Having a jetted bathtub is a sure ticket to relaxation and stress reduction, so don’t ruin the serene vibe with dirty bits floating around while you soak. Keeping the jets clean and sanitary is key for good health as well as great relaxation. Like many fixtures and appliances, all the parts of a jetted tub need regular cleaning to maintain proper working order.
The proper method for how to clean a jetted tub isn’t difficult but it is more involved than cleaning a regular bathtub. This is because there are a number of small parts and spaces that are hard to reach, meaning a little more time elbow grease to get the job done. These little spots collect mold and yucky gunk that isn’t easily tackled with your usual bathroom cleaning routine.
The payoff for your added work is the regular enjoyment of a sparkly clean jetted tub.
Is this a DIY job or do I need a professional?
This guide for how to clean a jetted tub lays out everything you need to get it done and each specific cleaning task. That said, there might be times when you need to call a professional for a problem you can’t solve. If you follow all the steps and your jetted tub still spews out bits of gunk, it might be that the pump and/or the pipes need expert service. The pros are trained on how to access the mechanisms and determine where the problem lies.
Why did my jetted tub get yucky in the first place?
Any place in the bathroom that is constantly moist or wet can build up mildew, mold and muck in the jets, pipes and crevices. The goo build-up comes from body oils, soap or other bath products. Many tub manufacturers have recommendations about the limited types of bath products and their amounts that you should use while running the jets. If you do add things to the water during a jetted soak, you’ll have to be scrupulous about keeping everything clean to prevent any major build-up of slime. Even if you only use products when taking a regular bath, they can still enter the jets, so knowing how to clean a jetted tub properly is critical to keeping things sanitary.
How often do I need to clean a jetted tub?
It depends. Actually, the frequency of cleaning comes down to how often you use it. If the tub only gets used once in a while, then four or five times a year should be enough to keep it safe and sanitary. If you’re a real devotée of soaking away your stress frequently, then you’ll need to do a proper deep clean of your jetted tub at least monthly. Of course, any time you notice bits of gunk floating in the water, it’s best to forego a bath and prep for a cleaning session instead.
What do I need to clean a jetted tub?
There are ready-made cleaners for jetted tubs available and your manufacturer may have specific recommendations. Still, the best way to clean your jetted tub can be with easily accessible household products that you might already have in the cupboard:
- White vinegar
- Baking Soda
- Dishwasher powder
- Non-Chlorine bleach
- Borax (optional)
- Dental Floss
- Soft cloths
- Bottle brush (optional)
A Step-by-Step Guide on How to Clean a Jetted Tub:
Flush Out the Yuck
First things first mean wiping up any debris, hair or gunk that you can see in and around the tub. Next, fill the tub with enough hot water to go above the jets by two or three inches. For the next part of this, you have a couple of options for the products that you can use. One thing to remember is that some manufacturers recommend avoiding chlorine bleach because it can dry out gaskets over time, leading them to deteriorate.
The first option for cleaning the tub is to add two cups of vinegar to the water. You may already be using vinegar for household cleaning because it’s natural and acidic, eliminating scum and buildup without any toxic elements. It will do the same thing in cleaning your jetted tub.
A second option is to add 1/2 cup of non-chlorine bleach and a few teaspoons of powdered dishwasher detergent. Some sources suggest you can use liquid dishwasher detergent too, but be sparing because some types can create more suds than you want. The dishwasher detergent will also help minimize mineral deposits if you have very hard water. Borax is also an option for this part of the process.
You can always opt for a commercial product formulated specifically for cleaning a jetted tub.
Check Your Manual Before Running the Jets
Before you turn on the jets, check the manual that came with your tub because some will recommend that you turn off the air induction valves before running the jets to clean the tub. Others suggest that you leave them open. Your owner’s manual will tell you how to do this, but generally, you can adjust the valves clockwise all the way to turn off the air induction. Your particular model may also have an “off “indicator on the valves. Closing the air valves makes the water flow only in the tubs internal plumbing, meaning that you’ll get a more thorough cleaning. In either case, turn on the jets and run them at the high setting for 10 to 15 minutes.
Flush it Again
Drain the tub. At this point you can wipe up some of the gunk and debris from the tub if you wish. Repeat the process of filling the tub and adding the cleaning products of your choice for a second time, flushing any additional debris from the jet system.
Scrub the Tub
So far, the process has been pretty simple but here’s where the elbow grease comes in: It’s time to scrub the inside of the tub. You don’t need anything fancy, just some baking soda and a soft cloth, which will clean up any scum, mildew or other grim. Sprinkle the baking soda around the tub. Let it sit for a few minutes and then get to scrubbing! You don’t want to rub with too much pressure or you might scratch your tub’s surface.
Clean Each Jet
The last step in how to clean a jetted tub is giving attention to each individual jet. It’s important to clean in and around each jet nozzle, and that’s where a toothbrush – or a bottle brush — can come in handy to reach into the spaces and crevices. Some dental floss can be useful for cleaning any gunk from around the nozzle trim. Finally, you can us the same equipment to clean the air intake. Just remove the cover, clean inside the intake and the cover, rinse it, then put it back on. Finally, give everything a super good rinsing to get rid of the baking soda, dirt and and goo that you loosened.
How to keep the jetted tub clean
Keep it Sparkling!
Now that your tub is squeaky clean inside and out, there are a few little things that you can do to help keep it in tip-top shape and perhaps eliminate the need for extra scrubbing next time. Every time that you’re finished with your relaxing soak in the tub, don’t immediately drain the water. Add vinegar to the tub water and let it sit for a few minutes. Then run the jets for 10 or 15 minutes. This helps keep the system clean and doesn’t waste a lot of water.
About the filter…
Your jetted tub likely has a filter that you will also want to keep clean because otherwise it can get clogged and affect the water pressure through the jets. Depending on the type of tub and manufacturer, you may have a removable filter. Follow any specific instructions in the manual to clean it. Otherwise, for those without a removeable filter, you can remove the filter cover and clean it, and then clean inside and around the filter opening before replacing the cover.
Let’s face it, there’s nothing like sinking into a tub full of whirling, crystal clear water at the end of a long and stressful day. Cleaning a jetted tub takes some effort, but if you maintain it well, it’ll provide years of relaxing soaks.