Buying a hot tub in the UK
UK hot tubs and spas.
Spas and hot tubs originated in America but have been popular in the UK for many, many years now.
Before taking the plunge into buying their own spa, most people have some experience of the delights of soaking in warm, bubbling water and letting the spa massage away the aches and strains of a day.
You might have a friend who has a spa that you have tried or you might have visited a gym or health club which has a hot tub as part of their offering or, you might even have had your first spa experience on holiday.
It might just be that you have decided to invest in something that can be a focus for relaxation and fun with friends and family and a hot tub has come out top of your list.
Whatever your reasons for deciding to buy your own hot tub, there are a number of things that you should consider before looking around and talking to a spa dealer.
- What is your budget?
- Where do you see your spa being situated?
- Do you want a spa for fun, hydrotherapy, relaxation or a mixture of all three?
If you have some idea of the answers to these questions it will make it easier to buy the right hot tub for you.
What is your budget?
There are a large number of hot tub dealers throughout the UK and most of them will carry spas in their showrooms that range anywhere up to £15,000 or more.
Inflatable spas can offer a cheaper option if you just want to put your toe in the water, but if you fall in love with the spa experience – which you are almost certain to do – then you will soon want to trade up to a proper hot tub.
Spas come in all shapes and sizes and, these days, can have a vast array of additional features either in terms of jets and seat layouts or entertainment packages so the upper end of the spa price range is pretty much wherever you want to put it.
Where are you going to put your spa?
The two most important considerations are access and access; the access that your spa needs to be delivered to that perfect spot and the access that you and the other bathers need between house and hot tub.
When you buy your spa and have it delivered, the equipment pack may be removed and perhaps some cladding but the acrylic shell is in one piece so the overall dimensions are really the same on delivery as they were in the dealers and as they will be in situ. Steps, garden gates and narrow passageways are going to be a severe hindrance to getting your spa installed so, unless you plan to hire a crane, you should probably let access dimensions play a part in choosing the size of the spa that you buy.
Your local Sundance Spa dealer will be happy to come and survey your property looking not only at the access for delivery but also at suitable places for the spa in regard to power supply and a firm and level base.
In terms of bather access, your spa shouldn’t be too far from your house or the changing area particularly if you intend to use your spa all year around – and winter is actually the best time to enjoy an outdoor spa.
Grass and dirt from bather’s feet can easily be transferred into your spa so a clean path and perhaps an area of decking is a good idea.
Other things to consider would be access to a water supply and an electricity supply. A spa should never be underneath power lines and overhanging trees are best avoided if you can.
The spa will need a strong and level foundation; a concrete slab is best.
Privacy and views should be considered; who can see you in your spa and what can you see when you are bathing?
For fun, hydrotherapy or relaxation?
Owning your own hot tub can provide you and your family and friends with any of the above or a mix of all three. However, for most spa owners one of these aspects comes out on top and that will influence what hot tub you buy.
If you want a spa that will provide specific hydrotherapy then it really is important to wet-test the hot tub so that you know the jets are in the right places and are powerful enough to give you the massage you want, right where you want it. Once again, your local Sundance dealer will be happy to offer you a wet test.
A hot tub for relaxing with your family and friends will have to be big enough for the number of people that you have in mind. You might want to place it in a secluded corner of your garden and use a gazebo or exotic planting to give a feeling of real seclusion to your hot tub.
A final, important point.
A spa or hot tub must always be wired in by a qualified electrician, for instance one who is NICEIC registered. The electricity supply must be permanently connected to a single phase, 240V source from an earth leakage protected consumer unit via a waterproof switch. Your Sundance dealer will be able to carry out this work or put you in touch with someone suitable.