- How much space do you have ? (Keep in mind that there are minimum clearance distances to comply with depending on your city and your insurance company.)
- How many seats do you want ? (Will you be hot-tubbing alone, as a couple, or with friends ?)
- What will you use it for most ? (Unwinding, recharging your batteries, loosening up your muscles, socializing…)
For socializing or just relaxing, a hot tub with fewer jets will do just fine. For massage, it takes at least a minimal number of 6 different types of massage activated by a minimum of 30 jets and 5 or 6 seats (massage stations) that will target specific areas of your body and deliver a complete hydrotherapy massage. Looking to soothe back problems ? Choose a spa having oriented jets along the spine.
The shell contains the moulded seats and extends to the top of the hot tub structure. It may be made from acrylic, fibreglass, resin. A quality shell should be thick, with reinforcements at strategic areas. Keep in mind that a pearl or granite (pebbled) finish will do a better job of camouflaging any eventual scratches.
The cabinet is the skirting around the hot tub structure. You can choose a resin coating imitating wood or simply resin. Resin. We recommend treating it with a water-repellent sealant to preserve the colour. Resin requires little maintenance. Important: the cabinet must have various removable panels to provide easy access to the area underneath, as needed.
When you aren’t using your hot tub, a cover
is strongly recommended to maintain the water temperature. It shall be lockable in order to ensure safety. Ideally, it should also be slightly convex to let rainwater run off. If it has a faux-leather covering, make sure it is flexible enough to resist temperature extremes. Note that practical levers
are available to simplify lifting and storing your spa cover; these can be worthwhile accessories.
The pumps control the power of the massage jets and oxygenate the water in your spa. If you want a gentler massage, a single pump will be enough, but for more intense massage action, two are a must. The more jets your spa has, the more powerful the pumps need to be.
The filter system in an average hot tub should be powerful enough to filter at least 35 gallons/minute. The filter surface of the filter must be at least 50 sq.feet for good efficiency. We recommend always keeping a spare filter cartridge handy and switching cartridges when the time comes to clean your spa. Some models also feature disinfection by ozonation and/or a water purification system with UV lamp. Those types of system disinfect and sanitize the water, which means you’ll need fewer maintenance products.
A superior heating element is one delivering at least 5.5 kW of power.
There are two main types of insulation in a hot tub. The underside of the spa is covered in insulating foam, and there is also a combination of polyurethane foam and vapour-barrier insulation allowing easier access to the plumbing components in case repairs are needed. Ideally, the outside panels should also be insulated, for optimum resistance to our harsh winters.
A wide variety of accessories
are available to you. One mandatory accessory is a breaker called a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI). This is a very important safety device in case of variations in current or a sudden electrical storm. Depending on your precise spa configuration, a resin step may be a must-have to ensure easy entry and exit. There are also deluxe add-ons like waterfalls, lighting, a sound system, etc.
Lastly, if you’re interested in a particular model, be sure to try it out in-store—with or without water inside—to see if it’s comfortable and the right fit for you.