Investing in a hot tub can bring many benefits to your life, from relaxation and stress relief to improved health and quality social gatherings.
If you are conscious of buying a hot tub that isn’t going to bring you unwanted surprises, you’re not alone.
We understand you’ll be wanting to feel as though you’ve covered your bases and haven’t missed anything important, and we’re here to help you!
In this article you’ll learn about some key considerations to make whether you’re in a showroom speaking to a sales expert or browsing online. By the time you reach the end of the article, you should feel a sense of relief that you’re armed with some valuable buying advice from industry experts.
Ask to see inside the hot tub cabinet
The cabinet of a hot tub is where all the essential components are housed, such as the pumps, filters, heater, and plumbing. When shopping for a hot tub, don't be afraid to ask the salesperson if you can see the inside of the cabinet. If the hot tub expert does this without asking, that’s great!
A well-built hot tub will have organised, well-labelled, and easily accessible components. Avoid models with cramped cabinets or components that seem disorganised, as this can lead to difficulties with maintenance or repairs in the future.
If you have the opportunity to see behind a cabinet panel, we recommend you take a closer look at:
Struts holding the shell up
This indicates that the materials used to create the shell aren’t as strong as other brand and models.
Hot tubs with high quality shells don’t require extra supports. Spotting struts could also be one of the reasons why the hot tub as a lower price tag. A hot tub shell needs to hold a lot of water and the weight of people, so strength is really important for peace of mind.
Clear tubing for the plumbing
Unless this is made with ribbed or flexible PVC material, it is likely to be cheap and not designed to treat water that’s chemically treated and again, the hot tub may have a lower price tag. Poor quality plumbing can lead to kinks and leaks which is the last thing you need to think about.
Thin material for the base
The key place where heat from hot tub water is from the top, but it can also escape from the bottom too. If you can see the hot tub has a very thin base, or nothing at all, we strongly recommend you reconsider your options.
A hot tub like this may not cost a lot to buy, but lack of a thick, insulating base can lead to heat loss and water damage to internal components.
Pumps vs jets
If you see a lot of jets in a hot tub, keep in mind that more jets does not always mean the massage experience is going to be better. Why is this? Think about the massage feeling you’ll get from seats that are fitted with many jets. Consider strategic jet placement rather than the number of jets.
Also, if the pumps (located within the cabinet) are powering too many jets at once, this could cause you to waste energy and a less effective hydromassage experience.
For peace of mind, we recommend you book an appointment to test a filled hot tub for yourself and ask about the jet to pump ratio.
Consider the hot tub weight
One often overlooked aspect when buying a hot tub is its weight and the location where you plan to install it.
Hot tubs can be quite heavy, especially when filled with water and people. Before purchasing, ensure that the location can support the weight of the hot tub, including the decking or foundation.
We strongly recommend you speak to a hot tub salesperson for peace of mind that the structure or foundation you have is correct to the hot tub you’re considering.
While it’s important to be aware of how the hot tub will be when it sits on a foundation on your property, it’s also important to be cautious if the hot tub feels very light, when it’s not filled with water.
A quality hot tub shell should be constructed with several layers of resin, which adds to the overall weight of the unfilled hot tub. If you can lift the hot tub off the ground when you’re in the showroom, that’s a sign that the shell may be quite thin, not constructed with a lot of resin and may not be built to last.
Consider a hot tub for hydromassage
Are you imagining the feeling of relaxing and relieving your muscles in a comfortable hot tub seat with jets that feel like they’re targeting the right parts of your body?
This is a clear sign that you will want to add 'hydromassage hot tub with quality features’ to your wish list.
It can be easy to peer into a hot tub, see lots of jets and think it will do the job. We recommend you take some time to do some research on the jets in terms of:
-What sort of massage do the jets create?
-What areas of the body are they targeting?
-Are the jets fully recessed (I.e., they are flush with the shell of the hot tub)?
It’s important to be aware of what level of hydromassage you’re after – whether it’s good, better or the best on the market.
There are hot tubs that come with lots of jets, but that does not mean these hot tubs will provide better quality hydromassage than other options with less jets.
Consider a hot tub test soak
One of the best ways to work out if a hot tub is right for you, and if the level of hydromassage suits you, is to book an appointment in a showroom and spend some time soaking in a few hot tubs.
The hot tub product expert will be able to explain the differences between the seats, varying types of massage and how you may be able to customise the jets to suit you.
You will also be able to get a feel for which seats tick the comfort boxes. If you are someone who would test drive a car before buying, then booking a hot tub test soak will be a worthwhile experience for you!
Consider the hot tub warranty
Thehot tub warranty can often be easy to de-prioritise when you are so focused on finding your perfect hot tub. However, remaining aware of the warranty terms that the hot tub will come with is key to long lasting peace of mind and to generally protect your hot tub investment.
A good warranty should include comprehensive coverage for the hot tub’s shell, equipment, plumbing and electrical components.
A longer warranty is considered to be better and shows the manufacturer has confidence in the components lasting the distance. Warranties for some hot tub parts can extend to 10 years and in some cases a lifetime warranty for the hot tub.
Important note – If a warranty is longer than the company has been in business, we recommend that you consider other hot tub options. Their shorter time in business makes it harder for them to justify that they can create long warranties.
Read the fine print and take note of anything that the warranty does not cover. As an example, you will find that some hot tub manufacturers do not cover the service fee to bring a hot tub technician to your house, or they may charge a travel cost if you live outside a metropolitan area. It’s important for you to be aware of this so you these potential costs aren’t a surprise down the track.
Reputation of the manufacturer
A hot tub warranty that you should feel comfortable with usually comes from a reputable manufacturer that produces reliable, high quality hot tubs. These brands that are respected in the industry are more likely to honour their warranty commitments and provide great customer service.
A hot tub manufacturer you can trust should also have a responsive customer support service and address warranty claims within an appropriate timeframe. This should include clear instructions on how to file warranty claims and help with troubleshooting that you can do yourself.
Consider hot tub accessories
Some hot tub accessories can make hot tub ownership easier and more enjoyable while others are the nice to have add-ons that add an extra touch of luxury. If you are wondering what add-ons or accessories for a hot tub to prioritise, if they’re an added cost, we suggest:
-Hot tub cover
-Hot tub cover lifter
If you have the budget to buy more or want to make a wish list of what you may like to save up for, there are plenty of options to choose from. These include:
-Champagne flutes or shatter free glasses
-Pergola or gazebo
Jacuzzi® Shop offers a range of accessories that you can browse for here.
By smart system, we mean a hardware module and app that’s designed to make hot tub ownership easier and may have the ability to save you money, especially
if you are on the move and often away from home. The brands that offer these types of systems for their hot tubs may make it an optional upgrade, or it will come as standard.
As an example, Jacuzzi®SmartTub®, is a system exclusive to Jacuzzi® Hot Tubs and allows you to:
-Remotely control and monitor your hot tub from anywhere with a cellular connection
-Schedule when you want to use your hot tub and receive energy saving estimates for doing so
-Timed reminders for important maintenance (changing filters, replacing the water)
Depending on what hot tub brand you’re looking it, there may be a purchase cost to have the smart system installed and a subscription for the app, but the control and energy saving awareness it gives you can be great for budgeting running costs.
If you're keen to learn more about what we consider to be the best hot tub brands in the UK, read this article which includes an unbiased summary, prices, key features, pros and cons of five hot tub brands.