How often should I get my water tested?

We recommend that you come into Buds with a 1L water sample of your pool or hot tub water once a month. As long as you stick to a proper weekly maintenance regime once a month is plenty.

Why do I need to balance my pool or hot tub?

Proper water balance in a pool or hot tub extends the life of equipment and ensures that the sanitizer works efficiently. Without proof of water balance, equipment and liner manufacturers will not warranty their products. Water that goes unbalanced for extended periods of time can result in liner wrinkles, heater corrosion, leaking equipment and irritated skin and eyes.

How often should I run my pool pump?

A pool pump should run at least 8-12 hours in one day. This will allow the entire body of water to be filtered at least one time in a 24 hour period. Preferably, your pool pump should run during the day especially if there are excessive amounts of rain or heat. Stagnant water has an increased possibility for turning cloudy or green.

When and how long should I backwash my sand filter?

You should always backwash your filter once the pressure shown on the pressure gauge has reached 8-10psi higher then your normal running pressure. Backwashing the filter too often can stir up the sand and allow small particles to pass through it. Allowing some dirt to sit in the filter sand, helps to create rough edges so the sand can catch small debris. Not backwashing the filter enough will create a blockage in the filter sand and impede the flow of water back to the pool. All pool filters run at a different pressure based on a number of different variables. Ensure that you have a working pressure gauge on your filter at all times in order to acquire the best performance from your filter. A sand filter should always be backwashed for a minimum of 3 minutes and a maximum of 5 minutes depending on the size of the filter. Many people only backwash until the water leaving the backwash line or the water in the site glass is clear. Sometimes the filter sand will have a clear patch in it where no or very little debris has been trapped. Since the water pushes the debris from the bottom of the filter to the top of the filter, if backwashing is stopped at a clear patch, the debris underneath it forms a barrier in the sand and the filtration can no longer perform at its full potential.

How often should I drain my hot tub?

Draining a hot tub depends on bather use and chemical additions to the water. A Total Dissolved Solids reading is taken every month when you come in the store to get your water tested. Once the dissolved solids reach a certain level, a Buds water analysis expert will recommend draining the hot tub. On average, a hot tub is drained every 3-4 months.

How often should I change my filter sand?

The sand in the filter should be changed every 3-5 years. As the sand begins to age, it will not be as effective in picking up debris. At the end of every season, the sand in the sand filter should be chemically cleaned to alleviate oils and debris from adhering to the sand over the winter. This will help to keep effective filtration until it is time to change the sand. If the sand is not chemically cleaned every season, it will need to be changed more often.

How long should I run my automatic vacuum for?

If you have a robotic pool cleaner it will run for a maximum of 3 hours and then turn itself off. This vacuum can be used daily if needed. If your automatic cleaner is attached to the skimmer line, you should only run it for a maximum of 2-3 hours 4 times per week. Automatic vacuums that are powered by the suction in the skimmer take away from proper skimming of the pool. When a suction sided automatic vacuum is in use, the water traveling through the system is coming only from the bottom of the pool. If it is used too frequently, the pool does not get the chance to filter properly. Never use an automatic vacuum to clean a green pool.

Why does so much dirt accumulate on the bottom of my pool?

There could be a number of reasons why this is happening. Start by making sure that the return jets in the pool are pointed downward on a 45° angle. Both jets should be pointed to the right in the pool. This will allow for optimal circulation of the water. You should never see rippling on the surface of the pool water. If you see rippling, your jets are only circulating the top of the water and allowing small debris to sit on the pool floor.

Do I still need to balance my water if I have a salt system?

A salt system merely generates chlorine in a pool or bromine in a hot tub. Since you do not have to continuously add heavy doses of chlorine or bromine to the water, proper balance is easier to maintain. This however, does not alleviate balancing the water altogether. Using a salt system can cause the pH to rise naturally. Bringing in a water sample to Buds once a month will help to keep the pH in the proper range so it does not harm your equipment. Balancing the water is an essential part of pool maintenance whether you are using a salt system or not. Making sure that you follow a proper weekly regime will also extend the life of your pool and keep it looking magnificent.

Why does my hot tub water look cloudy after a few weeks, even if I just filled it with fresh water?

Every hot tub is susceptible to build up within the lines and on the filter. Over time, this build up gets worse and eventually it starts to break down and make its way back into the water. Using a chemical to flush residue and build up out of the lines when you drain the hot tub, will help to keep the water looking clear for a longer period of time. Ensuring that your filter is rinsed on a weekly basis and chemically cleaned every 4-6 weeks will also help to alleviate cloudy water. Allowing a build up of oils and waste to sit in the lines and the filter of the hot tub, result in quicker sanitizer consumption which can also contribute to cloudy water. Remember to only rinse your filter with a garden hose or sink faucet as forced pressure will tear the internal pleats of the cartridge making the filter inept and contributing to cloudy water.

How many bromine/chlorine tablets should I put in my hot tub feeder?

Try to limit the number of bromine/chlorine tablets to 3 or 4. By leaving more space inside the dispensing chamber, you are leaving more surface area thus the water can dissolve the tablets easier. If you try to pack too many tablets in the dispensing chamber, the water has a harder time running over the entire tablet making the release of sanitizer into the water much slower.

How do I measure for a new hot tub cover?

Please download our guide. This guide will help you measure your spa or hot tub cover so that it will fit perfectly. Even if a cover manufacturer has your spa on file, take the time to measure and be sure.