Indoor Hot Tub? Avoid Disaster. 7 Things You Must Know BEFORE Beginning Your Project
When the fall chill comes to the air, we start getting questions from shoppers who think they might prefer to have their hot tub indoors. Personally, we enjoy soaking outside because it feels more natural, but we can bring the Olympic experience inside if you don’t have a spot on the deck or lawn, or if you’d just rather relax in the privacy of your home or make your hot tub part of a home gym.
Obviously, the indoor installation comes with a few extra complications compared to the outdoor space, so we’ve put together some issues and answers for you. These tips apply to any hot tub in the Hot Spring family of spas.
- PICK THE RIGHT MODEL. The most popular models for indoor use are the Jetsetter and the Prodigy Hot Spring spas. HOT TIP: For best results, consult with a qualified builder or architect and call us for specifications for which ever model you select. If you’re building a new room, leave a big opening for the hot tub delivery. The best plan is to have the hot tub installed before you close up that last wall.
- WATCH WHERE YOU STEP. Avoid flooring that turns slippery when wet. Believe it or not, about a gallon of water comes with you when you get out of the hot tub, and most of it flows to the floor. Choose a floor material that maintains good traction and drainage when wet. That does not include wood or carpet, which will rot, or “Astroturf” plastic grass carpet, because water can seep under it and rot the base. Best bet is a matte finish, non-slip tile. HOT TIP: Install a floor drain for easy cleanup and for draining the spa.
- GO WITH THE FLOW. Even though all Hot Spring, Limelight, and Hot Spot Spas are portable and require no external plumbing, you’ll need a convenient water source for filling.HOT TIP: Install a hose bib in the room to make those fill-ups easy
- DRYWALL, YES DRY WALL. A tight-fitting cover keeps moisture in the hot tub, but when the lid comes off, the room steams up fast. Cement walls, glass enclosures and cedar lining are among the best choices for wall material. You can also use the water-resistant drywall made for bathrooms and kitchens. HOT TIP: Install an intact vapor barrier under the wall covering to prevent dry rot of studs and joists.
- FAN IN. FAN ON. You’re going to need a powerful, quiet vent fan to get the humidity out of the room fast without disturbing the peace of your hot tub time. That’s the most important part of saving walls and structural elements from dry rot. The usual “builder’s special” fan won’t do – it’s noisy, and before long its rust will be staining your walls or ceiling. We’re fans of the Xpelair brand from Coast Products, 954 Elliott Avenue West, Seattle 98119, (206) 285-5120. Xpleair fans are whisper quiet, won’t rust, and are sized to handle the space in your room. They come as ceiling, external wall or window mounts. Be sure to get one with a timer, thermostat and humidistat in one unit. HOT TIP: Call an HVAC contractor for help to get the right size, pick the right place in the room, and install the fan correctly.
- HEAT THE SPACE. To minimize moisture condensation, make sure the room is adequately heated. HOT TIP: A ceiling fan will enhance air circulation.
- NO SMELLS ALLOWED! There’s nothing worse than the dank odor of chlorine filling your house, and it will get out of the hot tub room every time even if you use the fan. HOT TIP: Odorless SilkBalance or the new ACE salt system is the only way to go for sanitizing indoors.
- CALL OLYMPIC BEFORE YOU BEGIN YOUR PROJECT. Best tip of all. We’re a phone call away with 34 years of installation experience inside and out. We’re here to help. A quick phone call can save you years of grief and boatloads of money. 1-800-448-8814. We make it easy to take it easy! RES EST SERVA VOLUPTAS Pleasure is serious business.
Author: Don Riling
Don Riling is the President of Olympic Hot Tub and has been an active member of the hot tub industry for over 20 years. As the company’s owner since 2016, he has continued Olympic’s legacy of promoting health & wellness through hot water & sauna therapy.