How to install and set up your hot tub or spa


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Your hot tub or spa has arrived. Now what? There are several factors and ways to get your hot tub up and running. The following "How to Guide" tries to take in consideration some of the more extreme factors and the cost associated with them. Please feel free to comment at the end of this guide and share your experience with us.

Step by Step


Step 1

The first step on installing your hot tub is to find an area where you want to place your spa. Some things to take in consideration is the ease to get to your hot tub, what is above the spa / hot tub, and what kind of view you have from you hot tub. In our case we wanted to put our hot tub on our deck. In this case I asked myself A) How I would get the hot tub onto my deck. B) Will my deck support the new weight of the spa.

Step 2

I checked with an engineer to see if my deck would support the additional weight of the spa, plus water, plus 7 people. He suggested that I reinforce my deck. I ended up adding more joists and ledger fastners. The material cost were around $250. Click here for more information on How to reinforce a deck for a spa / hot tub.

Step 3

After reinforcing my deck my next step was to figure out how to get the spa up to the deck. The hot tub weighs about 600 lbs. One option was to gather about 6 - 8 people and slowly lift it around to the deck. Where I live it is very hard to get people up to my house for this job. So I elected to rent a crane and have them lift the hot tub up and onto the deck. The crane rental cost me $240 and was quick and easy.

Step 4

I now had the spa up on the deck and my next step was to get electricity to the hot tub. Unless you know what you are doing I highly recommend to hire an electrician for this job. It is recommended whether you hook up your spa 240V or 120V that you supply your own fuse on your home fuse box. My job was again on the high side and ended up costing me around $1,000 to install all of the equipment and get the electric hooked into the hot tub.

Step 5

Add Water. This part I have heard people doing two way. Check the chemical balance of water and then add the water to your hot tub, or add the water and then check the balance. My water comes direct from a well. I wanted to make sure my electrical was hooked up properly so I elected to fill the water and then check it. Start up you spa as per your spa directions.

Step 6

Everything was up and running so I checked my water with an Aquacheck chlorine test strips. I used this to help figure out how to keep my spa water under control, balanced, and in check. I then used a chlorine spa start up kit and added chemicals accordingly.

Step 7

I have also heard different lengths of time that you need to wait before entering your hot tub after adding chemicals. I heard anywhere from 5 minutes to 1 hour. Several, people have told me not to worry about it, but I am a bit paranoid. I played it on the safe side and waited the longest length of 1 hour. I spent a total of about $1,500 to get everything working. I would think that an average cost to install and set up your spa would be around $600. So now its the time you have working for. RELAX IN YOUR SPA!!!!! Enjoy!


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 Posted: 2/11/2019 

Do you find it expensive to run? I am looking at purchasing a portable 7 seater spa for an outdoor area. Is an electrician required to install with an outdoor power and water source or can it be filled from outdoor tap and hose outlet? How often do you empty it and how is that done? Thank you!

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 2/19/2019 

Hello Helen - As with anything pool & spa related, it depends. The cost of running a spa depends on the type of pump. A small circulation pump will not cost much to operate. If you run a higher HP pump consistently, it would cost more. Some portable spas can be plugged into a normal outlet as long as the breaker is large enough to handle the power requirements. An electrician may be required if you need a larger breaker or if it needs to be wired for 220v. The spa can be filled with an outdoor tap. On average, the spas need to be drained every 3-4 months. A better way to judge that is to test for total dissolved solids (TDS). Have the water tested for TDS levels when the spa is filled. Once that number rises another 1500 ppm, drain and refill the spa. The spa can be drained by using a hose and by siphoning the water out.