A hot tub can be a wonderfully therapeutic addition to your household. Hot tubs help relieve stress, relax muscles and even help with some physical ailments. But they can also be a hefty financial investment. Before purchasing a hot tub, you should carefully consider what you will really use it for and buy accordingly.
For one thing, consider your housing situation. If you are living in a house you own and intend to be there for a while, a larger tub, 5- to 7-person, can be a good choice. If you expect to move soon or will be renting in the near future, a portable hot tub might be better. The larger to tub, the more difficult and expensive it is to move. A bigger issue is where to place the tub. Larger models need a solid concrete base; an empty 7-person hot tub typically weighs nearly 1,000 pounds. You also need access to a 220 outlet for a big tub. Smaller, portable hot tubs often run on 110 and don’t need as much security beneath them since they are much lighter. Being lighter, of course, also makes them easier to move. The number of people who will be using the tub will also make a difference. Portable hot tubs often seat only two people, and neither can lie down. Many 5- and 7-person tubs have lounge seats that take the place of two, so someone using the lounge in the largest tub still allows 5 people to join in.
Typically, bigger tubs also have more jets. While the number of jets may not seem important to you, without enough jets, the hot tub is more like a slowly circulating bath. If you are considering the hot tub for physically therapeutic reasons, get more jets. Of course, salespeople will probably tell you that you want the most jets possible, but that isn’t necessarily true. You don’t need the highest number available, but don’t settle for the least because it’s a little cheaper.
Although portable hot tubs don’t often have the option, the larger models may have a feature that allows the tub to run and heat at the same time. Of course, this adds expense to your purchase. However, if you will be enjoying the outdoor tub in the winter on a cold night, it might be more comfortable to have the tub at optimum temperature before you get in it and have it heating while you are there. In such situations, tubs will lose heat just by being opened, and a few degrees can feel very different on your skin. If you intend to use the tub only in warmer weather or inside, then don’t waste your money on this feature.
Used hot tub
Finally, consider buying a used hot tub. People are often finding they just don’t use the tubs as much as they thought, or they can’t afford them because of the added expenses like water, electricity and chemicals. Sometimes they just need some quick cash, and a hot tub usually has a pretty big wad of money tied up. Auctions, internet sources and local want ads are all great places to find used tubs. You can often find deals on tubs that are fairly new and are ¼ the price of a new one. Be sure to find out about shipping and delivery costs and arrangements before you leap. Even if the warranty is not transferable, most tub companies cover the plumbing and motor for five years or less, so you aren’t really missing out on a guarantee if you get a good enough price. While buying a hot tub is not typically an impulse purchase, you might be unhappy with the product long-term if you don’t carefully consider these issues before buying.
Read reviews, visit showrooms to actually see differences, and carefully compare the factors that matter most to you
. Then you will have a hot tub that gives you years of enjoyment.