Can I Turn My Hot Tub Off?

By Jon Filson

Hydropool Hot Tubs and Swim Spas

Published May 15, 2024

In a way, this is an easy question to answer. Yes, you can turn your hot tub off. The real question is, should you?

“Should I shut off my hot tub?” or “Can I shut off my hot tub?” are common questions we get at our Hydropool retail outlets. It can come from potential buyers trying to figure out how a hot tub works or from new owners trying to figure out if they can reduce the ongoing costs of their hot tub. 

So while the answer is yes, you can certainly shut your hot tub off, there are quite a few variables that will influence when you should turn off your hot tub or whether you should leave it running.  

In this article, we’ll go over them, including:

  • Why is it best to leave your hot tub at one temperature? 
  • Can I turn off my hot tub in the summer? 
  • Can I turn off my hot tub at night? 
  • Can I turn off my hot tub in the winter? 
  • Can I turn my hot tub off while on vacation? 

We don’t want to make you wait for answers. Here’s our general advice: Hot tubs are designed to operate most efficiently if you keep your hot tub running at all times at the set temperature you like to use it at. So our best advice is to pick a temperature you like and stick to it! You won’t hurt it if it’s left on all the time and it will actually cost you less. 

The issues and potential issues - including increased costs on your electrical bill - involved in lowering and raising your hot tub temperature are rarely worth the effort involved. 

This article will go over the various factors to keep in mind when deciding whether to turn off your hot tub when it’s not in use. By the end, we hope you’ll have a good sense of how and when to turn your hot tub off – and when to leave it running! 

 

 

Should I leave my hot tub at one temperature?

The main reason why you want to leave your hot tub at one set temperature is because the odds are that it was designed to run the most effectively that way. 

 One reason you would want to turn off your hot tub when it’s not in use is to cut down on your energy costs. But if that’s your primary concern, you should know the energy used to bring a colder hot tub up to a usable temperature will easily be more than the amount of energy used to maintain it at a set temperature. 

Chances are, hot tubs aren’t the only thing in your house that works on this principle. If you have a hot water tank in your house, it works the exact same way, keeping a large amount of hot water available for you at any time, with a comparatively little amount of heat. 

In general, this is the least expensive way to keep a hot tub running. For more on hot tub costs, check out this article

Can I turn my hot tub off in the summer?

Sometimes a hot tub can just become too hot. So yes, you can turn off your hot tub. But should you? 

We certainly believe in turning your hot tub down in the summer, provided you’re not yo-yoing it up and down, which is what will start costing you more money than you need to. We don’t believe in turning it off. You’re asking for a whole host of problems if that happens. 

We don’t advise is shutting your hot tub off entirely, no matter how warm it is outside. Don’t be tempted! Your hot tub needs to circulate water to ensure that it remains clean and that requires electricity running to the pumps. Those pumps move water through your system. 

At Hydropool, our system works like this: 

Some hot tubs have summer settings, which will allow you to set your hot tub at a lower temperature – and because manufacturers know their products will overheat. 

At Hydropool, our hot tubs are designed with built-in vents. If you pop them open in the summer and close them in the winter, you get rid of extra hot air when you don’t need it and keep it in the cabinet when you do. 

Can I turn off my hot tub at night?

Our advice is no. Actually, it’s really, please no, don’t do this. Your hot tub was made to run most efficiently at one set temperature. You’re asking for some dirty water with your pumps shut off and some high bills due to your hot tub straining to raise the temperature of your water, day after day. 

One way to reduce your energy bill is to lower the hot tub thermostat by a degree or two.  You may hardly notice the difference in the water’s temperature, but you will notice the difference in your energy bills.  Small adjustments in temperature can make a major difference in energy consumption.

Can I turn off my hot tub in the winter?

If you drain it, yes, absolutely. Just make sure every drop of water is out of it that you can. If you don’t intend to use your hot tub in the cold weather of the winter, then a great way to save money is to drain the water from the tub entirely so that nothing freezes in it. 

At the same time, you’re unquestionably missing out! Many people say hot tubs are best in the winter. 

Can I turn off my hot tub while on vacation?

This one depends on how long you’re going. This also holds true if you have a vacation property that is going to be vacant for a long time. 

If your absence will only be a week or two, in general, we say keep your hot tub going (feel free to turn it down if you like, to around 90 for example). Here are a few tips:

  • Clean your filter before vacation. 
  • Shock your hot tub before any vacation. 
  • Make sure you have sanitization chemicals in your hot tub that will last the length of your trip (you’ll likely need less because you won’t be using it). 
  • Have a friend or neighbour come and check on it if you are gone for more than a week, to ensure everything is running okay. 

Your best bet is to drain your hot tub if you’re going to leave it alone for a longer time (say a month or more – although ultimately this is going to be up to you). That way you have low cost and peace of mind that nothing is happening. 

 

Can I turn my hot tub off when I want to?

At Hydropool, in general, we say in most cases that you shouldn’t, although of course the option exists. In most cases it’s best if you keep your hot tub running at the same temperature all the time – this is how most modern hot tubs were designed to run most efficiently today. That way you don’t have to worry about turning it up and turning it down. 

Some hot tubs require a bit more work because you have to remember to turn them on in advance to ensure your water is heated. Many lower-priced inflatable hot tubs work this way as they are without any insulation and don’t retain any heat. We don’t advise buying this type for this reason any many others (Hydropool doesn’t make them for the same reasons). 

We hope this guide has helped you decide whether to shut your hot tub off in the summer, winter or when you’re on vacation or whenever you want to really. We might have missed a situation here though: If you have a question not answered here, please don’t hesitate to contact a local retailer

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