The master bath of our new house has a jetted whirlpool tub. We haven't used it yet, since the previous owners were, um, lacking hygiene. Is there a good way to clean it out without taking the whole thing apart? I've heard that some people use dish detergent, but then I've heard elsewhere that this can cause residue buildup inside the jets and tubing. Is there a good cleaning product made specifically for jetted tubs out there that doesn't cost an arm and a leg? Does anyone have experience they can share?

5 Answers 5


Were the previous owners kind enough to leave the instruction manual for the tub? If not, you may be able to look up the model online, and get a copy.

The last jetted tub I had experience with, had removable jets, which could be placed in the dishwasher (as per the instruction manual). In order to clean out the tubing, we would fill the tub, and add 1-1.5 cups of bleach, then run the jets for a good 20-30 minutes, drain the tub, refill with clean water, and run for another 5-10 minutes. It was amazing how much "ick" came out, and with the bleach you don't have to worry about buildup.

If the previous homeowners were as you say, lacking hygiene, you may want to repeat this process a few times.

  • The dishwasher idea sounds good. However, I've read that bleach can harm the gaskets and the tubing. (It could also be that websites I read that on are just trying to sell more of their cleaning products.) Did you notice any problems with that? I guess it might depend on how often bleach was used.
    – Doresoom
    Commented Aug 10, 2010 at 16:46
  • Honestly- we didn't clean it all that often, because we didn't use it often (vicious cycle- we didn't use it, because it was such a pain to clean! ;) ). That being said, if you fill the tub up, and put in 1-1.5 cups of bleach, the bleach is going to be diluted enough that I wouldn't think it would cause issues with the gaskets and tubing. YMMV
    – MarkD
    Commented Aug 10, 2010 at 17:43

MarkD mentioned bleach and removing the jets. If there are hard water stains you could also try vinegar, just not at the same time.


We actually ended up using Ahh-Some Jetted Bath cleaner. It sounds expensive - $20 for 2 oz, but you only have to use a tiny pinch (<1/4 tsp) for each cleaning, unlike the amount the directions call for.

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It worked amazingly well. We watched in horrid fascination as tons of gunk came pouring out of the tubes. After repeating the process two more times, nothing new came out of the jets. We then cleaned the tub surface with regular bathroom cleaner.


This YouTube video compared a jetted tub cleaner, Oh Yuk to bleach and dishwasher detergent. As you can see in this video, Oh Yuk is considerably more effective than bleach and dish washing detergent.



Oh Yuk Jetted Tub cleaner, found on Amazon, is widely used by the lodging industry.

How To Use Oh Yuk System Cleaner For Residential Tubs:

  1. Fill the bathtub with warm water. Make sure the water is high enough over the jets so you can turn them on.
  2. Run the tub with the jets on.
  3. Add Oh Yuk System Cleaner.  The longer you let Oh Yuk run through your system, the better job it will do cleaning your plumbing.

These are the recommended minimum times: Initial Cleaning: 8 oz. per 100 gallons for 1 hour. Maintenance Cleaning: 2 oz. per 100 gallons for ten to fifteen minutes.

  1. Drain the bathtub.
  2. Clean the scum ring and the surface of the tub with a good cleaner.
  3. Fill the tub over the jets, turn the jets on for a few seconds, then drain the bathtub.
  • And how do you use this product?
    – Niall C.
    Commented Sep 17, 2013 at 20:53

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