After you’ve done all the research for the purchase of your new hot tub or spa, your planning and research isn’t over. Hot tub ownership has responsibilities. There’s much to think about in terms of risks and practices from the installation to daily usage to maintenance. You don’t want the spa that’s supposed to relax you turning into a hassle that will make you regret your purchase.
House Hassles and Your Spa
Before you whip out your credit card to pay for your relaxing new hot tub, we recommend some additional research. You’ll be trying to find a spa that has the right amount of jets. Asking yourself questions like, “How many people should fit in the hot tub?” and “Does this need to be portable?” You should also be thinking about whether your rental insurance or homeowner’s policy will cover liabilities from a hot tub.
It’s unfortunate, but accidents can happen. If someone falls climbing in and out of your spa, could they get hurt. Absolutely. Will they try to sue you? It will depend on the friend/family member and the extent of the injury. It could definitely happen, which is a hard thing to think about. It’s always best to make sure you’re covered in the case of an accident with guests.
It’s important to ensure that you have coverage if something goes wrong with the spa itself. This is mandatory if the spa is being installed inside the home. It could cause flooding and property damage if it breaks. It’s better to have preventative measures in place or know exactly how you’re covered in the event of an accident.
Safety During Setup
The first step to installing your hot tub once it’s been delivered is to find a few strong people to help move it. The pieces weigh a lot. The delivery guy isn’t going to set up your hot tub, so you’ll need to have willing and able-bodied people helping you.
The place you install the hot tub has to have a few factors like a great view and the ability to hold the weight of the entire unit with the water added. You can’t place this on a second floor deck unless the deck has been reinforced prior to installation. With hundreds of gallons of water, the weight of your new spa could exceed a few tons. The weight of the tub itself, the water, and the people will all influence the weight.
When installing the hot tub, it might make sense to hire a professional. You might need someone to put the pieces together as well as someone who can wire the electrical outlet that you could need.
You should never DIY these things because water and electricity should never be mixed. Except by professionals of course. While rewiring a lamp can be an easy task, amateur electricians shouldn’t attempt to wire for a hot tub.
Another aspect of hot tub safety is the chemicals added to the water. Initially, you’ll need to test the amount of chlorine in your water and add chemicals from a spa kit. Wait the required amount of time for the chemicals to do their magic before trying out your spa.
One more point we want to mention is the use of a hose to fill the hot tub. During the first fill up, it doesn’t really matter if the hose is left in the spa. It’s fresh water that won’t back-siphon into the water line. That shouldn’t be done when you’re refilling it later. Once the chemicals are in, and people have been sitting in the hot tub, you’ll want to keep the fill hose from being submerged.
Guidelines for Hot Tub Use
Once you’ve had the spa or hot tub safely installed in the right location, you’ll be waiting for the water to heat and the chemicals to work their magic. Take the time to consider who will use the spa and what kind of rules you’ll have.
Hygiene and Hot Tub Safety – Your hot tub should be a place that everyone in your family as well as your friends can enjoy. That enjoyment shouldn’t be tainted with the possibility that people could end up with a skin infection after soaking in your spa. Always ask friends and family to shower before getting into the hot tub. It saves everyone from bacteria and makes your maintenance chores much easier.
Length of the Time Soaking – While you might want to spend hours soaking in the spa, the high water temps can cause serious issues. If you soak in the hot water longer than 15 minutes, you run the risk of becoming overheated. This could lead to fainting and other medical problems.
Drinking and Soaking – The hot water will amplify the impact of alcohol while you’re in the hot tub. While a glass of chilled wine can be so very relaxing while you’re soaking in the tub, make sure you’re monitoring your levels of alcohol during parties.
Maintenance and Soaking Safety
Disease and Illness
Those with heart or breathing problems might want to avoid a hot tub. It can cause them to overheat, which can tax the heart and lungs. It happens to incredibly healthy people without health issues. It can happen to those who are challenged by existing diseases or illnesses. If that’s a problem for you or a guest, you could ask them to avoid the tub, or you could turn down the temperature.
Cloudiness or Foaming Concerns
The clarity of the water is a visual cue as to the health of the water itself. If it’s cloudy or foamy, that’s a serious problem. Cloudy water forms because the water needs to be cleaned. The chemical levels could be off, but foamy water is the result of people. It comes from a buildup of oils. The water should be cleaned or shocked before anyone uses the spa. If you can’t seem to shake the hazy color of the water, you might need to start over with new water.
Infections and Cuts
Water can soak into infections and wounds to make them worse. It can lead to a higher risk of infection. It might also transfer to someone else in the water. It’s important that everyone stays healthy while sharing a hot tub. Gently ask anyone with cuts to avoid soaking in the hot tub with you or other guests.
Hot Tub House Rules
- Shower before use
- Never use street clothes in the spa
- Children under 5 should never be in the hot tub
- Limit time spent soaking
- Consult a physician before use if pregnant or if you have health concerns
- Limit alcohol consumption during soaking
- Attach the cover after use to avoid drownings
- Ventilate area well if used indoors
- Be careful entering and exiting the spa to avoid accidents
Frequently Asked Questions
How do spas work?
A spa has heated water or air that is forced through jets. You’ll sit in front of the jets and let them massage sore muscles. A hot tub will have relaxing bubbles, but not individual jets that massage specific parts of the body. If you’re looking for a more detailed explanation, check out our article on all the terms like hot tub, spa or Jacuzzi. https://thebackyardgnome.com/is-it-a-spa-hot-tub-or-jacuzzi-terms-explained/
Are hot tubs safe?
The level of safety will depend mostly upon the owner of the spa or hot tub. If you are keeping up with the maintenance and health of the water, you shouldn’t have any issues. Always follow standard safety protocols and enjoy a truly safe experience in the spa.
Are hot tubs good for arthritis?
Hot water soaks will loosen up your muscles. It’s why they’re fantastic at the end of a long, tough work day. When muscles are loose, there’s less pain. That is always great for people who suffer from arthritis. The ailment tends to tighten joints and muscles. The hot tub reverses that problem.
Can hot tubs cause miscarriage?
While they can’t cause miscarriage on their own, a hot tub results in a heightened body temperature. That’s a problem for any woman who is pregnant. Whether it’s a heightened temp due to fever or a hot tub, it can cause serious issues like neural tube defects. It’s best to avoid a hot tub or spa during pregnancy.
Will hot tubs cause a rash?
Hot tubs and spas that aren’t cared for properly can definitely cause skin problems. Bacteria like Pseudomonas aeruginosa can cause serious rashes when the hot tub isn’t cleaned properly. Some people find that the chlorine and chemicals used for cleaning can cause skin irritations and rashes, too.
Is a hot tub good for back pain?
Spas and hot tubs are used in many salons and physical therapy centers because they are incredibly beneficial to those who suffer from back pain. Heat and massage improves circulation and relaxes muscles. That is great for the back.
Do outdoor spas need a fence?
Many spas and hot tubs can benefit from a locking cover. It keeps children from accessing the hot tub without supervision. The cover will keep debris and dirt from entering the water, too. In some areas, outdoor water like swimming pools and hot tubs need to be surrounded by a fence. Always check with your local ordinances to find out what’s needed.
Are spas worth it?
Spas are definitely worth the money. They come in a variety of prices ranges, too. You’ll be able to find the one that fits in your budget while providing you with relaxing fun. They are great for massaging and therapeutic for all kinds of pain and ailments.
You should always have hot tub and spa rules and regulations to ensure that everyone stays safe during their spa experience. It’ll make it easier for you to keep the water fresh and clean, too.