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Arctic Spas Manuals


82. Establishing Correct Water Chemistry

1.10.5 Establishing Correct Water Chemistry


The following steps provide guidance to help establish correct chemically balanced water. To help ensure chemicals dissolve appropriately it is good practice to first mix/dissolve the chemical in an uncontaminated container of hot water before adding to the spa water.

Steps to Establish Chemically Balanced Water With Spa Boy


Step 1. Test and Adjust Total Alkalinity (Use drop Test Kit) Test Total Alkalinity. It should be 80 – 100 ppm (100 max). If high, lower Total Alkalinity with Arctic Pure, Salt Water Balance. Do not raise Total Alkalinity! WARNING: Skipping this step on Start-up can cause scaling problems and cloudy water that may not be covered under warranty.

NOTE: Use all products according to directions on the bottle. 

Step 2. Test and Adjust pH (Use drop Test Kit)

Test pH. Levels should be between 7.2 – 7.6. If pH is high, (over 7.6) add Arctic Pure, Salt Water Balance.

NOTE: Salt systems naturally drive pH levels to increase, strive to achieve a balanced pH level.

NOTE: High pH will cause calcium to precipitate (fall out of suspension). The problem with calcium falling out of suspension is that it collects on the heater and pump, and shortens their life.


Step 3. Mix Salt Crystals

Dissolve 1/3 of the required recommended salt dosage in a 5 Gallon (20 litre) pail of hot water. Refer Arctic Spas – Spa Boy Salt Dosage Chart contained in this guide.

WARNING: Salt causes pH to rise, to help ensure pH can be managed within the target range, it is most important not to add the entire salt dose in one step. If all the salt is added in one dose it may increase the pH level to an unmanageable level that requires the spas water to be drained.


Step 4. Add Salt to Spa Water & Re-Test TA / pH

(a) Slowly pour the dissolved salt from the pail into the spa water.

(b) Run pumps for 5 minutes to help mix salt blend through.

(c) Wait 1 hour.

(d) Then re-test and adjust pH level accordingly.

Refer: Steps 2 for correct pH levels.


Step 5. Repeat Steps 3 & 4

Repeat steps 3 and 4, ensuring all sub steps are carried out accordingly.


Step 6. Repeat Steps 3 & 4

Repeat steps 3 and 4, ensuring all sub steps are carried out accordingly.


Step 7. Test Sodium Chloride Level

(Aquacheck Salt Test Strips are suggested) Also refer Sub Steps to Help Ensure Sodium Chloride Test Strips are Used Correctly. You will now need to test sodium chloride levels. This can be carried out using a salt tests strip. If sodium chloride levels are low, dissolve 1/2 lb (225 Grams) of salt (using cup provided) into hot water. Pour the dissolved salt into the spa water. Test sodium chloride level. Repeat until required sodium chloride level is reached:

Test Sodium Chloride Level


Spa Boy Version Minimum Maximum
1R1 2000 ppm 2500 ppm


NOTE: For start up it is recommended to strive for the minimum salt dosage. Once a Sodium Chloride reading has been taken and the minimum salt dosage achieved, it can be increased slightly to accommodate spa usage and bather load.

NOTE: The Arctic Spa Boy Salt Chart in this guide provides the estimated impact of adding ½ lb (225Grams) of salt to your spa.


Sub Steps to Help Ensure Sodium Chloride Test Strips are Used Correctly

Plastic cup with a water

Step 1. Take Water Sample

Take a sample of water from the spa in a small cup (about 25mm / 1” full).

NOTE: Always take water samples 25-30cm (12”-18”) below the water surface.

Test Strip in Water Sample

Step 2. Place Test Strip in Water Sample Place the lower end of the strip into the water.

IMPORTANT Keep top half of strip COMPLETELY dry to get an accurate reading.

Test Strip in Water Sample

Step 3. Test Duration Period

Leave strip in water for 3 – 5 minutes until yellow band at top of strip turns dark.

Test Strip in Water Sample

Step 4. Obtain Readings

Obtain your reading: where top of white peak falls on the number scale.

Read top of peak to the nearest 0.2 division.

Test strip and the strips bottle

Step 5. Correspond Test Result Reading

Correspond the test result reading number with the numbers on the bottle.