Taking a leisurely soak in your hot tub at the end of a long day is the epitome of relaxation.
So it’s ironic that, when your hot tub gets a leak, it becomes the exact opposite. Especially when you don’t know exactly where the leak is coming from, it can become a major source of anxiety, and rather than washing away your stress at the end of the day it adds to it.
Luckily, however, hot tub leaks are relatively common and most are pretty simple and quick to fix – especially when you use the Spa Leak Sealer for hot tubs, which can locate and seal a leak in mere minutes.
Before we get onto how you can quickly fix the leak in your hot tub, there are a couple of things you might find useful to know.
First, what causes a hot tub leak?
A number of things can cause a hot tub leak: normal wear and tear that develops over time, impact with other objects, or perhaps the connections between parts such as valves and pipes have become loose.
If you have a crack in the hot tub shell itself – a.k.a. the solid part of the hot tub that contains the water, and that you sit on when inside the tub – another possible cause of damage can be that the tub hasn’t been placed on level ground.
This causes the water to exert more pressure on a particular part of the shell, which can cause the shell to crack. Otherwise, weaker parts of the shell – such as the lens covers on the lights – are more susceptible to wear and cracks that can grow over time and cause leakage.
How can I tell if my hot tub has a leak?
Each week, your hot tub will experience some natural water loss (about an inch or two every seven days) due to the natural evaporation of water from the hot tub into the air – the rate of which can increase depending on whether it’s particularly hot and sunny that week.
However, if your hot tub is losing more than this – or if you notice a significant difference in the amount of water your tub is retaining, without there being an accompanying weather change – then it’s likely you have a leak.
But don’t worry! A leak in your hot tub doesn’t mean you need to throw it away and buy a new one, and for each leak there’s usually an effective fix you can make to restore your hot tub back to full health.
First, though, you need to locate the leak.
How do you find the leak in your hot tub?
Though most tend to assume that a hot tub leak is from the hot tub shell, a leak in your hot tub can occur in a couple of places.
This includes the pump, the plumbing, the heater, lights, or from the valves.
But how do you figure out exactly where the leak is coming from?
To start with, make sure that your hot tub is switched off. If you can’t see obvious cracks in the hot tub shell, then remove the outer panels of the tub and check for areas that seem excessively damp.
If it’s not immediately obvious where the leak is, check:
- the pump – a common leakage culprit, you should especially check around the seal of the pump, which can deteriorate over time
- the pipes, valves and lights – for cracks and areas of breakage, again looking for areas that appear wet.
- the hot tub shell – try to spot any less noticeable cracks, particularly around areas such as the lights (though, to fix a leak in the hot tub shell, or in the plumbing, you don’t actually need to know the exact location of the leak)
How to fix the leak in your hot tub
How you fix the leak in your hot tub depends on where the leak is.
1. Plumbing/hot tub shell leaks
Thankfully, It’s actually pretty easy to repair minor breaks and cracks in the hot tub shell or the hot tub plumbing – some of the most common culprits of hot tub leakage – using Spa Leak Sealer for hot tubs.
Firstly, make sure your hot tub pump is turned off and remove the cartridge/filter grids from your hot tub to ensure the leak sealer doesn’t contaminate the filtration system.
If you know where the leak is, you can pour the leak sealer straight into the water near the damaged area. If you don’t know where the leak is located, you can go ahead and pour the sealer into the hot tub skimmer, and you can be confident it’ll find its way to the source of the leak.
It’s important to leave your hot tub filled while you fix the leak so that you can easily detect whether or not the sealant has fixed the leak, since you can monitor whether the water level is still dropping more than it should be over time.
Thirty minutes after pouring in the Spa Leak Sealer, turn the pump on and leave it running for the next 8 hours. Then, check to see whether your hot tub is still losing water.
If it isn’t – great! If it is, then treat the tub a second time within the following 24-hour period. This should do the trick to seal the leak.
Be careful not to put too much Spa Leak Sealer in the tub immediately, though – it’s possible to over-treat your hot tub and block the plumbing, hindering the proper filtration and draining of your hot tub.
After a further 24 hours, replace the filter grids/cartridges to resume filtration of the tub, and you can look forward to being back in your tub in no time.
2. Around the lights
If you notice the lens covers around the lights are cracked – and it seems as though the water is leaking from this part of the hot tub – then you probably need to replace them.
First, make sure your hot tub is turned off and drain the water until its well below the level of the lights.
Using a screwdriver, unscrew the light covers and prepare to replace them with new ones. It’s also a good idea to replace the lens gasket – the connecting piece that ensures the feature is fully sealed – since this is susceptible to wear over time.
This ensures all your bases are covered and you can avoid hot tub leaks well into the future.
3. The pump
Make sure to turn off the power first and thoroughly check the underside of the pump for excessive wetness.
There are a couple of components that could be causing the leak, including the seal shaft, union fitting or volute. However, it can be pretty tricky to determine which part is to blame, if there’s no obvious culprit.
Most often, you’ll need to replace the pump seal – which can be pretty tricky. To do this, you’ll need to take apart the pump and use specialist tools to re-attach new seals onto the main component.
Unless you’re pretty handy, you might be better off getting a professional to do this – and they might also be in a better position to tell you if the entire pump needs to be replaced, being able to install this for you too, to restore your hot tub to good as new.
4. The valves
Like the pump, if the valves are leaking, you’ll probably need to replace a part – usually, the gasket, which is used to connect the heater to the plumbing.
You’ll need to remove the bolts holding the valves together. From here, you can remove the old gasket and replace it with a new one, placing the valves back together and re-inserting the bolts.
Do I have to drain my hot tub after fixing it?
If you’ve replaced a part on your hot tub, or made another mechanical fix, it’s not necessary to drain your hot tub.
However, if you’re using a hot tub leak sealant, most advise you to fully drain your tub after using the formula.
After using the Spa Leak Sealer for hot tubs and replacing the filtration grids, it’s a good idea to drain your hot tub, wiping away the residue from the sides of the shell with a textured cloth to ensure all the sealant is washed away.
When your hot tub has been fully drained, it’s recommended to leave your hot tub empty for at least 5 days before refilling. After that, you’re good to enjoy your hot tub once again.
So, if you want to fix the leak in your hot tub ASAP, try to first locate the source of the leak to determine if you need to fix or replace a part (or have a professional do it for you) or whether you can use the Spa Leak Sealer for hot tubs to quickly and easily seal the leaks in your tub.