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Guide to Hot Tubs & Spas Ownership Basics Best Brands Are Hot Tubs for You? Best Time to Buy Hot Tub Benefits Recommended Brands
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Guide to Hot Tubs & Spas

If sinking into warm, soothing water sounds like the perfect way to unwind after a long day, then you’ll want to know more about backyard spa options. Spa relaxation is easy to attain—simply immerse yourself in bubbly luxury and exhale stress—but choosing just the right spa is more complicated. With many models and spa features on the market, it can be confusing to determine what spa best fits your lifestyle and budget.

This guide should help! Here, we’ll explore various types of spas, sharing features as well as pros and cons of each. We’ll answer common questions potential spa buyers have:

  • What are some basics of hot tub ownership?
  • What is the best brand of hot tubs?
  • Is buying a hot tub worth it?
  • What is the best time of year to buy a hot tub?
  • What are the benefits of hot tub use?

If the amount of spa variety overwhelms you, don’t worry. You don’t necessarily need the biggest spa or the fanciest spa—you need the spa that’s right for you! Keep reading to learn more about which spa might be best for your climate, landscape, lifestyle and budget. Then, when you’re ready, take the spa plunge!

What are some basics of hot tub ownership?

Hot tubs range in quality from easy-assembly plug-and-play models to luxury models decked out in elaborate features. From budget two-person hot tubs to the fanciest eight-person hot tubs on the market, all spas share common features like heated water and soothing jets. However, spas vary in heating power, jet power, size, features, and energy efficiency.

Hot Tub with attached swimming pool

For optimal energy efficiency, you want a well-insulated tub. You may want to use your hot tub for muscle relaxation or other therapeutic functions—in that case, you want a hard-wired model with powerful jets. No matter which model you purchase, you should regularly clean and chemically balance the hot tub in order to keep the water quality sparkling and safe for soaking. This chart summarizes the basic differences between three hot tub models: plug and play, premium, and luxury.


What is the best brand of hot tubs?

Many leading hot tub manufacturers produce quality hot tub brands, ranging from plug and play models to top-of-the-line luxury editions. Some of the top brands in the market today include: Cove Spas, Garden Leisure Hot Tubs, Shoreline Hot Tubs, E-Series Spas, and Swim Spa Collection. *must make sure to include manufacturers

To get an idea of which spa best fits your taste and your budget, visit your local independent hot tub dealer. They will likely have models that you can view and even sit in! This hands-on experience, along with any feedback you can get from hot tub owners, is valuable. Careful research, including input from hot tub professionals, is the best way to make sure you get a hot tub that works best for your relaxation and recreation needs.

Aerial view of man relaxing in hot tub

Is buying a hot tub worth it?

It might be easier to tell you when buying a hot tub is not worth it. Don’t buy a hot tub if you’re never home, don’t like water, or don’t have any time for relaxation. Otherwise, a hot tub is probably for you!

A hot tub fits many lifestyles, including people looking for the following:

  • Solo relaxation,
  • A place to chat and relax with friends,
  • A romantic backyard date with a partner,
  • A place to splash and play (at low water temperature) with kids,
  • Hydrotherapy using powerful jets, and
  • Aquatic exercise.

From stargazing with a special someone to soothing tense muscles after a taxing workout, a hot tub flexes to meet many personalities. When you use your hot tub regularly, you benefit from the relaxing benefits of hydrotherapy. You can continue to use your hot tub long into cooler weather seasons because hot tubs heat much more efficiently than pools. Overall, hot tubs are a great fit for many lifestyles!

Pool and Spa Supplies

Potential spa buyers may be concerned about the supplies needed for a hot tub. Does a spa purchase require a hefty supply investment? Because hot tubs are much smaller than pools, they’re also easier to maintain. Basic hot tub maintenance requires a few supplies: a hot tub cover, spa vacuum, chemical test strips, bromine tablets, spa shock, and alkalinity balancers. Clean, test, and chemically balance your hot tub weekly, and you’ll find maintenance requires little effort.

Woman resting in hot tub

What is the best time of year to buy a hot tub?

Depending on your climate, you may be able to use your hot tub year-round. That said, you can usually find good deals on hot tubs several times a year. Like other retail sales, hot tub retailers usually mark down their products near Memorial Day and Labor Day. Also, look for retailers to discount older models near the end of the year as they prepare to stock new models for the coming swim season.

If you have any pool and spa shows or state fairs in your area, those occasions might also be a good time to purchase a hot tub. Retailers might exhibit popular models at events so that you can get an up-close look at a hot tub before purchase. In addition, retailers may offer special discounts available to event attendees. You can also check your local hot tub retailer’s website and social media accounts to see if they offer any discounts.

Hot tub and pool with mountains in background

What are the benefits of hot tub use?

A hot tub can be a big investment, so you want to make sure you’ll get enough bang for your buck. Luckily, that’s not hard to do. In fact, hot tubs have more benefits than you may realize, including these perks:

  • Exercise. Water’s resistance makes hot tubs a great place to exercise, especially for anyone with joint damage or mobility issues that limit land-based workouts. The warm water limbers muscles for stretching, provides resistance for weightlifting, and may offer enough room to run in place or tread water.
  • Stress relief. A hot tub’s legendary stress soothing atmosphere speaks for itself. Couple the allure of warm water with a few accessories like color changing lights, spa-side speakers playing your favorite tunes, and candles to create the ultimate relaxation zone.
  • Creativity boost. Warm water boosts your blood flow, meaning that more blood pumps to your brain. The relaxed atmosphere and increased blood flow can boost mental activity and creativity. So, bring your next problem solving-session into your spa and see if you step out of the water with a solution in mind.
  • Improved sleep. After relaxing and exercising in your hot tub, your body and mind will be ready for sweet slumber. In fact, a soothing soak is one of the best ways to unwind from a hectic day and get ready for sleep. The benefits of better sleep can extend into the next day too, making you more pleasant and productive.

Even if you don’t need all these benefits that a hot tub offers, take advantage of the ones that fit your lifestyle. Your hot tub may offer something different to each person in your family. Consider everyone’s relaxation, health, and recreation needs when choosing the best model for your backyard.

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