If you ever needed to move your hot tub or build a deck to install the hot tub, then you probably asked yourself how much does a hot tub weigh.
Depending on how many persons can the hot tub fit, it would weigh anywhere from 551 lbs (250 kg) for a 4-seater to 1428 lbs (648 kg) for a 10-seater. Almost every hot tub prospect will have this number listed under their specifications as ‘Weight Empty’ or ‘Dry Weight’.
You will also have another weight called ‘Weight Full’ that would indicate the total weight once the tub is filled with water. To calculate the weight of the full hot tub you need to add the tub’s dry weight to the amount of water it can hold, (For reference 1 litre of water weighs 1 kg or 2.2 lbs) and add an average weight of 185 lbs (84 kg) per occupant.
How Much Does A Hot Tub Weigh Dry Vs Filled
I made a research and collected different hot tub models and their empty / filled weights.
|Brand||Model||Seats||Empty (lbs)||Empty (kg)||Filled (lbs)||Filled (kg)|
|Hot Springs||JetSetter LX||3||480||220||2,755||1,250|
Notice how weigh is being reduced as you look at smaller models.
What If My Hot Tub Weighs Too Much
Once you know the total weight of the tub, you can then divide it by the size of the tub in square meters (feet) giving you a number in kilograms (pounds) per square meter (feet). This is the load that your surface must absolutely support. A structural engineer can help with your hot tub on deck or concrete pad designs to ensure they can withstand the full load.
If your deck is not engineered to hold the weight of the tub water, it could then collapse or it could cause timbers to sag.
As for the water, you have to know that rain is not the same as constant wet or leaks caused by sagging timbers due to excess weight.
I have found an example where a small inflatable pool, nothing like a hot tub, totally bent the wood on the deck, made like a crater. It did not break the wood, but it bent it, almost as if it was stretched, completely damaged the deck.
More people are injured or even killed by collapsing decks than most people realize. Frank Woeste, professor emeritus of wood engineering at Virginia Tech is quoted in JLC as saying, “Except for hurricanes and tornadoes, more injuries and deaths may be connected to deck failures than to all other structural failures stemming from typical residential code loads, including seismic and snow loads.”
What Materials Cause My Hot Tub To Weigh More
Weight will vary depending on setup, piping, number of jets, number of motors, etc but this may give you an idea of what to expect. Hot tub shells, due to their size, can affect the weight the most.
Hot tub shells can come in a variety of materials, each having their own strengths and weaknesses. Acrylic hot tubs will give you the worst time moving them while plastic ones will allow you to maneuver them way easier.
The Heaviest – Acrylic
Acrylic is considered to be one of the most durable materials for a hot tub shell you can find today. The downside of it is that it is heavier than some of the other options. It can also cost more than materials like fiberglass, plastic, and vinyl.
In the early days, wood was a common material used for hot tub shells. Although plastic remains popular today, high-end wooden tubs still look beautiful and are usually made from cedar, redwood and other trees.
Getting a wooden hot tub is likely to cost more than purchasing one with a synthetic shell. While wood generally has a more natural, classic appearance than synthetics like acrylic, the downside is that it can’t be molded into smooth shapes for benches. Going further, it probably won’t hold heat as good and will have much higher energy costs.
While the vinyl shell is way less expensive and can be moved easily, you probably won’t get as much joy from using this kind of hot tub. It is not very durable and thus it is prone to cracks and tears far sooner than other materials. In some cases, damaged vinyl can be repaired.
The lightest – Rotomolded Plastic
A wide range of plastics can be used to make hot tubs, and one method is rotomolded plastic. This uses a plastic powder that is put on a mold, then heated until it melts and finally rotated until the entire mold is smoothly and evenly covered.
The result is a matte finish that could easily be considered a few steps north from vinyl. The Rotomolded plastic will also be lighter and more affordable than acrylic.
Best Places to Keep a Heavy Hot Tub
The reality is that the further the spa is from your back door, the less it will be used.
If you own a house, many people opt for patio after a few years of fighting the grass. If you have the option of placing the hot tub a bit further from the door, ask yourself if you would be using the hot tub during winter. You shouldn’t walk all the way to the hot tub in the freezing cold weather. Otherwise, your deck is the best option.
For most hot tubs your deck should be able to hold 90 pounds per square foot. Most older decks will need to be reinforced a bit with a few extra stringers and 4-bys.
If you live in an apartment you should stay away from the idea of placing your hot tub on the balcony due to potential leaks that can cause damage to the building. In this case, just rent out a garage space at your complex and keep it in there. There is also very little risk of weight problems.
However, the safest bet would be to pay a couple of bucks to a licensed structural engineer to make the decision for you and save the big bucks for the kids.
I Want My Hot Tub on The Existing Balcony
Most balconies around the world provide amazing views and it makes a lot of sense to install your heavy hot tub right there. As I previously said, generally, having your hot tub on a balcony is a serious no go, however, it is not impossible.
For this to work your deck must be reinforced concrete, and it is especially important how it is tied into the building and what’s inside the concrete, such as steel L-beams.
Concrete has its structure buried inside where it can’t be seen and is really difficult to detect or inspect. The main problem is that you don’t know what is in your concrete for support or reinforcement.
Hence, without expensive testing it’s really difficult, not to say impossible to know how strong it is. Simply saying “reinforced concrete” doesn’t really mean anything until you can say specifically how it was constructed.
Find out when your balcony was built. Then look up the code requirements for deck construction at that time. That will give you some ideas. In general, older structures can be very inadequate by modern standards.
Twenty years ago decks were built thinking there wouldn’t be more than a few people standing out there. And then today comes a party with the deck full of dancing people and it’s all over the news. Numbers of deck collapses have shown that many of those old decks did not have a proper safety margin built into them.
How To Move An Empty Hot Tub
I can hear you asking yourself the following question: “How to move a hot tub easily?”.
You might have sold your house and you want to take your hot tub with you. This could only be one of the reasons. Regardless of the reason, the easiest way to move an empty hot tub to a new home is to not move it at all.
There are a number of time-consuming difficult tasks for getting the home spa ready for moving along with the real-life risks of personal injury or even damaging your property during the actual relocation.
I would say that recently most often, the hot tub owners choose to leave their hot tubs behind for the new owners of the home to enjoy in it and they just change a bit more money for it. If you haven’t moved your hot tub before or you are just not handy enough, just don’t try.
On the other hand, if you are someone who likes to calculate things and costs, let’s talk about that as well. The thing is when you take into consideration the money you will spend on the transportation of your hot tub, then the time you will waste preparing it, relocation, re-assembly, and the efforts and risks involved, it might not be worth it.
As a matter of fact, you may actually find out that the best option for you is to purchase a new hot tub when you move into your new home. Ideally, your old hot tub would be good to go at that time so you don’t regret leaving a brand new hot tub behind.
In case you really want to take your hot tub with you to your new home, then hire a moving company to do it for you, hassle-free.