How and Why Should I Shock My Hot Tub?

Sometimes it feels like there are so many hot tub terms that you learn a new one every day. You’ve either just gotten a new hot tub or are looking at getting one, and you heard about hot tub shock. You may be wondering, “Is this different from balancing your hot tub water?” “How and why should I shock my hot tub?” We’re here to help you out.

Why Should I Shock My Hot Tub?

So before we get to the how, you probably need to know why you should do it. Because if you don’t know why you should do it, why would you even bother learning how?

When you last used a public pool or hot tub, did you smell that oh-so-familiar chlorine smell? Fun fact: it’s actually not chlorine you’re smelling. It’s a by-product that comes from contaminants being neutralized by the chlorine. Whenever you get in the hot tub without rinsing off first, you transfer bacteria and oils from your body into the water. This isn’t to say you’re dirty; it’s just what happens. The oils can be from residual lotion and shampoo. It’s unavoidable even if you rinse off first, because you won’t ever get everything off, and you can’t rinse off your sunscreen.

So what does this have to do with shocking your hot tub? Shocking your hot tub is what gets rid of that by-product build-up. You should shock your hot tub at least once a week, and always after heavy use. Heavy use increases the amount of bacteria, which is why that smell pretty much always lingers at public pools and hot tubs.

How Do I Shock My Hot Tub?

So now that you’re ready to get rid of that bacteria, how do you do it? First, you’re going to need to get shocking chemicals appropriate for your hot tub. For a chlorine or saltwater hot tub, you’ll want to get chlorine shock. 

Then, you’ll want to prepare to add it for your hot tub. Get everyone and everything out of your hot tub and take off the hot tub cover (if you haven’t already). Try to do this at night so the sun doesn’t affect your chemicals. 

Before you measure any of the shock, turn off the jets in your hot tub (if on) and test your hot tub’s pH. You’ll want the pH level to be normal (about 7.4 to 7.6). If it is outside this range, then the hot tub shock may not work. And you don’t want that! 

Once everything is prepared, you’re ready to do the shock. It is never a bad idea to wear protection like gloves because, after all, it is a chemical. Measure the chemicals according to directions on the bottle, add to your hot tub, and voila! You have shocked your hot tub.

Pick Up a Hot Tub to Shock

Now you have one less question about your hot tub! If you need any other help, come on over to Texas Hot Tub Company. We’ll answer any other questions you have and help you find the perfect Jacuzzi® hot tub.


The 2019 Limelight Collection Owner’s Manual will help you understand your spa’s features, and answer questions you might have regarding spa operation, water care, and maintenance. There is also a troubleshooting section included for your convenience.  

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