There aren’t many home improvement projects that provide higher returns on the pleasure scale than the addition of a portable spa. A portable spa is simply an industry term for a self-contained hot tub unit that can be installed anywhere on your property. They are perfect for patios, decks, concrete slabs, and even reinforced decks, and are easily the most popular type of hot tub being purchased by homeowners today. Don’t let the word “portable” fool you into thinking lower quality. In fact, portable spas make up the vast majority of the spas you see being used by homeowners across the country, and are high quality, top of the line, spas for your home.
Portable Hot Tubs and Spas: What’s the Difference?
Not much, anymore. Traditionally, spas referred to the entire area, resort, and experience of luxurious bathing that usually included comfortable seating, water jets, filters, salt additives, and other amenities, whereas hot tubs referred to a simple wooden basin used for hot water bathing. Today, people often use the terms “hot tubs” and “spas” interchangeably or even consciously use the term “hot tub spa” to make sure all meanings are captured. Portable hot tubs and spas are an even more dubious distinction. If a unit must be self-contained to be considered “portable,” it limits the experience to the tub itself, even if that tub includes many of the extra typical of the spa experience. Indeed, the ability of portable hot tub manufacturers to incorporate these amenities within the tub has directly contributed to the blurred lines of each term.
Portable Spas: Costs and Considerations
There are two main considerations you need to take into consideration when you begin shopping for portable spas for your residence. The first is where you want to put it; the second is how large of a spa you want to purchase. Both are important questions, and in some sense, the choices you make in one area will greatly influence the other. It comes as no surprise to anybody that portable spa costs vary tremendously. You can find an inflatable spa for just a couple hundred dollars. Basic hard shell hot tubs usually run at least $1,000. Large, top-of-the-line spas will generally run $10,000 or more. Looking to ballpark the cost of what your neighbor might be spending. Well, the average cost of hot tub installation from homeowners across the country, young and old, rich and poor, is $2,067.
Portable Hot Tubs and Spas: Size and Accessories
Once you’ve determined where you want your portable spa to be placed, the last decision you’ll need to make is what size of spa you’re in the market for. Is your dream a small, cozy spa that you and your spouse can enjoy on cool spring evenings? Or are you looking for the biggest tub you can find, so that everyone can fit in the water at your infamous pool parties? Knowing how many people you want to be able to seat is a must before you head into the showroom. It’s important to be honest with yourself: Are you really going to host parties where a handful of people will use the hot tub? Are you really going to use the hot tub several times a week with your spouse? Depending on your answers, you may be able to find the best value from an elongated, two-seater that will give you plenty of leg room without being bigger than necessary.
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Understanding Portable Spa Installation
The term “portable spas” can be misleading to homeowners, in that many people assume it means an easy set up and instant gratification. Remember, portable spas are still serious pieces of equipment. They are big, heavy, and will have to be wired into your home by an electrician or other contractor before they can be turned on. With all that being the case, it’s best to talk to a spa contractor about having a professional do a proper installation.
- Indoor Portable Spa Installation: Spas can literally be installed anywhere inside or outside your home, though most homeowners prefer outdoor installations. Installing portable spas indoors means you’ll have to make other home improvements, like cedar wall paneling and special ventilation, in order to accommodate the rise in humidity and moisture levels that a spa will produce. Still, it’s a price some homeowners are willing to pay to enjoy the relaxing properties of a spa without ever having to leave the house.
- Outdoor Portable Spa Installation: If you’ll be installing your spa outside, your main concerns should be convenience and privacy. Where is your spa going to be easily accessible and convenient to use? Remember, you’ll be making trips to your spa (hopefully!) during some pretty chilly weather, so most homeowners choose a place closer to the home rather than far away. Privacy also becomes a concern, so it’s a good idea to set off a “spa sized” area with a garden hose or tape, and to do so in a few different spots on your property. Spend a few minutes in each area looking around to see which one gives you the best combination of privacy from neighbors and great views of landscape and sky.
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