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Can You Put Antifreeze in A Hot Tub? (Detail Guide)

With winter drawing near, we all know that a drop in severe temperature can lead to some devastating effects on your hot tub. You don't want any burst pipes that will cause damage to the components of plumbing. Now, you might be considering using antifreeze to protect your hot tub during the cold times. So, can you put antifreeze in a hot tub?

The answer is a definite yes! But no one should use the hot tub after the antifreeze has been added to it. We don't want anyone soaking in the dangerous chemicals.

The addition of antifreeze might just seem like pouring a pack of chemicals into your tub. But it takes preparation and following a few guidelines. It might not be rocket science, but you will end up facing consequences if you don't follow the proper procedures.

Why Should You Put Antifreeze in A Hot Tub?

By adding the antifreeze, you won't have to worry about spending megabucks on repair and maintenance. You will finally be able to reopen the tub in the following months when the weather goes back to being warm. And after you close the tub and put it to rest, you can go snuggle up inside and not worry about any leakage, significant damage, or broken pipes.

If you're someone who wants to have your hot tub open during all seasons, that's perfectly fine as well. Who doesn't love a warm bath during icy cold weather? But if you're thinking of closing it down for the winter, it's better to winterize your precious tub before doing so. As mentioned earlier, adding antifreeze before the closure will help it steer clear of any broken pipes and plumbing.

Winter may indeed be the perfect time to use your hot tub as the perfect spa. But not if you're planning a vacation, a winter get-away with close ones, or just planning to stay indoors. That’s when the winterization process will be the best option for you to pick for your hot tub.

If you use your hot tub throughout the winter it is not needed. But, if you don’t plan to use it during the winters, winterization using antifreeze is essential. I would go on to say that winterizing your hot tub is a further investment. Without this process, you're eventually and unknowingly putting the hot tub in harm's way.

What Happens If You Don't Put Antifreeze In Your Hot Tub?

If you altogether avoid the winterization process and do not put any antifreeze in it, you'll just be opening doors to other unnecessary inconveniences. Shocking, regular cleaning, and paying the electricity bills are just some of the aforementioned nuisance

There are many articles online which might just convince you that winterizing your hot tub is not that necessary. If you have it running all year long. That is ideally true. But it also means that you'll have to keep an eye on the tub while you're not using it. And that itself is a hassle and includes expenses which you'd most probably prefer to avoid.

Now would that be the best use of your time and money when there are better options available? I thought so. So, if you're planning to keep your hot tub dormant all winter long, why sacrifice the longevity of the equipment when you can add more protection to it?

How To Winterize Your Hot tub?

Adding antifreeze and winterizing your hot tub is not a lengthy or daunting process if you're following the steps properly. It will consume quite a bit of your time but the results are worth the effort. The process includes proper prep time, drainage, and thorough cleaning. And the final protection which will help it to withstand the cold.

No individual should use the pool after you finish the process. Chemicals, other than the ones used to keep the water clean, should not meet the skin if you plan to use the hot tub during winter.

Thus, you need to get a better grasp of the process of adding antifreeze to your hot tub. I've put together the following steps and listed a few tips and tricks to protect your hot tub while it's not in use. So that it remains in perfect condition during later months:

Step 1: The Preparation

Before you burden yourself with the prep, you need to realize that time is crucial in this step. You shouldn't wait till winter to finally start adding antifreeze to your hot tub. The winterization process should start well before the month arrives.

As you start prepping for the procedure, make sure that the tub is empty. And the temperature is not too cold outdoors. If the weather is below freezing, the water will just freeze into ice. And you won't be able to drain it.

Now, before you start with the draining, you will need a set of equipment that will ease the process and labor.

A hose: A garden hose is best suited to drain the hot tub from its drainage plug.

A vacuum cleaner: Do you have a vacuum cleaner laying around the house? Then this is the best time to put it to good use. A dry or wet vacuum cleaner will act as suction and remove the excess water in the hot tub and the pipes.

A washcloth: An absorbent washcloth or a dry towel will soak up all the water that will get left behind at the bottom of the tub.

Antifreeze: A non-toxic antifreeze, preferably a Propylene Glycol Antifreeze, would be the best pick to keep your hot tub and its attached equipment from freezing during the harsh winters. There is a specific type of antifreeze that is designed for hot tubs so get that one. Avoid using any antifreeze that's intended for vehicles. It will just add to the overall toxicity.

A funnel: Instead of just pouring it out of its container, using a long funnel will help you eject it into the narrow openings of the pipes and jets.

Step 2: Drainage

Once you're done with the prep, you'll finally be able to properly drain the tub of its components. The drainage is extremely important to get rid of any bacteria growing in the empty tub or pipes. Because it will be left unused for the rest of winter. Here’s how to do it.

While choosing the right kind of pump for your tub, it's ideal that you get one that can be easily immersed into the hot tub. This way, you'll be quickly able to drain the tub from areas such as the deep within.

If you're not able to get a submersible pump, then you can also use your garden hose to get the job done. All you need to do here is just screw off the plug for the drainage pipe of the tub and re-attach the garden hose to it.

The downside of this is that it takes a lot of time and effort and you'll need a vacuum to clean off the additional liquid which will stay back.

Don't forget to turn off the power if you don't want to get an electric shock. Or a trip to the hospital. Before you proceed with the whole process, your main priority should be to turn the switch off from the designated breaker box near the tub.

After the hose or pump gets the job done, there will still be a few liters of water left in the tub. In that case, a dry vacuum will help to remove it. And blow out the excess liquid that remains in the nooks and crannies.

This is mostly for those who use a garden hose instead of a pump. But a vacuum would be useful in both cases.

Step 3: Adding The Antifreeze

Once you've drained the tub of its impurities, you can finally proceed with the thorough cleaning. This is practically the whole winterization process where you'll have to add the antifreeze to the tub to keep it sealed and protected against the cold while it's not in use.

Detach the garden hose and screw back the drainage cap which you removed earlier. As all the water has been removed, there is no need for further drainage during the cleaning process.

As you don't want any water to freeze, it's best to take an absorbent washcloth and soak up any lasting moisture from the bottom of the tub.

Now, it’s time to put in the antifreeze. The funnel is used to pour the antifreeze from its container into the narrow pipes and jet holes. As previously mentioned, Propylene Glycol is a good antifreeze for any hot tub.

The areas that need to be covered with the antifreeze include any openings, such as the standpipes, narrow jets, and other such openings where water can easily come in or exit the tub. By doing this, you'll essentially be preventing any form of freezing in these areas.

Finally, you can just put the cover-up on top of your hot tub. You can put plywood on top of the cover. So that the hot tub does not face any damage from the weight of the snow or ice during the winter.

This might seem like a trivial issue. But if the cover gets damaged, it becomes waterlogged. And you'll be dealing with a much bigger problem then. So, take care of that.

By now, I’m sure you have a decent idea of whether or not can you add antifreeze to your hot tub?' Not only is this something you can do, but it's mainly a process you should proceed with if you plan to keep your hot tub turned off throughout the winter. It might be time-consuming.

But in the end, it will help keep your hot tub long-lasting and summer-ready. Thank you for your time and I wish you a splendid day ahead!

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Written by Ferdi Vol
Ferdi Vol is a pool and hot tub owner who has been working in this industry for over 5 years. He has learned all the ins and outs of maintaining pools and hot tubs, as well as how to privately own one. Ferdi Vol is also passionate about blogging, researching topics that he shares with his readers online via this blog.
About Ferdi Vol
About Pool Uncle
Pool Uncle is a blog that focuses on helping pool and hot tub owners get the right tools, maintain their pools and hot tubs, and learn about how to care for them. It provides readers with all of the information they need to keep their pools clean, safe, and looking great. The website also publishes original articles about pool maintenance topics such as filtration systems or algae prevention techniques.
About the Author
Ferdi Vol has been in the swimming pool and hot tub as an owner for over 5 years. His experience ranges from owning a pools and hot tubs and maintaining them. He’s learned about pumps, filters, chemicals, cleaning products, treatment systems… you name it!
About Ferdi Vol
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