After fifteen years in the hot tub industry, I thought it was about time I wrote down my own hot tub buyers guide. I really hope it helps you to decide whether owning a hot tub is right for you and your family, whether you have the disposable income to afford the running costs and to point you in the right direction of where to find information on looking after a hot tub.
Hot tubs are growing in popularity and I suppose this is down to their versatility. As I hope to explain, hot tubs are great for your health, your social life and your family relationships. Lets start with your health:
We live in a world where it is almost impossible to switch off from the outside world. This is increasing the stress we are under. Constant stress can lead to a whole host of health problems; but the good news is that sitting in your hot tub gently removes the stress of modern life on a consistent, day-to-day basis. You’d be amazed at how well a simple 10-minute dip can:
There have been numerous case studies over the years; many of which have concluded that using a hot tub can help with the symptoms of common ailments too. The combination of heat, buoyancy and massage found in hot tubs act as force for good on your body. Aliments include:
From arthritis, joint or back pain, restless leg syndrome, muscle injuries or fibromyalgia, hot tubs are a proven form of chronic pain relief. The heat of the water increases blood flow and relaxes the body, while the massaging action of the jets and the water’s buoyancy loosen muscle tension and soothe sore joints.
The New England Journal of Medicine (08-16-1999) found that, after just 10 days, patients with Type 2 Diabetes who used hot tubs 30 minutes a day, 6 days per week required reduced doses of insulin, lost weight, slept better and showed distinct decreases in plasma glucose and glycosylated hemoglobin.
For those suffering from insomnia, using a hot tub helps your body to wind down before bed and get the natural sleep you need. Even if you don’t suffer from chronic sleep problems, the Better Sleep Council recommends establishing a relaxing bedtime routine, such as soaking in hot water to help maintain a healthy sleep cycle. According to the Council’s findings, warm water releases muscle tension and increases blood flow, both of which contribute to a relaxed, deeper, more comfortable and better quality sleep.
Wellness is quite a buzz word at the moment, but what does it mean? The Constitution of the World Health Organization (WHO), defines health as “a state of total wellbeing, encompassing physical, mental and social aspects, and not simply the absence of illness or infirmity”. The inclusion of the concept of wellbeing in the definition of health reflects the sense that daily stress, deriving from a frenetic life, unavoidably leads individuals to search for inner peace - and let's face it, who couldn't do with some inner peace? SO how can owning a hot tub increase your wellness?
Hydrotherapy from a hot tub involves the use of water for soothing an aching body or speeding the recovery of other muscular ailments. It combines water with air and heat to promote wellbeing and the healing benefits of hydrotherapy date back thousands of years and across all the world’s great cultures. Ancient Egyptians bathed in heated waters treated with flowers and herbs, while the Greeks believed that water therapy was essential to optimal health.
The golden rules of effective hydrotherapy are:
Hydrotherapy is a key player in sports recovery too. Whether it’s a new exercise routine or an unusually active day on your feet, most of us know the feeling of sore, overworked muscles the day after heavy exercise or playing sport. The water pressure from hot tub jets relieves muscle tightness and soreness by removing lactic acid from the muscles, opening up the blood vessels and promoting the flow of endorphins and oxygen.
LPGA Sports Medicine Director Caroline Nichols and former President of the American Orthopedic Society of Sports Medicine Dr. James Andrews recommend hydrotherapeutic activity for athletes at every level.
Nichols says that hot tubs especially help with recovery since jets focus on overused muscle and joint regions, while Andrews supports hydrotherapy as a good tool for improved circulation, sensory impulses and stiff joints.
Another England Rugby player Brad Shields has found his hot tub incredibly helpful in aiding his recovery after a training session. You can watch his testimonial on our YouTube channel too.
One of my favourite ways to spend time as a family is in the hot tub. There are no screens, no smart phones going off, no distractions. Just 20 minutes of quality time spent together relaxing and talking. Hot tubs can be used all year around, so it's a great place to escape to if the Christmas dinner isn't going as planned!
Every hot tub dealer is different, but there are some things that are really important. Do your research on the brand of hot tub the dealers are selling. We have countless of phone calls from people who have been sold a hot tub that has broken down and the parts are not available because the manufacturer or dealer has gone bust. The last thing you want is a very expensive garden ornament! Once you have narrowed down your hot tub brands, visit the dealers showrooms. Sit in the hot tubs and if you can try out their wet test model.
Find out what is included in the price of the hot tub, what the length of the warranty is and who carries out the warranty work. Lots of hot tub dealers are able to offer finance to help spread the cost of buying it. Please take in to consideration the running costs of owning a hot tub when thinking about the affordability of the finance offer. From experience, my hot tub costs around £1 per day in electricity. On top of that, the hot tub requires a water change four times a year. If you use Bromine or Chlorine, you can expect to pay around £100 per year. Your filters are likely to need need changing once a year and the final cost is the ClearRay bulb of around £70 per year. Make sure your dealer runs through all the costs with you before you buy your chosen model.
Hot tub dealers should offer a delivery, installation and commissioning package. This should include the hot tub being positioned in the place you want it to live and a demonstration of the safe use of the controls and chemicals. Before your delivery date, you will need to prepare a suitable level base for your hot tub to sit on. This can be any hard surface, but it needs to be as level as possible to stop the hot tub from rocking. You will also need a power supply close by. Depending on your chosen model, this might be an isolated 32 AMP supply or 13 amp supply. It is important you know what power supply your hot tub will need before you purchase. Your dealer is likely to know of a local electrician who can provide a quotation if you need a power supply installed.
If you are looking for inspiration on how to landscape around your hot tub, our instagram page has most of our customers installations on.
Your hot tub will not need a plumbed water supply, just access to a hosepipe. You can drain your hot tub with either a submersible pump or by locating the drain valve and attaching a hose pipe to direct the flow away from the base of your hot tub.
Looking after a hot tub is pretty straight forward and not very time consuming. Once you get in to a routine, it will become second nature. When we deliver a hot tub, we take the time to run through the safe administration and storage of the chemicals. We keep the process as simple as possible to ensure you make the most out of your hot tub. It really doesn't take more than around 15 minutes a week. Water changes will take a little more time and effort, but they only happen fours times a year.
We recommend, wherever possible, have a cover lifter fitted. This really helps prolong the life of your cover and stores it safely while you are using your hot tub.
Hot tubs do not have serviceable parts, so do not need an annual service; unless of course you choose to have your hot tub checked over every so often to foresee any problems before they arise.
Other top tips are:
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