What to look for in the best quality hot tubs and spas
There are cheap spas and hot tubs on the market but they don’t necessarily represent the best value. We believe that you deserve the best possible spa that you can have.
A spa or hot tub is an investment.
When you buy a spa or hot tub you are making an investment in health, fun and relaxation for you and your family.
Therefore the last thing that you want to do is buy something which is going to disappoint or cause you hassles and annoyance.
As with any other purchase decision, buying a hot tub is about getting the best value and choosing something that fits your own needs and desires.
You don’t need to choose the most expensive spa, but you should look for one that is well built, reliable and well equipped for the money that you spend. A cheap spa may look attractive but if they have cut corners in manufacturing, you may soon find yourself disappointed.
So what aspects of how the spa or hot tub is designed and built should you be looking at?
How powerful should the pump be?
Some people focus on the power rating of the hot tub pump when they are choosing between hot tubs, but this can be misleading.
What you are looking for is good water flow that is appropriate for the design of the spa, the number of jets and the massage effect that you desire to achieve.
The power rating applies to the electric motor in the pump but that isn’t the only thing that defines the water flow.
The motor drives an impeller, which moves the water around the system, and impellers can be more or less efficient than each other. What you are looking for from the pump is good water flow and these two components need to work well together to achieve that.
The real issue is the flow of water through the jets and so, the quality of the plumbing become important, as does the number of jets –and their layout – that the pump is driving. Getting this aspect of spa design right is one of the things that has led Sundance to win so many industry awards.
In reality, the best way to see if the spa pump is powerful enough for you and gives the best massage is to take a wet test. You wouldn’t buy a car just from reading an on-line brochure or description and the same is true for a hot tub.
Your local Sundance dealer will be happy to arrange for you to wet-test their spas.
What sort of insulation should the hot tub have?
A well-insulated spa will stay warmer and be more efficient to run.
The insulation is something that a wet-test can’t really tell you about, so what questions should you ask?
Some spas are ‘partially insulated’ where there is an airspace inside the cabinet and some are full-foam insulated.
In the main, full-foam insulation is seen to be the best option and all Sundance spas have full-foam insulation.
The foam insulation keeps the heat in creating an efficient spa, it reduces noise and it reduces vibration, which therefore protects the plumbing.
You may be told that full-foam insulation makes servicing and repairing the spa more difficult but, in a well-designed spa with such insulation, the equipment pack will still be easily accessible for normal servicing and repairs are much less likely to become necessary.
What sort of control system should I look for?
The hot tub control panel is where you set the temperature of your spa and control the pump and the jets.
Some control panels may be relatively simple and some are much more advanced setting filtration cycles and running through programs for the jets and power modes for the pump and heater.
Of course, the control panel will reflect the different functions that any particular hot tub has. The more complicated the spa, the more advanced the control panel must be.
In the main, you should be looking for something that suits you and you will find easy to use. Your Sundance dealer can talk you through all the models in our range.
What sort of warranty or guarantee should I be looking for?
The warranty should be a very important factor in your purchase decision. It stands to reason that a manufacturer who has confidence in their product will be happy to extend a longer and more complete warranty than would be found on a cheap alternative.
The warranty should cover the acrylic shell against cracks or leaks as well as the surface from blistering or fading.
There should be a section in the warranty on the plumbing and one that covers the equipment pack and controls.
The warranty should extend for an acceptable period of time and you should have confidence that both the manufacturer and your spa dealer will be there to deliver on their guarantees and promises should they be called upon to do so.
Sundance Spas give a 10 year warranty on the spa shell and a 5 year warranty on equipment and plumbing.