The Ace Salt Water System

Why do we love the Ace Salt Water System? Because with easy-to-care-for spa water that looks, feels and smells great, you’ll spend more time in your Hot Spring® spa.

Today we look at the Ace Salt Water System and why it’s good for your spa. Really, the difference is in the diamonds.

It’s More Natural

You’ll use fewer chemicals and have more natural spa water.

The ACE system creates “active oxygen” and other powerful cleaners from just a little bit of salt and your spa water. So, there are fewer chemicals added.

It Cleans Differently

The ACE system cleans spa water differently than any other salt water system, or any traditional water care program. The ACE system uses a patented diamond electrode, which allows the system to break apart water molecules and create a powerful oxidizer called Active Oxygen.

Active oxygen goes to work to breakdown and remove bacteria and impurities in the spa water completely-leaving behind only water and carbon dioxide.

Once the water is clean, then the active oxygen pairs with sodium chloride (salt) that has been added to the water to create the chlorine sanitizer.

Since the ACE system only produce schlorine after the spa water is clean, it may take a day (or longer) to see a measurable amount of chlorine on your test strip. If you do not get a chlorine reading, that is an indication that the ACE system is hard at work cleaning the water.

It Eliminates Side Effects

Traditional Chlorine

Most spas and hot tubs are maintained using traditional chlorine water care.

Chlorine is an approved sanitizer for spas and hot tubs. Chlorine combats bacteria and contaminants in the spa, and provides you with peace of mind that spa water is clean and safe. However, bottled chlorine can leave spa owners with a number of unappealing side effects.

Eliminating Byproducts

When chlorine attacks contaminants in the spa water, it results in the creation of chlorinated byproducts, or chloramines. The chloramines are what generally cause the strong chlorine odor and irritating side effects that are often associated with hot tubs. The ACE system cleans the spa water differently.

The Active Oxygen breaks down contaminants completely, eliminating those byproducts that impact the quality of spa water.

Minimizing Stabilizing Acid

Bottled chlorine also contains an acid, which is necessary to stabilize the chlorine.

With traditional water care, bottled chlorine is added to the spa at a minimum of once a week, and in many cases with each use – which could be daily. Each time the bottled chlorine is added, the spa owner is inadvertently adding more acid to the spa water.

The increasing level of acid in the spa water also contributes to the dry skin, red eyes, and irritation that some people experience from spa water. With the ACE system there is only a very small amount of bottled chlorine added to the spa, hence eliminating these side effects.

Taking Care of the Water is Easy

Caring for your spa water with the ACE system consists of:

  • Balancing spa water at start-up
  • Testing weekly to ensure water remains balanced and the chlorine level is within the recommended range
  • Conducting the 30-day check up
  • Cleaning the cell every 90 days

Let’s break each one of those down a bit:


Regardless of the water care system you use, it is always important to maintain balanced, sanitized spa water.

It’s important to understand the make-up of your water. Talk to us about whether your water has high calcium hardness or metals. On The Go portable water softener is good for filling your spa if you have high levels of calcium hardness or metals in your water.

Balance water using a FreshWater® 5-way test strip. Measure and adjust pH and alkalinity into the “OK” ranges for the ACE system. Use a Vanishing Act calcium remover to decrease calcium hardness as needed. Add salt.


Always maintain balanced spa water. The pH and alkalinity levels must stay within the OK range. Use a test strip weekly, or each time you use the spa, to verify.

Keep total hardness between 25 and 75 ppm.High levels of calcium in spa water will lead to more frequent cell cleaning and replacement. Use a test strip to check hardness, especially after topping off the spa. Use the On the Go portable water softener to eliminate calcium hardness before filling and topping off the spa, or the Vanishing Act calcium remover as needed.

Adjust output levels as needed.The ACE system cannot measure how much chlorine is in the water. The ACE system will continue to generate chlorine according to the Output level selected. It’s important to adjust the use level as your hot tubbing pattern changes.


Every 30 days the water care icon on the control panel and the Hot Spring® ready light on the front of your spa flash as a reminder to conduct this 30-day maintenance routine:

  • Test and balance spa water
  • Confirm Output level
  • Rinse filter(s)
  • Shock the water

The 30-day timer resets any time you adjust your Output level. If you do not perform the 30-day maintenance routine, the ACE system defaults to a low-use Output level, and your ready light continues to flash.


The ACE cell is a wearable part that needs to be replaced over time. On average the ACE cell lasts 2-3 years. Like tires on a car, the more often you hot tub ,the more frequently you need to replace the ACE cell.

There are some steps you can take to maximize cell life:

  • Maintain calcium hardness at 50 ppm.
  • Keep Output level as low as possible to meet your normal needs and supplement with dichlor as needed.
  • Clean filters monthly.
  • Clean cell every 90 days.
  • Use the FreshWaterAg+ silver ions to inhibit bacteria growth.
  • Clean the ACE cell regularly. Regularly inspect the cell for scale and clean it at least once every three months. The cleaning process is simple and easy.

The exclusive ACE salt water system is an option for all Highlife®, Highlife NXT and Limelight® Collection spa models.

Have questions about your Hot Spring spa or the ACE system? Give us a call or contact us for more information!