As great as hot tubs are, the cost of running them is an obvious hurdle that many homeowners struggle to get over. But there are ways to enjoy your very own hot tub and keep your energy bills low.
Here are some tips to help you reduce your hot tub’s energy usage:
1) Look for Good Insulation
In hot tubs as in houses, insulation is a great way of preventing heat loss. Choosing a properly-insulated hot tub can make a big difference to the amount of energy needed to keep it warm.
Good insulation will keep more of the heat in, so the water in your hot tub will require less energy to maintain its temperature, even when not in use.
2) Keep It Covered!
A proper hot tub cover is another thing that will help your spa to retain its warmth. Make sure you get a thermally-insulated cover that creates a proper seal around the rim of the tub because this will trap the heat that would otherwise escape from the surface of the water. We recommend replacing the cover if it is cracked, worn, or no longer fits well.
For an extra layer of insulation, you can also get a spa bag. Designed to act much like a bike or car cover, the spa bag works to keep the heat in and the elements out of your hot tub.
Also, while heat loss through the bottom of your hot tub is minimal compared to the sides and top, it’s still worth putting the tub on a good base. You can use matting, or better yet, an ABS base to prevent any moisture from below penetrating the tub and wicking away the heat.
3) Location, Location, Location
When you’re deciding where to put your hot tub, try to place it as close to the house as possible. This will mean that the tub is more sheltered from the elements, and as a bonus, your walk from house to tub will be nice and short on those cold winter days. If you can’t find a suitable spot that’s close to the house, consider building an enclosed shelter around the tub to keep it sheltered.
Exposure to the elements will drive up your hot tub’s energy usage because the heaters will have to work harder to maintain the water temperature against the cold air.
4) Use Economy Mode
Obviously, reducing the temperature of the water will reduce your hot tub’s energy usage. Turning the water temperature down by just 1°C can reduce the energy bill by roughly 10%!
Between uses, you can save energy by switching your tub to ‘economy mode’ or turning the water temperature down by a few degrees. Caution: you shouldn’t turn the temperature down too far, as this will mean more energy is needed to heat it back up. Cooling it by about 5°C between uses should be enough if you use your tub regularly.
5) Use Your Hot Tub Less Often
No, we’re not suggesting you only use your spa once or twice a year – that wouldn’t be good value for money! However, unless you need to use the hot tub very frequently for medical reasons, it might be worth only using it on weekends, or every few days. Heating the water less often will obviously decrease your total energy usage.
6) Keep the Filter Clean
Maintaining a clean filter will reduce your energy usage because a dirty hot tub filter can reduce the flow of water, straining the pump and impacting the efficiency of the whole system.
To reach the tub, the water has to pass through the filter before arriving at the heater. So, if the filter is dirty and reducing the flow of water, your heater has to work longer and harder to heat up the water, using more energy.
7) Balance Your Chemicals
Ensure the sanitiser and pH levels of your tub are kept balanced, as this will help to prevent components from corroding, keep your filters cleaner for longer, and ensure the water in the tub lasts a long time before draining. All of this will reduce energy usage over time. Use testing strips to make sure the chemicals are properly balanced, and double-check that you’re cleaning the hot tub with the right chemicals.
8) Winterise Your Hot Tub
Arguably, winter is the best time to own a hot tub because the hot water offers a pleasant and relaxing cocoon against the winter chill. That said, not everyone likes using a hot tub in winter. If you’re one such person, you can have your hot tub ‘winterised’ to ensure it isn’t damaged by the cold.
This involves completely draining and removing all the water from the tub so that none of it freezes and cracks the pipes, as well as fully cleaning the tub.
9) Get Your Hot Tub Serviced Regularly
Just like your car, having your hot tub properly serviced on a regular basis is a very good idea. Regular services should ensure that any problems with your spa are resolved before they become serious issues.
A good service will not only keep your tub running at maximum efficiency but also extend its lifespan.
10) Invest & Upgrade
A hot tub is an investment. Buy the right one and you’ll be enjoying it for years to come – a decade or more if you choose wisely.
If your current tub is on its last legs, consider upgrading by trading in your old tub for money off the new one. Not only will you save money on the new tub, but the new tub is also likely to be more energy efficient than the old one, saving you money on the electricity bill too.
We hope this guide proves useful in saving you money on your energy bill and helps make your hot tub experience better for longer!