How to Buy a Spa

Buying a spa is a decision you shouldn’t feel rushed or pressured into, so be sure to ask the dealer a lot of questions. Like shopping for anything else, knowledge is everything. Before you take the plunge into buying a spa, ask for a private “test soak” so you can feel the jets and the overall comfort of the spa. Here is a checklist of things to consider. Feel free to print it out and take it with you when you comparison shop.

1. Learn about the spa’s specific features, ease of use and maintenance.

  • When the spa is not in use, does the water always remain hot and clean?
  • Do the jets and jet systems allow you to customize your hydromassage experience?
  • How loud are the jets and pump?
  • Does the spa offer a balanced filtration system? Is the water continuously filtered 24 hours
    a day to ensure clean, clear water?
  • Are the filters top-loaded for easy access
  • Is the heating and filtration system fully automatic with no programming required?
  • Is there an automatic clean-up cycle after you exit the spa?
  • Inquire about the heater—typically the most vulnerable component of any spa. Make
    sure corrosion will not occur.
  • Are the controls user-friendly, easy to operate and adjust?
  • Are there optional features to make spa ownership easier?
  • What are the electrical specifications of the spa? Are both 115v and 230v available?
    (115v can be far less expensive to install)
  • How is the seating configured? Are you able to move about easily? Is there lumbar
    support for your back?

2. Learn how the spa was constructed and its energy efficiency.

  • The components should be fully tested and backed by the manufacturer’s warranty.
  • Make sure the spa is totally insulated, not just fully-foamed.
  • Ask how to estimate your monthly operation costs. (Beware of less expensive spas
    which can cost in excess of $50 per month to operate).

3. Obtain a copy of the warranty.

  • Ask for a copy of the warranty and read it thoroughly. Beware of the dealer who is
    reluctant to provide a copy.
  • What spa parts are covered under warranty and for how long? Make sure the heater, surface/structure, components, tile and skirt are included.
  • How does the manufacturer’s warranty compare with other brands? Make sure there are no undesirable limitations or exclusions.

4. Obtain information on the manufacturer and the dealer to ensure you will receive quality service both during and after your spa purchase.

  • How long has the manufacturer been in business?
  • How long has the dealer been in business? Inquire about their service policy.
  • Call the Better Business Bureau for more information.
  • Ask for customer references.