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  • Writer's pictureWellis

How to fix a hot tub airlock?

If you ever had a problem with your hot tub jets not pumping out enough high-press water, it could be an "Air Lock." That means you’ve got air trapped in the hot tub pipe work.

Air Locks are a common problem in hot tubs. Especially when you first fill your hot tub or after you drain and refill it. Here are two simple ways to troubleshoot a hot tub air lock and get your hot tub water flowing again.

A. ‘Bleeding’ your hot tub jets, which is quick fix by pushing a few buttons.

  1. Turn the jets on low for 10-20 seconds.

  2. Switch the jets on high for 10-20 seconds.

  3. Repeat this a few times until the jets are working and there is no gurgling or air bubbles.

  4. If it doesn’t fix the jets after 3-4 times, stop what you are doing, it can damage your pumps.

B. Remove the air from the pump.

You might need a screwdriver or pliers to do this method

  1. Unplug / turn electric main off for your hot tub

  2. Open the service access panel on the cabinet

  3. Locate the pump or pumps which may have an air lock and close the valve at the discharge side

  4. Locate the bleeder valves – a plastic looking bolt located on the hot tub pump motor.

  5. Slowly turn the bleeder valve and let the air escape. You don’t want to remove the valve, just loosen it a little until you hear the air hissing out. When the hissing sound stops, you’ll see a stream of water and now you can tighten the valve back up. Make sure you tighten it properly because water can leak if not.

  6. Reopen the closed valve at the discharge side

  7. Switch to power back on and check the jets.

  8. If it didn’t work, you might need to release the air at the pump unions. The pump union is the plastic with which the pump attaches to the rest of the plumbing. Don’t loosen it too far, just until the hissing sound stops or you see water coming out. Then tighten it back up.

IMPORTANT: Do not ever use a plunger to release air.

If it still not working:

  • Check the water flow, maybe you have some issues.

  • Clean your filter and check for other clogs or leak.

  • Check if you have enough water in the hot tub. Maybe your pump doesn’t get enough water.

  • Don’t give up after one go of priming. Sometimes it takes multiple attempts to clear a hot tub airlock. Similar to a central heating radiator.

But if you can’t manage or not comfortable doing it, just give us a call and we can fix it for you. Happy soaking...

Credit: Swim University


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