Wouldn’t it be lovely to come home from work and sink away from your stresses in a lovely, relaxing, warm inflatable hot tub? Whether it is a cold winter’s day or a get together with friends or family on a bright summer’s evening, an outdoor spa is a perfect way to relax and unwind.
The inflatable hot tub allows you to do this without breaking the bank or making permanent changes to your home. This buyer’s guide will provide you with all the information you need before making your purchase.
Only got 5 minutes?
If you are thinking about purchasing a hot tub, there are a few considerations we feel you should make before comparing products.
- How much space do you have?
- How many people will be using the tub?
- Is there an accessible plug socket near to where you want to put the hot tub?
Inflatable hot tubs can fit from two people up to eight; they come in various sizes and will need to be plugged straight into a plug socket and not an extension lead. So ensure you take this into consideration when choosing a model.
Not yet sure if an inflatable tub is beneficial? Our research has proven there are numerous benefits to an inflatable hot tub.
Unlike fixed hot tubs, the inflatable hot tub does not require any changes to your home. As long as there is a plug socket available the inflatable hot tub can be moved anywhere around your home and can even be packed up and taken away on a weekend break.
Inflatable hot tubs are simple to set up. Simply plug it in, blow it up, fill it with water and wait for it to heat.
For an inflatable hot tub, you can expect to pay between £150 and £600, a fraction of the cost of a standard tub. Operating costs are also much less.
Other features to look out for are:
- A control panel that can be accessed from inside the tub rather than having to get out to adjust the heat or jets.
- Heaters that can reach the maximum suggested safe temperature of 40˚C (104˚F)
- Water jets. Standard tubs come with a combination of water and air jets. Many inflatable tubs, however, only have air jets. So, if water jets are important to you, look for this feature when purchasing.
- Hard water systems are an added feature that minimises calcium build up in the tub.
- Square tubs for some, are more aesthetically pleasing and can offer a little more leg room
- A ground cloth or hot tub pad sits underneath the tub to help protect from damage.
- Compare the warranty on the models. Not many offer a long warranty so compare lengths and ensure you test the hot tub straight away.
Considerations to make
- Due to the ease and portability of an inflatable hot tub, we do not feel there are too many considerations to make before purchasing. In fact, we only think there are three.
- The first being size. Hot tubs can seat different numbers of people; smaller tubs usually suggest 2-4 people and larger up to eight people. The more people it holds, the bigger the price and the more water needed to fill it. So, consider who you are purchasing the tub for. If it is just for yourself and your partner, a 2-4 person should be plenty big enough, but, if you have a larger family or plan to use it with friends, consider buying one that seats eight people.
- The next consideration you need to make is the space you have. Although inflatable tubs can be put in a number of places and are easily moved, you still need to ensure you do have space for one. You will need to ensure the space you have is level and flat and that when you choose a tub you ensure the measurements fit that space.
- The last consideration is your plug sockets. Inflatable hot tubs will need to be plugged into a socket. An extension lead is not advised, so ensure you have a mains socket free close to a door or window not far from your chosen space.
Benefits of an inflatable hot tub
There are numerous benefits to purchasing an inflatable hot tub. Here are our top five reasons why we feel a portable hot tub is a good investment.
Unlike other hot tubs, the inflatable hot tub does not require any changes to your home. Whether you have an empty looking patio or a bare garage, the inflatable hot tub can be put anywhere with access to a water supply and electrical outlet.
If you have not much space or just do not want a hot tub in your garden all year round, the inflatable tub can be easily put down and packed away until needed.
This also means that if you decided to move home or are just going away for the weekend, the hot tub can be taken along too.
Inflatable hot tubs are simple to set up. Simply plug it in, blow it up, fill it with water and wait for it to heat. The actual process of setting up should take you no longer than 30 minutes.
Standard hot tubs come at a high cost. Inflatable hot tubs, however, come at a fraction of the price making them much more affordable. For an inflatable hot tub, you can expect to pay between £150 and £600.
Low operating costs
Inflatable hot tubs run from standard electrical output and run on less electricity than a standard hot tub. As this type of hot tub is not fixed, you are able to simply pack it away and inflate as and when needed.
As you may be aware, standard hot tubs are made from hard, rigid substances such as fibreglass or timber. Inflatable hot tubs, however, are made from a soft, expandable plastic, which is then filled with air. Therefore, instead of resting against hardwood when you are trying to relax, you will be being cushioned by air.
Although many simply purchase a hot tub for relaxation purposes, a hot tub also offers numerous health benefits.
How? The reason is hydrotherapy, which is the use of warm water for the treatment of health and pain relief.
Hot tubs also dilate blood vessels, which decreases blood pressure thus, improving heart health. If you suffer from an existing heart condition, it is important that you consult your doctor before use.
Hot tubs can also help you to sleep better. Sounds odd, but raising your body temperature in the tub followed by a drop-in temperature releases something called sleep ‘catalysing endorphins’ which support a deeper sleep.
The use of the hot tub also helps to relieve stress, help relax muscles and relieve arthritic pain.
Why Trust Us?
The internet is full of review sites that claim they have bought and rigorously tested every product so they can give you the best buying advice, Tripadvisor has some fake reviews, who do you trust?
Let us be straight from the off, we provide the following, we get a product category or subject area, find out everything you could possibly want to know about it, find some of the best products for sale in the category and combine it all into a concise buyers guide.
If we were buying something that is exactly what we are looking for, we don’t care much for someone’s opinion, we want facts, the best products based on specifications and reviews and it all presented in one place. That is what we provide in our buyer’s guides.
Inflatable hot tubs do not boast the long list of features that premium tubs do, however, there are a few to consider when comparing tubs.
Inflatable hot tubs are fitted with a simple digital control panel with an LED display. This enables you to adjust settings such as the temperature, controlling the jets and timing the heating of your tub.
However, not all are fitted with a control panel that is accessible whilst you are in the tub. One that is, is preferable, as let’s face it. Nobody wants to get out of a nice warm tub and run out into the cool evening air, or winter weather, to make a simple adjustment.
Of course, all hot tubs are going to be heated, but it is worth checking the temperatures the tub can reach. Most hot tub users prefer to keep the temperature between 37˚C and 39˚C. (100˚F- 102˚F) The maximum suggested safe temperature is 40˚C (104˚F). You should simply check the model you chose reaches the required temperature and can maintain this.
The time it takes for inflatable tubs to heat is between 12 and 24 hours, so it is worth checking this especially if you plan to turn your machine on off regularly.
There are two different types of jets in hot tubs. Air jets and water jets. Standard hot tubs usually have a combination of the two; nevertheless, not all inflatable hot tubs have water jets as they take much more power. Inflatable tubs can host between 100 and 200 air jets but if water jets are a must-have for you, pay attention to this feature when choosing a tub.
Hard water system
Some inflatable hot tubs feature a hard water system. This is a feature of the filtration system to minimise the calcium build-up in your tub.
A more aesthetical feature than a necessity but if important to you, you will now find some square shaped inflatable tubs on the market rather than the standard circular. The square tub will also offer a little more legroom.
The hot tub you choose should come with a ground cloth. This a sheet of material that should lay on the ground underneath your hot tub. This acts as protection from debris, temperature change and other facts, which could be damaging to your tub.
Alternatively, you may want to purchase a hot tub pad, which works in the same way but is made from a hard, sturdy plastic to also create a solid platform and level surface.
Unfortunately, most inflatable hot tubs do not offer much over a one-year warranty. We suggest you compare the lengths of warranty and ensure that you test your hot tub straight after purchase.
Some models do offer additional accessories. These are not what we consider necessities; however, they may appeal to you and therefore support your choice so look into what is offered. Some of the accessories that may interest you are; seat cushions, headrests, LED lights and a solar cover to help prevent loss of heat.
Inflatable hot tubs come with everything included in the box. The only items you will need to purchase separately are new filters and chemicals to maintain your spa. However, these will not be needed straight away.
Inflatable hot tubs can be used indoors; however, it is important that you take into consideration the flooring beneath it. Can the flooring hold the weight? Is the flooring safe to be getting out of the tub onto when wet? Will the flooring become damaged?
Inflatable hot tubs are made from relatively strong material and should come with a ground cloth to help avoid puncture. However, there is always a risk. If this is a concern for you, consider purchasing a hot tub pad and choose a model that comes with a puncture repair kit.
There are four processes to maintaining an inflatable hot tub.
1. Regularly test the pH and alkalinity of the hot tub water using test kits provided with the tub.
2. Sanitise the water by pouring in sanitising solution as recommended on the packaging.
3. Remove and clean the hot tub filter at least once a week. Your hot tub manual should explain how to do so.
4. Drain the hot tub every three to four weeks, or as suggested in your manual. Clean the inside of the tub with soapy water and thoroughly rinse to ensure no bubbles or soap is left.