Hot tub covers are essential accessories. They conserve heat, reduce operational costs and maintain adequate chemical levels in the spa. Not to mention, they stop leaves and other outdoor debris from falling into the water.
An average cover lasts between three and five years, depending on its usage and quality. To get the most years from a cover, assess the three criteria below before purchasing it.
How well hot tub covers retain heat depends on three things: foam density, foam thickness and foam sealant.
- A 1.5-pound density cover will provide sufficient strength and rigidity. That said, larger spas might need upgrading to two pounds.
- Hot tub covers less than two-inches thick will not provide enough support or insulation. Similarly, flat covers collect water and can sag over time. Covers with a two-inch slope are best, with a minimum thickness of three inches at its shallowest point.
- Poly wraps form a moisture barrier and prevent water from penetrating the foam. Standard poly wraps are two millimeters; never buy less than this. Additionally,check the workmanship of the hinge seal to minimize gradual heat loss.
All covers require a reinforcing c-channel to bolster the foam and hold its form. Most channels come in aluminum or galvanized steel—the latter offering more strength. How the cover is sewn also affects its durability. Look for products with at least triple-stitching around high-stress areas like handles, locking straps and seams.
Good quality marine vinyl weighs 30 ounces or more. It will also include UV and mildew inhibitors. For colder climates, check the recommended temperature ranges to ensure the vinyl will not crack or blister. Most covers now include drain holes, too, that allow moisture to escape. Ensure your cover has this feature to avoid waterlogging.