Winter Power Outages & Your Hot Tub

As the winter storms approach, you will want to stay informed in case you have a power outage.  Having the correct knowledge can prevent ice damage to your hot tub. The number one piece of knowledge is to never drain your hot tub unless you plan to go through the entire winterization process. Draining the tub without winterizing it can make it vulnerable to ice and freezing.
 
In the event of a power outage:
 
  • Try not to open your hot tub cover.
Opening the cover frequently can cause the temperature inside to cool down.  Brushing the snow off the cover of your hot tub can also help maintain the temperature and prevent the cover from collapsing.
 
  • Make sure your hot tub cover is cinched down tightly.
This will also prevent the heat from escaping your hot tub. If you’re worried about your cover not staying completely closed or blowing off, you can stabilize it by putting weight on top of the cover. Make sure that the weight is evenly distributed around the outside instead of being placed in the center of the hot tub cover. Generally, wood boards work best to evenly distribute the weight. Placing weight only in the middle of the cover can cause it to break or collapse at the center.
 
  • Insulate the inside equipment housing area of the hot tub.
A well-insulated hot tub can retain enough heat to prevent freezing for up to two weeks, depending on the outdoor temperature and wind. A well-insulated hot tub should be covered in spray foam insulation or wrap-around insulation covering the outside of the tub and plumbing. The equipment bay is the only part that is vulnerable to freezing as long as the rest of the hot tub is well-insulated.
 
Nonetheless, in the event of a power outage, follow these additional steps to prevent the equipment area from freezing:
1) Shut off breaker to the hot tub (this prevents the motor from overheating if the power comes back on)
2) Open the equipment door where the pump and electronics are stored
3) Wrap the pump housing and heater lines that run water through them with blankets, sleeping bags, or another form of insulation
 
Once the power comes back take the blankets, sleeping bags, etc off the plumbing and water lines and then turn the breaker back on.