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The Difference Between a Hot Tub and a Spa

Posted on June 15, 2010
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One of the first questions that can come to mind when looking into buying a hot tub is what is the difference between a so called hot tub and a spa? Well, a simple answer is: nothing. It is now very common practice for manufacturers to use hot tub and spa synonymously. A more in-depth answer, however, is that portable hot tubs and portable spas are manufactured tubs that can be installed aboveground or inground and do not necessarily have to remain in the same location. Permanent spas, on the other hand, are typically built inground, often accompanying or connected to a swimming pool. They become an integral part of a property’s permanent pool area. These non-portable spas are usually made of poured concrete, while hot tubs and portable spas are composed of an interior shell (typically made of acrylic or another synthetic material) and an exterior cabinet that is most often made of real or synthetic wood.

Regardless of the terminology you prefer, both a hot tub and a spa can be distinguished from a “whirlpool tub”, which technically is found in a bathroom and is filled and drained after each use (the water itself is not sanitized and treated like in a hot tub or spa). A hot tub or spa uses sanitized, filtered and circulated water and is only drained a few times a year for maintenance.

Also, and more importantly, a hot tub or spa offers a number of benefits that will not only increase the value of your home, but will also improve your health, your well-being and can even affect your relationships with those you love. With advantages like these, the thought of unwinding in warm, swirling waters after a long day is most often too hard to resist! But among the vast number of hot tub models, which vary in everything from size to number of jets to entertaining hot tub accessories, how do you decide which one will fit your lifestyle? Don’t worry, the right hot tub (or spa!) is out there somewhere.

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