Hot tubs have become more available and affordable over the last few years, and we find a great deal of interest from our clients. These can be a fantastic addition to a garden, and perhaps less complex than many fear, but they are a specialist item that is worth planning properly and having professionally fitted. If you want to go for a cheap option hire an inflatable one for a season to see if it is something your family will enjoy before installing a permanent feature- as with garden lighting, our experience is that skimping on a permanent installation is a false economy that will be disappointing and ultimately cost more than doing it correctly in the first place! Sometimes clients are worried about how difficult it will be to get water and electricity to remote parts of the garden, or that the fitting and upkeep will be onerous, or these days with so many options just the minefield of knowing which one is best for me?
Rest assured if you have a good design and landscaping company on board, this is a simple addition.
We asked one of our favourite suppliers Glynn at Hertfordshire Hot Tubs to share with us the answers to the most common questions they are asked, and his answers are below…
What type of Hot Tubs are there?
My first question would always be what kind of experience do you want to get from your hot tub? This may seem like a strange question to start with but it’s very important. If they say “it’s because I have a bad back and I need some hydrotherapy”, then I’d recommend they go for a 2 pump – 32 amp spa (see image 1). This way they will get the benefit from the spa and the pump power to get a good massage. If they say “well, it’s just for the kids and we will never use it” then they can go for a plug and play option – 13amp socket (see image 2).
It’s also worth considering how many jets and lighting you will get from your hot tub. Don’t be fooled by online promises of 90+ jets with colour fountains. Experts will tell you ‘less is more’. If the spa has too many jets, you lose the benefit of a good massage – look for 30-60 jets for the best blend of power to benefit.
Here are my top 3 recommendations:
- Optima – the spa of choice for hydrotherapy which has 10 different types of massage
- Chelsea – an alternative offering 6 different types of massage
- Peyton – from the Sundance Spa standard range, this comes with a choice of with/without a lounger
What power do I need?
All hot tubs need power and I always advise to get a professional electrician involved – water and electricity are not a good mix so don’t take any chances.
The first spa I mentioned above needs to be wired directly back to your main consumer unit with a rotary isolator switch which is obviously a bit more complex than a simple plug in version. An electrician will check what is required and advise if another consumer unit is needed or if you are best going for one that needs lower power- definitely best to know all this before you have bought the hot tub!
Can my Hot Tub go anywhere?
Well- most things are possible, but there are definitely some restrictions. Water is very heavy and the hot tub will need a proper concrete base, typically at least 15cm in thickness, and provision for access for maintenance and drainage.
Get researching! The internet is a wonderful place for research although I wouldn’t recommend buying a hot tub online – but then I would say that… Truthfully though, sometimes the cheaper options you find online are not the product you receive. It is much better to get a local expert to conduct a site visit to check access as well as the proposed location. You’d be amazed, I hear stories all the time of Hot Tubs getting stuck on the kerb as they don’t fit down the side of the house!
Which is the best cheapest option?
There is no such thing as a cheap hot tub… The cheap tubs you see on the internet will be made from cheap components. These spas can cost more than double the price of a good spa in running costs, problems are not rectified and sometimes the parts cannot be replaced if faulty. (Note from CGLA, this is absolutely our experience too!). Get advice (and hopefully buy) from a local experienced dealer who can help when you have problems, someone who knows the product and can offer a good solid warranty.
For advice on adding a Hot Tub to your garden either contact CGLA who can design and manage the landscaping and overall process, or contact Glynn directly on 01442 973300 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks to Glynn Pope from Hertfordshire Hot Tubs who partnered with us for this blog
CGLA are an award winning team of Garden Designers, Landscape Architects, Landscapers and Garden Maintenance Operatives working in Buckinghamshire, London and the South East, as well as on prestigious design projects across the UK and abroad. We are currently working in Oman, Jersey and France, and welcome enquires for design, landscaping or garden maintenance. Contact us here