What is the Difference Between Hot Tubs, Spas and Jacuzzi’s?

Hot tubs are usually made of wood with a bench seat and don’t always have jets. Spas are made of many different materials and have many jets and seating configurations. “Jacuzzi” is actually a trademarked brand of spas. Roy Jacuzzi is credited with making one of the first jetted tubs. Pool and spa professionals will generally use “hot tub” and “spa” universally.

What Type of Hot Tub is for me?

There are four general categories that factor into purchasing a hot tub: interior, exterior, operating system, and total cost of ownership.

The Interior

The interior of the hot tub is where you spend most of your time. Is it comfortable? Are the controls easy to find and reach from inside the hot tub? Do you want a lounger, open seating, large foot well, lights, fountains, etc…? How many people are regularly going to use the hot tub? Most interior features are a matter of personal preference.

The Exterior

The exterior of the hot tub is what you see 95% or more of its life. This includes the cabinet, the base, and the cover. Do you want natural wood (requires regular maintenance) or artificial materials (requires less or no maintenance)? Are the cabinet and base well-protected from pests and weather? How easy is it to remove the cabinet to service the hot tub’s operating systems and plumbing?

The Operating System

The operating system is the brains of the hot tub. Is it well-insulated for outdoor use and noise reduction? Do the pumps move adequate water for the number of jets for proper performance? (Horsepower of motors can be very deceiving– they rarely depict the true performance of the pump). Are the jets too powerful? Too weak? Many of these questions may require a “test soak” to answer.

Total Cost of Ownership

Total cost of ownership is more than just a price tag. This factors into all of the previous talking points and how they affect your wallet and your time. Hot tub that use higher quality components and insulation may cost more up front but will require less money and time for the life of the hot tub. Poor quality control can cause premature problems that may happen after the warranty period. Does the place that sells the hot tub have in-house service people to handle the warranty or does the service come from a non-local location? You don’t want to have to wait a month or two for a service technician to address a warranty just because your hot tub is outside of his/her service area.

The Difference Between Our Product and Our Competition

Many manufacturers will use similar components as their competitors. Unfortunately, not all manufacturers give the same amount of respect to the components they use to provide the highest quality hot tubs they can. This saves money in production and allows a lower price tag on the finished product. Quality control is as important as the quality of the component itself!

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