Maintaining clean and germ-free water in your hot tub can become quite a chore, and the chemical smell can be a little overwhelming in condensed spaces.
But there is one little device that can make your job easier.
It’s called an ozonator, or ozone generator. This inexpensive little machine will reduce the amount of chemicals you need to use while giving you the clearest, cleanest water you’ve ever had.
Ready to hear more about it?
The 10 Best Hot Tub Ozonators
#1. QCA Spas 8x8 Ozonator
QCA Spas makes this great little Ozonator that sanitizes hot tub water naturally and reduces the amount of chlorine you have to use. Like other Ozonators, it’s also meant to prevent corrosion and prolong the life of your hot tub parts.
We like this product because it’s super easy to install with a dedicated ozone tube and jet.
Most customers say they’re able to install it themselves quickly and easily in just a few minutes. It comes with everything you need for the job.
#2. A2Z Spa and Hot Tub Ozonator
- Installation: Pre-assembled and ready to install. User manual, check valve, 5 feet of tubing, four hose ties and two screws and plastic anchor for mounting, all included in the package.
The A2Z Spa and Hot Tub Aquatic Ozonator is a small but powerful device that can produce 300 MG/H of concentrated ozone. This is the most powerful ozone concentration available so you can be confident in its cleaning power.
This product is also easy to install and can be wired to both 110v and 240v units. Most hot tubs are equipped with the ozone injector or vacuum port you need for installation, but check the specks on your spa model to make sure.
#3. Prozone Water Products 110v Ozonator
- PZ1 110 VAC ozone system for portable spas up to 800 gallons features our patented corona Hybrid arc tube, solid state ballast and installation kit
Prozone’s Ozonator will work with spas up to 800 gallons. This makes it a good one to choose for large hot tubs that the small generators won’t work on.
The product is designed with Prozone Water Product’s patented Corona Hybrid Arc Tube that maximizes ozone concentration levels.
It’s also made to be extremely durable and long-lasting. But if you do have any problems, it’s backed with a 2-year warranty.
#4. Prozone Water Products 220v Ozonator
- PZ1 220 VAC ozone system for portable spas up to 800 gallons features our patented Corona Hybrid Arc Tube, solid state ballast, and installation kit
This is the Prozone Water Products Ozonator to get if your hot tub has a 220v connection instead of 110v. It’s equipped with the same reliable Corona Hybrid Arc Tube and solid state ballast that makes these generators so efficient.
The installation kit comes with everything you need, including a ¼” ozone check valve, hose, hose clamps, and mounting screws.
#5. A2Z Ozone Aquatic 2 Ozonator
- Universal Plug Type: The Aquatic 2 Spa Ozone Generator can be wired for 110v or 220v. Set up instructions are included in the user manual.
The A2Z Ozone Aquatic 2 Ozonator is a step up from their basic Ozonator listed above. It’s designed to reduce the need for harmful chemicals while keeping your spa crystal clear.
The great thing about these is their compact size and simplicity of use. They require almost no maintenance and are one of the most reliable units on the market.
It’s also extremely easy to connect without a professional. It comes pre-assembled and with everything you need for easy installation.
#6. Del Ozone 115v/230v Ozonator
Del Ozone makes this mini ozone generator for hot tubs that hold up to 750 gallons of water.
Despite its smaller size, this device is designed to kill 99.9% of microorganisms in the most average-to-large size spas. Its Advanced Plasma Gap technology generates two times the ozone of previous models.
The average life of the ozone cell in this product is at least 5 years. But it comes with a 1-year warranty just in case you have any problems.
#7. Del Ozone High Output Ozonator
This second product from Del Ozone is designed to work for large hot tubs up to 1,000 gallons.
Like their other models, this one uses Corona Discharge and Advanced Plasma Gap technology. What this means for you is that it maximizes water sanitation and kills 99.9% of all microorganisms that like to grow there.
This unit is easy to install on the interior wall of your spa and comes with everything you’ll need.
#8. Del Ozone Eclipse-20 Ozonator
The third Del Ozone Ozonator on our list is kind of the daddy of them all (the Eclipse-40 being the granddaddy).
It will work on hot tubs or pools up to 15,000 gallons by itself. Or you can use it as a supplemental sanitizer for pools up to 50,000 gallons.
This one connects a little differently than the other models and requires an installation kit you have to buy separately. It connects to the pool timer and automatically injects ozone into the water at optimum times.
#9. A2Z Swimming Pool Ozonator
The A2Z SP-3G Ozone Generator promises to reduce chemical usage by up to 95% in hot tubs and pools up to 25,000 gallons.
Unlike the compact models, this is a heavy-duty machine with a more complicated installation. It’s recommended that it be done by a professional, and in some states, it’s even required.
This generator produces high voltage and should be kept dry and away from your hot tub or pool.
#10. A2Z Ozone MP-3000 Ozonator
This industrial use ozone generator is a great product for larger pools and spas. It’s portable so that it can be used anywhere.
This is a more powerful unit than most of the other ones we’ve listed, putting off 3,000 MG/H. It has an internal air compressor and an option to connect it to an external source.
It also has an adjustable timer so you can set it in 15-minute to 4-hour intervals.
What is a Hot Tub Ozonator and how does it work?
According to the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency), ozone, or O3, “is a highly reactive gas composed of three oxygen atoms.” So, what does this mean for your hot tub?
Well, believe it or not, injecting ozone glass into your water blasts contaminants out of it fast. It attacks soaps, lotions, deodorant, saliva, urine, bacteria, and other contaminants and sends it packin’.
So a hot tub ozonator, also called an ozone generator, is a device that you attach to the ozone jet. They use either corona discharge (CD) units or ultraviolet (UV) light to split oxygen molecules into two atoms.
These atoms then bond with oxygen molecules in the water to create ozone.
While running, the ozonator injects ozone gas into the water, both aiding and reducing the amount of chemicals needed to keep it clean.
Types of Ozonators
There are two basic types of ozonators: UV and CD. They both do the same thing but function a little differently.
UV ozone generators were the first invented. These machines use...you guessed it...ultraviolet light to split the oxygen molecules.
They’re not quite as efficient as the newer CD units and don’t last quite as long. But they are a little easier to clean and do better in extremely humid conditions like you might find in some of the southern states.
Corona discharge ozonators use electricity to mimic the action of lightning hitting oxygen in the atmosphere. This produces ozone in a much more powerful and concentrated way.
In fact, the corona discharge method produces concentrations of up to 10wt% as opposed to the 0.2wt% the UV method produces.
And no, we don’t fully understand or care what that means exactly. All we do know is that it does a much better job cleaning up the gunk out of the water.
Hot Tub Ozonator Benefits
Enhances the performance of sanitizers - Ozone breaks down combined chlorine or bromine, sort of recycling it in the water.
Allows you to use less chemicals - An ozonator usually allows you to use 60-90% less sanitizer than normal.
Compatible with all types of sanitizers - An ozonator works equally as well with chlorine or bromine sanitizer.
Reduces the number of times you need to change your hot tub water - Ozonators help keep your water fresher longer. Most people with ozonators say they only have to change their water about once a year as opposed to every 3-4 months.
Reduces chloramines and odors - Because ozone breaks up combined sanitizer molecules, you’ll have less of a problem with those pesky chloramines.
Prolongs the life of your equipment - Using less sanitizer means less wear and tear on your equipment.
All natural - Ozone is much safer and more natural than chemical sanitizers. And while it doesn’t completely take the place of another sanitizer, it does reduce the amount you need to use.
How to install an ozonator in your hot tub
Ozonators are fairly simple to install as long as your hot tub is already equipped for one. Most hot tubs are designed with a dedicated jet just for these machines, but you should check with your manufacturer if you’re not sure if yours has one.
First, connect one end of the clear tube to the check valve and the other end to the ozonator.
Next, flip off the circuit breaker and remove the panel on the spa controller. If you use the Balboa spa controller pack, it should have clear instructions right inside the panel of how you’re to wire the ozonator.
If your controller doesn’t, you’ll need to contact your hot tub manufacturer or go to their website for instructions.
Once you’ve wired your ozonator correctly, simply plug it into the appropriate port in your control panel.
Finally, mount the ozone generator near the hot tub. Usually, the best place is under the spa cabinet. Some tubs even have a sticker telling you exactly where to put it.
You can also follow along with the guys at INYO Pools here:
Tips for Maintaining Your Hot Tub Ozonator
Ozone generators are easy to maintain, but if you want it to last as long as possible and get the maximum benefit from yours, there are a few things you should do.
Use an ozone testing kit to make sure it’s actually doing its job. If it’s not generating ozone, there is probably something wrong with it or it was installed incorrectly.
Keep testing the water chemistry in your hot tub every week. Remember that an ozonator doesn’t replace your need for sanitizer, it just changes the dosage requirements. Keeping your water balanced will prolong the life of your ozonator as well as keeping your water safe.
Replace your ozonator every few years. If you’re testing the ozone in your water regularly, you should have a good idea of when the machine starts to lose function.
Clean the ozonator when needed. Often, when the ozonator is not working properly, it just needs to be cleaned.
This is especially true if it’s fairly new. Follow along with this video for simple instructions: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8zTX0a0BBos
Spa Ozonator FAQs
Should I get an ozonator for my hot tub?
There’s really not much of a downside of installing an ozone generator in your hot tub. It can help reduce your need for chemicals, prolong the life of your equipment, and keep your water fresher and cleaner for longer.
We think an ozonator, especially in a hot tub, is a wise investment.
What is the best spa ozonator?
All the ozonators we listed are pretty great units, but our #1 pick is the A2Z Ozone Aquatic 2 Ozonator.
It’s extremely compact and pre-assembled, making it a snap to install. It’s also one of the most reliable products on the market, known to rarely malfunction.
What does an ozonator do for a hot tub?
An ozonator will make your hot tub maintenance tasks a whole lot faster and easier. And your water will be cleaner and fresher than ever before.
How much is an ozonator for a hot tub?
Prices on these vary of course. But they mostly range from $79-$150.
How often should I run the ozonator?
To do its job right, an ozonator should run at least twice a day for two hours, but your hot tub manual should have more specific guidelines.
How long does an ozonator last?
Most corona discharge ozonators are made to last 3-5 years. But the UV units should be replaced every 18-24 months.
We recommend that everyone who owns a hot tub installs an ozonator. It’s cheap, easy to install, and does so much for your water.
Of course you’ll need to check with your spa manufacturer to make sure it’s set up for one. If not, you can still install one, but you’ll have a few extra steps.
This simple device, along with regular hot tub maintenance, will give your spa and equipment a much longer life and you’ll enjoy it a whole lot more!