Believe it or not, the chilly winter season is actually one of the best times to enjoy soaking in your hot tub. When it’s freezing outside and you don’t want to leave the house, but the cabin fever sets in, taking a dip in your hot tub can be the perfect solution. After all, what’s better than hot water to warm your body up? If you’ve used your hot tub in winter before, then you know what I’m talking about!
However, many people choose not to use their hot tubs during the winter months because they might be going on vacation or taking a break from hot tubbing. No matter the reason, we can tell you how to winterize your hot tub the correct way to prevent damages and ensure a long-lasting product.
Is Winterizing My Tub The Best Option?
Before we get into the nitty gritty, let’s make sure winterizing your hot tub is the best option for you. If you’re planning to spend winter at home, but not a lot of time in your tub, it’s best to keep your hot tub running, and maintain it accordingly. Our energy efficient hot tub models need little electrical output to remain heated, even in cold climates. Although, winterizing your hot tub does require you to set aside time to get it done. If you know you won’t be around for an extended period of time or you don’t have time to maintain your tub, then it’s best to winterize it.
To avoid damaging your spa you will need to winterize it the correct way to prevent the water from freezing and expanding, as it turns into ice. This process can do real damage to your tub. If you, like most people, are concerned about doing it on your own, hire a professional to help you out. Your local hot tub retailer will be able to help you or find a professional to visit your home and winterize your hot tub.
If you are confident in your skills, follow these steps to winterize your hot tub:
1. Drain Your Hot Tub Water
First things first, turn off all power to your hot tub at the breaker, or, if it is a GFCI Plug-n-Play hot tub, unplug it from the outlet, coil up the power cord, and wrap the GFCI plug in plastic and place it inside the equipment compartment. Finally, drain your hot tub. Open up any adjustable jets and air valves to allow for better drainage.
2. Clear Any Excess Water
If your hot tub has a drain spigot (all Fantasy Spas do) open it up and drain all the water out of the spa. If not, use a submersible sump pump to get rid of the water. Pro tip: this is a much faster way to drain your spa! Make sure you lower the drain hose at or below the lowest level of water in the hot tub to be sure it all drains out. This is especially important if you attach a hose to the drain spout. If you have a blower, you’ll want to temporarily reconnect the power and turn it on for 20-30 seconds to blow out any remaining water. When the hot tub is done draining, leave the drain spout open. If you have some water left in the foot well, recessed seating areas, filter cavity, or anywhere else, make sure you clear it out with a bucket and/or wipe it up with towels or a large sponge.
3. Release Water from Your Equipment Compartment
For these steps, you need to locate your equipment compartment, which can be found just below the control panel. It’s important to open it up to loosen and release the water from your heating element and pump housing. Loosen the large plastic white unions that attach your heater and pump(s) to the rest of the hot tub until some water spills out. If your pump housing has drain plugs on them, open them up.
4. Close the Air Valves
Now it’s time to close or turn off any air venturi valves. Since your system will still have some residual water in it, use the blowing end of a shop vacuum to blow air into all the jets in your hot tub. Spend just a few seconds at each jet and the opening of the filter (remove the filter before doing this). Keep your filter out of the filter basket the entire winter. While you have your filter out, use this time to hose it off and clean it with a filter cleaner.
5. Seal Your Hot Tub and Turn Off Power
Most of the water should now be out of your spa. Secure your hot tub cover back onto the tub to avoid it blowing off in high winds. Close your equipment compartment and re-attach any screws or latches. Last but not least, turn off the hot tub power at the house breaker.
All Fantasy Spas are built to withstand the climate and perform great in the coldest months of the year. But, if you don’t plan on using it, these steps are sure to protect your spa from any winter weather! When spring rolls back around and you’re ready to enjoy the warm water again, don’t forget to re-attach all the unions, drain plugs, and close the drain spigot before refilling your hot tub.
Happy hot tubbing!