I love our swimming pool, and so do our kids. But if it hadn't have come with the house, I’m not sure I would've installed one. It’s costly to heat in the winter and a chore to maintain year-round. A more economical and therapeutic option might be a hot tub.
Hot tubs are almost synonymous with parties and time travel, but more people are investing in them as a way to relax and unwind, manage muscle soreness, and enjoy some social time with friends and family. (The term hot tub and spa are now used more or less interchangeably.) I’ve been shopping for a hot tub for a few months now, and with the help of Jake Ricks of Lovia Spas, I’ve compiled some tips to make the experience of buying a hot tub a more soothing one.
Hot Tub Placement
The location for your portable hot tub, along with your intended use, will determine how big a tub you need.
Most square hot tubs fall between six and eight feet in length, but you should also check for how much surrounding space you might need to accommodate a cover, steps, or equipment. I suggest a hot tub that might be slightly larger than what you think you need. You never know when last-minute guests might join the party, or you might just realize you need a bit more personal space.
Hot tubs require a structurally sound and level flat surface. The surface can be a concrete pad, pavers, brick, crushed rock, or a reinforced deck. The important thing is that it starts out level and remains level no matter the weight of the hot tub.
You’ll also need a control panel with a 50-amp breaker and the ability to run 240 volts of power to the hot tub's location. If this power is not readily available, you’ll need to bring in an electrician at least one and possibly twice—to run the power, and a second time to hook up the tub. There are a few hot tubs that operate on 110-volt household power, but they lack in performance and durability compared to higher-quality hot tubs.