chemical so the hotter the water the faster it will dissipate. We also recommend leaving your thermal blanket off while you are away. If you choose to use Energy Saver Mode while you are away, make sure you take it out of that mode when you return home.
The cold months are a great time to use your Softub. However, should you choose to store your Softub, we recommend:
1. Unplug your tub and disconnect the pack from the tub. Tip the pack so that any water in it can drain out.
The pack MUST be stored inside where the temperature will not drop below 50 degrees.
2. Completely drain your tub. After it has finished draining, tip it on its side with the plumbing facing down so that any water still in the plumbing drains out. Periodically roll it back and forth a little to facilitate draining. You may want to give it a few hours (maybe even overnight) to ensure that all water is out. Wipe down your tub several times to make sure it is dry on the inside and the outside.
3. We recommend placing a small amount of steel wool in the end of the plumbing pipes to prevent rodents from nesting in them.
4. We recommend storing your tub flat. If you must store it on its side, the tub may develop a flat spot over time. Rotating the spot that is in contact with the ground every 1-2 weeks should help prevent a flat spot from developing. If one does develop it may go away with a little bit of time once the tub is filled and heated, but there is always the possibility that it may not.
5. We recommend placing a couple of folded towels under one side of the lid to slightly elevate it and allow for airflow into your tub to help prevent mold/mildew growth.
6. We recommend applying a good coat of 303 Aerospace Protectant on your vinyl before storing your tub. This will help protect your vinyl from extreme temperatures. Never use Armor All as it will deteriorate the seams!
7. We recommend covering your tub, especially if it is going to be stored outside, to protect it. You can use a Tubguard Cover or a Travel Cover.
8. After a snow accumulation of 6-8 inches, you’ll want to use a broom to remove the snow from the top of your lid. Accumulated snow can cause your lid to crack. DO NOT use a shovel as it can damage your liner.
It is ideal for your tub to be stored away from the elements. However, if you’re not able to store your tub inside, following these steps will help your tub survive the winter beautifully.