The warmth of the water is perhaps the defining feature of a spa pool – it’s why they’re called hot tubs, after all. But with so many other alluring features – the massaging jets, the relaxing ambience, the quality time with loved ones – there may be times, particularly in summer, when you’d love to enjoy the joys of your spa pool, just minus the heat.
The good news is that you can use your swim spa or spa pool without the water being heated. Simply turn the thermostat down, add cold water, or if you’ve got a Hot Spring CoolZone™ system, set the spa to whatever cool temperature you choose!
What should a spa pool owner need to know about running a spa pool as a cool tub? Read on to find out.
Can you fill a spa pool with cold water?
Spa pools are designed to heat the water that they hold. This means that unlike a bathtub, you don’t need to fill your spa with hot water (doing so can in fact damage your machine). Instead, it’s recommended that you simply fill your spa with the cool water that comes out of your garden hose, then let the heater do the work.
If the water from your hose isn’t as cold as you want it to be, you can add ice to your spa pool to lower the starting temperature further.
How long can you stay in a cold tub?
When spa pools are set to temperatures in the high 30s, which is greater than the internal temperature of the human body, soaking comes with a level of risk, as the body can struggle to rid itself of excess heat. Pregnant women in particular should be careful as to how they use their spa at high temperatures. For this reason a soak of 15 or so minutes is recommended as an ideal length of time. (It should be noted that there is minimal risk in soaking in a spa pool that is set at or below body temperature.)
How do I make my spa pool water cool in the summer?
There are a number of ways to create a cold water spa pool in the heat of summer, including:
Set your spa to the lowest temperature
While the thermostat on your heater may have the ability to be set as low as the mid-20C range, if you want your spa water to get as cool as possible it’s wise to set your spa to the lowest temperature.
Turn on your CoolZone™ system
By far the most effective way to cool your water is to choose a spa pool with a cool water mode. An optional add-on, the CoolZone™ system grants you total control over the temperature of your water, using heat pump technology to actively cool your H2O to as low as 15C. Simply set the thermostat and wait for your water temperature to drop!
Add cold water or ice
An effective (albeit temporary) solution to your spa temperature problems is to add cold water or ice to your tub. You may need to replace a decent amount of water to notice a difference, particularly if you choose liquid H2O over solid, so it’s wise to briefly drain your spa before adding more so that it doesn’t overflow.
The radiant heat of the sun will warm your spa pool far faster than heat from the ambient air. At the very least your spa pool should always be covered when not in use, but if you’re looking for your water to stay cooler for longer, it’s wise to invest in a purpose-built shade, like a spa-side umbrella.
Run the jets
When you run your spa pool jets with the heater on, it can help to warm the water faster. The same is true for cooling your water: ensure your heater is switched off, then turn your jets on. The water will cool down slightly as the motion of the jets exposes it to fresh air.
What is the lowest temperature you can keep a spa pool?
It’s summer. You pour a cool glass of water, then wander out to your verandah and place it on a table. Over the next five, 10 or 20 minutes it slowly warms until the water temperature matches that of the ambient air.
When you set your spa to the lowest temperature, the same thing happens to the water in the tub – the insulation will make the process slower, but the temperature inside will eventually match the temperature outside. Most spa pools can only heat the water and have no way to cool it, which means that the lowest temperature that most hot tubs can be kept at is whatever the outside temperature happens to be on that day.
The Hot Spring CoolZone system grants you the ability to actively cool your water, setting the temperature to as low as a truly refreshing 15C, which just happens to be the point at which the benefits of cold water immersion (CWI) therapy take effect.
The CoolZone system allows you to enjoy your spa pool all year round, from the peak of summer to the depths of winter, no matter what Mother Nature might throw at you!
Can you use a spa pool in the rain?
While we’re on the subject of weather, can you enjoy a soak while it’s raining?
The short answer is yes – spa pools might be electronic pieces of equipment, but they’re designed for outdoor conditions and are built to deal with water, so there are no issues with using them in a drizzle (although you should always head inside if you see lightning).
There is a small asterisk, however: by allowing your spa pool to be topped up with fresh rainwater, you may change the careful balance of chemicals that keeps your spa pool water clean, clear, soft and fresh. The addition of rainwater can dilute chlorine and change pH levels, but only ever to a small degree, so these changes are simple to deal with as part of your standard water maintenance regime.
Cool or warm, a Hot Spring soak is better
At Hot Spring we’ve been supplying Kiwis with the most stunning, comfortable and innovative warm and cool water spa pools for over four decades. The innovation continues to this day, with features like the CoolZone system ensuring there’s no bad day for a soak.
No matter what your spa pool needs and wants or your local conditions, you can trust our dedicated network of Hot Spring dealers to offer the help and advice you need to enjoy the finest spa pool experience possible.
Ready to feel the Hot Spring difference? Book in your test soak today!