Preparation For and Operating Your New Spa
In order to prepare for the installation of your new spa you will need a level space either on a deck or a pad in your yard. If you choose to put your new spa on a deck it is mandatory that you add extra support from the bottom to support both the load of the tub and the water weight.
If you choose to place it on a pad it can be either gravel or stepping stones or something of this nature. Regardless of what you use, making sure it is level is crucial. We normally do not prepare surfaces for your new tub however we can for an additional fee.
In order to prepare for your new tub we need to know where you want it and a clear path to get it there. Do we have to take it through a narrow gate or can we drive into the back yard? Is it going into a back porch or somewhere else more difficult?
Knowing these details beforehand will make your delivery go much smoother. It is always best to text or email us some pictures of the path we will need to take to install your new tub. This just keeps us from having any surprises before we arrive.
Our delivery fee is usually $300 however it could be more depending upon distance and difficulty of placement.
Most of the tubs we carry require 220 volt connections. This mean you are going to need to have a licensed electrician run a spa panel box near your new tub with usually a 50 amp GFCI breaker inside. From this box there will be "whip" which will connect directly to your new hot tub main panel.
If you need to hire an electrician, we can refer one who is super experienced in hot tub connections and priced fairly. Just give us a call.
Initial Set Up
Once the hot tub is delivered and placed it is time to set it up. We recommend running water in the tub immediately as it will take one to two hours before it is full (unless you have a swim spa.) While we are filling it, we connect the tub from the GFI panel to the tub. Once connected DO NOT turn on your tub until the water level is a few inches over the filters.
Now that the tub is full it is time to turn it on. Most tubs will enter priming mode which will be displayed on the control panel by a "Pr." If the tub does not seem to want to flow, you could have an air lock. In order to remove the air lock you will need to take off the front panel and loosen one pipe fitting near the motor with a pipe wrench. As you loosen it, you should hear the air flow out and the water flow in. Once you hear this sound, retighten the fitting and restart the tub.
Not only do we deliver every tub, as long as you already have the electrical ready we will connect, fill, and show you how to operate your tub before we leave all included in our delivery fee.
Every hot tub manufacturer uses a variety of different control panels. The most basic panel on the market is similar to the one pictured above which has only 4 buttons.
1. Jets 1 2. Options or Jets 2 3. Temp 4. Light
Understanding how to use these 4 buttons in which sequence is imperative.
Balboa is one of the largest manufacturers of hot tub parts and topside control panels. Since there are so many different panels out there which operate differently we have included a link to Balboa's website where you can download instructions based upon which type of panel you have.
If you have a different spa such as CalSpa, Go here.
If you have yet a different brand simply search your brand online and look for the operating manuals.
Jets and Dials
There are usually 3 ways to control the amount of pressure and air flow that blows out of the jets. First some tubs have one or more pumps. Each pump controls a different section of the tub.
Some pumps have a low and high setting which is controlled by hitting "Jets" button once for low and twice for high.
Secondly, each jet can be spun clockwise to turn down the pressure and counterclockwise to turn the pressure up.
Thirdly, the dials on top of the tub control how much air flow is directed to different sections of the tub. Counterclockwise is usually high, while clockwise is usually low.
Understanding how the pumps, jets and dials work together to increase or decrease hot tub pressure will give you a more pleasurable experience.
There a three modes which help you operate your spa:
Economy = Ec
Standard = St
In order to change modes, generally you will hit the temp button once then the light button. Every time you do this, it will change which mode you are operating your tub in.
The sleep mode will keep your temperature at 20 degress below your set temperature. This mode is good if you are going on vacation or not planning on using the tub often.
In economy mode your tub will only heat during your filter cycles unless you have the pumps turned on.
We recommend that under normal usuage you should set your mode to standard as it will keep your water temperature to your set level at all times. It generally costs $20 or less per month to do so and enables you to enjoy your spa at any time should you desire.
Believe it or not, water maintenance in a hot tub is a controversial subject. We are of the opinion that the less you have to do to maintain your water, the better off you are. Therefore we have four sugestions.
First and by far the easiest, we have found that if you purchase a small floating chlorine dispenser and add (2) 1" chlorine tablets weekly (or when they have dissolved) that your water should stay clear. If you don't do this religously your water will get cloudy fast.
Second, if your water is cloudy there could be several different reasons why, here is a good article that should give you ideas of how to rectify it. Click here.
Thirdly, almost all experts say that you should change out the water in your spa at once per quarter and definitely not less than twice a year. This just helps clear out any contaminates and gives your tub a fresh start.
Finally, clean your filter at least once a month so it continues to filter properly. We also recommend replacing the filter at least once a year and don't buy a cheap filter.
Good luck and we hope you enjoy your new spa!