How to Raise Chlorine/Bromine Levels in a Hot Tub

Written by: Jake Riggs



Time to read min

You want your spa to be fresh, clear, and ready for soaking anytime. To keep it that way, you must use a sanitizing hot tub chemical to kill bacteria.

When keeping your hot tub clean and sanitized, you might know that chlorine and bromine are essential spa chemicals. You might know they can purify your water and kill harmful germs.

They are the most critical hot tub chemicals to keep your hot tub clean and bacteria-free.

When they get low, you may not know how to raise chlorine/bromine levels in a hot tub.

So, in this article, we look at the ins and outs of raising those levels. First, though, let’s define these two vital hot tub chemicals.

What is Chlorine?

Chlorine is the most common sanitizer for your hot tub, and it works great to keep your water clean and clear. Here are a few details:

  • Chlorine is easy to add and easy to manage.
  • It’s cost-effective for hot tub owners.
  • Chlorine also is quite forceful when it comes to algae and bacteria.

For example, you may use bleach products in your kitchen or bathroom to kill viruses and bacteria. Well, chlorine acts the same way but in your hot tub. Some people don’t love the smell of chlorine, although it’s not the actual chlorine you are smelling. As chlorine kills contaminants in your spa, it creates a chemical reaction responsible for the smell. It’s worth noting that if you can smell the chlorine, you probably aren’t using enough.

What are the Proper Chlorine Levels for Your Spa?

Proper chlorine levels for your hot tub are one part per million (ppm) to three parts per million. Make sure you check with your hot tub manufacturer for their exact recommended levels.

You want to test your spa water regularly to see if those levels are where they should be.

What is Bromine?

Bromine is an alternative sanitizer, and people like it because it doesn’t oxidize, so you don’t have any of that chlorine smell. Instead, bromine ionizes contaminants and breaks them up.

The ionization process produces bromamines, and while they don’t have an odor, they reduce the effectiveness of your sanitizer, and you don’t want them in the hot tub. You can eliminate this problem by keeping your level steady.

What are the Proper Bromine Levels for Your Spa?

Keep your bromine levels between one part per million and five parts per million. Again, please check with your hot tub manufacturer for their recommended levels.

There are a few more reasons some spa owners like bromine:

  • Bromine lasts longer.
  • It’s gentler on your skin.
  • Bromine makes it easier to keep your water balanced because it has a lower pH than chlorine.

While chlorine can be stabilized, bromine can’t be, and it sometimes burns off faster.

What Happens If My Levels Are Too Low

If your chlorine or bromine levels are too low, your hot tub isn’t safe for people to soak. Low levels mean bacteria is probably high.

In addition, when these spa chemicals are low, your hot tub water is probably cloudy, making it uninviting. You may also smell unpleasant odors when the levels are low. You should regularly test your hot tub water to check your chlorine and bromine levels.

Now that you know the difference between chlorine and bromine and the consequences of low levels, let’s look at how to raise the levels in a hot tub.

Shock Your Hot Tub

If your chlorine or bromine levels drop below two ppm, you want to do this. Shocking your hot tub can help boost your levels.

Adjust Your Settings

Your hot tub may have a dispensing device like a salt generator. If it does, you can turn up the dial.

You want only to adjust the dial to one new setting every day and then test the water. Leave it alone once you have reached the proper levels and found the correct setting.

If you have heavy bather loads or a lot of rain in an uncovered hot tub, you again want to shock your water with the right spa chemicals.

Increase Your Chlorine or Bromine

You can also add more chlorine or bromine. Consider slow-dissolving tablets to help return your water to a stable level.

Balance Your Water

Water balance in your hot tub is vital. When we refer to water balance, we’re talking about the pH of your spa water. If your pH isn’t at the right level, your chlorine is rendered entirely useless, even if there is enough of it. If you are using bromine, you’ll find that it’s less affected by changes in the pH.

It is vital, though, that whichever hot tub chemical you are using that you maintain your pH levels.

Drain and Refill Your Hot Tub

Did you know it’s essential to drain and refill your spa every three to six months? If it’s been about three months, your water may have difficulty keeping proper chlorine or bromine levels.

To raise your levels, you can drain your spa and refill it. Make sure to clean the inside of your hot tub and your filter cartridges so you can start fresh.

Raise the Chlorine/Bromine Levels for Safe Soaking

You want a hot tub with fresh water daily so you can soak, relax, and feel better each time you step into your hot tub.

You need the right spa chemicals for clean, soft, and balanced water to do that. We are experts in spa care, so if you have questions, please don’t hesitate to ask!

If you’re looking for quality pool and spa chemicals shipped to your door, you’ve come to the right place. At Pool Goods, we are here for you to help you make every day better in your pool or hot tub with the best pool and spa chemicals on the market!