Low or no readings on bromine or this might not be the case.

Low or No Readings On Bromine or This Might Not Be The Case

Bromine is a very effective sanitiser to use in your hot tub or spa, but like all chemicals in your water treatment kit, bromine is only effective when used correctly and in the right quantity. Effective bromine readings should be between 4-6ppm. If your readings are outside of this range, there could be a few reasons why. In the last week we have supported several hot tub owners with dormant bromine in their spas, take a read of our latest blog to find out how to achieve the perfect water balance and steps to take to identify dormant bromine readings.


Bromine Is An Effective Sanitiser.

If you have chosen bromine for hot tubs as a primary sanitiser due to its effectiveness at high water temperatures, its lessened irritation to sensitive skin or simply because its flexibility to work across a wider range of pH and Alkalinity levels, then you need to be aware that bromine can remain dormant in your water after it has completed its sanitising cycle.

Bromine is available in both granule and tablet form. If you have chosen the tablet form, then this needs to be used in conjunction with an adjustable floating dispenser. Unlike granules, due to the compressed nature of bromine tablets they can take anywhere up to 10 days to fully dissolve (this is dependent on the flow rate which you have the dispenser set at). Given this rate of dissolve, if you are using tablets in a dispenser don’t be tempted to add a dose of bromine granules on top of the tablets, simply let the tablets do their thing.


Is It True That Bromine Can Be Dormant In My Hot Tub Water?

In a nutshell, the answer here is yes. If you have chosen bromine as your hot tub sanitiser, then once the bromine has effectively removed unwanted bacteria and contaminants within your water dormant bromine salts remain within your perfectly clear water. Dormant bromine can, if tested, produce a negative bromine level result. If this is the case, then you shouldn’t necessarily reach for your bromine to immediately add more to your water.

In some cases, getting a zero-bromine reading can be quite the opposite due to the possibility of test strip ‘bleaching’. When you dip your test strip, if it turns a colour immediately and then after a couple of seconds produces a blank or white colour reading, then there is the chance that the levels of bromine in your hot tub water are so high that they are ‘bleaching’ your test strip.


How Do Non-Chlorine Shock And Bromine Work Together?

When bromine has completed its effective sanitising cycle, it remains dormant in the water of your hot tub, which can (as we have already identified) produce a false negative bromine level reading.

This is where non-chlorine shock is the go-to product. Dormant bromine, can be converted back into active bromine through the addition of a non-chlorine shock treatment.

Non chlorine shock is great not only to reactivate bromine, but is an effective oxidiser for managing water clarity.

This relationship between bromine and non-chlorine shock is important to maintain the balance of your spa water. Using non-chlorine shock on a weekly basis will ensure your active bromine is working as an effective sanitiser and keep it smell free.


How To Treat High Levels Of Bromine In Your Hot Tub Water.

We have already discussed that high levels of bromine in your hot tub water can produce false-negative test strip readings. One identifier of this high level of bromine within your water is the presence of a strong recognisable smell.

One of the biggest mistakes hot tub owners make when they get a zero or negative reading for bromine in their spa water is to keep automatically add more and more bromine granules or tablets. Once your floating dispenser is out of bromine tablets, there is probably enough dormant bromine in your water to last up to 10 days by simply using non-chlorine shock as explained above.  If after using NCS you still receive a no reading on bromine and no bleaching has occurred then you can follow your manufacturers guidelines on how to build back up your bromine in your water.

If you are getting a bromine level of higher than 6ppm in your water, you should look at reducing the levels. The quickest and most effective way of doing this is by draining and diluting some of the water that you have within your hot tub.

Using a clean bucket remove some of your hot tub water, and replace it with the same volume of fresh untreated water. Then leave your hot tub running for a while for the water to mix before testing your water again. If the levels are still too high, keep repeating this process until you achieve a bromine reading level of between 4-6ppm. The exact amount of water that you need to remove to achieve this perfect reading will depend on the amount of bromine in your water and the volume of water in your hot tub. 

If you are unsure about interpreting the bromine level readings you are getting and which products to use to achieve the perfect water balance, the SpaChem team are on hand to help. We stock a range of hot tub chemicals online. Give us a call on: 02920 280422 or WhatsApp on 07540 184405.



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