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Step Six: Testing Components

Heaters: See STEP FOUR for heaters.

Motors: If the spa works BUT one of the pumps or speed of a pump motor doesn't, then likely the failure is in the pump motor. Our rule of thumb is after 3 years we replace pump and motor complete. Its just makes sense from both a dependability standpoint and cost of return and repair. You can be a bit more conservative what you repair if you know the caveats.

First, if you install a complete pump/motor you will get a warranty so if either fails the pump/motor is repaired. If you replace one part and not the other the failure of the part you didn't replace could affect the condition of the replaced part. Example: you replace the motor and reuse the pump/wetend. The pump a couple months later starts dripping water into the motor and the motor fails. It would not be covered under warranty. But if you understand that and can handle having the hot tub out of service, then you can piecemeal the repair.

The pump is considered in TWO parts: the pump or wetend AND the motor. Often you must define even among repairmen which you are talking about. Some will call the "pump" meaning motor and wetend. Others do not. So in our discussion, The "pump" is the wetend, the parts that move the water. The motor is the motor. When considered together, its pump/motor complete.

First the Pump/Wetend. Occasionally the pump will have internal broken parts but this is fairly rare. The components that fail in order are the SEAL, then impeller, then back bracket, then large oring. Failed seals are a reflection of water quality. Newer "vitron carbon" seals are more resistant to both ozone gas and other chemicals that cause a seal to fail. I would expect a seal to last at least 5 years and often more. (See How To for rebuilding help). All other parts of the wetend can fail due to usage, water quality, or freeze damage.

The motor is usually replaced not rebuilt. You can check in major cities and might be able to find someone that rebuilds. Some motors are originally built with materials that the rebuilder can't obtain. We always replace motors with new.

To test a motor is a simple task if you simply want to know if the motor has failed. By use of a voltmeter you see whether a motor is or is not receiving current. If yes and the motor isn't coming on, replace. If no, then the problem is upstream. See "How To" for testing a motor.

Ozonators: Ozonators simply make ozone or O3 gas. An "ON" light or even a glow doesn't confirm the ozonator is either making or making enough ozone gas to be effective. For "bulb" type ozonators, its life expectancy is about 3 years, even if glowing. After this it will make little or no ozone gas. Corona Discharge ozonators begin to produce less ozone gas about 3 years down to about 5 years. Generally if you ozonator is over 5 years old its not doing its job.

To test an ozonator you need to install a paper that reacts to ozone gas. These "test kits" are expensive BUT you can reuse until the paper reacts. Typically you know if the ozonator has or is failing by the need for more chemicals to keep your hot tub clean.

Air Blower: Air blowers can be either 115v or 230v. They also have a horsepower rating. The normal way to test is to check the voltage. Some control boxes have a specific fuse for the air blower. Typically if that fuse blows the air blower has failed. Although few do it, you can replace the air blower's "brushes" and often regain use of the air blower.

Topsides: Almost impossible to test. We simply carry the equal with us and swap and see if the topside is the cause. Because the topside is extremely low voltage and each topside has it's specific design, the above is really the only way to point to or eliminate as the problem. Of course topsides with damage on the topside or water visible under the glass makes replacement obvious. But a topside that looks good can still be the issue. To make it even more unclear, many models the topside is a slave and doesn't even need to connected to the board for the spa to operate. Other designs are if the topside isn't connected the spa will not operate. Upside is USUALLY you can reason or do test that will logically indicate if the topside is likely the issue.