Hot Tub Water Test Kits and Test Strips

Spa Breeze ChemicalsTesting spa water is simple with either a water test kit for chlorine based spas or test strips for chlorine or bromine based spas.

A water test kit is preferred by some as it is said to be more accurate, but the test strips to an equally fine job of alerting the spa owner to a chemical imbalance in the hot tub.

A water test kit comes with a dual chamber plastic vile with level readouts. On one side, a test for chlorine is done by adding 5 drops of OTO to the water sample. On the other side, the test for water pH is done by adding 5 drops of phenol red to a sample of hot tub water filled to the fill line.

The caps are put on and the viles are shaken up to get the correct readout.  Then adjust the water’s sanitizer and pH levels.

Water test strips usually come in viles of 50 strips per container and they come in all sorts of different configurations.  A popular test strip is the one that has 4 tests – chlorine, bromine, pH and alkalinity.  Of course it won’t test for both chlorine and bromine because you should be using either bromine or chlorine as the sanitizer, never mixing the two.  But this allows hot tub owners of both bromine and chlorine based spas to purchase the same test strip without worrying about it in case they eventually want to switch sanitizer after a water change, or to just not worry about being sure they purchased the correct test strip.

The pH levels on the test strip will indicate over/under and allow for adjustment to within the 7.2-7.6 range.  Some suggest it is ok to go as far as 7.8 pH and still be ok.

Spa breeze chemicals Hot Tub Outpost

Keep test strips in a dry place to be sure they do not get moist which can affect readings from the test strip. Follow directions on the container they come in and take the reading right away after dipping the test strip in the water as the colors can change over time after the test is taken.

See the Monday-Wednesday-Friday Program featuring Spa Breeze Chemicals at Hot Tub Outpost USA and save on hot tub water test strips.

Water test kits are also available online from the Hot Tub Outpost.

What are the Best Hot Tub Features?

Hot tub spa featuresWhen it comes to hydrotherapy, QCA Spas offers a wave lounger so every spot on the body gets massaged as the moving massage goes row by row.

One consideration is how much hydrotherapy or how many jets are desired? Up to about 40 jets works with a single pump spa. Any more than that should have 2 pumps in the spa. Another pump is the air blower that is also found in the higher end spas.

Zoning is a system that moves water flow from one section of the spa to another. This helps a one pump spa provide more power to a particular side of the spa as needed.

The deluxe spas with air blowers also feature turbo charging where the water gets another boost from the forced air of the blower that can be routed through the water lines or through the dedicated air injectors for a more champagne like bubbling that spas are known for.

Many quality hot tub features are hidden such as quality, name brand components, pumps, controls and heaters. Other features are out in the open for all to see such as the waterfall feature or LED lighting.

A sound system can also be added to most any spa. There is the lower end sound system with speakers and the high end Vibrasound system that turns the spa shell into the speaker creating a uniform sound field no matter where you sit in the spa. The Vibrasound system also adds the subwoofer for true bass.

Hot tub featuresAlthough an aromatherapy canister can be added to most spas that are outfitted with a spa blower, the most popular form of aromatherapy comes in liquid or crystal form that can be added to any hot tub, even those without a dedicated aromatherapy system.

Another nice feature is the integrated chemical dispenser inside the filter. This avoids having to use a floater to hold the bromine or chlorine tablets.

Want a salt water spa? Almost any mid-range or higher end QCA Spas can be upgraded to a salt system by adding the bromine salt system. Just buy the Bromicharge sodium bromide and put a reserve in the spa water, then the chemicals to kill bacteria and sanitizer the water are manufactured automatically by the bromine salt system cell.

Unlike an ozonator that can be retrofitted later, the bromine salt system is best when factory installed at the time of ordering to avoid a costly service bill.

hot tub spaWhen using the spa outdoors, always use a hard cover instead of a flexible soft cover that may come standard with the lower end spas.  Get a free hard cover upgrade on those spas as well from Hot Tub Outpost. They believe in offering quality from the get-go to avoid any unpleasant surprises. After all, you want to get into your spa and enjoy it from day 1, and not receive an incomplete kit.

Have any questions about buying the right hot tub? Contact the folks over at Hot Tub Outpost for knowledgeable assistance.

Plug and Play Hot Tub

plug and play spaA plug and play type hot tub allows for 120 volt operation in North America.  These units most often come with an included power cord with integrated Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI).  No electrician is usually needed as these plug right into a 120 volt power outlet with the provided GFCI cord.

Plug and Play hot tub models include the Dream Star, Mystic, Star Gazer, and Riviera available factory direct at www.HotTubOutpost.com.

These plug and play models are also convertible.  That means that at a later date, they can be field-modified to operate at 230 volts instead of 120 volts thereby making the built-in heater a 4 kw heater instead of a 1 kw heater, all without needing to exchange any components.  The upgrade is a simple dipswitch setting and the moving of 1 wire which can be done in a couple of minutes.  Of course if you choose to operate the convertible plug and play spa at 230 volts, you will need an electrician to install the main breaker, proper gauge wire run, gfci disconnect box and wire to the control box of the spa. The electrician will also need to unmount the GFCI cord as that is only for 120 volt operation.

See our other articles on how to convert a plug and play spa from 120v to 230v and how to choose a plug and play spa.

Not all plug and play spas on the market are convertible, but the ones at Hot Tub Outpost are.

Models that have this feature include the Mystic, Star Gazer, and Riviera.

The Mystic is a 4 person spa, Riviera is a 3 person spa and the Star Gazer seats up to 5.

The benefit of 110-120v hot tub is low initial cost and low installation cost.  Even the power cord is included, so no expensive external wiring is usually necessary.

The benefit of a 230v hot tub is that pump(s) can be run on high speed with heat still running, whereas at 120v the heater shuts off automatically when the pump is put on high speed so there is enough current to run the heater.  The heater is also 1kw at 120v but is 4kw at 230v, so the 230v spa heats faster.  A good solid cover will keep the heat in no matter which voltage you operate the spa at.

plug and play hot tub spaThe Dream Star is a 2 person hot tub that operates at 110v only.  It fits anywhere and is only about 250 lbs. so it is easy to set up anywhere or move.

The flex covers that are standard with this series come with a free hard cover upgrade from www.HotTubOutpost.com.

Getting into a hot tub is easy with a plug and play spa from Hot Tub Outpost.

Buying A Used Hot Tub

Used hot tub spasThinking about buying a used hot tub?  Found a hot tub in your new home or getting one second hand?  There are things to consider before jumping into that used hot tub for the first time.

It is a good idea to know about how old the spa is.  This can be determined from information on the spa pack or electronics box, or possibly listed in the owner’s manual if transferred with the spa.  Another method to determine a hot tub’s age is by serial number.  These are often date coded so that the month and year of manufacture can be determined.  The actual spa manufacturer also may be able to look up the serial number in their production database to help determine a spa’s age.

Typically a hot tub cover may need to be replaced after about 7 years.  Pumps that are older than 3 years or so and are broken may be better off being exchanged rather than repaired.  If the water quality was not maintained by the previous owner, then pump seals and other o-rings and gaskets in the system may wear, causing leaks.

At minimum, by filling and adding 2 capfuls of chlorine to attempt to kill bacteria in the lines are the best in super chlorinating the spa.  The new product is also available at www.HotTubOutpost.com for cleaning the pipes and inside lines of a hot tub and is highly recommended in addition to chlorine to give the pipes and hoses a new beginning.

Replace the cartridge filter with a brand new one for your model.  Determine if the cover is still good or needs to be replaced as well.

Used hot tubs can save money, but can also cost money to get them up to speed.  If the electronics and pumps work, and the spa does not leak, it is a good start, but the spa will need to be cleaned inside and out and brought up to proper operating standards. Note that if water chemistry was not properly maintained, another thing that may go wrong is that the spa heats slowly or not at all. This could be the result of a calcified heater element with calcium buildup on the element inside the flow through heater. This makes it harder for the heater to do its job and ends up costing the owner more in electricity.  The solution is to replace the heater.

buy used hot tubsThere are 2 types of heaters. Those with the sensors on the outside of the tube and those with sensors on the inside of the tube (like recent model Balboa heaters). The ones with sensors on the inside usually are not hooked up to a pressure switch, whereas older models have a separate pressure switch that makes sure the heater can only work when safe.

Get all your hot tub spare parts from www.HotTubOutpost.com.

Factory Direct Hot Tubs Spas

A factory direct hot tub is one that not only ships from the factory, but is made by and sold by the actual factory that makes the product.  This is the best way to deal directly with the producer of the product rather than commissioned salespersons in a dealer showroom.  Some dealers may offer extra value, but they also need to recoup this overhead in the form of a higher price.

The manufacturer has the luxury of selling directly to the end customer and eliminating many steps in between.  Shopping at the Hot Tub Outpost gets you a factory direct hot tub shipped right off the assembly line to your driveway.

Popular factory direct spa models for 2015 include:

Hot Tub Outpost 2015 Hot Tub Sale

To select a factory direct spa, visit Hot Tub Outpost and choose a hot tub right from the factory.

Let’s Narrow Down the Hot Tub Choices
Do you like the lounger models or the non-lounger models better? Knowing this will help you slim down the choice. Next, figure out how many persons you would like to be able to invite over at the same time, or how large the spa should be.

With spa size and number of persons as well as non-lounger or lounger model decided, you have now narrowed the field even further.  Next look at jet count and accessories to see how much spa you would like, and also look at your budget.  That should narrow it down to a few models.  Email us with any questions, or ask HotTubOutpost.com directly with factory direct details about any model(s) you are interested in.  Also note, that you get FREE shipping anywhere in the U.S.A. (and parts of Canada too)

Enjoy your savings as you enjoy your quality factory direct hot tub spa!

Save Money by Buying Factory Direct Hot Tubs

You don’t necessarily have to spend a lot of money to buy your very own hot tub spa if you know how and where to shop for them. Buying factory direct hot tubs is a smart way to purchase them because of the elimination of the middleman, and the avoidance of paying a mark-up from retailers. Browsing and shopping for hot tubs directly from a reputable manufacturer online, such as QCASpa – a leader in aqua technology since 1966, has many advantages for the consumer.

Benefit #1: Factory Direct Discount Prices

One of the biggest advantages of purchasing a hot tub online directly from a manufacturer is the lower purchase price. You could potentially save hundreds of dollars by shopping factory direct rather than buying from a conventional retailer. Manufacturers who deal with the public are selling their products at lower prices than their retailing counterparts. This is because retailers charge a premium on their products in order for them to profit, pay overhead and commissions. By eliminating the middleman, the consumer is able to save quite a bit of money.

Benefit #2: Convenience and Hassle-Free Shopping

There is no better way to shop than sitting at home, without having to waste gas and time traveling from one store to another. In addition to saving time, you do not have to deal with any salespeople who may be working on commission and possibly push you into making a sale for them. When you shop online for factory direct hot tubs, you can gather all the necessary information you need on specific hot tubs without having to deal with any salespeople, or exerting energy to hop from one store to the next.

Benefit #3: Compare Different Brands and Models Easily With the Wide Selection

The selection you can find online is much greater than what you would find in a showroom at a store, as not all available models can possibly be put out on display. It is so easy to compare different lines and models of spas online by referring to charts and spa specifications the manufacturers’ website provides. For example, QCASpas.com supplies charts on specifications for their tubs, making it easy to compare each model to each other. Simply spend a few minutes browsing online and find a variety of different types of well-built hot tubs in every budget to meet your needs.

Buying online also lets you pick your shell and cabinet color, as well as accessories. You can customize your spa with a built in stereo system, LED lighting and more. If you order your QCA spa through www.hottuboutpost.com, you can also get free shipping! Buy an American built spa, backed by a comprehensive warranty, and have it delivered right to your door at the best prices!

Using Hot Tub Replacement Parts To Repair Your Spa

Installing a hot tub or spa in your backyard can be an amazing source of relief from stress and an oasis for relaxation, especially after a particularly long and hard-working day. It is incredibly convenient to be able to access a hot tub right in the comfort of your own home.  Day or night you can reap the hydrotherapy benefits that hot tub spas offer.

In order to be able to enjoy water therapy for a long time, you need to care for your tub and repair any parts that need repairing or replacement. Doing so will extend the life of your tub, and will prolong the enjoyment it gives you. In addition, obtaining hot tub replacement parts for your spa will give you an economical alternative to having your tub fixed by a professional, or replacing the entire hot tub altogether.

Who Do You Call For Quality Hot Tub Replacement Parts?

If you are looking for specific parts for your tub, or simply aren’t sure what you need, call the professionals at TheHotTubSuperstore.com for knowledgeable and friendly customer service and advice. They will be able to help you find the exact hot tub replacement parts that you need to repair your hot tub.

TheHotTubSuperstore.com is a Toronto, Ontario based company who manufactures, distributes and supplies a wide range of high quality parts for all spa makes and models of hot tubs. They have a large inventory of parts and accessories in stock, which allows them to fill orders immediately.  Online ordering is easy and you can have your spa parts shipped right to your front door anywhere in Canada.

Some of the parts and accessories that they supply include the following:

Covers and cover lifters;
Safety rails;
Towel racks;
Spa bars;
Steps;
Spa packs;
Umbrellas;
Spa fragrances;
Ambient Lighting to add a soothing and relaxing element to your spa experience;
Ozonators;
Topside controllers;
Bromine generators;
Air blowers;
Water care products

TheHotTubSuperstore.com offers everything you could possibly need to repair or maintain your spa.  No matter your make or model, you can get hot tub replacement parts for your spa. If you can’t find what you need on their website, call their friendly customer service representatives who will track that part down for you. Call them today and take advantage of their FREE shipping policy (for orders over $250) to anywhere in Canada.

They also offer discount hot tubs if your spa is beyond repairing.  Get discount hot tubs online at a low price with free shipping!

Why Pay More? Find Discount Small Hot Tubs Online

Small hot tubs are a great source of tranquility and relaxation, no matter what time of the day, or what day of the year. Whether installed indoors or outdoors, small hot tubs can provide you with the peace and serenity you are looking for after a particularly stressful or physically exerting day. You don’t necessarily have to break the bank with these spas – with some patience, you can find discount small hot tubs online that can meet any budget.

Guidelines for Buying Discount Small Hot Tubs

First of all, set your budget for buying a hot tub. Although there are a variety of sources out there that offer hot tubs for less, you still want to be conscious of how much you are able to spend prior to commencing your search for the perfect small hot tub.

The good news is that small hot tubs generally cost a fraction of the price of larger 6 to 8 person hot tubs. You can easily find hot tubs that seat 2 or 3 people for a very reasonable price. Their price affordability is due largely to the fact that they are much smaller in size, and require no special electrical or plumbing installation to add them to your backyard or indoors. The majority of these small hot tubs simply require a garden hose to fill them with water and an electrical outlet to plug them in.

Look for discount small hot tubs that are energy efficient. Such products will not only save you money on the initial purchase of the product, but will also save you money in energy and utility costs to operate.

Verify the accessories and components that come with the tubs. For example, look for the inclusion of such things as cleaning chemicals or supplies, free spa packs, accessories and spa covers. All of these can add up in price if they have to purchased separately.

You will also want to make sure that the manufacturer and supplier that you are purchasing from offers a warranty or guarantee. This is a good sign that the company you are buying your discount small hot tubs from is so confident in their product that they are willing to provide their customers with warranty, but you also want to make sure the company has been in business a long time and will be around to honour the warranty.   The best quality spas have always been manufactured in the US with quality US components.  Buying a discount spa that is cheaply made will only cause headaches down the road.  For added safety and security, also look for spas that are U.L. certified, so you know you are buying a quality product.

The manufacturer is as important and the model when making your choice online. Look for factory direct spa pricing and free shipping to get the best deal on a quality spa.

Advantages of Smaller 2 Person Hot Tubs

Having a hot tub in your home is a wonderful accessory to own, for many reasons. Hot tubs can help you relax, unwind, and provide some health benefits too. The great thing about a 2 person spa hot tub is that they are more affordable than the larger hot tubs, are easier to maintain, and can fit just about anywhere.

What to Look For in a 2 Person Spa Hot Tub

There are a few factors to think about when buying a 2 person hot tub. First of all, make sure it is a good quality tub made of high quality material, especially the tub’s shell. Those that are made of cheaper material, like vinyl, can crack, leak, and fade more easily than higher quality material, like Lucite acrylic, which is a much more durable and long-lasting material.

Pay attention to how many gallons of water the tub holds, and the dimensions of the tub. For maximum comfort, you want to be able to have plenty of leg room, and be able to immerse yourself shoulder deep for optimal comfort.

The seats should be very comfortable and ergonomically designed, so you will want to spend more time in the spa.  An ozonator to clean the water with minimal chemicals is a wonderful feature. In addition, find a 2 person hot tub that you can simply plug in and enjoy for quick set up and operation.

Health Benefits of a Hot Tub

Believe it or not, hot tubs actually provide health benefits through the use of hydrotherapy. Studies have shown that joint pain can be dramatically reduced by spending a few minutes a day hanging out in a hot tub. Various doctors and therapists have recommended their arthritis patients to spend time on a regular basis in a hot tub to reap the benefits of hydrotherapy on their aching joints. The heat from the water, the pressure from the jets, and the buoyancy of the water takes pressure off people’s joints, and alleviates pain and discomfort from arthritis and joint pain.

In addition, tension headaches have been known to be helped by using a hot tub on a regular basis. The relaxation and stress-relief that a hot tub can provide can relieve the tension that causes these headaches. Simply spending a few minutes a day can alleviate pain and discomfort, and rejuvenate a person.  If you do sports or fitness, or spend hours doing physical labour each day, a hot tub will also help with muscle pain, warm up or cool down.

There are also social benefits.  Hot tubs are a great place to spend time catching up and getting reacquainted.  What could be more romantic than a 2 person hot tub?

Where to Find the Best Price Hot Tubs

Finding the right hot tub for your household can be a challenging task, especially with so many choices out there. You want to make sure you get the hot tub that fits well in your home, is the right size, has the features you need, is of good quality, and has a price tag that you can afford. Making a smart purchase can mean the difference between relaxing enjoyment and owning an over-priced, energy-draining hot tub. An easy way to comparison shop for the best price hot tubs is to do an online search, which allows you to view all the available models out there, and their associated prices, all without even leaving your home.

Browsing online for hot tubs is a great way to be able to research all the hot tubs available for purchase, as well as their specific features and components. You want to buy a hot tub that will give you all the conveniences you are looking for, without having to spend a bundle. Shopping directly from a manufacturer online is a great way to find the best price hot tubs.

Look for high quality tubs that are constructed using good quality materials, such as Lucite acrylic, which is long-lasting and durable. You also want to find a hot tub that has lots of leg room, and will allow you to immerse your whole body in the warm, bubbling water for maximum comfort and relaxation. All these specifications can be found by viewing the dimensions and construction of these tubs, all of which are available on these websites for you to look at.

Before you actually make that purchase, be sure that you are buying from a reputable manufacturer and supplier that has been constructing and selling spas and hot tubs for a long time. A company with a good track record will give you more peace of mind knowing that you are dealing with the professionals. One such credible manufacturer online is QCA Spas Inc., who have been in the business since 1966. They provide warranties on their products, and even provide free shipping to give you even more savings on top of the best price hot tubs online. Get your dream spa delivered right to your front door without even having to step foot outside of the house!  Go to their factory direct site now for the best price on the best quality spas.