Prepare your Hot tub for usage during Winter

Now that summer is gradually coming to an end and winter is drawing near, it is normal for things to start getting colder,  especially over the next couple of months. Once winter arrives, there's nothing more relaxing and soothing than sitting in a hot tub on a cold winter's night. Imagine getting back home after a long day at work with the cold winter breeze, and sinking into a warm bath with bubbles. I can gladly tell you that this is one of the greatest pleasures that come with owning a personal spa. As great as this sounds, however, the cold weather still comes with some challenges for hot tub owners. This is precisely why you need to winterize your hot tub.

Prepare your Hot tub for the Winter:

  • Get a Good Cover
  • Keep the Water Clean
  • Monitor the Water Level
  • Constantly Check the Temperature
  • Reduce Jets Usage
  • Plan Your Soak Times
  • Keep Warm After You Soak

How to Winterize your Hot Tub While While Away:

  • Flush and Drain the water
  • Blow the air
  • Replace the Filters and Loosen Your Fittings
  • Clear the Jets
(CC BY 2.0) by koka_sexton

Besides, making preparations for your hot tub for the winter months includes carrying out necessary operations as well as required adjustments to keep the tub operating all through the cold winter months. Finally, you'll also be required to take some preventive measures to ensure that certain freezing temperature levels do not affect or ruin your hot tub. Do you want to know the right way to prepare your hot tub for the winter? Are you concerned about coping in the cold winter months? Don't worry; this article will carefully guide you through the steps required to prepare your hot tub for the winter.

Steps to Prepare your Hot Tub for the Winter

Before entering into the winter season, always bear in mind that hot tubs don't necessarily have to be closed down in the winter. Some people believe that hot tubs are prone to more damage and in the winter, and hence, they close them down. On the other hand, this spa proves to be more beneficial when used in the winter. However, the most critical part of this preparation is ensuring that your hot tub has been drained completely. This is because water tends to expand when frozen, leading to burst pipes and damage to the heating systems, pumps, and jets. Follow the steps below to help prepare your hot tub for the winter months.

1. Get a Good Cover

Investing in high quality and well-insulated cover that has a tight-fitting seal is very crucial. This will help your hot tub maintain a constantly high temperature, even when the weather is freezing. These covers insulate better when locked, as the straps pull down on the edges of the cover, which forms a tight seal that helps keep the heat in. If the straps are not properly locked, the edges of the cover can lift slightly, causing heat to escape. This will not only mean extra heating costs, but you'll also be required to top up the water level more often and add more chemicals to balance the water.

2. Keep the Water Clean

Ensure that you are regularly clean and maintain the water and filters based on your usual schedule, as simple problems may become a big deal in subzero weather.  If you know that your tub will be due for a scheduled water change around the wintertime, it is advisable to reschedule to earlier in the year. If you decide to change the water when the outside temperature is low, there's a risk of water freezing and damaging your spa.

Also, the risk of your pipes freezing outweighs all the benefits that changing the water has. However, if you still need to do so, change the water in small batches at a time, refilling and reheating the water in between these partial drains. Although this won't get you the same results as draining completely and refilling, it will still get you by until winter is over.

3. Monitor the Water Level

Frequently check your water level and add more if necessary. Make sure the water level does not fall too low in cold weather, as the components of your hot tub may freeze, and this may damage your hot tub. Of course, there are times when you'll be too busy to use your hot tub. However, the main problem arises when this becomes a means to skip maintenance. There are some important reasons why you should never neglect your hot tub, one of which includes the time required and the effort needed to fix a hot tub with water quality issues. When you're not using your hot tub, still try to check on it at least once a week, and add all the maintenance chemicals. This will save you a lot of stress when you're ready to use the tub again.

4. Constantly Check the Temperature

To make things a lot easier, set a reminder for checking the water temperature daily. This will help you react immediately whenever something goes wrong. If the weather is too cold and dry, your hot tub will evaporate much more quickly.

5. Reduce Jets Usage

Ensure that you don't use the jets as much as you would in other seasons, and don't forget to turn them off when you're not using them. Jets work by blowing air into the water, and this can lower the temperature in wintertime.

6. Plan Your Soak Times

Note that the longer you stay inside your hot tub, the higher your body temperature climbs. Although it may be quite tempting and equally soothing to linger in the warmth of your hot tub in the winter, make sure you limit your soak time to about fifteen to twenty minutes.

7. Keep Warm After You Soak

You should not be wet and still be wearing a bathing suit- this can be very dangerous to your health. After your soak, when leaving your spa to face the icy winter air, make sure you shield yourself from the cold by wearing a bathrobe and sturdy slippers.  Get indoors as quickly as possible and dress warmly.

How to Winterize your Hot Tub While On Vacation

If you'll be taking a trip for an extended period during the winter, it is important to make sure your hot tub is still being maintained. You may decide to ask a friend or family to stop by regularly, but if you still need to shut it down during the winter, you can do that too. However, shutting down your hot tub does not mean just closing the cover and forgetting about it. There are certain things you need to do before you leave for you to avoid all sorts of expensive repairs when you return.

1. Flush and Drain the water

Before you drain your hot tub, add Whirlpool Rinse 24 hours prior. This removes and dissolves all the accumulated body oils and lather that have built up in the plumbing lines, and may affect proper jet action.

The fiberglass hot tub insert is usually sturdy; however, there are several holes in it that can let the air from the whirlpool massage system in. You wouldn't want to leave any water in there. So when the embers in the wood-fired heater are completely cooled down, carefully open the draining plug of the hot tub and leave it open to allow all the water to run out completely. It is important that you do not drain the water when the heater is still hot to prevent damage.

2. Blow the air

Once the water has been drained completely, turn on your whirlpool air massage system to blow air from all the multiple holes. Ensure that there's not even as little as a droplet left inside. Finally, put off the heating system and allow the air blower to run for 30 seconds to push all the water out and dry it completely.

3. Replace the Filters and Loosen Your Fittings

If you'll be shutting down your hot tub for a long period, it is a great idea to remove and clean the filters. In case they need to be replaced, make sure you do so. If not, simply clean out the filter, dry it, and keep it somewhere safe for the winter. After draining, there could still be water in some of the fittings that connect the pipework of your hot tub. Loosen all the fittings to allow the remaining water to drain out.

4. Clear the Jets

Use a wet-dry vacuum cleaner and blow enough air through each of the jets to make sure that all of the water has been completely removed. Next, you'll have to do a deep clean of the hot tub shell and cover to ensure that all bacteria and debris are removed so that nothing can grow and ruin your hot tub while it is empty.

Final remarks

In conclusion, hot tubs are actually very enjoyable and even more soothing in the winter. However, special attention needs to be paid to this system in cold weather, to avoid some challenges that hot tub owners face. Once you pay attention to these steps, you'll be able to get the most out of your hot tub this winter without any issues.