Myths About Saltwater Spas: Debunked

by Apr 3, 2024

Salt is safe

In recent years, saltwater spas have made a triumphant entrance into the hot tub industry, prompting a range of questions about their maintenance, use, and balancing procedures.

Although saltwater hot tubs offer extensive benefits like reduced skin irritation and less costly upkeep, the increased popularity of these models has also created skepticism about their safety and longevity. In this article, we’ll debunk the common myths and misconceptions that may have been keeping you from finding your dream saltwater model at Arctic Spas®.


Myth #1: Saltwater Corrodes Your Spa

When purchasing a spa, it’s always important to consider the longevity of both internal elements (heaters, seals, and pipes) and external elements (headrests, cabinets, and jets). Keeping this in mind, common misconceptions about saltwater corrosion often lead people to forgo saltwater spa systems altogether.

However, saltwater systems not only require fewer harsh chemicals than traditional chlorine or bromine systems, they also provide softer water that has been proven to decrease the deterioration of materials like swimsuit fabric.

Spa systems can mainly be damaged by saltwater if they are balanced incorrectly – as is true of any chemical system. An Arctic Spas® saltwater system calls for a concentration of salt between 15 and 1800 parts per million (with suitable concentration being as high as 2400 ppm during periods of high use). Pump and valve seals will not be adversely affected until facing prolonged exposure to a salt concentration of over 3500 ppm, making the Arctic Spas® range more than suitable for internal and external hot tub elements.

Additionally, Arctic Spas® has designed innovative features to specifically stand up against salt and chemical corrosion. Both our Low Profile and Pepperleaf Pulse™ jets utilize a bearingless design, preventing rusting or breakdown of rotating components. And, our Adjustable Headrests utilize extremely durable EVA rubber to offer a comfortable base that won’t deteriorate or hold onto water in the way that standard, foam spa pillows traditionally do. Arctic Spas® also adds a sacrificial anode to our hot tub’s plumbing systems, further preventing corrosion. These anodes utilize the same technology found in saltwater boats, boilers, and water softeners, highlighting the importance of their inclusion to saltwater systems.

Finally, Arctic Spas® utilizes Titanium Heaters to further offer supreme corrosion resistance, with no calcium buildup created by the addition of solid chlorine and bromine tablets (as is required in chemical spa systems). By choosing to craft our internal elements out of this resilient metal, you can trust that your Arctic Spa will remain rust free, regardless of your chosen system.

When your hot tub utilizes high quality internal and external elements, specifically innovated to provide longevity against salt and chemical systems, corrosion easily becomes a worry of the past.


Myth #2: Saltwater Spas Aren’t Safe

Common concerns about saltwater spas have stemmed from the misconception that Health Canada has “banned” sodium bromide in hot tub use. However, this isn’t the whole story.

While it is true that certain sodium bromide products have been deemed to have health risks, sodium bromide is still legal and found to be safe for water care uses in Canada and the United States. Sodium bromide is not to be used in combination with swimming pool or spa products that utilize electrolysis, ozonation, MPS, or UV, but is otherwise completely suitable for hot tub use.

Regardless of this decision by Health Canada, Arctic Spas® has always opted to utilize sodium chloride in its Onzen™ and Spa Boy® salt water systems, not sodium bromide. Sodium chloride is not only considered a safe and natural sanitizer (forgoing the health concerns associated with sodium bromide), but is also a preferred sanitizer in many spa systems. This product offers softer water and easier maintenance while also providing a more consistent level of sanitizer than traditional chlorine systems, therefore preventing peaks and valleys in your spa’s cleanliness. And, Arctic Spas® saltwater systems are so safe, we have been given our own Health Canada approval and registration number!


Myth #3: Saltwater Spas Are Hard to Maintain

Because saltwater spas are still relatively new to the world of hot tubs, there is a common misconception that their balancing and maintenance will be difficult to perform. However, this could not be further from the truth. Saltwater systems require far fewer chemical additives than traditional chlorine or bromine systems. And, with Arctic Spas’ revolutionary Spa Boy® saltwater system, hot tub balancing can now require minimal user intervention.

Whereas traditional balancing methods require multiple chemicals to be added in person, often making them imprecise and complex, the use of medical grade sensors in the Spa Boy® saltwater system can accurately detect even minuscule changes in sanitizer levels within your spa. These sensors then alert advanced intelligence within the Spa Boy® system to precisely and automatically adjust sanitization, creating your optimal water conditions with minimal manual intervention.

Spa Boy® also provides a level of automatic testing directly on your phone, allowing you to largely skip in-person testing procedures. Should your spa’s pH or natural chlorine products become unbalanced, Spa Boy® will alert you through your Arctic Spas® app, offering you easy correction capabilities right from your mobile device. With Spa Boy®, you can shorten your weekly water care routine from 30 minutes to 30 seconds, making saltwater balancing one of the simplest spa procedures possible.

Saltwater spas also require less frequent water changes than traditional spa systems, while preventing harsh chemical smells and irritation. Finally, saltwater acts as a natural exfoliant, leaving you with clean, clear, and fresh skin, every time.

Although saltwater spas are still considered to be newer technology in the hot tub industry, these systems serve as simple, effective, and safe options for spa sanitization. By ensuring your hot tub is crafted with high-quality elements, and user-friendly balancing tools, you can enjoy the ease and comfort of your saltwater spa for years to come.