Why You Shouldn't Winterize Your Hot Tub or Spa and How to Keep It Running All Year
When the night is chilly and the toes are numb, it just might be the perfect time to have a nice soak in the hot tub. A hot tub or spa will keep you toasty warm, even when the temperatures get close to zero.
Maybe people wonder how they should winterize their hot tubs, but the truth is, they can enjoy having their hot tub all year long. After all, what could be better than to slip into the warm soothing water and relax any time of the year?
Along with being able to enjoy your spa in the fall and winter months, not draining it may be better for your hot tub, preserving it for years to come. This is because residual water that is left after improper draining can cause damage. Operating the unit throughout the season is not only more fun than letting it sit, but will allow you to continue to maintain the system. Plus, you will avoid the hassle of closing down the system and then opening it back up again in the spring.
The biggest hazard to your hot tub or spa is freezing. Now is the time to reread your manual. If your model is equipped with a freeze protection system, make use of it and set the temperature above the minimum setting and on the auto heat mode. If you do not have this feature, use your timer to set your system to cycle on in frequent intervals. How often these intervals should be will depend on the time of the year and your regions. On very cold days, you may need to set the intervals for every 15 minutes per hour. Of course, keeping the temperature at a constant setting will not only allow you to use your hot tub every day, but it will also save energy. Keeping it warm, rather than allowing it to cool and then heat up again, will be more efficient.
Running your jets in the winter will consume extra energy, since they will inject some cold air into the spa water, which will then need to be reheated. Still, if you enjoy your jets, go for it. Just keep them turned off when not in use.
Make sure that you have a solid cover that is in good condition. This will keep your unit insulated, which takes on more importance in the colder months. Lower the heat loss even more by installing a floating thermal blanket. It will help prevent evaporation and reduce the moisture build up on the sides of your spa.
Finally, have a contingency plan for extended power outages. If you loose power for just a few hours, all you need to do is keep your cover on your unit. If the power outage lasts longer, you will need to connect your hot tub to a generator, or follow proper drainage procedures to prevent freezing.
Image Source: Emerald Spring Spas via HGDesignIdeas