Having a good hot tub seal is important to any hot tub pump since a leaking pump seal could mean bad news for you and your spa. Like any other equipment your hot tub pump seal can wear out over time requiring to be replaced, but choosing the right seal for your hot tub will help it last longer. There are also some operational and installation tips that can help extend the life of your seal.
Choosing the Correct Hot Tub Pump Seal
In the past, Premium hot tub pump seals have been made of Buna elastomers, a phenolic (plastic) carbon and ceramic mating ring. These materials work well for a seal when small amounts of chlorine are long diluted before they reach the pump seal; but with applications today like ozonators, salt chlorine generators, and hydrogen peroxide based chemicals, the Premium seals are not the best option as these elements destroy the Buna elastomer and the primary ring.
US Seal, the manufacturer of the pump shaft seals we carry at Hot Tub Warehouse, has made newer applications that work better with ozone, salt generators, and peroxide based chemicals. These hot tub pump seals a made to better withstand the elements that come with these sanitizer systems.
Seals in the US Seal Ozone/ Salt line are made with Viton elastomers a resin filled carbon ring with ceramic of a superior grade. These materials have been found to withstand the chemical output of ozone and salt, allowing for a longer life of the seal and reducing pump and motor issues.
- Before installing a new seal it is important to make sure your hot tub pump and motor are in like new condition meeting all the manufacturers’ original specifications, if your whole assembly needs to be replaced, just replacing your seal will not prove incredibly helpful.
- Check the tracking on the primary ring (black ring) of your existing seal. If the tracking is irregular, this is caused by a worn or damaged impeller or from your back plate not concentric with your centerline shaft. These issues will result in seal failure so it is important to take care of them also.
- To prevent seal failure, always check for and replace all worn or damaged parts on your pump. Any wobbly or noisy bearings need to be replaced. If an impeller or seal housing appears worn or out of round it should not be reused.
- Cleanliness is necessary for successful hot tub pump seal installation. This includes the equipment, your work area, and the seal. A clean seal needs to go into a clean shaft or housing. Ideally you should wear latex gloves while performing a seal installation.
- Use the correct lubricant. If you use the wrong lubricant it will destroy your seal. Using a water based lubricant, US Seal Lube is our recommendation. Never use a PTFE or silicon based lubricant, they draw the carbon from the primary ring and smear the material on the face of the mating ring which causes a buildup that will destroy your seal.
- Never apply lubricant to the face of the mating ring.
- Never use an adhesive as lubricant; this will cause fast seal failure.
Choosing the right hot tub pump seal, and following the operational and installation tips above will help you get the longest life possible out of your hot tub pump seal.