In our last post, we answered the 10 most asked questions when buying a hot tub. Today, we’ll answer 10 more of our customers’ most frequently asked questions. This time, however, the topics will revolve around basic usage, operational advice, and the many benefits of being a hot tub owner.
Can you operate a hot tub without chemicals?
While you technically can operate your hot tub without chemicals, if you don’t want to drain and refill the water after each use, we wouldn’t recommend it.
It doesn’t matter if you shower before every soak and cover your hot tub when it’s not in use, unwanted dirt and bacteria will inevitably get in. And since hot tubs are designed to keep the water at an ideal temperature for bathing, that also means bacteria will be right at home to multiply.
You need chemicals to kill the bacteria, which is why if you buy a hot tub, you should get comfortable with adding and balancing those chemicals regularly. Protect your spa investment with our line of concentrated chemicals that are specially formulated for extreme water conditions found in most of Minnesota and Western Wisconsin.
What chemicals do I need to put in the water?
A spa is only as good as the chemicals you put in it. Whether you’re attempting to treat a specific water condition or trying to keep your spa in mint condition, having the right chemicals makes all the difference.
In general, spa chemicals are used to balance the following three levels:
- Alkalinity: The alkalinity of your water measures its capacity to neutralize the acids within the water. Ideally, your hot tub should fall in the range between 80 and 120 parts per million. If your water is above or below this range, you can then increase or decrease accordingly using alkalinity-specific chemicals.
- pH: The pH balance of your spa measures the water’s acidity, with a high pH level indicating more acidic water and a low level indicating basic water. You can test your spa’s pH level with a simple test strip and use Nature’s Choice pH Up or pH Down to bring the level back to the ideal range of 7.2 to 7.6.
- Sanitizer: Most commonly, spas are sanitized using either Bromine tabs or Chlorine granules. Bromine chemicals can be more expensive than chlorine upfront but tend to last longer.
How do I take care of my hot tub in the winter?
Your hot tub doesn’t have to go into hibernation just because there’s snow on the ground. You can enjoy the restorative benefits of your spa all year round by following these five simple winter care tips:
- Change the water in the fall and spring
- Invest in a good cover
- Keep the water and filters clean
- Monitor the water levels
- Always keep your hot tub warm
For more helpful tips, read our full guide on using and caring for hot tubs in a Minnesota winter.
Can I use my hot tub in the summer?
On the complete opposite end of the spectrum, many people are curious whether or not they should use their spa during the hot summer months. The simple answer is: Yes, absolutely!
That said, here are some tips for how to use your spa in the summer:
- Take advantage of the cooler times of day
- Enjoy a soak during or after rain
- Relax before or after a dip in the pool
- Soothe your muscles after a workout
- Use it to elevate a gathering with friends
Does my hot tub have to be hot?
Another great way to enjoy your hot tub in the summer is by turning down the heat. It may seem contradictory, but your hot tub can actually be a great way to cool off!
Turn down the temperature on your hot tub and give it some time to adjust. You can also add some fresh, cold water to help drop the temp more rapidly. Running the jets can help to cool the water as well, especially in the cooler evening air.
Using a cover on your hot tub when it’s not in use and keeping it shaded while in use will help to retain the temperature. Unlike pools, hot tubs are insulated, so once you’ve settled on a temp you like—whether warm or cool—maintaining it is much easier to achieve.
What are the physical health benefits of owning a hot tub?
One of the best reasons to own a hot tub is the myriad of health benefits they provide. While certainly not a comprehensive list, regular use of a hot tub can provide:
- Pain relief
- Lower blood pressure
- Better circulation
- Weight loss
- Faster injury recovery
Read our full guide for more ways a hot tub can improve your physical health.
Can a hot tub improve my mental well-being?
As if the lengthy list of physical advantages weren’t enough, regular soaks in a hot tub can provide mental benefits too, such as:
- Reduced stress and anxiety
- Better sleep
- Balanced hormones
- Improved overall mood
- Mental reprieve from physical pain
Do hot tubs reduce stress?
If you read the answer to the previous question, then you already know this to be true. Soaking in a hot tub is a great way to relax and rejuvenate physically and mentally after a busy day. In fact, regular hot tub use can be a beneficial part of stress reduction therapy, especially when combined with other healthy lifestyle choices like exercising and getting plenty of sleep.
By using your hot tub for hydrotherapy at least 20–30 minutes a day, you can deliver huge returns for your health and wellness. The warm waters and massaging jets help alleviate both the effects of stress on your body and the stress levels that caused them to begin with.
My kids are growing bored with our hot tub—how can I keep them entertained?
Owning a hot tub is a great way to improve your family life. However, enjoying a calm, relaxing soak is not usually enough to keep most kids’ attention. Fortunately, there are plenty of simple ways to complement the fun of a hot tub.
Whether you’re looking for more classic entertainment such as waterproof cards or board games, or a more intense match of hot tub hockey or ping pong outbreak, there are plenty of great games you can play with the kids in a hot tub.
Don’t have the time (or energy) to teach them a new game? Here are some great hot tub toys that are perfectly suited to pacify both younger and older kids alike.
Is it possible to overuse my hot tub?
People enjoying a new hot tub or considering purchasing one frequently ask, “How often can I use a hot tub?” The answer is, you can use it as often as you’d like, so long as you follow these recommendations:
- Reduce each soaking session to 30 minutes or less.
- Maintain the water temperature to around 98.6 degrees.
- Keep up with regular cleaning and maintenance.
Extended use of a hot tub with very warm water can have some negative effects, so it’s important to listen to your body and be cognizant of your situation. Other than that, though, your hot tub needs to run at regular intervals to help keep it clean and ready for use, so don’t be afraid to use it!
Do you have a question we didn’t cover?
Contact one of our Cal Spas representatives for more information or visit one of our convenient Twin Cities showrooms.