It wasn’t that long ago that hot tubs were considered the domain of rich people. There is definitely a sense of opulence and luxury associated with hot tubs. So why are hot tubs so expensive? Well, the fact is that although you can spend incredible amounts of money on a hot tub, in today’s market there are quite a few cheaper options available to the average person. In hindsight, what makes a hot tub initially cheap or expensive can turn out to be the opposite in the long run. To help you decide on how much you want to spend on a hot tub, we’ve put together this article to help you to understand what makes a hot tub expensive.
The Differences Between Inflatable, Portable and Inground Hot Tubs
If you’re looking at it purely from a price perspective, inflatable hot tubs will be the cheapest. You can have one up and running in your backyard for a few hundred dollars. That said, it may not last more than a few years and will probably cost you more to operate than the more permanent options available. If you’re looking for something cheap, quick and simple an inflatable hot tub will do the trick.
Portable hot tubs are not as portable as inflatable hot tubs, but much more portable than an in-ground installation. Portable hot tubs are quite sturdy with a shell composed of acrylic or fiberglass that’s surrounded by a rigid frame. This makes them much more durable than their inflatable counterparts. With proper maintenance they can last 15 years or more. While it’ll be difficult to find a portable hot tub that costs less than a few thousand dollars, you could easily spend tens of thousands of dollars on high end models.
Brand Name Recognition
There are a few brand names in the hot tub business that have been around since the advent of the industry. They are generally still around because of the quality of their products, although there’s a price to be paid for that quality. That said, there are plenty of cheap, no name brand hot tubs that sell every year. It’s just that buyers should not expect a durable, long lasting product.
Water Treatment Systems
The standard hot tub water treatment system is based on chlorine. However, it can be a harsh chemical and some people are sensitive to its use. Ozone or ozone with UV combination systems greatly reduce the reliance on chlorine, but come with an added cost. A self cleaning system will also generally cost you more upfront, but will reduce the amount of maintenance and labor necessary. You may also find upgraded water treatment systems will reduce your long term operating costs.
It only makes sense that all else being the same, a larger hot tub will cost more than a smaller hot tub. Every seat in a hot tub requires more water jets to be built in and more water jets require a more powerful water pump. The larger volume of water will also require a powerful water heater. However, in the hot tub world bigger does not necessarily mean better. If you’re a couple that rarely has guests, paying for a 10 seater hot tub is probably not in your best interest. You can often get the same options in a two or three seater for a fraction of the 10 seat price. Choose your size accordingly.
With a better understanding of what makes a hot tub expensive, download a free hot tub buyer’s guide for more information.