How to Prime Hot Tub Pump?
Hot Tubs

How to Prime Hot Tub Pump?

Filling a hot tub with water for the first time or after cleaning is dejectedly puzzling for first-time spa owners. Hot tubs with airlock may or may not indicate a prime error on their control panel. And if they do, you can use the owner manual to source for information on how to prime your hot tub. Know how to prime hot tub pump with our easy yet all-inclusive guide.

The Ultimate Hot Tub Pump Priming Guide

Confused and not sure how to prime hot tub pump, use our easy steps to prime your hot tub pump and get the hot tub working efficiently.

  1. Switch off the pump. You can quickly do it via the on/off switch, which is conveniently located on the pump side. However, it would be safer and a bit convenient to unplug the hot tub pump right from the mains power socket. In case your hot tub pump is linked to power through a circuit breaker, you’ve to flip off the circuit breaker.
  2. Unscrew the front panel from the hot tub with a Phillips screwdriver. It will give you access to the internal components of the hot tub. Find the multi-valve and recirculate it. By recirculating the multi-valve, you’ll bypass the hot tub’s filter, letting water flow directly from the pump to the pool.
  3. When you’re done recirculating the multi-valve, try identifying the air relief valve. In most hot tub models, it’s found just above the filtering system. Open it up and wait until the pressure gauge reads zero.
  4. After a successful air lock removal, locate the pump debris basket. Disconnect it from the unit and clean it thoroughly. Now, fill the already clean basket container with water from a household tap or garden hose. Don’t stop filling the container even if it looks filled. That will allow the plumbing lines on the pump’s poolside to be filled with water. Skipping or implementing this step wrongly results in failed primping. So, do it carefully and adeptly, allowing the plumbing lines enough time to be filled with water.
  5. Now replace the old debris basket. Install the lid back to its place. Check the O-ring seal to ensure it’s in perfect condition. That will ensure it won’t succumb to the hot summer weather.
  6. Open the pressure relief valve and then the system. It won’t take long before you see water flowing through the pump. You’ll hear sounds of air being dispensed, but it won’t be too long before the air is dispensed wholly through the pressure relief valve.
  7. Carefully watch over the pressure relief valve and ensure you shut it off once it starts releasing steam of water-free air bubbles. Once done, install the multi-valve back to circulate and power on the hot tub. Water will now flow via the filter and the jets.

What If that Fails, What Else Can I Do?

Wondering how to prime hot tub pump further if the above process fails, here’re two other tricks that work.

Through the Bleeder Valve

  1. First, rid of the front panel from your hot tub to lay open the pump.
  2. Switch off the hot tub’s power. Locate the gate valve and put it off. It’s mostly found on the pump’s discharge side.
  3. Twist the bleeder valve anti-clockwise. You can use a flat head screwdriver or pliers for such a job. Ensure you turn it counterclockwise until all the air inside the pump is totally discharged.
  4. In case that doesn’t work, try loosening the union nut. It’s mostly found amidst the channel locks and pump. This will provide room for the trapped air to move out. Once all the trapped air is removed, tighten the union nut.
  5. Now power on the hot tub. Press the JETS button to see if there is any trapped air inside the hot tub’s pump. If that fails, repeat steps two and four.

Through the Control Panel

If the above hot tub priming process doesn’t work, you can try troubleshooting it via the control panel.

  1. Power on the spa and allow the control panel some time to display the Priming Mode. It’s mostly displayed on the top side of the control panel.
  2. While on the pump, click the JETS button and leave it running for about ten seconds. Ensure the pump operates at an incredibly low speed. High speed can disrupt the accuracy of the process.
  3. Click the JETs button once more to speed up the pump’s flow speed. Allow the jets to run for several seconds.
  4. Click the JETS button once more to switch the pump off. Ensure the pump stays off for about some seconds before you power it on again.
  5. Repeat all the processes until you see water flowing through the jets and the air trapped in the plumbing lines removed.

Don’t make the mistake of pressing the Temp button during the priming process. Doing so will make the spa exit the priming mode and turn to the standard mode. That will abort the process, forcing you to repeat it.

Having issues with your hot tub control panel? Here are the best ways to reset your hot tub control panel.

How to Prime Hot Tub – Conclusion

These are tried and true tricks on how to prime hot tub pump. They’ve all been tried and confirmed to work, so you won’t be wasting your time in vain. Watch out for the given precautions to avoid making mistakes that could ruin the entire process and force you to repeat the steps once again.

Not all models and brands of hot tubs will have the same types of keys or buttons. The type and alignment of the buttons will vary from one hot tub model to the other. So, read the hot tub’s user manual to know to get an idea of the recommended troubleshooting and priming tricks. In case the above tips for how to prime hot tub pump fail, it would help to hire a certified service engineer to troubleshoot the issues on your behalf.