For many hot tub buyers, one of the most basic questions is almost always one of the most difficult; what size should their new hot tub be?
Modern hot tubs come in a wide range of sizes; from 2 person all the way up to 10-12 person! In this article we will look at the factors that go into choosing a hot tub size, and help you choose which size is right for you.
HOW MANY PEOPLE WILL USE THE HOT TUB?
The first, and most basic, factor when deciding how big your new hot tub should be is how many people will be using it. While this might seem easy to do, it usually isn’t. For most people, the number of people using the hot tub at any given time can change depending on things like:
- Visitors. There will likely be times when you have family and friends over. Will the hot tub have enough room to hold everyone?
- Family Schedules. Is your week busy with sports or other activities? Do you and your partner work at different times of the day? If so, you may not always use the hot tub at the same time.
- Time Of Year. Everyone has different preferences. Some family members might not want to use the hot tub in the summer, for example.
- Kids. Over the lifespan of your hot tub, small children can grow up enough and start becoming regular hot tub users. Older children will also likely reach the point where they move out of the house and stop using the hot tub.
In our experience, most hot tub owners won’t have visitors in their hot tub more than 2-3 times in a year. Buying a hot tub large enough to support an extra 2-3 people for such a rare occasion is usually a waste of money; both in the upfront cost and in the ongoing costs of heating and balancing that extra water.
When deciding how big their hot tub should be, we therefore usually tell people to not focus too much on fitting your company into it. Instead, focus on how many people will be using the hot tub for the majority of the time and buy based on that number. That said, if you frequently have company over to your home (more than once per month) it may be wise to buy a hot tub that is a little larger than you might otherwise need.
People vs Seats
Another thing to understand about hot tub sizing is that the amount of seats in a hot tub isn’t necessarily equal to the amount of people that can comfortably use it. For example, most 6 seat hot tubs can only fit 4-5 adults comfortably.
The reason for this is not that the seats are too small, but rather that the footwell of the hot tub is too small. The smaller the footwell is, the more people’s legs and feet will be touching, and the more uncomfortable everyone in the hot tub will be.
Every hot tub will fit different people in different ways. What might be perfect for one person might be too small for someone else. The biggest contributor to this is the height of the person using the hot tub.
Tall people generally don’t fit well into small hot tubs. The culprit here again being the footwell. Some footwells in smaller hot tubs simply aren’t big enough to comfortably fit longer legs; forcing taller people into buying a bigger hot tub than their shorter counterparts.
Do You Want A Lounger?
Another factor that you should consider when deciding on what size of hot tub to buy is if you want a hot tub with a lounge seat (“lounger”) or not. A lounge seat is one that is built for you to use in a more reclined position with your feet up. Many people prefer lounge seats as they give you a full body massage, from your feet all the way up to your neck.
The downside of lounge seats, however, is that they take up a lot of room. A hot tub with a lounge seat will generally have 1 less seat, and a smaller footwell, than a similarly sized hot tub without a lounger. If you plan on buying a hot tub with a lounger you should therefore consider getting one that is slightly bigger than you might otherwise have planned on buying.
WHERE WILL THE HOT TUB BE LOCATED?
The last factor to look at when deciding how big your hot tub should be is to look at the space where you plan on putting it. Is it big enough to hold the hot tub that you want?
If space might be an issue, be sure to measure your install area prior to going hot tub shopping. Make sure that any hot tubs that you’re looking at can fit within your chosen space. Keep in mind that accessories like stairs and cover lifters will increase the footprint required by the hot tub. Cover lifters, for example, generally require 6″ of clearance on either side of the hot tub and 18″ of clearance on the backside of the hot tub to properly function.
HOW TO DECIDE WHAT SIZE OF HOT TUB TO BUY
With so many potential factors, how do you know what size of hot tub to purchase? Often times, the best way to find out is to simply get everyone in the hot tub to try it out. Before putting any money down, get the family down to the showroom and sit in a couple of hot tubs. Once you think you’ve found the right size, try one larger and one smaller to make sure that you’ve chosen correctly.
Pay close attention to the size of the foot well and make sure that everyone’s legs fit comfortably in it without crowding. Remember that you will have this hot tub for many years. If you have young children, make sure that they will have room to use it as they grow.
Ultimately, the hot tub size that you choose will come down to personal preference. Hopefully this guide gave you some good tips to help you choose the size that is right for you. If you have any other questions on hot tub sizing, or anything hot tub related, call us and speak to one of our hot tub sales specialists.