UPDATED: Mar 07, 2020.
Traditionally, hot tubs weren’t hot all the time. They didn’t have a thick insulation spa top either. In fact, they were heated on demand. Now, portable spas are available almost everywhere. Manufacturers have hence created the plug and play appliances which is why a spa already has an integrated electric heater. They have an electric heating element fit into a stainless steel tube. This is a hot tub heater that’s obviously responsible for heating your spa.
At a Glance: Our Top Recommendations for Best Hot Tub Heater:
- American Standard 9075.120 Safe-T-Heater (Top Pick)
- Raypak 11Kw Electric Spa Heater 001640 (Top Rated)
- Hayward Universal H-Series Pool and Spa Heater (Editor Choice)
Best Hot Tub Heater Reviews
Here to look for the best hot tub heater? Have at the best ones reviewed along with their pros and cons:
1. American Standard 9075.120 Safe-T-Heater
- Keeps the water at a constant temperature
- Installation is easy
- Plug and play operation
- It doesn’t heat the water very well, only good to keep it warm
American Standard 9075.120 Safe-T-Heater is an electric hot tub heater that is designed to maintain the temperature of the water in your hot tub when it’s in use. The unit can work with any American standard whirlpool tub. Just fill the hot tub with water at the temperature you desire, install this heater and it will maintain the temperature for you.
It’s just a plug and play unit, no assembling is required. The only problem with this unit is that it does not heat the water. It has been designed to keep the water warm enough for you to enjoy a long soak. You will need to make sure the pump is turned on; the water is circulating and the jets are running.
2. Raypak 11Kw Electric Spa Heater 001640
- The unit has a compact design
- Automatically turns off when the pump turns off
- Copper and bronze construction makes it durable
- Watch out for missing parts
Raypak 11Kw Electric Spa Heater 001640 is made from corrosion-free copper and bronze materials. Because of that, the unit has a longer lifespan as compared to other water heating elements. There is a built-in pressure switch that prevents operation without water flow.
It’s very easy to install and it has a compact size that can fit into small spaces too. To prevent overheating, there is a high limit temperature control and a thermostat. The unit is designed to heat with a maximum flow rate of 60 GPM.
3. Hayward H150FDN Universal H-Series 150,000 BTU Pool and Spa Heater
- Installation is simple
- Heats the water in no time
- The fire tile traps the heat and makes sure the water stays warm for longer
- Hayward does not honor its warranty
- The unit is pretty loud when it’s on
Hayward H150FDN Universal H-Series 150,000 BTU Pool and Spa Heater is an environmentally friendly unit so, it produces low NOx emissions. The unit is made of Cupro Nickel to provide longevity. There is an LED control panel that lets you check the temperature. You can set the pool to the temperature you desire.
Within 1 hour, the unit can raise the temperature of 800-gallon water to 30 degrees. You will enjoy the soak as soon as you get into the hot tub. The force draft system moves air through its combustion chamber. This ensures that the weather outside does not influence the heating performance.
The unit has a few problems. It’s noisy so this might interrupt your peace. Plus, lots of users have complained the company doesn’t honor its warranty.
Types of Hot Tub Heaters
Hot tub heaters are available in 2 types – gas and electric.
1. Gas Heaters
They are powered by natural gas or propane. These heaters are mostly used in in-ground spas, portable spas or free-standing wooden hot tubs. They can add up 1 to 2 degrees a minute. You can set the spa at a low resting temperature and it will still heat up quickly. They function well but they are expensive to install. You will need a gas line connection to supply gas to the unit, of course. The unit has to sit in the open air for exhaust purposes.
2. Electric Heaters
The heating element is packed in a stainless steel tube. There are union connectors at the end. Other than that, the tube has temperature sensors that help you control the temperature and monitor the water flow. Electric heaters are less expensive as compared to gas heaters. The installation is a breeze too. Plus, the maintenance and repair costs are low. They might take more hours to heat the water, especially if the temperature outside is cold. Another downside is that they may increase your utility bill.
How Does a Hot Tub Heater Work?
From the name, it’s pretty clear that a hot tub heater is responsible for keeping the water warm. The heater works in a unique way. Once you have filled the hot tub with water, it goes through the filter and reaches the heater. The hot tub pump pushes the water through the heating device. It warms up the water on the basis of the temperature set by the user. The heating device has a heating coil that converts the energy into heat and warms the water. Once the water has gone through this heating device, it passes through the pipes and reaches the jets. The jets finally deliver the water to the hot tub letting you enjoy a nice and warm bath.
How to Install the Hot Tub Heater?
To install the hot tub heater, you must first power off the hot tub itself. Make sure all the water is drained from the tub. Then follow the steps below:
- Disconnect the power line that connects the tub to the heater.
- Remove the couplings and then take the heater out.
- Install the new heater and put everything back.
- Connect the power line and you are ready to use the hot tub.
There are tons of different brands and models of hot tub heaters on the market with unique features. The first thing you need to decide whether you want a gas or electric heater. keeping in mind the type and size of your hot tub, take a mental note of the specifications you want in the unit. Pick a model that meets your heating needs the best. if you’re not sure, any of the above-mentioned products will make sure you get the best bang for your buck.