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A hot tub cover isn’t just a good-looking accessory for a hot tub. A good quality cover traps in heat when the tub isn’t in use, lowering energy consumption and saving you money on heating the hot tub. It also prevents evaporation, which saves both time and money, protects your hot tub from the elements that dirty the water, and can damage your hot tub’s mechanisms. Even with diligent hot tub cover maintenance, the cover can be worn down by the elements. Inefficient and old hot tub covers start costing more than they’re worth.
Signs it’s time to replace a hot tub cover
A properly maintained hot tub cover can last up to five or six years, but there are some telltale signs that a cover isn’t working properly anymore. Here’s how to spot them.
When the vinyl cover of a hot tub starts to look dry, cracked, or flaking, it isn’t just an eyesore–it’s time to think about replacing the cover. Cracked vinyl can let debris or rainwater into your hot tub or let the cover insulation get wet, severely reducing the effectiveness of the insulation and adding costs to operating your hot tub.
The cover is heavier
If your hot tub cover is heavier than you remember, it probably isn’t your imagination. When the foam core of a hot tub cover takes on water, it will start getting heavy fast.
The foam core of the cover is the insulation, and it keeps the heat inside by trapping warm air in the bubbles of the foam. A wet foam core won’t insulate nearly as well and can make heating your hot tub much more expensive. The added weight of the cover will strain your tub, and if you use an automatic cover lifter, it could also damage the machine.
The cover is sagging in the middle
When excess snow or rain starts to pool in the low points of your hot tub cover, it can weigh the cover down and warp it. Over time, the cover will continue to sag as it takes on more weight on top.
When a hot tub cover starts to sag in the middle, it has already warped and lost its shape. Even before the pooling in the middle gets serious, check the corners of your hot tub cover. If they’ve started to lift, the seal is already broken.
When the cover bows toward the center, the edges will lose their seal, meaning heat and steam will escape from the hot tub, raising both your heating and water costs to maintain the tub.
The locks or straps have broken
Broken straps, locks, or hinges can break the cover seal on your hot tub, costing you maintenance money. But these are also important safety features. If your cover can’t be secured or lifted correctly, it’s time to replace it.
The cover takes on an odd smell
Even if the hot tub cover looks fine, water inside the vinyl cover offers a perfect breeding ground for mold and mildew in the insulation. You may be used to the smell; ask someone who isn’t a frequent tub user if you suspect something might be off.
If your hot tub is costing you more money
If you’ve been diligent with your hot tub maintenance, but the maintenance cost is suddenly rising, your hot tub cover is an excellent item to investigate as to the potential cause.
The benefits of a hot tub cover
An old, damaged cover is the primary source of heat loss in your hot tub, but a high-quality, functioning hot tub cover is a core part of keeping your spa clean and working. The insulated cover keeps heat inside the hot tub, reducing energy consumption and your energy bill. Plus, the tub will always be ready and warm for when you want to soak. A broken cover can add up to hundreds of dollars in energy costs over a season.
A working hot tub cover also protects against the elements. Keeping debris, such as leaves, dirt, sticks, or other detritus, out of the hot tub saves money and time spent on cleaning the tub and chemically rebalancing the water. It also prevents debris from getting into the spa filter cartridge or other machinery and creating unnecessary damage to the tub itself.
Getting a new hot tub cover
With all the ways a hot tub cover can save you money and effort in the long run, a good quality cover is an investment that can pay itself back tenfold in savings and peace of mind. The Cover Guys offer thickly insulated, custom-crafted hot tub covers that fit most models of hot tubs on the market today. Contact The Cover Guys today if you’re thinking about replacing your hot tub cover.