Thinking of bringing the spa experience to your backyard? Nowadays it’s easier than ever to turn your deck or patio into an oasis of relaxation. But Before you can install your new hot tub and begin indulging in the rejuvenating bubbly effects of hydro massage, there are some key things to consider to make sure you get it right.
1. Verify if a building permit is required
One of the last things you want is to invest in a backyard spa and then be forced to dismantle it. Most cities require permits for exterior construction and electrical work related to pools and spas. Check your local municipality by-laws to see if a building permit is required for hot tub installation.
2. A Licensed Electrician is a must.
When it comes to the electrical work involved in the installation of your backyard spa, there are the following safety and financial concerns to consider:
Most warranties will be voided if the electrical work is not performed by a licensed Electrician. A voided warranty can lead to heavy financial burdens should your hot tub unexpectedly require servicing that is normally covered under a warranty.
For the safety of family and friends aspects like proper grounding and electrical circuit installation are always best left to an experienced licensed Electrician, who is qualified to hook up your hot tub according to provincial electrical code requirements.
3. Check for certification from a recognized agency
When it comes down to choosing your spa – safety first! Make sure your spa bears the marks of a recognized certification agency. Owning an unapproved spa increases your risk of shock and fire. Some certification marks to look for are ETL, CSA, ROHS, LC.
4. Read the fine print of your warranty:
In some cases, the manufacturer won’t recognize the warranty unless a final inspection has been performed after installation is complete. If this is the case, make sure to have your local building inspector certify the work performed.
5. Proper Foundation
A solid, level foundation is crucial for your hot tub – both to insure no damage to the spa and also to maintain your manufacturer’s warranty.
A hot tub filled with water and people can way as much as 6,000 pounds or more. Any dips in the foundation can cause cracks in the shell or other internal damage.
For most manufacturers any attempt to hand level a hot tub due to an unlevel foundation will void the warranty.
6. Location and placement of your spa
When determining where to place your spa, as a rule, you do not place your hot tub on grass or bare ground. If you choose to place your hot tub on a wooden deck, be sure to consider its weight (filled with water and people) and the weight bearing capacity of your deck.
Other key considerations when choosing a location for
your hot tub are:
A location good for all seasons
On those hot hot summer days it may be best to have some shade from the sun. Consider placement of your hot tub under a gazebo or hot tub umbrella, or for some natural shade consider a placement next to trees or shrubs. In contrast, during the cold winter nights having your hot tub close to an exterior door would be preferable. Having one location that covers both these scenarios is the ideal choice.
To get the most enjoyment out of your hot tub, especially in those moments when you are looking to relax, keep in mind the view of your neighbors and determine a location that provides maximum privacy.
The best view
The ideal positioning for your hot tub should award you the best view possible. Facing outward into the greenery of your backyard is far more appealing than a brick wall. If you have options, choose with this in mind.
7. Is a fence or a gate required for the hot tub?
For the safety of children, especially those under 5 years of age, access to the backyard should be restricted by a gate or fencing.
Some cities require residential barriers for properties
with hot tubs. Check your local municipality by-laws to determine the need for a fence or gate.