foam in hot tub

What Causes Foam In Hot Tub? [Explained With Solution)

Foam in a hot tub can be annoying for any hot tub owner. It reduces the aesthetic value of the hot tub and can also be a sign of improper chemical balance or other more serious issues.

Foam on the tub surface can make the water look unappealing and even cause a mess. So you should understand the causes of foam in hot tubs and how to address the problem properly.

In this blog post, I will explain the most common causes of foam in hot tubs and how to prevent and eliminate it. I will also discuss some helpful maintenance tips to keep your hot tub foam-free and in great condition.

With the right knowledge and products, you can ensure your hot tub is always treated properly and looks its best.

Foam in hot tubs is usually caused by soap, detergent, body oils, and other contaminants that can mix with the hot tub water. These contaminants create a surface tension that traps air in the water, resulting in bubbles and foam.

What is Hot Tub Foam?

The buildup of body oils, lotions, soaps, detergents, and other contaminants typically creates foam in a hot tub. This foam aesthetically displays and may lead to clogged filters and pumps over time.

Do not worry; you can reduce foam buildup by using some tips. This treatment works by reducing the elements talked above that cause foam and allowing them to be filtered out more effectively.

You can also frequently clean hot tub filters to reduce foam buildup. Implementing these measures can help keep your hot tub foam-free.

Things That Can Cause Foam & Bubbles In Hot Tubs

1. Properly Balance Water pH Levels

Properly balancing water pH levels in hot tub water is essential for a long-lasting, enjoyable experience. The pH of the water affects the foam creation, water clarity, and corrosion of the hot tub components.

If the pH levels are too high, the water can become cloudy and corrosive, causing damage to the hot tub and skin irritation. On the other hand, if the pH levels are too low, the water can become sticky and soapy, increasing foam formation.

To prevent issues, it is important to maintain a pH level between 7.2 and 7.8. You can measure this by using test strips or a digital pool tester. You can also add a pH increaser or decreaser as needed.

2. Regularly Clean and Maintain the Hot Tub

Regularly cleaning and maintaining a hot tub is essential to ensure the water’s foam remains safe. Proper maintenance helps to remove any oils and other contaminants that can cause the foam levels to increase.

You should test water weekly to check the chemical balance and chlorine levels and adjust as necessary. You should also clean the filter regularly to ensure it is working efficiently.

In addition, try to inspect the pipes, jets, and pumps and ensure all are in good condition and do not cause any issues with the foam.

Additionally, regular maintenance can prolong the hot tub’s life, eliminating costly repairs and replacements down the line.

Hot tub jets
Hot tub jets

3. Utilize Quality Sanitation Products

Quality sanitation products are essential for maintaining clean and healthy hot tub water. They help to prevent the growth of bacteria, algae, and other contaminants which can cause foam buildup.

Additionally, they can save you time for frequent cleaning and money. Utilizing quality sanitation products can also help the balance of water chemistry.

If foam continues to be a problem, you can use a specialized foam remover to reduce or eliminate foam. When choosing a sanitation product, select one specifically designed for hot tubs and spas.

This will help ensure that the desired water chemistry is achieved and the hot tub water is safe for use.

However, not only the above things you should consider but also below are the most common culprit to building up foam in your hot tub.

(1) Personal Care Products

Personal care products significantly impact foam in hot tub water as they contain elements that can create and increase surface tension, thus creating foam.

These products combine soaps, detergents, and other ingredients in body washes, shampoos, and conditioners. To avoid contamination, you should properly rinse off before entering the hot tub and use personal care products specifically designed for hot tub use.

(2) Human Bodies

Due to a variety of factors, human bodies can also have a significant impact on building up the foam. When humans enter a hot tub, their body’s natural oils can create a foaming effect.

Similarly, sweat, urine, and other bodily excretions can increase foam production in hot tub water.

(3) Beverages

Sugar and carbohydrates are found in drinks which can cause an increase in foam when mixed with water. To avoid this, you should not bring drinks into the hot tub. Also, you can properly rinse any residue left behind on the sides of the hot tub after a beverage has been drunk.

Why Does My Hot Tub Foam Up?

It could be a result of high levels of Total Dissolved Solids (TDS), which is a buildup of products in the water. Products such as soaps, laundry detergents, makeup, cosmetics, hair products, body lotions or oils, shampoo, and conditioners can cause foam buildup. 

Additionally, low calcium levels in your hot tub can decrease the surface tension of the water, leading to excessive foaming. 

So you should check and maintain your hot tub’s water balance regularly to prevent foamy water. Unbalanced water can cause other issues such as water turning green or having a bad smell. 

You can prevent foamy water is to shower before using the hot tub and rinsing bathing suits before getting into the water. These precautions can help remove any dirt, sweat, or lotions from your body or clothes before entering the hot tub. 

You should also test the water weekly and follow guidelines for proper maintenance to keep your hot tub water crystal clear.

Quick Tips to Prevent Hot Tub Foam

  • Maintain Your Hot Tub Chemistry: Regularly maintain your hot tub and ensure the pH level is appropriate. Use a pH decreaser if necessary.
  • Open Your Hot Tub Cover: Allow your hot tub water to breathe by opening the cover periodically and having fresh air in the water.
  • Clean or Replace Your Filter: A clean filter will stop new foam from being created, so make sure to clean or replace it regularly.
  • Shock The Water With Sanitizer: Use chlorine or another sanitizing chemical to shock your hot tub water, which will help prevent foam from forming.
  • Use Vinegar and Baking Soda Mixture: Mix vinegar and baking soda in a 10:1 ratio and add it to your hot tub to help reduce foam.
  • Use Anti-Foaming Agents: An anti-foaming agent will help dissipate any existing foam and prevent new foam from forming in your hot tub.
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FAQs Related to Foam In Hot Tub

Why does my hot tub foam when the jets are on?

Hot tubs can foam when jets are on because the water is agitated and mixed with body oils, lotions, soaps, and other chemicals. This agitation creates bubbles that form foam.

Is the foam in hot tubs dead skin?

The foam in hot tubs is usually created by a chemical reaction between the water. So if you soak in a hot tub regularly with foams, you shed dead skin cells.


Foam in a hot tub is a nuisance for many hot tub users, but with the proper maintenance and prevention techniques, you can easily address it.

Mostly you should keep your hot tub clean and well-maintained by regularly testing your water and adding the right chemicals.

So with regular cleaning and proper chemical balance, you can keep your hot tub foam-free and in great condition.


Hi, I'm Shimul, the founder of Pooltub Life. I'm excited about sharing the latest outdoor living trends with you. My goal is to provide you with up-to-date information that will help make your POOL & HOT TUB stylish and enjoyable. Read About Me More । Follow on Facebook

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