Hot tub tranquility in the winter

Spa Care in the Winter: Everything you need to know to take care of your hot tub as the temperature drops

Hot tub tranquility in the winter
Enjoy any time of day or weather in a hot tub

While it may seem counterintuitive to go outside and get in a body of water in the middle of winter, a hot tub in freezing temperatures can be a rewarding and relaxing treat! But there are several things you need to know, especially if this is your first time caring for a spa in winter. Spa Care always seems daunting at first, but just like the initial learning curve for sanitizing and balancing your spa, once you’ve experienced the bliss of soaking in a hot tub in winter, it won’t seem so challenging.

Winterizing your Spa

If you really won’t be using your spa during the winter, either because of inclement weather or due to travel plans, there is still an important spa care step to take before the cold sets in: Winterization.

Winterization is the process of protecting an empty spa from freezing. If you will not be using the hot tub or will be away and unable to perform the required regular spa care routine of sanitizing and balancing your spa, you will need to drain the tub and fill the lines with antifreeze. Removing all the water from the lines of your spa’s plumping is impossible, and even a little water can result in disastrous and costly freezing damage.

Any time a spa will be empty for any length of time in below-freezing temperatures, it must be adequately winterized.

If you plan to be away or empty your tub this winter, call us and ask about our winterization rates!

Wintertime Water Changes

But if the spa cannot be empty for any lengthy time, how are you supposed to keep up with your required water changes? Because of the risk of freezing, we recommend avoiding water changes in the coldest months of January and February. Schedule a water change in the early weeks of December when the weather is relatively warm and sunny. A water change in Late March / Early April (when the weather warms), a change in June, and a change in September.

Depending on your use, you may need to change your water more often, but a good rule of thumb is 3 – 4 months between water changes.

If you find yourself in the middle of winter and need a water change, you must pay close attention to the weather. Find a day or a few days where the temperature will stay above freezing for at least 24 hours: to give you enough time to clean, drain, and refill the tub and allow the water to move through the system and begin to heat up before the temperature drops back down.

Don’t forget to grab a bottle of Metal Gon for your refill! The sequestering agent is key to preserving the lifespan of your spa and components, helping you save money and avoid costly repairs in the long run.

How to Avoid Freezing

Sometimes no matter how prepared we are, disaster strikes. If you encounter an issue with your spa in the winter, do not turn off the hot tub unless directed by a service tech. Moving water is much more resistant to freezing than water sitting in your plumbing.

If your spa stops circulating below-freezing temperatures, you must call for service immediately! Letting the spa water sit still at any time increases the risk of damage to the plumping. While you wait for help to arrive, however, there are a few steps you can take to help preserve the warmth in your spa:

  • Leave the cover on to keep the water warm.
  • Take a small ceramic space heater and place it directly in or beside the spa’s pack area. Remove the main side panel that covers your spa pump and controls, and point the space heater into this area: to help prevent the residual water from freezing in the plumping while you wait for service!

Learn more about our Spa Service department.

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