Whether you want to soothe sore muscles or enjoy some time with friends and family in a fun environment, a hot tub can be a luxurious way to relax. Some people might opt for an inground hot tub if they don’t mind spending extra money or waiting for it to be installed.
An inflatable hot tub, however, is a good option for those on a budget. Inflatable hot tubs are quickly increasing in popularity because they portable, convenient and cost-effective. If you are new to the idea of owning a hot tub and need to explore the ins and outs of owning one then you are in the right place. Read the beginner’s guide for an inflatable hot tub below for specifics you should know before purchasing an inflatable hot tub.
What Is an Inflatable Hot Tub?
Inflatable hot tubs, sometimes referred to as inflatable spas, are smaller and more compact than built-in tubs but the function is the same. In its most basic form, an inflatable tub is an above-ground unit that is blown up with air.
The tub comes with all the necessary components including the jets and the waterways if applicable. A separate unit will be included that includes a pump and a heater. Hot tubs are inflated with the pump and filled with a water hose.
Inflatable hot tubs come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and styles. When shopping for one, be sure to pay close attention to how many adults the unit can comfortably fit. Most inflatable hot tubs are quite small and will not accommodate as many people as a traditional hot tub.
What's the Best Inflatable Hot Tub to Buy?
When deciding which type of inflatable hot tub is right for you, you want to consider things such as the shape and the components of the tub. Not all hot tubs are created with the same materials.
Some have different accessories and tubs come in a wide range of colors and sizes. Which hot tub you purchase will depend on where you plan to put the tub and what you intend for its primary use. Take the following things into consideration before you decide which hot tub to buy:
Capacity: Most inflatable hot tubs are big enough to comfortably accommodate two adults. You can choose any model if you only want enough room for two people.However, it may be a tight squeeze if you plan to fit four or more adults into the tub. If you plan to invite friends over, choose a unit that can accommodate more than two people. These models will likely be more expensive, but the added cost may be worth it if you plan to use the hot tub regularly.
Shape and Design: Most units are circular in shape. Some manufacturers, however, offer alternative shape designs such as rectangular or square options.
Square models tend to have more legroom that will make it more comfortable if you are hosting guests. Rectangular shapes tend to be more expensive be will also generally accommodate more guests.
Controls and Timers: Just like a traditional hot tub, the inflatable version comes with controls. Choose a model that comes with controls that are easy to access and intuitive to operate.
Ideally, any action you want to perform should not require more than a touch or two. If you are concerned about your electricity consumption, choose a model that comes with a timer control.
You can set your unit to automatically turn off after a certain length of time to save electricity and control the water temperature. Generally, as a rule of thumb, avoid running your tub for more than 45 minutes at one time.
Coverings: Most units will come with a separate cover. Some people don’t consider the cover when making a purchase. However, this is a mistake because the cover performs a very important function.
Covers keep debris, dirt and critters from contaminating the water. They also help ensure the safety of children and animals.
Covers that are made from insulated materials can even help maintain the temperature of the water when it is not in use. This will reduce the amount of power needed the next time you use the unit.
Pump: The most important component of any inflatable hot tub is the pump. The pump is particularly critical in an inflatable unit because it fills the unit with air.
The pump is also responsible for circulating water and powering the jets. Choose a model that safely encloses the pump in a separate container.
You don’t want any electrical components exposed to the elements or damage could occur. Also, choose a model that has a safety mechanism built in that will help protect against shocks.
What Can I Put Under My Inflatable Hot Tub?
You cannot put an inflatable hot tub directly on the ground, even if you place the unit indoors. Purchasing a sturdy ground cloth is essential if you plan to place the unit outside to protect it from dirt, rocks and other sharp objects.
Most tubs will come with ground covering, but some may be low quality. Purchase thick pads or insulation to put underneath the tub if you are worried about the quality of the covering that came with your unit.
Do Inflatable Hot Tubs Have Jets?
Traditional hot tubs come with high-powered jets. These jets are made up of many parts. The main portion is the jet body. This part seals the tub wall with a ring so the water will not escape.
The jet body is connected to the water lines in a traditional hot tub. The jet body houses several components including the diffuser and the nozzle.
Inflatable hot tubs have pumps, but they are a bit different from the pumps that you would find in a traditional unit.
These pumps are not as high-powered, but they still have air jets and are strong enough to produce the circulation needed. Most units come with gentle pumps. If you want to purchase a more high-powered pump, it can be bought separately.
Are There Seats in an Inflatable Hot Tub?
Inflatable hot tubs come with a variety of accessories, including seats. Tubs do not usually come with accessories.
They must be purchased separately. While some hot tub accessories, such as seats, are purely for functional purposes, others are more for recreation or style.
Below are some accessories that you can purchase to enhance your unit:
- Seats: Purchasing seats is a good idea if you plan to spend a lot of time in your tub. Seats come in a multitude of colors, sizes and textures. Select seats made of a material that will withstand being submerged in water.
- Lights: Lights are a great accessory to purchase if the hot tub is outdoors. Everyone loves to enjoy a pleasant evening soaking in a hot tub and lights will make it a safer and more enjoyable experience.
- Headrests: Headrests are not essential items to have, but they can be a good purchase if you want to use the tub to soothe aches and pains.
- Steps: Purchasing steps can greatly enhance the safety and functionality of your inflatable hot tub, especially if children or seniors will be using the unit regularly.
This is just a short list of the accessories you can purchase. Shop around before purchasing and always choose accessories made of materials that can be submerged in water.
Why Are Inflatable Hot Tubs So Expensive?
The cost of an inflatable hot tub will vary depending on the size, manufacturer and quality. Some models can be purchased for as little as $300, but these units are usually small and cannot withstand much wear and tear.
Most quality models start at around $400. Tubs priced at the $500 price mark often come with strong pumps and are made of highly durable materials.
Inflatable tubs that are priced more the $500 should accommodate at least four individuals. Be wary of tubs that are priced similarly to a traditional acrylic hot tub. It’s wise to opt for a traditional unit if you are willing to pay that much money.
How Can I Maintain My Inflatable Hot Tub?
Once you make the investment and purchase an inflatable hot tub, you want to make sure you maintain and clean it properly. Follow the tips below to keep your unit running efficiently for years to come:
- If your inflatable hot tub does not automatically circulate the water, turn it on once a day for 20 or 25 minutes. The circulation prompts the water to move through the filter so the conditions in your hot tub remain safe and sanitary.
- Inspect the unit’s filter regularly to ensure it is running properly. Most filters should be thoroughly cleaned once a year. Check your owner’s manual for advice if you suspect you need a replacement.
- Use a sanitizing agent such as bromine to remove harmful bacteria from the water. Even though the water inside the unit gets very hot when turned on, it does not get hot enough to kill bacteria or other harmful germs.
- The pH level in your hot tub’s water can become unbalanced if not checked routinely. Ideally, the pH level should stay between 7.2 and 7.6. Test the water once a month to keep levels balanced.
- Drain the water and clean all components of your hot tub, including the cover, once a month.
- Use cleaners that have antibacterial chemicals in them. Germs can remain on surfaces for several hours and can contaminate the water if not cleaned properly. Consider hiring a professional to thoroughly clean and sanitize your hot tub once every year or two.
- The water inside the hot tub should be changed every three months, or even more frequently if you use it daily. Your owner’s manual will explain the best method for draining the water.
- While it may seem unnecessary, ensuring everyone showers before entering the hot tub can help keep conditions sanitary.
Set a regular schedule for maintaining and cleaning your hot tub. It will become part of your routine after a few months and won’t seem like such a chore if you get in the habit of performing a few simple duties regularly.
Can an Inflatable Hot Tub Be Used in the Winter?
While it is not necessary, it is possible to use your hot tub during colder temperatures if you take a few steps. However, most units will not function if the temperature outside is below 40°F.
You can build an enclosure around your hot tub if you live in a cold area or if you want to use it in the winter months. Put an extra cloth beneath your inflatable hot tub during the winter months to protect it from the cold ground. Check out some of the best inflatable hot tubs for winter right here.
Make sure you completely cover the tub each time you are finished using it, especially if it is located outside. Significant damage can occur If the inside of your hot tub is exposed to snow or sleet.
Can Inflatable Hot Tubs Be Used Indoors?
An inflatable hot tub can be safely situated indoors if it is placed on the right type of flooring. Tubs are very heavy when filled with water and are difficult to maneuver. Because of the weight, don’t place the tub on a deck or another type of flooring that is not stable.
Ideally, units should be placed on concrete or grass. An unfinished basement is an ideal location for an inflatable tub.
Most basements have concrete floors and large, empty rooms that will easily accommodate the size of the unit. However, it will be very difficult to move the hot tub if you ever decide to finish the basement.
We hope you have found this guide helpful and have found answers in this guide to help you make a right decision for purchasing your inflatable hot tub. If you have decided to purchase an inflatable hot tub and are looking for an affordable retailer, look no further than Hottub.net. We carry a variety of inflatable hot tubs that are affordable and made of durable materials.
We offer models that can accommodate up to six individuals. Visit our website today to browse through our selection of inflatable hot tubs. You can also contact us through our website if you have specific questions or you want to discuss which model is best for your home.