Indoor Hot Tub
While both indoor and outdoor hot tubs offer the same benefits, from relaxation to hydrotherapy to entertainment, deciding where to install your hot tub can change your experience entirely. The choice makes a world of difference when it comes to installation, maintenance, and how you choose to utilize your hot tub.
To make a decision, you need the facts. That's where we come in. We've done the research to help you decide whether you should install your new hot tub indoors or outdoors, all while showing you the pros and cons of each.
Let's dive in and explore so that you can get one step closer to soaking in paradise.
Pros and Cons of Indoor Hot Tubs
There is no better way to enjoy privacy than from within the home. It is so easy to walk from the bathtub or shower into the bedroom without having to worry about any onlookers.
For this reason alone, many people have begun installing indoor hot tubs in their homes. Here are a few of the noteworthy pros and cons of having an indoor hot tub.
Pros of Owning an Indoor Hot Tub
While both indoor and outdoor hot tubs can be convenient, a hot tub that is in the home only requires a few steps to get to. Users never even have to put on a pair of sandals to get to the hot tub.
Many hot tub owners live in urban and suburban neighborhoods, full of nosy neighbors and passers-by. One of the best ways to create privacy and break free from any inquisitive gazing is by installing a hot tub indoors. People often take comfort in soaking with privacy, as it can enhance the relaxation experience.
Optimize Unused Rooms
Consumers that have a large home or empty nesters whose children have moved out or gone to college often find themselves with plenty of leftover room in the home. Rather than letting these large rooms collect dust, it can be worth creating an indoor paradise with a high-quality hot tub.
Protection from Harsh Weather
When a hot tub is placed in the home, worrying about the elements becomes a thing of the past. Not only does an indoor hot tub have better protection from sun damage, dirt, and debris, but so does the user. There is no need to apply sunscreen before stepping into an indoor hot tub. Plus, an indoor hot tub can be used comfortably in the home no matter how bad the weather is outside.
Many hot tub cabinets suffer greatly at the hands of sun and snow. An indoor hot tub cabinet will retain structural integrity much longer than an outdoor hot tub.
Cons of Owning an Indoor Hot Tub
While indoor hot tubs may face less wear and tear, installing a hot tub indoors, not to mention maintaining one, can be a bit difficult. Successful indoor hot tub installation requires tons of home planning and preparation. Some people need to make notable alterations to their home to do so, many of which require the help of general contractors.
Here are some of the pitfalls people fall into when installing a hot tub indoors.
Home Installation Path
Hot tubs come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes, most of which are much larger than the average doorway. It may not be possible to maneuver a standard hot tub throughout a home, around corners, through hallways, and up or down a flight of stairs. Prior to purchasing a hot tub, it is necessary to review the specs and take measurements of the installation or delivery path.
Sometimes, homes require pretty substantial alterations to make indoor spa installation possible.
Spa Base Installation
A portable, indoor hot tub will require a solid foundation to sit on. Even small to mid-sized spas can weigh more than 5,000 pounds when completely filled with water. This weight is without any people sitting in it.
A standard home floor will require a bit of additional reinforcement unless the plan is to lay the hot tub on a water-resistant slab of concrete in the basement. In this instance, it is crucial to speak with a hot tub dealer or structural engineer for guidance.
There are far too many horror stories of people installing indoor hot tubs incorrectly and ruining the structural integrity of their homes. Plus, incorrect hot tub installation can be a serious hazard.
If a room doesn't have running water, some plumbing work will be necessary. Most hot tub manufacturers suggest their hot tubs be emptied and filled once per year. Having a sink or faucet of some sort in the same room as the hot tub can help make the water drainage process much easier.
While it is sometimes possible to run a house from the front or backyard to the hot tub, some homes aren't designed to make that work, meaning an additional plumbing project might be in order.
When people enter or exit the hot tub, or move around inside of it, there is bound to be a bit of spillage or hot water displacement. If a spa drain is not installed, that spa water will sit idle on the flooring. Sitting water can cause costly structural damage on non-water-resistant floors.
Those who don't want to install a spa water drain might consider running a hose to a nearby sink whenever they need to clean up water.
Some hot tubs require special 220v electrical installation, which may require the work of an electrician. Those who are handy when it comes to electrical work could install a ground fault circuit interrupter between the power source and the hot tub, though a licensed electrician is always recommended for this type of installation project. Hiring anyone to do this kind of work can be costly, though, for standard hot tubs, it is necessary.
When spa water is heated, it will evaporate into the surrounding air and cause a spike in humidity. This much humidity coming from a hot tub could potentially damage paint, carpet, drywall, plaster, or any other covering or furnishings in the room, causing eventual dry rot. Plus, humidity breeds fungi and bacteria. To help reduce hot tub humidity in an indoor vapor barrier, it is necessary to install a ventilation system.
A ceiling fan is not a proper form of ventilation in a tub room. Rather, consumers might want to install an exhaust fan to help keep the space dry. Many professionals recommend consumers install a hot tub in a proper tub room with water-resistant cement walls to protect their homes from dry rot.
Pros and Cons of Outdoor Hot Tubs
Outdoor hot tubs are much easier to install and maintain compared to indoor hot tubs. Modern hot tubs are stronger than ever, meaning most of them can withstand harsher climates.
Heavy vinyl hot tub covers are made to protect the interior from dirt and debris while weather-resistant cabinets can stand up to sun, wind, or rain damage.
Here are a few of the noteworthy pros of owning an outdoor hot tub.
Pros of Owning an Outdoor Hot Tub
There is no need to worry about ventilation when a hot tub is outdoors. The wind will work to blow away any excess humidity, leaving the deck or patio completely intact. Any water that is left over will evaporate as soon as the sun comes out.
Easy Delivery and Installation
Installing a hot tub on a patio or deck is much easier than installing one in the home.
While a foundation and any other electrical changes might still be required, the initial cost will be far lower.
Of course, it is necessary to make sure that the delivery path is wide enough and has been cleared of any debris.
A section of fence might have to be removed to install a hot tub, though it is much easier than having to break down a wall.
Having a hot tub or spa outdoors provides a unique form of relaxation that simply cannot be matched with an indoor space. An outdoor hot tub gives users the chance to bask in their landscaping, hear the birds sing, enjoy a sunset, and get some much-needed sunlight, all while soaking in pure comfort. There is no better way to become one with an environment than from a comfortable outdoor hot tub.
Need a Hot Tub?
Draining a hot tub outdoors is a much easier process than draining a hot tub in the home, as there is no need for an additional floor drain. It is as simple as running a hose from the interior of the hot tub into a natural spa water drainage site, such as a garden.
Cons of Owning an Outdoor Hot Tub
There aren't as many pitfalls that people fall into when it comes to outdoor hot tubs, which is why most people install their hot tubs outdoors, to begin with. However, there are a few noteworthy considerations to make before placing a hot tub in the front or backyard.
A backyard space that is within the line of sight of a neighbor or passer-by means less privacy. For those who want privacy when in the hot tub, it might be necessary to plant trees or shrubs. It might even be worth it to build a higher fence or wall.
Try and find a hot tub company that manufactures built-in covers. A built-in spa cover could provide a bit of extra privacy when up.
Not as Convenient
Enjoying a hot tub outdoors might not be as convenient. On a sunny day, it might be great. However, not all climates are sunny year-round. Bad weather can put a damper on the spa experience. Plus, testing the water, cleaning the filters, or performing any other types of maintenance, require a walk outside.
Final Thoughts - Indoor Vs. Outdoor Hot Tub
The choice between placing a hot tub in the home or outdoors completely depends on the needs and desires of the user. There are plenty of trade-offs that one makes depending on where they choose to install their hot tub. Speak with a professional to decide what might work best for installation.