All hot tub owners should expect to face some kind of water problem at some point. The most common water problems are foamy, cloudy, or milky water, but these can be easily resolved.

For the most part, following the recommended hot tub maintenance schedule for your hot tub will help avoid any potential water problems from occurring.

However, if you are one day faced with hot tub water problems, follow the steps below, and your hot tub water will soon be crystal clear once again.

What Is Foamy Hot Tub Water?

Foamy water is when there is a visible build-up of foam residue, and it floats on the surface of the water. It can turn into a thin film around the waterline by the hot tub walls. Foam build up is easy to identify.

It’s usually caused by a clash between the alkalinity level of the water, and cosmetic or body oils, such as makeup, or deodorant.

How to Fix Foamy Hot Tub Water

You can prevent foamy water by having anyone using the tub to shower before getting in the hot tub. This can remove the cosmetics and body oils before they affect the water. However, if foamy water does occur, it can be fixed by trying the following options:

Enzyme Products:

Enzyme products can eliminate the reaction between the water, and the causes of foam so that it doesn’t happen.


A continuous build-up of foamy water can indicate that the hot tub needs to be drained and cleaned to remove grease from the walls and floor.

Anti-Foam Cleaner:

And anti-foam cleaner can give a quick fix. It clears the foam and restores the appearance of the water. It’s a short-term fix and shouldn’t be relied on as a permanent solution.

What Is Cloudy Hot Tub Water?

Cloudy water looks like it has small particles floating through it, but the particles aren’t big enough to touch or remove. This can be caused by a few factors, such as poor filtration, debris, unbalanced water chemistry or a buildup of algae.

How to Fix Cloudy Hot Tub Water


If it looks like there are particles floating in the hot tub water, then there is a good chance that the filter needs to be cleaned. Rinse the filters completely and leave them to soak in a specialized filter cleaner. You need to allow them to dry fully before replacing them.

pH Levels:

Cloudy water can be caused by an imbalance of pH levels. Check the levels of the water sanitizer, and that the water balance is correct. If the level of the sanitizer is too low, or too high, then it can be the cause of the problem.


You could also try using shock to clear the water quickly. This can resolve the issue when used in addition to cleaning the filter.


The last resort is to drain the hot tub and start over with fresh water. This can be helpful especially if you’ve had a period of heavy use.

What Is Milky Hot Tub Water?

This is when the water in the hot tub looks like and has the colour of milk. It makes it difficult to see the bottom of the hot tub.

The cause of milky water in your hot tub can be a little more difficult to determine, but it may be caused by dirty filters, heavy use, poor water chemistry, or insoluble particles.

How to Fix Milky Hot Tub Water

You can resolve problems with milky water by following the same steps as you would for fixing the cloudy water. It’s very important to clean the filters and soak them in a special filter cleaner on a routine basis.

You may want to buy a second filter so that you can still use your hot tub with one filter as the other cleans.

About the Author

Scott Bland has been in the leisure industry for nearly 20 years.  As a sales manager in the leisure industry, he knows hot tubs inside and out.  Right now, he works sales while writing about consumer goods on the side.  If you want to contact him, you can do so at his LinkedIn.




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