Congratulations, you’ve done it! You’ve been cutting back, skipping a few mocha lattes every week, bringing your own lunch to work, but it has finally paid off and now you can afford that hot tub that you’ve always wanted. That’s the good news.
The bad is that even if you were able to walk into the spa showroom, plunk down cash, and take advantage of free delivery and installation, you aren’t done paying for your hot tub. The simple fact is a hot tub is an ongoing expense. Finding hard numbers to indicate what those expenses will be is kind of hard, but we can look at where some of the money will go.
The thing most people look at first is the increased use of electricity. This is the most obvious recurring bill for hot tub ownership, but the spa industry has made great strides in reducing that expense. In fact, there are manufacturers who promise that running your hot tub will not increase your electricity bill more than $20/month. If it does they will attach a meter to your hot tub circuit and track your power usage, and pay the difference!
The reason the electrical cost is coming down is because newer spas are much better insulated, so it is cheaper and easier to keep the water hot than to incur the expense of heating the water every time you want to soak. In addition to the insulation in the tub itself, the hot tub cover is very important for holding the heat in the water. Most spa owners find that their covers begin to warp or even crack after two or three years as a result of the hot, moist air over the tub, so you should figure the cost of a new cover every few years.
To enjoy the benefits of the insulation keeping your water hot means the water needs to be kept clean, which means keeping your filters clean and keeping track of the water chemistry. Water test kits are not expensive, but they will need to be replaced when the test materials are expended. Whether you prefer test strips or the count-the-drops tests is a personal decision. Strips are generally cheaper and most people find them simple to use, but I find I get better and more accurate results with the liquid tester.
There are a number of water chemistry programs on the market, and the one that is best for you and your tub may not be the same as for your neighbor. The biggest difference between the systems is the basic chemical, usually chlorine or bromine. There are advantages and disadvantages to any system, and it is worth talking to your spa dealer to find what will work for you.
There may be a savings in buying your chemicals in bulk, but this is not a recommended approach when you are starting out. For the first few months of having the spa in your life, it is worthwhile to buy in small batches so that you can find the system which works best. It is also beneficial to be able to talk to the experts at the spa store until you have everything figured out.
Some other small or hidden costs of spa ownership include extra wear and tear on your laundry facilities, and you may want to invest in more towels as well. It is also important to budget so that you can have extra wine on hand. This is because your friends are likely to show up for a soak, and they are not likely to remember to grab a bottle on the way over!
To learn more about bringing a spa into your life in the least expensive way, contact the experts at Black Pine Spa and Billiards today!