safety

  • Thanksgiving in the Hot Tub

    Thanksgiving in the Hot Tub Image by moodboard photography. http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/7301112520/

     

    With the holidays kicking off this week, it's the perfect time to take the cover off the hot tub and plan family gatherings around warm, bubbly water. Below you'll find some tips and advice on how to make your hot tub a fun part of your Thanksgiving.

    We are Thankful for Lounge Seats and 28 Stainless Steel Jets

    Get the tub warmed up as your guests start to arrive. Invite people to soak while they wait for the turkey to cook, and to soak while the turkey digests happily in their bellies. It's a great way to distract the kids and placate the teenagers. Something about a hot tub really brings a family together, and might even help prevent those awkward holiday arguments. Here are some ideas for making the tub a big part of Thanksgiving dinner:

    • To encourage guests to use the tub, have them bring their suits and towels.
    • Pick up hot tub accessories like this towel table and stools so there's a place to put towels and drinks and other guests and hang out and visit with the soakers.
    • A small table nearby is a good place to set plates so food stays out of the tub.
    • Consider adding some spa steps with handrails, so grandma and grandpa can get in and out of the tub easily.

    Don't Get into Hot Water While in the Hot Water

    As always, you'll need to take precautions while the tub is in use to make sure everyone stays safe. A few things to keep an eye on:

    • A sober adult should always be monitoring the tub if there are children or pets in the home. It can be easy to get distracted by Auntie Amy's crazy stories, but it can only take a second for a child or pet to fall into the tub and get into trouble. Consider assigning non-drinking guests as hot tub monitors in half-hour increments.
    • Disallow drinks and food in the tub. In addition to getting the water gross, spilled food and drinks can be a safety hazard and can damage the hot tub's system. Encourage guests to use nearby tables and benches and to exit the tub to eat and drink.
    • Prevent guests from drinking heavily and then using the tub, as they could pass out and injure themselves and others.
    • Eating a big meal can make people drowsy. Throw in a little wine and you have a recipe for a satisfying nap. Keep an eye on the tub after dinner and get sleepy soakers out and onto the couch instead to prevent accidental drowning.

    Happy Thanksgiving, to All of Our Super Soakers!

    From all of us here at spasandstuff.com, Happy Thanksgiving! We hope your holiday is full of good food, good company, and good soaking.

  • Where to Put It? Tips on Where to Install Your Hot Tub

    Where to Put It? Tips on Where to Install Your Hot Tub

    PLAN AHEAD FOR STRENGTH AND SAFETY

    Wherever you decide to place your hot tub, you need to make sure that the location has a solid foundation. The foundation must be uniformly firm and provide a level setting. The recommended foundation is a concrete pad with a minimum thickness of 4 inches with steel-reinforced cross bars throughout.

    When installing your spa on a wood deck or balcony, the same load requirements must be met. The total load may be as much as 90 pounds per square foot. Remember that your tub weighs about 700 pounds on its own. After you add water and people, it could have a total weight of up to 4,000 pounds.

    Regardless of the location that you decide on, you need to be sure that the hot tub is not within 10 feet of overhead power lines and that you leave access to the internal equipment.

    In order to perform maintenance or make a needed repair, you will need adequate space to reach the internal components. If your tub has external equipment, you need to know that most city codes require the equipment to be at least 5 feet from the tub unless they are separated by a permanent solid barrier.

    CONSIDERATIONS FOR INDOOR PLACEMENT

    If you decide to place your hot tub indoors, you need to understand that moisture will accumulate. The steam created by the tub must go somewhere, and it will leave moisture on your walls, ceiling, floor, etc. You need to make sure that you have really good ventilation. The amount of moisture will vary according to how frequently you use the tub.

    Ventilation not only helps dissipate the moisture and steam, but it also allows the hot tub chemicals to be circulated out. The odor of the cleaning components can accumulate indoors and even create electrical problem unless the area is well ventilated. The good news is that if you place your hot tub indoors, it will probably stay cleaner and require less frequent chemical treatments.

    Big tip on installing a hot tub indoors: you should have some kind of drainage system in place! Experts recommend you change the water in your tub every four months or so. You always have the option of running sewage drains to your hot tub, and if you are placing your hot tub on an existing slab you will need to dig up the concrete to build your drain system.

    Another option that is a little less of a hassle would be to get a small submersible pump. You can use the pump to push most of the water out of the tub, but pumps usually fail to move the last inch or so of water at the bottom of the tub.

    Some manufacturers build their hot tubs with a water hose connection inside of the cabinet at the bottom of the hot tub. This will enable you to hook a water hose to your hot tub so that you can easily drain the water and move it to another drain or outside on the ground.

    ADDITIONAL TIPS

    No matter how well made your hot tub is, it is always possible that after years of usage leaks will occur due to worn gaskets or seals. That water must have a place to go. Be prepared to deal with this if the situation arises.

    Another thing to consider is that you have to get the hot tub into your house. Measure to make sure that you have enough room to get it into your house and then measure again. After you do that, measure once more!

    Many companies suggest that you spend the money to have a licensed contractor make sure that the local building codes and load requirements can be met.

    OUTDOORS AND UNDER THE STARS

    For many people, outdoors is the best location for a hot tub. Outdoors, there are fewer concerns for the tub. You do not have to worry about the steam and humidity or the chemicals affecting your home. Locating your tub outdoors, though, does mean that you may have to get a concrete pad laid down so that it has a proper foundation.

    Outside it will get dirtier more easily. Walking to and from the tub, your feet will get dirty and that will get in the water. Leaves and such may end up in your new hot tub.

    A cover is very important when placing a tub anywhere, but it is especially important when placing it outdoors. Always have a cover on the tub when you are not in it. This is a safety measure to prevent small children from falling into it and it also helps it to stay cleaner. The cleaner the water stays, the less frequently you have to treat the water with chemicals.

    There are a wide variety of pictures of hot tubs on the Internet being placed outdoors in very creative ways. If you want to invest the money, a stand-alone deck can be built that encompasses the tub. The only limit here is your imagination and your budget.

    PLACING YOUR HOT TUB IN A SCREENED-IN ROOM

    Putting a hot tub in a screened-in porch mostly resembles an outdoor installation. You have to consider some of the factors that go with both indoor and outdoor installations, though. A screened-in porch will obviously allow for ventilation and the steam and humidity will not harm your walls. You will still need a drain put into the floor of the porch if one does not already exist. If the manufacturer uses the water hose connection, this will not be an issue for you.

    Again, you can find many creative pictures of hot tubs installed in screened porches on the Internet.

    IN CONCLUSION

    In the end, the placement of your new hot tub is completely up to you and your preferences. No matter where you decide to put it, be sure to plan ahead. The more you plan ahead, the easier it will be to install and to enjoy.

    If you are not sure whether or not your chosen location is suitable, you should seriously consider contacting a licensed contractor.

    Finally, always take into account safety factors when deciding where to put your hot tub. As stated before, a cover should always be in place when it is not in use. Also consider the surface that you will be walking on when going to and from the hot tub. If the path is smooth concrete you may want to put some mats down to prevent slipping.

  • Food and Drinks in the Hot Tub

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    In Taiwan and some other counties, it's understood that soaking in a hot tub or hot spring will mean eating and drinking while relaxing. In Taiwan--an island wealthy in natural hot springs--it is common for hot-water lovers to put fresh eggs and cans of coffee into mesh nets, then soak alongside for a little while until the eggs are soft-boiled enough to eat and the coffee warm enough to drink. It's a fun activity, and enjoying snacks while soaking just makes sense to hot tub users worldwide.

    But now we're going to put on our Mom Hats and offer a few words of advice to you before you start making up cheese plates to take spa-side:

    • Combining alcohol and bodies of water is never a good idea. For many, entertaining and  alcohol are closely related, but it is very important to be cautious. Alcohol impairs motor functions, and surfaces around hot tubs can be slippery. If necessary, a spa pad can add traction to the ground and aid balance and safety, but the best precaution is common sense.
    • It won't ruin your hot tub if food lands in the water, but anyone else sharing the tub with you might not enjoy sitting in a hot soup of soggy chips. It may be best to purchase patio furniture that can hold food and drinks next to the hot tub. Spasandstuff.com has some really attractive spa furniture, if you need some ideas.
    • Staying in the hot tub for long periods can make a person feel dehydrated and can lower blood sugar levels. It is a good idea to keep drinks on hand and to take snack breaks periodically. If at any time you begin to feel lightheaded, leave the hot tub immediately, rehydrate, and rest completely before returning to the tub.

    *http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taiwanese_hot_springs

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