We salute our customers who enjoy a good soak in the negative temperatures of winter! The rest of us need to protect our hot tubs during the winter months. These eight steps to winterize your hot tub will ensure your spa is safe against the cold and ready to enjoy once warmer weather returns.
There are a few practical reasons why you should winterize your spa. For starters, you may not want to fiddle with water chemicals since you aren’t even using the hot tub. Or you might be a snowbird and spend this time of the year in another state. Plus you’ll save energy and chemical costs if you shut down your spa.
Another big advantage is that you can avoid costly damage. Sometimes hot tubs lose power or experience a temperature drop. If you aren’t around to catch a malfunction, water could freeze in the pipes. Then you’ll have to pay a professional to inspect the plumbing, isolate any leaks, and perform needed repairs.
Steps to close your spa
1) Cleanse Your Jets
Run a jet cleanse if it’s been a while since your last cleaning. It’s a good thing to do twice a year and now is a perfect time. Remove the filter, add the solution, and run the pumps for about 15 minutes. Turn off the jets and let sit for an hour, which allows the formula to penetrate deep into your pipes and loosen any biofilm.
Run for another 15 minutes. Don’t worry if the water turns cloudy with particles because you’re about to get rid of it.
2) Shut Off Electricity
Water and electricity don’t mix! Turn off the power at the breaker before you tackle the next steps. That way there will be no chance of your spa accidentally turning on and running the heater or pump without water. Safety first.
3) Drain Water
If you have a pool, you have to leave some water to reinforce the sides (read our tips on closing your pool for winter). But hot tubs are different because they are so much smaller. It’s important to remove all the water. Simply attach a garden hose and open the drain spigot. You can also speed up the process by using a sump pump.
4) Deep Clean Surfaces
After months of use, your hot tub shell will probably have some buildup. Shocking and sanitizing can only do so much to treat body oils, sweat, lotions, and other residues. Once your tub is drained, you can give all the nooks and crannies a good scrub. Don’t forget to clean your cover as well.
5) Release Water
Even though you drained the tub, water can still hide in the interior components. These include the heating element, pump, air blower, filter compartment, and even the jets. Loosen all the unions or fittings, including any drain plugs on the pump. You might see water draining out at this point.
6) Blow Out Lines
Go one step further and use a wet-dry vacuum (like a Shop-Vac) to draw out any leftover moisture. Depending on the tub model, you might add 1-2 cups of antifreeze to protect the pipes.
7) Replace Filters
This is the perfect opportunity to check your filters. They’ve been working hard and likely need to be cleaned or replaced. If the filters are salvageable, put them in a chemical soak to dissolve grease and grime.
8) Seal With Cover
Phew, you made it to the last step! It’s time to add the cover. Make sure yours is thick enough to hold several inches of snow and ice so it won’t collapse under the weight.
We recommend having a professional winterize your hot tub when possible. We service the following brands: Hot Spring, Marquis, and Dream Maker. Call (319-200-7665) or contact us to schedule!