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How are Swim Spas Heated?

Swim spas can solve many problems all at once.  For those who like to swim laps, but don’t have enough room for a lap pool or full-sized swimming pool, the current generated by the swim spa allows you to get in a workout without the need for a lot of space.  If you also like the benefits of soaking in a hot tub, turning up the water temperature of the swim spa can allow you to reap those benefits.  There are even swim spas that have two tanks to allow swimming and hot tub soaking to happen simultaneously.  So how are swim spas heated?  In this article, we go over some of the basics of running a swim spa and the most efficient ways of keeping the water heated.

What Temperature Should the Water Be?

If you’re looking to do some swimming, the ideal water temperature is in the area of 27 to 30 degrees Celsius.  This ensures that the water isn’t too cold, but comfortable enough once you start generating body heat from the workout.  If you’re using the swim spa as a hot tub, you’ll want the water to be as high as 40 degrees Celsius.  It may take a few hours to raise the water temperature from what is suitable for swimming to what’s ideal for hot tubbing, so if you don’t have separate tanks, you’ll need to keep that in mind.  To make this process quicker, put the cover on while heating the water.

Maintaining Water Temperatures

For the most energy-efficient operations, you should keep your water heater constantly running and maintain a consistent temperature level.  It will cost much more in electricity to bring the water back up to temperature every time you plan on using it compared to keeping it at a constant operational temperature.

If you don’t plan on using the swim spa for a couple of weeks, you could simply turn the thermometer down by a few degrees to reduce your energy use.  Turning off the water heater should only be done if you don’t plan on using your swim spa for several weeks in a row.

Winter Operations

An advantage of the swim spa over a lap pool or full-sized pool is that you can run it all year round.  The smaller size of the swim spa allows you to easily keep the water temperature high enough for comfortable use even when it’s below freezing outside.  If you do plan on using your swim spa year-round, it’d be well worth your while to investigate models with extra insulation around the cabinet.  This option may cost you more upfront, but it will bring down your heating costs and reduce the cost of the swim spa over the long run. 

You should also invest in a tight-fitting, well-insulated cover for when your swim spa isn’t in use.  This will reduce the amount of heat lost to the atmosphere, especially at night, as well as cut down on the amount of dust and debris that ends up in the water. 

If you’re not using your swim spa during the colder months, it’s best to empty it of water completely.  Allowing water to freeze can damage the tank, plumbing, and other components.

Climate Versus Insulation

If you live in an area with a warm climate or if you never plan on using the swim spa throughout the colder months, insulation may not be an important factor.  But if you want to keep your water temperatures consistent throughout the year and you don’t have the advantage of a relatively warm climate, investing in a well-insulated unit could save you plenty of money. 

To find out more about swim spas, download your free buyer’s guide today.