FAQ’s – Frequently Asked Question’s to help with your hot tub purchase

How should I prepare before shopping for a spa?
First of all, you should prepare yourself for a lot of different theories and views from each manufacturer's product. There are varying schools of thought on the best way to build a hot tub. You need to listen carefully to these reasons on why to buy that particular product, don't take the word of a salesperson and use your common sense! The hot tub industry is a new industry and therefore brand awareness is still not proven. Workmanship, materials, and features determine a hot tubs price but generally speaking, a consumer should shop around before making the final purchase decision.

How much does a hot tub spa cost?
Spas and hot tubs range from as little as £1,000 for an inflatable model to as much as £12,000 from some companies. Mr Tubby offers quality and high specification whilst at an affordable and realistic price.

What should I look for in a hot tub spa?
Always look for quality. You should check for quality in every area of a spa. Here is our checklist:

How is the shell and frame constructed?
Most quality hot tub spas have an acrylic shell (2mm thick), reinforced with fibreglass. This is the most important part of your hot tub and therefore must protect it from any twisting stresses. This is achieved through the hot tub framework that can come in three forms, timber steel and stainless steel. Timber is the cheapest and does distort and rot with time, steel is far more rigid but will rust, and then there’s the ultimate framework of stainless steel that is both rigid and will never corrode. All of the Mr Tubby range comes with stainless steel frames, totally enclosed by using fibreglass reinforced plastic floor/base.

How is the spa insulated?
Most hot tub spas fall into three categories regarding insulation. Those that are manufactured in warmer climates have minimal or no insulation (plus saves manufacturing cost by not having it), others have insulated panels on the floor and walls of the cabinet and finally there is the full cabinet foam option.
In our climate you MUST have insulation to keep the heat in the water therefore minimise running costs so avoid hot tubs with little insulation.
The full foam method encloses all of the spa pipework, therefore should an issue arrise, you have to 'dig' out the insulation, then refill.
The panelled insulation method allows you to get to the pipes should you have a break or a leak.
The Mr Tubby range comes with foam insulation to the shell (exclusing the pipes), plus extra panel insulation installed around the spa skirt and floor - the ultimate insulation solution! This keeps the cost of running a hot tub to a minimum by stopping heat energy escaping, locking in the heat from the pipes and pumps.

How much does a hot tub cost to run?
This figure varies greatly between manufacturers, when looking for a hot tub you should check on the type of insulation and how it is applied. This will give you a good idea of the cost to run a hot tub. The best form of insulation is described in the point above.
There are a lot of variables that determine monthly operating costs. Some of these variables include climate, bather load (how often the spa is used), filtration cycles, etc but on the whole you should budget for between 50p and 80p per day.

What number of jets is best?
It is worth considering how many seats are in the hot tub spa, then seeing how many are allocated to each position. This will show you how many ‘master’ positions the spa has but If you can afford to have more then go for it as ultimately it will give you a true hydrotherapy experience. Avoid spas with less than 25 jets as you may as well stick to a hot bath!

How important is horsepower to the spa?
Very important if you want the true ‘hot tub experience’. One way of checking this is to turn all the spa jets on and feel the power. More powerful spas are the best, without question, as you can always reduce their flow when required. Another simple visual test is viewing the size of the pipes leading into and out of the pump. The larger the pipe size, the larger the flow. For example, a three inch pipe will require a high performance pump and motor. Also check the amperage rating, printed clearly by the motor manufacturer on the pump itself and compare. Higher amperage = Higher power. The Mr Tubby range are all 4 pumps, 45 amp supply.

Is the filter easy to remove for cleaning?
Through design, our cartridge filters can be easily removed and cleaned.

Wooden or plastic skirting?
Plastic/synthetic skirts have come along way recently (they used to look like cheap plastic!), so now it is down to personal choice. Plastic is less maintenance, but if you get a good quality timber, it will last as long and blend in with your surroundings.
Mr Tubby supplies both timber and synthetic surrounds, but when it comes to timber we upgrade all skirts to TEAK wood to ensure longevity and beauty.

How often does the spa need to be drained?
Typically, a hot tub needs to be drained once every 3 months. This is just a guideline as this will depend on volume of water in the spa as well as bather load. There will be instances when you may need to change the water sooner than scheduled, for instance if the water becomes contaminated with detergents or cosmetics from clothing or skin. A couple of days before you are going to drain the spa, stop adding chemicals, remove the cover and switch off to allow the water to cool. You can then use the water in the garden.

How much will the cleaning chemicals cost per month?
Less than £5 per month.

Can my hot tub be used all year round?
Absolutely! Many people purchase their own spas after experiencing using one at a ski resort. Mr Tubby spas are deep enough to ensure that the shoulders are submerged in the hot water at all times - very important when sitting gazing at the stars on a cold winter's night.

What electrical supply is required?
A 40 Amp RCD protected supply (for most Mr Tubby hot tubs although this can be confirmed prior to your work taking place).

How do I fill and drain the Hot Tub?
Using a garden hosepipe you fill the tub. Again by connecting a hosepipe to the drain valve you can empty the spa.

What is the weight of a Hot Tub empty?
Up to 400kg depending on the model

What is the weight of a Hot Tub full?
For a typical 5/6 person hot tub its approximately 2000kg when full of water. Then add the people, maybe 100kg each, then its 2600kg total.

Will the hot tub fit through a door?
No. See the data sheet for exact overall dimensions.

I do not have a garden access; how do I get the hot tub into my rear garden?
If there is no other access, maybe through a neighbour’s or by removing a fence panel then a crane lift is required. Costing between £200 - £500 this should not be an obstacle against having the ‘hot tub experience’. Mr Tubby will help with this if necessary.

Can I install the electrical supply myself?
No. A registered Part ‘P’ electrician will need to visit and install a circuit breaker in your electrical consumer unit, then run a cable to near your spa and fit an isolator. Mr Tubby can also carry this package out, please call to discuss the details of your installation. This is nothing to worry about as it is no more complex or expensive than installing any other outdoor electric product i.e. fountain pump or outdoor socket.

What maintenance is required and how long does it take?
About 20 minutes a week to check water condition and add chemicals as required. Half an hour a month to clean the filter, 2 hours every 3 months to empty and refill the pool.

How long does the filter last?
This is dependent on usage of the hot tub and the degree of maintenance to the filter. (6-12Months)

How are chemicals introduced to the hot tub?
After testing the water (e.g. with tester strip) any relevant chemicals are simply sprinkled in the pool.

Do I need to have water connected all the time?
No. Just fill from a garden hose and top up as required.

Can I install my pool in a conservatory or pool closure?
Yes. Please call our sales line for more information.

Can I use the pool immediately after I apply the first dose of chemicals?
No. You must wait for 12 hrs after first applying the chlorine. It will need this time to heat–up from cold anyway.

How long does the filter last?
This is dependent on usage of the pool and the degree of maintenance to the filter.

Is it called a hot tub or spa?
For many years our industry has struggled with this same question. In the mid 70's our products were marketed as "Hot Tubs" and sometime in the late 80's the term spa was introduced. Yes, a spa is a hot tub and vise-versa.

Without using strong chemicals, how can I keep my hot tub clean?
All of Mr Tubby’s hot tubs come with an integrated Ozonator that destroys viruses, algae and bacteria, reducing the need for strong chemicals. Ozone is one of the most powerful of nature’s purifiers and produces no harmful bi-products or side effects. A residual level of chlorine is also required in the hot tub to ensure that it’s kept spotlessly clean and disease free. Between 1-3mg/litre is required and this is maintained by regular dosing. Check chlorine levels every day and shock dose the water weekly. To shock dose your hot tub, add 10g of Granular Chlorine per 800 litres of water, allowing the residual chlorine level to drop back below 5mg/litre before re-use.

If I wanted to install my hot tub inside the house, are there are restrictions?
No, but take into account the accessibility of the room, the overall size of the hot tub and the floor must be able to withstand the weight. The floor must also be constructed from a water-resistant material with a non-slip surface, to ensure no accidents occur when leaving the hot tub. A drainage system should be incorporated into the floor design to soak away any excess water that splashes during water replacement or hot tub use. There must be adequate ventilation in the room as the hot tub will be heated at all times and the humidity will be high. Walls will require a coat of good moisture resistant paint or wallpaper and consideration should also be given to the furniture used in the room as too much moisture causes damage. The room should also be well ventilated for good air circulation or a de-humidifier could be used to help reduce moisture levels. Double-glazing will help to reduce condensation in the room.

If I move house, can I take my hot tub spa with me?
Yes as hot tubs are portable and once installed are filled from a garden hosepipe. All that is required when you move is to empty out the water, isolate and then disconnect the electrical supply and move it out. (The electrical disconnection must be carried out by an approved Part ‘P’ electrician as the cable must be disconnected from both the hot tub and the consumer unit to ensure the cable could never be livened up by mistake). Please beware, spas are very heavy. Mr Tubby Ltd offer a complete hassle free hot tub relocation service, please call for details.
Although most customers find that the hot tub spa adds value to their house and choose to include it in the sale price, installing a new spa in their new home.

Can I lie down in the hot tub?
Yes, several of our hot tubs have a full length ergonomically designed hydrotherapy body lounger to ensure perfect posture.

What is Hydrotherapeutic Action?
It is the continuous massaging motion of the jets that relieves stress by targeting individual muscles, allowing them to relax, giving an invigorated all over, well being feeling.

Will a hot tub help with sports injuries, aches and pains?
The rotational jets personalise each massage and replicate therapeutic sports injury treatments that can help repair damaged ligaments and weakened muscles. Immersing the body in water makes it 90% weightless, relieving pressure on bones, joints and muscles. The soothing combination of warmth and massage invigorates the skin surface and increases blood circulation by dilating blood vessels. The heated waters encourage fully oxygenated blood to flow freely throughout the body helping to repair damaged and sore tissue.

If I am using the hot tub at night can it be lit up?
All Mr Tubby hot tubs come complete with state of the art LED underwater illumination and waterline LED lighting.

In the Summer can the heater be turned off so that the hot tub can be used as a "splash pool"?
Yes our hot tubs can be used as a splash pool to cool down in the summer and all have digital thermostats so you can set the precise temperature you want the hot tub at. You could not switch the hot tub completely off as the filter cycle and ozonator would still need to run however the cost of running the hot tub would be minimal as the heater would not be used.

Are spas good for you?
Hydrotherapy has been a part of civilised life for thousands of years. The benefits of using hydrotherapy fall into two categories - physical benefits and mental benefits. Published research has also shown that soaking for 30 minutes a day in a hot tub can reduce blood glucose levels.

Will my spa relieve stress?
The relief of stress and stress related conditions are one of the main reasons why busy people buy spas. Relaxing in warm water and being gently massaged relieves anxiety and relaxes tense and aching muscles. As the body and mind relax, blood pressure falls and tension induced headaches fade.

Will my spa help me sleep better?
Spending time relaxing in your spa is the best preparation for a good night's sleep that you can make.

Should I use my spa after exercise?
After a strenuous workout lactic acid can accumulate in the muscles. Hydrotherapy increases the blood flow to carry away lactic acid from the muscles, helping to repair and rejuvenate them.

Can I exercise in my spa?
Exercising in water means that muscles and joints are supported at all times. Working with the resistance of the water can make gentle exercise very effective in building muscle strength - even for those who do not normally exercise.

Could a spa help with chronic joint pain?
Hydrotherapy is one of the safest and most reliable treatments for chronic arthritis and back pain. Joints can be eased in warm supportive water making gentle exercise possible even for those with pain in several joints. Immersion in hot water increases mobility by taking pressure off arthritic joints and thinning joint fluid.
Sources:
Arthritis and Rheumatism Publication
Arthritis Research Campaign
New England Journal of Medicine
Arthritis Care

Can children use the spa?
Yes definitely, they love them! (with supervision). A spa is for the whole family to use. It provides the ideal environment to relax or play with all but the very youngest babies. Your spa can become a special place for bringing the whole family together, no TV, no mobile phone, no laptop, just family time......

How is the water in the spa filtered?
All of our spas are built with a highly efficient cartridge filtration system that filters out the very finest particles. First of all through the active carbon tray removing all large contaminants and debris, allowing for higher water flow rates and increasing the cartridge life. Then there's the cartridge system for ultimate particle filtration.

How often should I change the filters?
The filters don’t need to be changed very often but they should be taken out and cleaned every couple of weeks or more, depending on use. Soaking overnight in Cartridge Cleaner, then rinsing with a garden hose before allowing to dry and re-fitting, best cleans the filters. Filter cartridges should be renewed every 6-12 months.

Do I need to treat the water with chemicals?
All spas need some form of chemical treatment for sanitising and balancing the ph of the water. The ozone system fitted to all of our spas reduces the need for chemicals substantially but water still needs to be tested and treated on a regular basis.

Is the water chemistry easy to look after?
Using a test dip strip that gives very clear information on what action you need to take, easily tests your spa water. Making sure your water remains in pristine condition takes only a couple of minutes.

Where do I get the Chemicals?
We can supply all the chemicals you need for operating your spa.

We hope these have helped you if looking into your first hot tub spa, any others, just call!