How long does it take to heat up a hot tub?
When you purchase a hot tub, you will have a lot of questions. How long will it take to fill up the tub with water? How long will it take for the water in the tub to heat up? These are just some of the most frequent questions that come in the mind of anyone who is about to purchase a hot tub. Well, having spent a good amount of time(and dough!) in our quest to find out the best hot tubs, we can answer these questions for you so that you can make an informed choice.
Hot tubs can hold anywhere from 2 to 8 people at a time. But in this case, bigger doesn’t necessarily mean better. Generally, larger tubs are not only more expensive, but they also take much longer to fill with water. Moreover, they cost more to heat. Yikes! If you want one for just your kid, or yourself and your partner, then go for a small hot tub. If you want one for your entire family to enjoy, you can go for one that can hold 4 to 6 people. If you plan on having guests or friends over and entertaining them in a jacuzzi, then you can buy a model for 6 to 8 people.
Setting up a hot tub
It is super easy to set up a hot tub and get in running in absolutely no time. It doesn’t require any tools and you don’t need to hire the help of a professional (unless something goes wrong with it of course!). Most of these inflatable hot tubs come with instruction manuals and it shouldn’t take you more than 15-20 minutes to set it all up. This includes laying it in the desired place in your house, whether indoors or in your backyard, plug it in and inflate it, ready to be filled up with water.
Using the built-in pumps that come along with the hot tubs, you can inflate them. They are easy to deflate as well when you are done soaking it for as long as you want.
How long will it take to warm up your hot tub?
It can take around an hour for your hot tub to be filled with water. The most desired aspect of inflatable hot tubs is its portability, but if you think that you can take in on your vacay, instantly fill it with water and enjoy a warm dip, well you can think again! It takes much longer for the water in the hot tub to heat up before you can enjoy a warm soak. It will take anywhere between 3 to 12 hours for the hot tubs to reach the desired temperature. All you can do is wait till the water gets warm enough – there is no way around it!
There are several factors which determine how long it will take the water to reach the required temperature.
- The capacity or the size of the tub
- The temperature of the water drawn from the hose
- The ambient or the surrounding air temperature
- How powerful your heating element is
- If you keep your hot tub covered with an insulating or UV cover etc.
- Conditions of the components of the hot tub like the water heater, cover, pump and the jets all affect how quickly the hot tub will take to reach the desired temperature. If these are damaged or wearing out, then it will take longer for the hot tub water to reach the ideal temperature.
A well-maintained hot tub will raise the temperature of the tub water between 3 to 6 degrees every hour. If you leave the cover on at all times, then it will help heat up quicker.
You can get your hot tub to heat faster, but you should do so without damaging it. Read on to find out more. We’ll try to answer all your burning questions on heating your hot tub.
Why and when do you need to heat a hot tub? When you have newly purchased your hot tub spa and freshly filled the tub. If you lower the temperature in between uses, then you have to heat the water again before you can soak inside the tub. When you power it down during winter and now want to use it.
The size of the tub
The size of the hot tub and the heater can impact the temperature of the water. Just think about it. When you boil water on the stove, it takes a longer duration to heat when you use a bigger pot as opposed to a smaller one. Makes sense? The same logic applies here too.
Bigger the size of the tub, the more time it takes to warm up.
The temperature outside
The temperature of the water in the hot tub will determine how long it takes to heat it. When the sun is really blazing outside, the temperature of the water will be around 80 degrees without doing any internal heating. So you will only have to heat your tub for just a couple of hours – 3 to 4 hours at most.
You can use your hot tubs during summer as well. However, if it is too hot inside the tub, it may not be too desirable when the weather is already hot outside. So what can you do? When it’s summer, lower the temperature to 95 degrees. If the water is still way too hot to enjoy lounging inside, you can switch the tub to economy or sleep mode. This will keep the temperature lower than the set value. If you switch it to economy mode, the temperature will be cooler by 15 degrees than you set it to. Who says summer is no time to enjoy a hot tub, eh!
The Hot tub cover
There are ways to improve the efficiency of your hot tub which will help you speed up the water heating while also reducing costs of your hot tub utility bill. No compromises when it comes to the quality of the cover. A good-quality insulated cover will trap heat inside the tub. When you purchase a cover, look for a lockable one with handles or tapered edges that will trap heat inside efficiently. Ensure that your cover has no holes, cracks or damages. Otherwise, it will not just cost you time, but money as well. This is something that many owners overlook. And pay for it later. Now that you know better, make sure you don’t make this mistake. A good hot tub required a good cover to enjoy a great soak!
The location of your tub
How does this matter you ask? If you place your hot tub in your backyard, or patio, somewhere where it is surrounded by plenty of trees and shrubs, This will prevent cooler air from reaching the water.
Maintain and service your hot tub frequently to keep all components in good working order. This will ensure that the water in the hot tub and the heat will flow freely. Also, you need to make sure that you follow all routine recommendations and follow the service guidelines that are recommended. Don’t be lazy with this! Inside the hot tub is where you’re allowed to laze around!
Having the jets on
A hot tub heats faster with jets on. Most inflatable and portable hot tubs feature an AirJet system that emits jets which will allow you to relax in the comfort of the tub while receiving a gentle and soothing massage to your body.
When you turn on the jets of your tub, the water will circulate all around. When the water starts circulating all round, it will disperse the heat evenly. When jets are not used, there will be pockets of cold water in the pipes inside the hot tub. When water begins to circulate, it will flush the pockets, mixing the cold and hot water. This process will heat the water by 3 to 6 degrees every hour!
Bear one thing in mind – turn on the jets only after the hot tub is full. If you risk running water through the jets until they are fully submerged in the water, you may end up damaging the whole unit.
So what if your hot tub doesn’t have jets? What you can do (apart from buying one with jets!) is circulate the water with your hands or a spa noodle. This may not be as efficient as jets, but it will still move the water around and help heat it marginally faster.
Heating the hot tub faster
- Place a lid or cover over the hot tub
- Turn on the jets and other water features in the hot tub
- Use a powerful heater
There are 3 main heaters for use in a spa or hot tub – 150k BTU, 250k BTU and 400 BTU. If you are reluctant to go for 400k BTU for a home spa because of the money factor, you can get a 250l BTU. This will heat the water faster by cutting down the heating time by at least an hour.
Now that you know how long it takes for a hot tub to warm up before you soak up and what you can do to speed up the heating process, you may be wondering how hot the water should be?
To what temperature can you heat it up to?
The absolute maximum safe temperature is 104 degrees Fahrenheit. Most users prefer a temperature of around 100-degree Fahrenheit. The higher the temperature, the shorter should be the time you can soak in the tub. Sorry!
So, if you set the temperature to around 104 degrees, you can soak for just 15 minutes. But if you set it to 98 degrees, you can lounge in for twice as much time! Most guidelines for safe usage state “Hot tub water temperatures should never exceed 104 degrees Fahrenheit. A temperature of 100 degrees is considered safe for a healthy adult.”
Can you use preheated water?
Sitting around for hours for the water to heat up may not sound that appealing. Also, if you are in the mood for a quick dip all of a sudden, the prospect of waiting seems unattractive. But don’t even think about preheating water and throwing it into the tub and getting in!
If you throw in boiling water, or anything even slightly above 104 degrees, you will end up searing the lining and damaging your spa permanently. Your hot tub is just not designed for scaling temperatures.
If you let in hot water that is higher than the temperature of the spa settings, you will only ruin the pump, jets, filter linings and material of the spa. It is simply not worth the risk involved, so yes don’t try this at home!
Should you leave your heater running at all times?
If you are someone who uses your hot tub occasionally, or during warmer weather, it makes more sense to turn off the heater and heat the water when you are about to use the tub. However, if you use it during winter and plan to take frequent dips throughout the week, then you would do well to always leave your hot tub running.