Hot Tub Error Codes: What They Mean

Hot Tub Error Codes: What They Mean

Uh-oh, an error code has popped up on your hot tub’s display panel, and you don’t speak hot tub.

Hot tub error codes are fantastic troubleshooting tools and can let you know the cause of the problem so you can properly diagnose it. Of course, every manufacturer has its own set of error codes, so you should refer to your owner’s manual for the most accurate information. But we’ve compiled some of the most common error codes to watch out for, which are used by most major manufacturers.

Flow errors

Common error codes: FLO, Flo, FL1, LF

Flow errors are one of the most common error codes triggered when the hot tub’s sensors detect a lack of water flow through the heater element. Specific examples of flow error causes include:

  • Low water levels: occur when water is below the skimmer/filter and there’s not enough water flowing through the filtration system. Water loss can happen because of evaporation, and evaporation can be intensified if your cover is frequently left open or if the cover is worn out and doesn’t fit properly.
  • Dirty filters: dirty filters restrict the amount of water flowing through the filtration system. Make sure you frequently clean your hot tub filter (once every two weeks with a filter cleaner) and replace it once a year. A dirty or over-used filter could compromise other hot tub parts, so it’s important to practice preventative maintenance!
  • Faulty sensors: sometimes faulty or incorrectly installed sensors can be the culprit of hot tub error codes.

Low water errors

Common error codes: DR, DY, DRY, H20

Low water error codes tell you there’s a lack of water in the hot tub pump. Your hot tub water line should be sitting at the waterline indicator typically located somewhere on the shell or by the filtration skimmer.

Low water error codes can also be caused by an airlock when air gets trapped in the pump. Airlocks often occur after refilling the hot tub. To fix an airlock, you can simply loosen one of the pump connections, and you will hear the air being released. If this doesn’t fix it, you should consult a professional.

High limit errors

Common error codes: ***, —, HILI, HL, HOT, OH, SP-OT, SN1, SN

High limit error codes are typically caused when the hot tub water gets too hot. To diagnose, get your thermometer out and check the temperature of your tub. If it’s above 110 degrees Fahrenheit, you might have a problem with your heater or spa pack. If it’s normal, you might be dealing with a faulty temperature sensor.

Cold water and frozen water errors

Common error codes: COL, COLD, COOL, FP, FR, FRE, LO, ICE, I CE2

Cold water error codes happen when the hot tub detects much colder water than the set temperature. Get your thermometer out and test out your water. If it’s colder than the set temperature by 10 degrees or more, then you likely have a problem with your heater. If the hot tub temperature is acceptable, you might be dealing with a faulty temperature sensor.

If you are getting the error codes ICE or I CE2, your hot tub is in danger of freezing and the freeze protection feature has been activated to protect against damage. Contact a professional to repair the issue immediately. While you’re waiting for them to arrive, you might consider placing a space heater by the hot tub, so the pipes don’t freeze.

Panel errors

Common error codes: PNL, OP, EO, SA, SNA, SNB, SH, SNH, SEoP, SESH, SN1, SN2, SN3

Panel error codes come up when there are signs or symptoms or a broken electronic component. This could be anything ranging from a broken sensor to a blown fuse. Your best bet is to call a professional to help you diagnose and repair the issue.

Circulation pump errors

Common error codes: CP

Circulation pump error codes occur when there’s a problem with the hot tub’s circulation pump. If you also have noise coming from your pump, that’s a good indication of a problem. Common causes include air trapped in the lines, scale deposits, clogged impellers, or bad bearings. If you’re not comfortable digging in deeper into the issues, consult a professional to help!

If you have a code that’s not on the list or have questions about troubleshooting or general maintenance, speak with one of our knowledgeable Buds’ associates – we’re always happy to help!