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Backyard Blogging.

How to Change Your Hot Tub Filters

Your hot filters are the silent warrior working every day in your hot tub to ensure it performs well. They work in the background, trapping particles as water runs through the filter media. These same hot tub filters are your most important defense against dirty spa water.

We want to help you take care of them well and when needed, replace them. In this article, we look at how to change your hot tub filters.

How Hot Tub Filters Work

Water passes through your filter, and the filter traps unwanted particles in the folds. Every hot tub has a filter. Why? Because even when your water looks clear, contaminants such as body oils, dirt, and debris exist.

Most hot tub filters have filters that you can easily remove, clean, and ultimately replace. With pleats all the way around, these folds increase the surface area of the filter for better cleaning. The more filter surface area, the cleaner your water.

It is important to maintain your filters on a regular basis so it remains as effective as possible. Your hot tub filters are essential to clean water and the proper performance of your spa. If they get dirty, clogged, or worn out, they are no longer doing their job. And, you don’t want to strain your hot tub pumps and cause dirt and grime to build up.

How to Clean Your Hot Tub Filter

Keeping your filters clean and replacing them when necessary are key to optimal hot tub health, performance, and long life. Luckily, today’s advanced cartridges are easy to clean, making your part in hot tub filter maintenance a straightforward matter.

Filter Type  

Polyester or “Paper” Filter Cartridge

Monthly Cleaning                                     

Rinse with a garden hose every month and inspect the filter for signs of wear and tear. Using an instant filter cleaner spray can also help to break up oils and other stubborn particles.

Deeper Cleaning

Every time you drain your hot tub, soak the filters in the cleaning solution your dealer recommends.


Replace every 2–3 years, depending on usage and visible wear.

TRI-X Ceramic Fiber Filter Cartridge Rinse with a garden hose every month and inspect the filter for signs of wear and tear. Using an instant filter cleaner spray can also help to break up oils and other stubborn particles. Every time you drain your hot tub, soak the filters in the cleaning solution your

You can usually spray your filter with a garden hose to clear much of the build-up. You can also use simple filter spray cleaners or degreasers you can purchase from us. Check out these videos for directions for your Hot Spring Spa and Caldera Spa.

Clean Your Caldera Spa Hot Tub Filters

Clean Your Hot Spring Spa Hot Tub Filters

How to Take Care of Your Filters

Once a month, remove your filters and spray them with a garden hose to remove any debris that may have accumulated between the folds.

Three To Four Months:

  • Whenever you change out the water in your hot tub, give your filters a full cleaning.
  • Remove them from the spa and spray away any debris that has accumulated between the folds with a garden hose.
  • Soak the filters over night in a spa filter degreaser (see package instructions for the product you’re using).
  • After soaking the filters, spray them clean and replace.
  • Do not use a pressure washer or dishwasher to clean your filters.

Tip: You can avoid any spa down time by having two sets of filters. Simply switch the filters to be cleaned with your other set. Then clean and store the set you’ve removed.

Two To Three Years:

  • If you’ve maintained your cleaning schedule, your genuine Watkins filters should last up to three years.
  • You may want to replace them sooner if maintenance has been sporadic, or your hot tub has seen heavier than normal use.
  • Replace your filters sooner if the filter is brown, gray or green, or if it stays dark yellow after cleaning
  • . You should also replace filters if you notice that the pleated part becomes flat or the fiber begins to shred or fall apart.
  • Also replace if the top or bottom of the canister has a split or crack.

When it’s time to replace your filters, check with us for the Watkins filters specifically designed for your spa model. For information on filter removal and replacement steps, you can also check the owner’s manual specific to the hot tub model you own.

Final Thoughts

Filter maintenance and replacement schedules vary depending on how often you use your hot tub and how many people regularly soak in it.

The more contaminants introduced into your water, the more buildup the filter collects. When the filtration medium is compromised, so is its ability to hold a strong line of defense against dirty spa water.

To keep your hot tub running efficiently, consider calendaring your inspections, monthly cleanings, deep cleanings, and spa-drainage days according to usage over a 12-month period.

Every time you remove your filters for cleaning, be sure to inspect them for signs of wear, tear, or cracking. Pay extra attention as cartridges grow closer to the end of their lifespans. When it’s time to replace your filters, choose only the certified, branded filters designed for use with your hot tub model. When your home spa depends so heavily on maximum filtration power for overall performance, you want to rely on the best.

Questions? Please contact us for more information!