How Long Do Hot Tub Filters Last (Find Out Here!)

By James Brockbank •  Updated: 07/13/21 •  14 min read

How long do hot tub filters last?

The minimum life for a hot tub filter should be 6 months to a year. I have found that filters can exceed a 1-year duration in service if you practice cleaning them regularly. The brand of the hot tub filter will also affect its service duration.

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Using a premium spa and pool cartridge cleaner will help remove debris more quickly.

I recommend the Aquatix Pro Cleaner to get the job done right.

Hot tub filters are common hot tub appliances that are fundamental to the functioning of a hot tub. Proper maintenance of the filters is critical to their service life.

Besides regular cleaning as part of their maintenance, you need to ensure that the water running in your hot tub is clean and free of debris and solid matter as this will minimize wear and tear on the filters.

When the life of your hot tub’s filters comes to an end, I recommend replacing them because they become ineffective in filtering the hot tub water.

A fresh filter helps save money because it is more efficient besides its ability to protect the active parts of the hot tub.

I recommend keeping swap and spare filters to have the time for thorough cleaning and ensuring that the filtration remains consistent. This means that when you are cleaning one set of filters, another group will be placed on your hot tub to continue functioning.

In this article, I’ll talk about how long filters last in more detail.

Let’s get started!

How Often Do Hot Tub Filters Need To Be Replaced?

Ideally, you’ll need to replace your hot tub filters after every 12 months because most of the hot tub filters are designed to last for a year. If you use the hot tub more frequently and the quality of water or material used in making your hot tub is low, you’ll need to replace the filters in less than a year. However, the minimum duration your hot tub filters can last is six months. 

I have realized that there’s no absolute time when you can replace your hot tub filters. The factors that determine the frequency of replacing your hot tub filters include the frequency with which you use your hot tub, the water quality used in your hot tub, the frequency of cleaning the filters, and the type of materials used in making the filters.

Besides, some people could be rotating two sets of filters in their hot tub to allow time for cleaning one set while ensuring continuous filtration of the hot tub water. In such a case, each stage of the filters will be working half the amount of time and might double their service life before replacing.

I discourage using the filters after 12 months because their efficiency decreases, leaving bacteria and debris into the hot tub water. You’ll not need to replace your filters in 12 months if you’re using a set unless you notice the signs of reduced efficiency. For instance, you could observe that although the hot tub water is fresh, it is unclear. Broken hot tub filters will also need replacing.

How Often Do Inflatable Hot Tub Filters Need To Be Changed?

Based on how often you’re using your inflatable hot tub, you could change the filters in a frequency of a month or so. Specifically, changing the filters after a month is necessary if your hot tub is used between four and five times a week. If you use the hot tub once or two times a week, you could consider changing the filters after 8 to 10 weeks. However, it would help if you always remembered to clean the filters thoroughly and rinse them after every use. 

Ensure that you spot the appropriate time for changing your filters after owning the hot tub for the first time by observation. You could notice pleats on the filters because they look a little frayed, discolored or hard because of the calcium build-up.

Inflatable hot tubs do have filters like other types of hot tubs. However, these filters are relatively smaller than those used on regular hot tubs. The size of these filters affects their duration. But you’ll need to clean them based on use. Cleaning and replacement are related because if your clean the filters of your inflatable hot tub at least after every use and carry out a comprehensive cleaning every week, you will prolong the service life of your filters.

My recommendation for the smaller filters is Intex filters for inflatable hot tubs.

How Many Times Can You Clean A Hot Tub Filter?

It would help if you cleaned your hot tub filters in intervals of 1 to 2 weeks by removing and rinsing with a hose or in the laundry to remove any trapped dirt and debris. If the dirt and debris are trapped deep inside your filters, I recommend buying a tool like a filter flosser because the pleats could not come out by regular cleaning. 

I recommend you frequently clean your hot tub filters because the debris trapped in the hot tub accumulates to the point that it hinders effective functioning. Cleaning will also help your hot tub filters function optimally.

I also recommend chemical cleaning of your filters alongside the regular cleaning after 3 to 4 months of service. The chemical cleaning helps to remove any trapped lotions and oils on the filters. The chemical cleaning of the hot tub filters requires using a specialty hot tub filter cleaner.

For the best results, add the filter cleaner into a water bucket that is large enough to submerge the filters fully. You should then place your filters in the bucket and level them submerged for about 3 or 4 hours. When the time lapses, use a garden hose to wash off any debris left on the filter. Ensure that the filters are completely dry after chemical cleaning before placing them back into the hot tub.

Remember to quickly rinse and inspect your filters after 2 or 3 weeks. For thorough cleaning, an interval of 2 to 3 months is appropriate.

When Should I Clean My Hot Tub Filter?

It would help if you cleaned your filters after an inspection that shows the need to do the cleaning exercise. You don’t need to inspect cleaning for an inflatable hot tub because the best practice would be cleaning the filters every time after using the hot tub. A hot tub filter that requires cleaning will not filter the water properly; thus, it might result in dirty water. 

Besides, a filthy filter that needs cleaning will allow debris into other parts of the hot tub like pumps and the heater, leading to straining when they are functioning. You could also observe for peats on your hot tub filters in an inspection or determine a regular duration after which you’ll be cleaning your hot tub. When any of these problems are identified, your hot tub filters require cleaning.

Using a premium spa and pool cartridge cleaner will help remove debris more quickly.

I recommend the Aquatix Pro Cleaner to get the job done right.

Along with the Flexi Hose to reach the filters more easily!

Can I Clean And Reuse Hot Tub Filters?

Yes, you can. Unless you have conducted a chemical cleaning that requires you to allow the filters to dry up completely, you can use filters immediately after regular cleaning. Cleaning the filters removes dirt and debris that might be affecting their efficiency and effectiveness. As long as the filters are not broken or damaged, you can always use them after cleaning. 

The aim of cleaning your hot tub filters is to unblock and improve the efficiency of water filtration. Clogged filters can have their service life reduced and also affect the effectiveness of other components like the heater and the pump. I clean the filters to eliminate the need for their replacement.

Generally, a good tub filter lasts two to five years with the condition that you regularly take care of them. In the opposite case, filters just become a trash can within a year. Therefore, two things are really important, keeping the filters clean and replacing them every two years.

Hot tub filters come in all shapes and sizes.

My recommendation for larger filters is Guardian Pool/Spa filters.

For thorough cleaning, you need to soak the filter overnight in the cleaning chemical. Take a bucket, soak the filter in it and add a small amount of filter cleaner. Let it sit overnight. This gives a good long time to the chemical to extract all the grease, oil, and dirt from the filter, thus leaving it clean.

You can make the filter cleaner yourself at home or get one from the market. There are many good chemicals of various brands available that are made especially to clean the filters.

Soaking your hot tub filters in a 5-gallon bucket is the best practice while keeping the bucket in a safe location away from pets or small children.

I recommend Leisure Time O Filter Cleaner to soak your hot tub filters for the best results.

Can I Clean My Hot Tub Filter In The Washing Machine?

You cannot clean your hot tub filter in the washing machine because doing so can be damaging. Specifically, your hot tub filters will be banged on the washing machine’s walls and cause the plastic components to start cracking. The detergents used with the washing machines have not been tested to effectively clean filters, meaning that their effects could be detrimental. After placing your hot tub filters into the washing machine, the detergent that remains in the filter can cause excessive foaming in the hot tub. For these reasons, I highly discourage cleaning your hot tub filters with a washing machine. 

It’s a good practice to use a hosepipe with good water pressure for cleaning the filters. The water pressure helps to remove pleat and large debris from your filters. You should then submerge your filter in a bucket full of water with a recommended filter cleaning solution for 3 to 4 hours.

After soaking for this duration, you could remove the filters from the bucket and hose again. I recommend using a filter cleaning comb for faster cleaning because it eliminates the need to use filter cleaning chemicals. The cleaning exercise after soaking will focus on pleats removal. When done with the cleaning exercise, dry your filters entirely before placing them back in the hot tub.

How To Tell If A Hot Tub Filter Is Working

There are different elements you can check in a filter to determine if they’re working correctly. Staining on the filter means that oils and minerals could be clogging the component. The filter might fail to work correctly if it contains some holes from cracks sustained during the cleaning exercises. Holes and cracks on the hot tub filters affect their effectiveness and ability to clean the hot tub water effectively. If your filter has a crack or hole, it is a sign that replacement is needed because it will allow dirt and debris to pass into the hot tub. 

If your hot tub filters are fuzzy or pleated, then they are not functioning correctly. There are cases where your hot tub gets fuzzy on the pleats. The effectiveness of the hot tub is much lower in such a situation. The ability to trap dirt decreases as spaces between the pleats become thin. Frequent clogging on your hot tub’s filters is also a sign that your hot tub is not working correctly.

How To Remove A Hot Tub Filter?

It’s relatively easy to remove the filters from your hot tub system. The first thing you need to do is locate your filter cartridge. The filter cartridge is partially visible from the inner side of your hot tub. In most cases, it will be located inside a lid, a cradle, or a canister. If you can’t see such a compartment, look at the owner’s manual and you’ll see the filter. 

After you have located your filter, you need to turn off your hot tub system to avoid running the system in the absence of the filter cartridge. You should turn the filter anticlockwise slowly and gently to minimize damages. Examine the filter from the bottom threads when rotating to see if anything needs to be unscrewed. When the filter is loosened from its position, pull it up and out from the compartment.

refill hot tub filters

Consider Using a Water Care Monitor

Monitoring the health of your hot tub can often be challenging if you are not testing the water on a regular basis. This can also be a problem if you go on holiday or you are unable to take care of your hot tub due to mobility issues.

A test system I highly recommend is the Exact Industrial Test System. This system is great for hot tubs and pools and gives your a highly accurate digital readout of your water chemistry compared to other methods.

The pHin Smart Water Care Monitor for pools, hot tubs, and inflatable spas continuously tests the water and alerts you when to add chemicals with the integrated mobile app.

This water care monitor also takes constant readings of the temperature inside your hot tub. This will give you peace of mind while away from your spa.

The mobile app will inform you when to add chemicals such as chlorine, and how much chemical is recommended. This is done by entering your hot tub or pool’s unique dimensions.

Simply scan the bar code of any chemical brand and the pHin app will calculate how much chemical is to be added to the water. Most products and brands are recognized by the application.

The pHin device will sample water more than 1000 times per week to give you an accurate reading compared to using test strips.

The pHin device works with different water types including chlorine, bromine, and saltwater hot tubs, swim spas, inflatable hot tubs, and pools.

This unique device comes with a lifetime warranty to ensure your water remains clear and ready for you to use at all times.

How Long Do Hot Tub Filters Last: Conclusion

how long do hot tub filters last

How long do hot tub filters last? I have seen that one year is the average time the hot tub filters are designed to last. However, the materials, cleaning frequency, and material quality used to make the filter will affect its lifespan.

Filters made from ceramic can last for up to five years. With proper maintenance, normal filters can go for up to 2 years. Inflatable hot tub filters should be replaced after one month. The cleaning requirements of inflatable hot tub filters are every time you use the hot tub. For other types of hot tubs, you should clean and inspect after 1 to 2 weeks.

You can tell that your hot tub needs cleaning if you find dirt and debris in the hot tub. It can also reduce efficiency in the water flow because of blockage from dirt. I discourage cleaning a hot tub filter with a washing machine because it can cause breakage of plastic components of your filters.

When your hot tub filters are not working correctly, remove them by locating their position and rotating in an anticlockwise direction until they are free to pull from their compartment. Remember, you can replace the filters after cleaning once they have dried up.

I hope you found this article on how long hot tub filters last helpful.

Thanks for visiting

James Brockbank