Alternatives to Chlorine
What Types of Dangers Does Chlorine Pose?
Chlorine is one of the most commonly used chemical agents in the world. In addition to being utilized for spa and swimming pool maintenance, this substance is an ingredient in many household cleaners and is a strong bleaching agent. As with most powerful chemicals, there are risks associated with chlorine usage.
Perhaps the most significant of the dangers of chlorine in spas relates to the association between the chemical and cancer. Some studies indicate that there is an association between absorption of chlorine through the skin and certain kinds of cancers. Because the water in spas is maintained at such high temperatures, it is believed that there is an increased likelihood of chlorine absorption through the pores in this type of environment.
Alternatives to Chlorine
There are alternatives for those concerned about the dangers of chlorine in spas.
Bromine: Some people choose bromine as an alternative to chlorine. Even though bromine is still a chemical additive, it does not have the same harsh smell as chlorine and is easier to use. However, this substnace is not without risk.
BaquaSpa Water Care System: This system is free from both chlorine and bromine. The system is an effective protection against harmful bacteria and microorganisms without the harsh chlorine smell or other potentially harmful effects. BaquaSpa has a reputation for being gentle to skin and eyes. The active microbial ingredient in this product is polyhexamethylene biguanide. It is more stable in the hot water of a spa environment than other cleansing systems, which means it stays active in the water for an extended period of time. It cannot safely be mixed with bromine or chlorine.
Spa Ionizers: Ionizers designed specifically for spa systems can be a good alternative for those who want to reduce the use of chemicals in their spas. The process of ionization works by releasing copper and silver ions into the water, which effectively kill both bacteria and algae. If you use an ionizer, you will have to use either a chlorine or non-chlorine oxidizing agent from time to time to clarify the water and maintain optimum spa balance. If you use a non-chlorine oxidizer with your ionizer, your hot tub will be chemical-free.
Autoclor: The Autoclor system still uses chlorine to clean your spa, but does not require you to add chlorine to the water. Instead, the system uses the process of electrolysis to generate chlorine from salt. Some salt naturally occurs in water, but additional salt will need to be added to use this type of system to keep your spa free from bacteria. The system continuously converts salt to chlorine, then back to salt on an ongoing basis to keep the water clean and free from harsh chemicals. The water does not take on a salty smell, nor does it feel like salt water from the ocean. Users often describe spa water treated with an Autoclor system as feeling soft and silky, like mineral water.
Natural alternatives: All natural spa maintenance systems such as Spa Magic can keep your spa water clear and free from bacteria with natural enzymes rather than chemical ingredients. If you switch to an all-natural system from using chemicals, it’s important to use a spa cleanser first, to rid your system of chemical residues. There is debate as to whether natural all-alternatives are as effective at eliminating bacteria and microbial agents as other water maintenance methods.
Ask to see a test strip to insure that the spa is maintaining the pH balance of the hot tub is essential. pH is a measure of the difference between alkalinity and acidity. It is important to carefully check the pH balance of your water on a regular basis. Water that is too alkaline will cause lime and scale buildup in your hot tub. If too acidic, the water will eat up the components of the tub, and will cause irritation of your skin
Observe the Regulations:
Always shower before using a hot tub, Jacuzzi or whirlpool bath. This will wash off any soap, perfume, deodorant, body oils, suntan lotion or other skincare products may still be on your body that may interfere with the proper operation of the filters. Spa Hygiene is essential in today’s environment to eliminate and prevent bacteria and disease. Spa baths can accumulate an amazing amount of unhygienic matter such as body fats, oils, skin tissue, and hair follicles, that build up over time and adhere to the inside of the pump and circulating system.
Never allow your children in a hot tub as their bodies may not properly regulate their temperature. In boys, the heat may cause sterility. Never swim, dive or submerge your head under the water in a hot tub.
Finally, the spa if they maintain a log on the cleaning of the spa so you can verify that it is being maintained properly.