Should You Use Ozone in a DIY Cold Plunge?

Should You Use Ozone in a DIY Cold Plunge?

Is ozone right for your cold plunge?

Every once in a while, there is some light debate in my Facebook Group on the best way to sanitize the water in your cold plunge. In my experience, using an ozone generator has been a fantastic solution. After install, it is low maintenance, extremely effective and, in my experience, eliminates the need to use harsh chemicals for water sanitation.

Ozone has become the industry standard for water sanitation in cold plunges. Most big cold plunge retail brands use ozone as their exclusive method of water sanitation. It has been a staple in the hot tub industry for over 30 years and there are thousands of people using it as their preferred method of water sanitation in the DIY space.

What exactly does ozone do?

Ozone basically kills all the bad stuff in your water. When installed and used correctly, the circulation in your cold plunge + filtration + ozone as a disinfectant will keep your water clean and clear for a long time without the use of chlorine, bromine or other chemicals.

When I built my DIY cold plunge my main goal was to stay away from chemicals AND not have to fuss with maintaining the water - or at least as much as possible. I’ve got 3 kids under 7 and a very hyper dog at home… so life is already busy. I didn’t want one more thing to take care of! I have gone for over 3 months at a time without a water change with minimal water maintenance.

How do I install my ozone generator?

Ensuring your ozone generator is properly sized and installed is the most important piece of using ozone safely and effectively. For a cold plunge, you want a generator that outputs 50mg/hr. The biggest mistake I see is people using ozone generators that are either intended for kitchen/food use or are WAY too overpowered.

The Ambohr SPA-124 Ozone Generator on my site is sized perfectly for this application and is the same generator many cold plunge companies use in their tubs. FYI there are other models that look just like this with higher ozone output.

To use an ozone generator like this in your cold plunge, you will need a venturi injector installed into your plumbing system. The venturi injector condenses down where the tubing connects from your ozone generator and as water is pumped through it, a vacuum is created and ozone is pulled into your water line. As the system continues to run, your water gets sanitized.

Is ozone dangerous?

This is the most common question I get when folks are looking to keep their cold plunge indoors. If you have concerns about ozone exposure, consulting with a professional or healthcare provider is advised.

As mentioned above, ozone has been in use for water sanitation in hot tubs for over 30 years. The number of people in the cold plunge community that use ozone is easily 100,000+ and I have yet to hear of any issue that has been a result of using ozone in their cold plunge - I will update this post if that ever changes. I personally keep my cold plunge outside, and as a test have been running my generator 24/7 for months without any issues at all.

My understanding is this: ozone can pose a potential risk if there is a large buildup of ozone gas in a confined area. This is why it is important to properly size your generator and run your ozone on a timer. Breathing in a high concentration can cause irritation in your eyes/nose/throat, shortness of breath, headache, coughing, dry throat and similar problems.

If you keep your cold plunge outside, there shouldn’t be much to worry about with ozone if you follow those best practices. If you plan on keeping your cold plunge inside, make sure you are running it in small intervals and plunge during a time when your generator is not running. On top of that, monitor the area - if there is a strong ozone smell, open the lid, run a fan and let the area air out.

How often should you use ozone?

I recommend experimenting with the proper interval for you and how you use your cold plunge. You can do this with a simple timer or go all out with a wifi enabled one.

There is no one-size-fits-all for this. 30 minutes all the way up to 2 hours per day is the typical range most fall in for keeping their cold plunge clean and clear.

I’m currently running mine 24/7 as an ongoing experiment, but prior to that I ran mine for 60 minutes per day, set for roughly an hour after my normal plunge time. This allows for near-maximum time for the ozone to dissipate before my next plunge. My guess would be something similar will work for you too.

Is ozone right for you?

At the end of the day, you will need to decide what method of water sanitation is best for you. I love ozone because it has proven to be effective and is basically a hands-off solution - perfect for what I need out of my cold plunge.

Of course, you should do your own research before deciding. No matter what, make sure to size your generator appropriately, avoid generators designed for air purification and use in the food industry and set your generator up on a timer as an added safety precaution.

If you are looking for an ozone generator sized and designed specifically for cold plunge use, check out my Ambohr SPA-124 Ozone Generator & Venturi Bundle. I greatly appreciate your support!