5 Tips For Winter Hot Tub Operation
Hope you had a happy New Year!
Just wanted to shoot out a quick post regarding winter storm hot tub care. We are getting a HUGE New Year’s blizzard here in Massachusetts and New Hampshire as I write this blog, so it felt like good timing.
First off, your spa is built for this and is designed to operate in extreme cold and hold onto its heat.
However there are a couple of things to keep in mind.
1. Please keep an eye on the snow build up on your cover
Your cover is meant to insulate and hold in heat, not carry a snow load. I would say 4" max, especially if we get any heavy wet snow.
Make sure you use a brush or a broom, NOT A SHOVEL to clear the snow off your cover. If you pierce a hole in the cover it will suck up moisture and get extremely heavy and lose its insulation value.
Most of the spas we sell use a 2lb density foam core cover, which is the best insulation value you can get in a foam cover. However some entry level or mid level spas use a 1lb or 1.5lb density foam cover.
These covers need to be watched even more closely for snow load.
That is is why whenever I sell a replacement spa cover I always quote the 2lb density foam. Even to customers who may have purchased a spa from me that came with a 1.5lb density cover. It is just the right choice for our New England climate.
One side note - If you don’t want to EVER have to worry about snow on your hot tub cover I urge you to check out the Leisure Concepts SmartTop Covers.
These things are built tough and can handle a ton of weight, you could probably have 10 people STANDING on your hot tub cover and it would not flinch.
These systems come with different types of built in cover lifters as well to make opening and closing very easy.
They are not cheap but knowing you have to replace a regular spa cover every 3 to 5 years, and the SmartTop will last 10 to 15, it basically pays for itself.
2. If you lose power, DON'T PANIC . Your spa is well insulated and will retain its heat for a long time without running. Just think your spa is at 102 or 104, will take a long time for that to freeze solid. If you don't open the cover and just let it be it can sit for days without needing to worry.
3. When the power comes back on, do not assume your hot tub breaker turned back on as well. Go out and check that the spa is in fact on and if not go over the the power disconnect and turn it on and make sure it starts up ok.
4. Make sure you are not running your spa in economy or REST mode. These types of running modes are great for the shoulder seasons but should not be used during the dead of winter.
(THIS DOES NOT REALLY APPLY TO SPAS WITH 24 HOUR CIRCULATION PUMPS)
Always run your spa in Standard or READY mode during the winter months.
Well, economy modes only run the spa and heat the spa during filter cycles, this means your spa will not work to maintain temperature. If you run 2 1 hour filter cycles a day that means your heater will only run 2 hours a day and then be off for 18 hours during the day.
This type of operation will lead to a drop of a few degrees in temperature. So if we have a storm and do lose power, you are giving the cold a 5 to 10 degree head start.
AND the worst part is your spa may no be ready to use right when you want it, you will have to go out an hour or 2 before and turn up the heat. Not a really efficient way to run the spa in this weather.
4. Finally this is the most important thing to do during a winter storm.......
USE YOUR HOT TUB!!!!!!!!
There is NO better time to enjoy your spa then right now with the snow falling on your head, get out there have some fun, grab a drink and enjoy the outdoors!
Enjoy your hot tub, and if you have questions about winter spa operation please leave a comment below and I will try to answer as soon as possible.