||So you're getting a
Setup is really no big deal, if you do a little advance planning and
preparation. We'll show you what you need to do to
make your installation as smooth as possible. Also, be sure to read
your entire owner's manual, prior to installation.
You may already have a special indoor or outdoor
spot picked out for your new hot tub, whether it be a lightweight
soft spa such as
or a larger model such as
or our full-sized
Spas. Regardless, it is your responsibility to make sure the
site is properly prepared, whether on the ground, on a floor, deck,
patio or slab.
All of the spas we sell are designed for either
outdoor or indoor installation, although most people prefer outdoors.
Make sure that you observe the following:
- Since a filled spa will have considerable
weight, make sure it is placed on a structurally-sound surface which
will support the weight of the spa, water, and occupants.
Uneven and unsound surfaces can damage the spa and void your
- If outdoors, make sure that the site has
adequate drainage so that rainwater will not be able to pool around
- Level the surface before filling spa with
- Plan in advance for proper access to power
source and circuit panels.
- Leave access to the hot tub's removable
equipment compartment panel for future service needs.
Preparing an Outdoor Site
Most spa owners will put their new spas
outdoors. Here we describe various options to provide a firm level
surface, unless you already have a suitable existing patio.
Keep in mind that installing your spa on the ground without a
perimeter boardwalk, paver stone, concrete sidewalk or other suitable
walkway will result in an increase in the amount of debris that is
inadvertently brought into the hot tub on user's feet. A
perimeter walkway can of course be added later.
Prefabricated Spa Pads
Pads are a great alternative to poured concrete, and provide a
very attractive base. This superb inter-locking pad system is
quick and easy to set up, maintenance-free, and can be a lot less
expensive than other systems.
||The pads interlock to make
a rigid base for your hot tub. Unlike poured concrete, the
base can be easily removed later if desired.
Each pad measures 32" x 48" and are sold in
cartons of three pads each. Six pads (2 cartons) make an 8' x 8' platform.
||Gravel or crushed rock is one of the least
expensive materials for a spa base. Be sure that the ground
underneath is properly compacted to prevent future settling,
level, and that rainwater drainage is considered. An access
walkway of stepping stones is a nice finishing touch.
Poured Concrete Slab
||Concrete pavers are
a beautiful base material, available in a wide array of choices.
Whether you do-it-yourself, or hire a landscaping contractor, make certain that the base is prepared according to the
stone manufacturer's specifications and leveled to ensure a stable foundation.
|If you plan a deck site, you
must first determine the deck's maximum load capacity.
Consult with a qualified building contractor or structural
engineer before placing your hot tub on an elevated deck.
The manufacturer of your spa can give you its filled weight.
Remember to also add the weight of the occupants. The spa's
weight per square foot must not exceed the rated capacity of the
structure to avoid damage and possible injury.
Deck designs and configurations are limited only
by one's imagination. Set-top deck installations are best
because they allow easy access to the spa cabinet for cleaning and
maintenance. If you decide to build a deck around your hot tub,
be sure to allow for access to the equipment compartment panel so
that future service is not hindered.
Indoor Spa Setup
|Indoor installations have
special considerations. The room should be properly
ventilated to allow moisture to escape. Using your hot tub for 15
minutes releases the equivalent water vapor as a shower of the
same duration. Installation of a bathroom fan or other venting
system is a good idea to prevent excess condensation in the room.
Unless placing the spa on a suitable concrete
slab, you will need to verify that the supporting floor structure
will accommodate the filled weight of the spa with occupants. A
qualified contractor or a structural engineer can help you
determine that requirement. Check your spa's specifications for
the estimated weight load of the filled unit. (A gallon of water
weighs approx. 8.35 lbs.)
If building a new room for the spa, a floor
drain is a good idea since water may be splashed from the tub. Select flooring which provides a good
grip for wet feet.
Electrical Service Requirements
240 Volt Spas
||Full-sized acrylic spas, such as our Belize
brand are designed for the most part to operate on hard-wired,
GFCI-protected 220-240V 50 amp circuits. Some spas with multiple pumps may require a 60
amp service. Refer to your owner's manual for
These spas must be wired by a qualified
electrician. The National Electrical Code specifies that a
manual disconnect device for your hot tub be installed at least 5
ft. away, and within line of sight of the spa for safety.
Consult with your local building department for additional
||We recommend our
Disconnect 60A GFCI Panel. This load center will handle 220-240V spa loads up to 60 amps (or less). Even if you spa has a lesser load,
this model will allow the extra capacity for future upgrades. Example: for a spa requiring a 50A service, a standard 50A breaker would be used in the main service panel.
Our load centers conveniently provide an additional 120V branch circuit which can be used for deck or landscape
lighting... or use the circuit to add an outdoor power receptacle for
BBQ rotisserie, etc. Designed for easy installation.
Need help with hook-up?
Tub Wiring movie shows how it's done, with tons of of
hook-up tips and 240V electrical diagrams.
Plug-n-Play 110 Volt Spas
Beautifully durable LifeCast Spas are now more affordable than ever before!
||There are quite a few
plug-n-play lightweight portable spas available today which use standard household voltage of 110-120 volts. These
include SuperTub 200 & SuperTub 300, and LifeCast unicast convertible voltage series.
|Many plug-n-play spas operate on a standard 15
amp household circuit. These have a GFCI built into the end of
the cord, and plug right into the outlet.
Note: Dedicated circuits are required to
prevent overload. Read your owner's manual.
Getting Ready for the Delivery
Access for Larger Spas
Prior to the arrival of your new spa, you should
ensure that there is clear access for moving the spa from the truck to
the setup location. It may be necessary to remove a section of fence,
trim tree branches or shrubs, move a doghouse, firewood stack or any
other protrusions that might be in the way. Check also for overhead
||If you are receiving your spa
factory-direct, it will be shipped by truck. Normally the freight
company will contact you by phone in advance of the delivery, to
let you know the expected arrival window. You will need to be on
hand for the delivery and it is a good idea to have helpers to
move the spa.
Spas are delivered curbside. This means that you do not have
to worry about unloading the spa off of the truck when buying a full
sized spa from us. Other companies that sell spas factory-direct may
not offer this service, in which case you will need to rent a forklift
or arrange for people to help you unload a spa from their semi truck.
In any case, it is your responsibility to move the spa from
curbside or driveway to its setup location. Some delivery
companies will provide this service for an additional fee, if arranged
Positioning the Spa
With the spa off the truck, it's usually
not difficult for two people to move it to the designated location
with a simple furniture or piano dolly-- a wheeled frame with
carpeted pads. These are available at rental shops inexpensively.
Piano moving companies also have them.
|If you anticipate any difficulty in moving
the spa over uneven ground or lawn areas, you can prepare a smooth
runway from a sheet of 5/8" plywood, cut in half to 2 ft. x 8 ft.
||Although rarely needed, in instances where
the setup location of a spa is inaccessible by normal means, a
crane service can position it.
costs less than you might expect, often just a few hundred dollars
depending upon the job scope and location.
With your spa in its final location and wired
correctly, you can begin with startup. Make sure you have read your
owner's manual before proceeding:
- Turn off all electrical power to the
equipment at the circuit breaker.
- Make sure that the spa's gate valves
are open if so equipped (consult owner's manual).
- Check to see that drain valve is
- Clean interior of spa with suitable
mild, non-foaming, non-abrasive cleaner.
- Check to see that the filter(s) are
- Using garden hose, fill spa with
clean cold water to level specified in owner's manual. Low water
levels can cause damage to the pump and heater element.
- Open equipment door and observe for
any leaks around union fittings. Tighten if necessary.
- Turn on power at the circuit
- Operate your spa's controls per
owner's manual instructions.
- Balance your water chemistry and use
a sanitizer system.
||Don't expect to immediately
feel hot water from the jets. Initially, the hot tub may take
approximately from 7-8 hours to a day to heat, depending upon its
size and other factors.
Water Balance & Sanitizer
Nothing is more important in promoting long
equipment life, and healthy, clean, clear spa water than assuring that
your water is balanced and properly sanitized at all times. Once you
get the hang of it, it is a simple routine.
The information provided here is for educational purposes only.
It is neither a substitute nor a replacement for information
contained in your owner's manual. Consult with your local building
department, qualified licensed contractor, or structural engineer
for structural and electrical requirements as appropriate.