Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Hot Tub Flow Problems

As mentioned in the last post, flow problems are one of the most
common issues with portable spas. Most people panic when they see that a safety system such as "LF - Low Flow" is flashing on their spa touch pad screen, yet usually flow issues are easily resolvable.

The best way to understand flow is to, firstly, understand the flow cycle of spa water. The water which is heated by the spa, is firstly taken in through the filters then passed through
the heater element, which is then pumped back through the spa water jets. If the sensors on the spa heater are not getting sufficient water, it will send a signal through the control board to cut off the heater and present a safety message such as "LF" or "FLO", these are simple measures to prevent the heater burning out.

So, the main cause of flow problems in hot tubs is dirty, old, or clogged filter cartridges (As pictured, top right). As the water cannot pass through the filter cartridge quick enough to allow sufficient water in the heater, flow protection modes are initiated. So, firstly, ensure your filters are clean, use your garden hose to see how easily water can be passed through the filter media, if the media is over-clogged, new replacement filters may be required. After cleaning or replacing your filters, turn the spa off and on again, running it with NO filters for a maximum of 5 minutes, this will allow the flow protection mode to be cleared and identify the filters as the issue. Then simply place your filters back in the spa and all should be back to normal.

In some cases, customers have experienced flow problems even with squeaky clean or brand new filters. This has been put down to sensor issues. In extreme cases, scale has actually layered the sensors, preventing an accurate reading and enforcing them to signal flow error messages. This problem is easily resolved by removing the heater, cleaning it thoroughly and ensuring PH levels are correct in the future, as well as using "No Scale" to break up any other existing scale in spa water.

In very rare cases, the control system has been the result of flow issues, with a faulty PCB board incorrectly reading signals from the sensors and being unable to clear any error messages, such as "Low Flow". This however is rare and any flow issues are usually simple to address and resolve. If a spa repair company simply claims, within 5 minutes, that a PCB board is the result of flow issues, you can ensure they have not checked thoroughly enough.

At Hot Tub Care Ltd. we receive calls from customers regarding flow problems on a regular basis. Our two-step policy is Step 1, tell the customer to check/test their filters and any potential blockages in the filter housing (e.g. leaves). If this has no luck. Step 2, organise an engineer to come and resolve the problem. We NEVER book an engineer at a customers' cost for flow problems before we can confirm it is nothing simple.

If you are still experiencing flow-problems after "Step 1". Feel free to contact us on
0845 366 1122. or Visit our website

Happy Hot Tubbing !

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