How Are Swim Spas Heated?

By Jon Filson

Hydropool Hot Tubs and Swim Spas

How are Swim Spas Heated?


If you’re considering installing a swim spa on your property you may have some questions about how they work, how much they cost to run or how are swim spas heated.  For those who aren’t familiar with swim spas, an easy explanation is that they are a compact tank of water that generates a powerful current to swim against.  This allows the swimmer to stay in place while practicing their stroke and means they never reach the end of the tank and have to turn around as they would while swimming laps in a regular pool.  Besides the compact size of the swim spa,there is the added bonus of being able to use it like a hot tub by simply turning up the water temperature.  Some swim spas even have a separate tank to allow swimming and hot tubbing to take place at the same time. 


Swim Spa Water Temperatures


You can adjust the temperature of your swim spa water depending on what you’re using it for.  For those who mainly use it for exercise, the average temperature is around 27 to 30 degrees Celsius (80 to 84 degrees Fahrenheit.)  For those looking for a hot tub experience and wanting to soak in the water, you can turn up the temperature to 40 degrees Celsius or 104 degrees Fahrenheit. 


Running Your Swim Spa Throughout the Winter


One of the advantages of owning a swim spa is that because it’s so much smaller than a full-sized pool, it’s possible to run it throughout the winter like a hot tub.  To make sure you don’t end up spending a fortune on heating the water you might consider an in-ground model.  Inground swim spas benefit from the extra insulation provided by the surrounding earth.  But you can still enjoy an above ground swim spa throughout the cold season without breaking the bank by making sure the cabinet is well insulated.  Judicious use of a well-fitting cover will also prevent heat loss when the swim spa isn’t being used.

Swim spas are available with a wide variety of insulation packages, so if you plan on using it throughout the winter it would be in your best interest to spend the extra money for a well-insulated system.  It will end up costing you a lot less money in the long run.


If you don’t plan on using your swim spa throughout the winter, you’ll need to drain it completely.  If you let the water in your swim spa freeze you could cause damage to the tank and the components.


When to Heat Your Swim Spa


It’s much more efficient to keep your swim spa running water heater constantly rather than turning it off after each use.  It takes much more electricity to reheat your water from scratch than it does to keep it at a constant temperature. 

Of course, the amount of use your swim spa gets will play a role in whether to turn your swim spa water heater off or to keep it running.  If you don’t plan on using your swim spa for long periods of time (more than a couple of weeks) it’s likely more efficient to turn off the water heater and reheat it again when you plan on using it.  If you’re gone for only a couple of weeks, it’d be more efficient to simply turn down the temperature rather than turning off the heater completely.


Energy Efficiency


If energy efficiency is important to you, it pays to shop around and compare the various models on the market.  Swim spas are not all created the same.  Some are more appropriate for warmer climates whereas others focus on energy efficiency.  Decide on how you’ll use your swim spa, what’s important to you and choose your model accordingly.

For more information, download your free swim spa buyer’s guidetoday.

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