Hot tubbing in the winter is one of the best ways to enjoy the winter scenery and air while staying warm and comfortable. Some people avoid using their outdoor hot tub in winter, however, because of the energy that it takes to heat it up or to keep it on all the time. That shouldn’t keep you from enjoying your hot tub year round. The following are a few tips for getting the most out of your hot tub this winter.
- Protect the pipes. If you live in a region that regularly experiences freezing temperatures during the winter, make sure that your hot tub pipes are well insulated. If water freezes in the pipes, the hot tub will not work and could be irreparably damaged. Wrap insulation around the pipes to keep the water inside from freezing and monitor the outdoor temperatures. Most of the newer hot tubs come well insulated but it is a good idea to check. If any of the insulation is damaged or wet, it should be replaced.
- Keep it covered. One of the biggest reasons homeowners don’t use their hot tub in winter is because it is expensive to heat the water before every use. Similarly, a lot of energy is required to keep an unprotected hot tub hot all winter. Simply putting a cover on your hot tub, however, can help hold the heat in and greatly reduce the amount of energy needed to keep it warm all the time. A good cover should also protect the hot tub from debris and from rain that will swiftly cool down the water. Here at SpaCap.com, we have been building outdoor hot tub covers for thirty years. Our covers not only insulate better but they also stay lightweight and easy to use.
- Monitor the water level. If your hot tub’s water level drops too low, it will affect the pipes and potentially damage your hot tub. Water level being low is also an indication that there may be a leak. A leak any time is bad but a leak in winter can be catastrophic. If your water level is significantly lower than normal, check for leaks right away. If there are no leaks than it’s probably due to teenagers using the spa. For some reason they seem to splash out about thirty gallons per hour of usage.
- Lower the temperature. You don’t need your hot tub at 106 degrees Fahrenheit to feel warm, especially when the air temperature is freezing. Keeping it lower will allow you to save energy needed to heat it, while at the same time helping you warm up and enjoy the hot tub. Another thing to remember as you lower the water temperature is that the water will not be circulating as often. This is especially critical under one of our SpaCap outdoor covers. Instead of running the spa on the thermostat, set it up to run on the timer. Again, on the newer spas, this can be done fairly easily on the control panel. You want the spa to circulate, two to three times per day, for two to three hours per cycle. The water will only be heated as needed but the water will be circulated enough to keep clear. Plus you’ll save money because the thermostat won’t be kicking the spa on thirty times a day just to run for a few minutes.
- Accessorize and decorate. Put flowers or other decorations around your hot tub area to make it more than a blank corner with a tub. Install speakers so you can listen to music while you relax, and consider getting an inflatable pillow or another similar item to enable easier relaxation.
- Block the weather. If your hot tub is exposed to the winter wind, it may help to set up a wind block, either temporarily or permanently, as you prefer. A nice privacy fence will do the trick and save you some extra dollars on your heating bill. Even though the spa cabinet may be insulated really well, some heat will always be escaping through the top. Keeping the wind from whipping over the spa when it’s really cold will help retain more heat and save you money.
For more information about enjoying your hot tub or to buy a hot tub cover this winter, contact SpaCap today.