Hot Tubs

Owning a hot tub is so much more than just a big party. A hot tub is a place to unwind after a long day, it’s a warm comforting enveloping environment in which to relax and stretch and release tense muscles, it’s a place to catch up on the day’s news whilst soaking with loved ones and friends, its warm waters help our bodies release endorphins which make us feel more upbeat. Warm water also helps blood flow and stimulate good circulation, aches and pains like arthritis reduce or disappear with only a half hour session.  It’s great to get away from the TV, phones and computers and just rest your mind a while and let some clarity return, and yes you can have a great party in a hot tub, maybe see in the new year or take a trip down memory lane with old friends.

The Riptide hot tub range includes various styles and sizes from small 2 person hot tubs to large 8 person and commercial hot tubs, with something to suit every garden and budget.

Hot Tub Running Costs

We are often asked how much will it cost to run a hot tub, the answer is surprisingly complicated. The cost of electricity per kW hour can vary from area to area and supplier to supplier so as this is critical to your running costs it's worth comparing electricity suppliers. Just in the same street that I live in I’m aware of people paying as little as 11p per kilowatt hour up to 15p. However, the construction of your hot tub, time of year and your use pattern are what will determine your weekly running costs.

The time of year is going to dictate the outside temperature and it’s pretty reasonable to suggest the lower the outside temperature the more power is going to be required to keep the spa water hot. Come the summer months, with very high ambient temperatures, it’s quite possible that the spa heater will hardly come on at all, especially when you consider that bathing temperatures in the summer are often reduced to below body temperature as no one wants to be that hot.

Hot tub construction methods also affect your running costs, inexpensively made products often have very poor insulation or even no insulation. Insulation is very important in order to keep running costs low. A well-insulated hot tub may be more money to buy but over time you will recoup that money many times over in saved running costs.

Use patterns will affect running costs too, for example, keeping the thermal cover in place will minimise heat loss, opening the cover and using the spa immediately releases the heat to the outside air and the longer you use the spa the more heat is lost. Most hot tubs will then add heat to compensate for the heat loss and the heater in an average hot tub will need to be at least 3/4kW to keep up and not allow the hot tub water to cool down. So it makes sense that the more you use your hot tub the more it will cost.

Lastly, there are some very inefficient add-ons you really need to avoid like air blowers. These will bubble heated or cold air from the spa's floor to the spa's surface and will remove your expensive heat in no time, so give these a miss if you can.

So what will it cost to run a hot tub per week? Subject to all the above you really need to plan on an average, over 12 months, of about £9-£10 a week. See our cost calculator to get a better idea.

Hot Tub Maintenance

If you're nervous about the maintenance, well please don’t be. There are thought to 400,000 hot tubs in the UK and most people get the hang of maintaining it in a week or so. What we have to recognise is that keeping water for long periods as opposed to throwing the water away after each use will require chemicals. The amount of these chemicals that is required will vary depending on the size of the hot tub, how often it is used, and how many people use it. If its just you once or twice a week the maintenance will be less than a hot tub in use every day by lots of people.

Every 3-4 months we throw away the old water and fill with new. When we do that we make small adjustments to Alkalinity and PH which we will show you how to do. Every 2-4 weeks we will need to remove the filters, which is very easy, and give them a clean. Every day or every other day we will need to check the chlorine level and top up if needed, and that, in a nutshell, is your maintenance.

A good retailer is always at the end of the phone so if you forget what you need to do we can help. Give it a week or so and I am sure you’ll feel confident and be taking care of your new hot tub with ease.

Therapy Jets

Therapy jets in hot tubs differ in size, shape and feel but what does it matter I hear you ask? It matters a whole lot I say.

The positioning of jets within the spa shell should reflect the muscle groups that the jets are aiming to massage. For example, I would want to see large powerful jets for my feet, but only smaller jets for my neck. Jets designed for your upper and lower back should probably best rotate to increase blood flow but also a static jet constantly pressing the same body area will become painful and uncomfortable. Very small jets can again be uncomfortable after a while and may leave marks on your back if you sit in the same spot for a long time.

The answer is to ensure the hot tub you choose has different jet arrangements in its seats, which will give you the option to move around if the seat you are in becomes uncomfortable. All spa jets should be individually adjustable, which will allow bathers who have had enough to turn their jets off, whilst leaving those still enjoying the massage to keep doing so. Also, you could find you have had enough on your neck but you're still loving the back massage so adjustable jets give you that flexibility.

A very common mistake made when choosing a hot tub is to believe that the more jets it has will give you more massage, unfortunately, the engineering involved in manufacture restricts a single 3hp pump to provide good therapy for only 25 jets. So do the maths, if the spa you are looking at has 50 jets it must have two 3hp pumps in order for those jets to have any affect. A hot tub advertised with 100 jets but is only fitted with 2 or 3 pumps will be a very disappointing experience and a very expensive mistake.

Don’t mistake individual jet control for the bar mounted air valves all hot tubs have. Almost all jets work on a venture system, this means that you can enjoy the jet with just water pressure or a mixture of water and air, which will make the spa jet feel more exciting. Air does add value but normally a bar top air control would add air to up to 4-6 jets so it’s a nice option but you still need to be able to individually control each jet as well.

Handheld massage jets also add massage to your front upper body and legs which are difficult to massage with conventional hot tub jets, look out for this if it’s an option.

Lastly, sometimes your best hot tub times will be soaking in that lovely hot water outside under a starry night sky in complete silence.