How To Lower Chlorine Levels In A Hot Tub – Quick and Easy

Michael Keenan


Hot Tub Water Chemistry

So, you’ve overdone it with the chlorine in your hot tub, haven’t you? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. It’s a common mistake and luckily, there are some simple solutions to get your tub back in balance.

High chlorine levels can cause nasty health issues and even damage your hot tub. But fear not, this article will guide you through the ins and outs of reducing those levels.

Whether you’re patient enough to wait it out, prefer a quick freshwater fix, or are leaning towards a chlorine neutralizer, you’ll find your solution here.

We’ll also delve into the importance of regular maintenance and proper water management to prevent this problem in the future. Stick around and soon you’ll not only know how to lower the chlorine levels in your hot tub but also how to keep them in check.

Let’s dive in! lol

reduce chlorine in hot tub

Key Takeaways

  • Option 1: Waiting for sanitizer levels to decrease by not adding sanitizer, turning off the automatic chlorinator, and allowing for natural evaporation.
  • Option 2: Draining and diluting the hot tub by partially draining it, cleaning the filter, and filling it with fresh water.
  • Option 3: Using a chlorine neutralizer to reduce chlorine/bromine levels, follow the instructions on the bottle for proper dosage.
  • Proper water chemistry balance is crucial for effective water treatment, including maintaining pH levels, total alkalinity, and chlorine levels within recommended ranges.

How to Tell if There Is Too Much Chlorine in Spa Water

If you’re noticing a strong chemical smell from your hot tub water, experiencing itchy skin or irritated eyes after a soak, or seeing signs of damage to your tub’s surfaces, you could have too much chlorine in your spa water.

Normally, the problem is not enough chlorine – after all, you’ll be adding chlorine regularly as part of your regular maintenance schedule. But mistakes happen!

If in any doubt just do a quick water test to check your chlorine levels.

The signs of chlorine overdose are not only discomforting but can also lead to serious damage to your hot tub equipment. High chlorine levels can cause corrosion and potential leaks.

Above all, never underestimate the importance of regular water testing. It’s the key to maintaining a healthy and enjoyable hot tub experience.

If you use bromine as your sanitizer – check out how to reduce bromine in your hot tub. The techiques are very similar with a few slight changes.

How Much Chlorine Sanitizer You Actually Need

It’s simple! The chlorine levels in your hot tub should be between 1 ppm to 3 ppm (measured as parts per million) – 3 ppm is considered the ideal reading.

If you don’t have enough chlorine in your tub, you run the risk of the water not being safe. Allowing bacteria and other nasties to pollute the water. Not good! That’s why you should be testing and adding chlorine weekly.

Have you just bought a new hot tub – read about how much chlorine to add the first time.

If you have too much chlorine in your hot tub, that leads to other problems. That’s next.

clean hot tub with jets running

Why Too Much Chlorine Can Be a Problem

Excessive chlorine sanitizer can wreak havoc on your spa experience. High chlorine levels can lead to potential health risks such as itchy skin, red eyes, and even respiratory distress.

The imbalance in water chemistry can foster an acidic environment, damaging tub surfaces, and plumbing over time.

But I know you are a responsible hot tub owner, and you’re not going to let that happen. At least not for long!

How to Reduce Chlorine in a Hot Tub

If your hot tub’s chlorine levels are too high, don’t worry, there are several ways you can bring them back to a safe range. It’s easy when you know how!

Just Wait!

Patience is a virtue, especially when you’re dealing with high chlorine levels in your hot tub. Instead of rushing to find a quick fix, consider waiting as one of the most natural alternatives. Here’s why:

  • High chlorine levels will reduce over time naturally if you stop adding more.
  • Uncovering your hot tub allows for natural evaporation, which helps lower chlorine levels.

Speed things up by removing the cover and running the pump for a few hours. If you are only a little over the ideal range, a couple of hours could be enough time to drop the chlorine to within safe limits.

Remember, when you shock your hot tub you are adding an extra large dose of chlorine to help the sanitizing process and boost effectiveness. What do you do to address the high chlorine levels after shocking? You wait! Works a treat.

Give it some time then test again.

Dilute the Water

If waiting isn’t your thing or maybe the levels are way too high, don’t worry. There’s another simple solution: diluting your spa’s water.

Just drain off some of the water and then top it up again with fresh water. Run the pump for a few minutes to mix it up and then test. By adding fresh water to your hot tub, you effectively dilute the concentrated chlorine, lowering its levels.

Just remember to turn off and disconnect your tub from its power source before draining. Safety first!!

Use a Neutralizer Product

In cases where time is of the essence and dilution isn’t an option, using a neutralizer product can be a good solution. By the time you go and buy it – the chlorine will be back to normal levels lol. Only joking, I know you have some in your chemical store!

You can buy a specialist chlorine reducer called a neutralizer. It contains sodium thiosulphate which is great at reducing chlorine and bromine in water. Follow the rates provided on the label (different products, different doses) and gradually apply the neutralizer to avoid removing too much chlorine.

Always remember to test your water before and after using a chlorine reducer. This step is to ensure that you achieve the desired chlorine level without risking under-sanitization.

waiting time

Good Water Management to Prevent Too Much Chlorine

Most hot tub water chemistry problems can be easily avoided by having a regular maintenance schedule. It’s not complicated for managing a hot tub.

Set up a schedule, and stick to it. Test your water weekly and add sanitizer as needed – not too much and not too little. For a hot tub with chlorine sanitizer, you should be shocking about once a week, more if it gets a lot of use.

Proper water management is key in preventing excessive chlorine levels in your hot tub. Regular testing is essential to monitor sanitizer levels and minimize potential health risks.

Familiarize yourself with your hot tub’s water testing kit, as it will help you keep track of chlorine levels, pH, alkalinity, and more.

It’s important to remember that excessive chlorine can disrupt water balance, resulting in a lower pH and increased acidity. This can lead to long-term issues like tub surface damage and corrosion of plumbing parts.

Good water management is not only about ensuring your comfort but also about preserving the longevity of your hot tub.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the health risks associated with high chlorine levels in a hot tub?

High chlorine levels in your hot tub can cause chlorine exposure symptoms like skin irritation and eye damage. Prolonged exposure may lead to chlorine allergies and long-term effects such as respiratory distress.

Can I use my hot tub immediately after adding a chlorine neutralizer?

No, after applying a chlorine neutralizer, don’t immediately use your hot tub. Allow the neutralizer to work and retest the water. Remember, different neutralizer types, brands, and application frequencies can affect neutralizer safety and costs.

What are some alternatives to using chlorine in my hot tub?

Consider alternatives to chlorine for your hot tub. Bromine usage is effective in high temperatures, ozone generators reduce chemical use, and mineral or salt systems offer gentle sanitizing. Ultraviolet light can also kill bacteria efficiently.

Does the size or capacity of the hot tub affect the amount of chlorine needed?

Absolutely, the capacity of your hot tub directly impacts chlorine measurements. Larger tubs require more chlorine for effective sanitizing. Always consider capacity during your hot tub maintenance to ensure chlorine efficiency.


So, you’ve learned how to identify high chlorine levels in your spa and why it’s a problem. And now you know how to lower chlorine levels in a hot tub. Remember, you can bring these levels down by waiting, diluting with fresh water, or using a chlorine neutralizer.

But prevention is key; good water management and accurate dosing of sanitizer will help avoid this issue. Keep an eye on your water chemistry and you’ll enjoy a safe, comfortable hot tub experience.

michael keenan author

Author - Michael Keenan

I'm Michael Keenan the owner and creator of the Outdoor Care Guide. I'm a trained horticulturist with over 30 years of experience in pool care, plant care, and landscape care! Seemed like a good idea to share - I think I can make your life easier and save you some time and money!