Hot Tub Maintenance Tips for the Winter
While some people choose to winterize their hot tubs, others want to enjoy their units all winter long. If you’ve decided to keep your hot tub open year-round, you’ll need to take some extra steps. Here are some important hot tub maintenance tips to keep your unit safe and operational when the temperature drops.
Change the water. It’s generally much easier to clean out your hot tub before the temperature drops. This will also give you a chance to make sure it is in good working condition, so you don’t have to spend a lot of time outdoors servicing the unit.
Add a thermal blanket. You can reduce your energy costs and keep your water warmer by using a floating thermal blanket which sits directly at the top of the water.
Monitor water levels. You should regularly check your water levels during the winter to make sure they haven’t dropped too low, or the pump and heater could shut down. If this happens, you could end up with frozen water and costly repair charges. If you consistently use your hot tub during the winter, you will likely see the water level diminish over time. If you don’t use it often, check the water levels at least once a week by partially opening the cover and taking a quick look inside. You should also run the jets and hit the buttons to make sure everything is working as it should.
Tighten your cover. Check to make sure your insulated cover is securely fastened since even the smallest gap can force your heater to run more often. While it’s typically best to keep the water temperature at 90 degrees Fahrenheit, a well-insulated hot tub can keep water from freezing for up to seven days even if the power goes out.
Clear off snow and debris. Although it may seem like a burden, it’s important to regularly check your hot tub cover to make sure snow, ice and debris aren’t weighing it down. Even a few pounds of weight can damage the foam core within your cover. This could result in hundreds of dollars in repairs, especially if you end up needing a full replacement. Snow and debris accumulation will also make you less inclined to get out and enjoy your hot tub since you know you will have to spend time cleaning the cover beforehand. With all that said, if you use your hot tub often, you can actually enhance its natural insulating abilities by leaving a small amount of snow on the cover. Just be sure to carefully monitor the hot tub to make sure the snow doesn’t get too deep.
Prioritize safety. It can be tempting to soak for long periods of time in your hot tub during the winter months. Because of the extreme difference between the temperature in the air and water, however, it’s important to pay close attention to how you feel. If you begin feeling tired or flushed, exit your hot tub immediately. When it’s especially cold above the surface of the water, your body may not give you much warning when it begins to overheat. Be vigilant and don’t overheat your water, especially if you are older or have existing health issues.
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