Although buying a hot tub can be a sizable investment, there are plenty of benefits you can reap from owning one. Not only can spending a few hours in the hot tub be a great way to spend a little more quality time with your family, but hydrotherapy can also help relieve aches and pains.
However, finding the right hot tub can be a challenge – with so many options out there, it can be tough to decide which one is right for your preferences and budget. Fortunately, I’ve done the legwork for you – I reviewed and compiled a list of my favorite hot tubs currently on the market.
My Favorite Hot Tubs
I found five hot tubs that I think are the best in class. Below are a ton of details about each of my recommendations.
Essential Hot Tubs 14-Jet Newport Hot Tub
⭐ Best Value
- 14-stainless steel jets
- Seats 3-4 people
- 200-gallon water capacity
- 110V connection
- Great for hydrotherapy
- Insulated exterior means that it stays warmer for longer
- Lightweight and portable
- Easy installation
- Might not be as durable as some choices
- It only seats four people
With fourteen different stainless steel jets, the Essential Hot Tubs Newport Tub may be a great option for buyers interested in hydrotherapy. With only the touch of a button, you can easily switch between different modes.
Although this tub seats up to four, there are only three therapy seats and a full-body lounger. Depending on your preferences, you can change your position to fit your specific needs that day. The interior of the tub is fully-insulated so that you never feel as if the heat is escaping. This hot tub is also designed for ease of installation. When you want to use it, all you need to do is plug it into any 15A outlet.
When it’s time to close the tub up, there are locking clips to ensure that the interior of your tub stays protected from the elements.
Essential Hot Tubs 67 Syracuse Shell
⭐ Best Large Hot Tub
- Seats 5-6 people
- LED lighted waterfall
- Requires 240V/50A electrical connection
- Contains Bluetooth sound system
- Heavy-duty insulated cover
- Not as easy to install (may require a certified electrician)
With plenty of stainless steel jets and seating for up to six, the Essential Hot Tubs 67 Syracuse Shell can fit the entire family. When you want to switch to massage mode, all you need to do is press a button. You can change positions in the tub, depending on the kind of therapy you want to receive. For a leg massage, you may want to sit in the lounger while one of the captain’s chairs can give you a full-body massage.
For a little extra entertainment, you can even pair your smartphone or another Bluetooth device to the sound system in the tub. Unlike some tubs, which may only be designed for summer use, the Balboa heater in this model means that you can use it year-round.
Essential Hot Tubs 24 Jets Devotion Hot Tub
⭐ Best Small Hot Tub
- Seats 2-3 people
- 220 water gallon capacity
- Plugs into 120V/15A outlets
- 450 lbs.
- Saves space and energy
- Easy to install
- Good for hydrotherapy
- Not lightweight or easy to transport
With 24 stainless steel jets, the Essential Hot Tubs 24 Jets Devotion Hot Tub can be used for passive therapy or a full-body massage. If you do plan to use this tub for a more invigorating massage, all you need to do is press a button.
Since this spa plugs into any 120V/15A outlet, setting it up and using it shouldn’t be a time-consuming process. Unlike some tubs, which may only be suited for summer use, the Balboa heater inside this tub makes it the perfect option to use year-round (even in the bitter cold winter months).
When you aren’t using the tub, you can easily protect it with the insulated cover and use the locking clips for extra security. In extreme weather, the locking clips help ensure that the cover doesn’t blow off.
Intex Pure Spa 6-Person Inflatable Heated Bubble Hot Tub
⭐ Best Portable Hot Tub
If you want to go the inflatable hot tub route, Intex is hard to beat.
- 115 pounds
- Seats up to 6 people
- 28″ tall
- 10W hard water system
- Comes with a carry bag
- The insulated top prevents heat from escaping
- 1-year manufacturer’s guarantee
- Cannot be left outside in temperatures below 39 degrees
- Does not ship to California
When it comes to relaxing and hydrotherapy, the Intex Pure Spa 6-Person Inflatable Heated Bubble Hot Tub is designed to be gentle on your skin and user-friendly. This inflatable bubble tub may look as if it isn’t durable, but that’s far from the case.
With a fiber-tech construction and puncture-resistant 3-ply laminated material, it’s unlikely that this hot tub is going to get damaged easily. Not to mention, it only takes twenty minutes to inflate and begin enjoying the soothing water.
To make sure that there’s limited heat loss, there’s an insulated cover as well as a lock to make sure that your hot tub is secure (even when you aren’t around). Although it’s unlikely that you may need to transport this hot tub anywhere, it does come with a carry bag in case you need to.
Keep in mind that this item can’t be shipped or sold to residents in California due to the 2014 Appliance Efficiency Regulations.
Bestway SaluSpa Miami Inflatable Hot Tub
⭐ Most Affordable Hot Tub
- 177 gallons of water capacity
- Seating for 4 people
- 54 lbs
- 60 bubble jets
- The maximum temperature is 104F
- Easy to transport
- Includes a digital control panel
- It May not be as durable as some other options
- Heating time can vary based on the temperature of the water
With soothing bubble jets that can massage your body from every side, the Bestway SaluSpa Miami Inflatable Hot Tub provides all the same hydrotherapy benefits in a more affordable package.
Depending on your preferences, the heating time of the hot tub can change based on the temperature of the water that you use to heat the tub. If you’re someone who enjoys the tub heating up slowly, this may be a great function.
Since it’s made with resistant PVC material, this hot tub is unlikely to wear down over time as some other models might. The skin-friendly material also makes it much gentler on your aching joints and provides maximum comfort. When you need to clean it, removing the filter on the hot tub is easy to clean and even easier to replace.
As a lightweight option, storing this model is also much easier as well. If you decide to put it away during the winter months, you can easily deflate it and transport it.
Recap: Best Hot Tubs
- Essential Hot Tubs 14-Jet Newport Hot Tub: Best value
- Essential Hot Tubs 67 Syracuse Shell: Best large hot tub
- Essential Hot Tubs 24 Jets Devotion Hot Tub: Best small hot tub
- Intex Pure Spa 6-Person Inflatable Heated Bubble Hot Tub: Best portable hot tub
- Bestway SaluSpa Miami Inflatable Hot Tub: Most affordable hot tub
My Research Criteria
Check out the research criteria I used to choose my top picks, as well as a few factors to take into consideration when buying a hot tub.
The location of your hot tub can make a bigger difference than you might think. Since most hot tubs will end up on your patio or back deck, it’s important to measure the area and compare it to the dimensions of the hot tub you’re looking at. Bigger hot tubs that seat four to six people will obviously need much more space than compact models that are only meant to seat two or three.
Besides location, the special features that come with your hot tub can also be crucial. While some people may not be interested in any of the bells and whistles, others may be looking at hot tubs that come with plenty of accessories. For instance, some hot tubs may come with sound systems, multiple jets, or even comfy seating.
Add-ons can also impact the price. Basic models without any of the perks will likely run much cheaper while those with all the accessories may end up costing you more. The goal of any buyer is to find a hot tub that comes with everything they need (and want) without exceeding their price range.
Depending on your needs, the size of your hot tub is essential. If you have a large family, buying a two-person hot tub may not be the smartest choice since it’s unlikely everyone will fit. On the flip side, there might not be any reason to spend money on a spacious model that fits six if you plan to be the only one using it.
Ultimately, the size of your hot tub comes down to every buyer’s individual needs. While some may require a larger tub to fit their entire family (or for parties), others may only need a two-person spa.
Like many products, many hot tubs require some regular maintenance. During the winter, some models may need to be deflated and stored indoors. Other hot tubs may require regular cleanings or even annual inspections to make sure they stay up to code. Even installing some hot tubs may require the oversight of a certified electrician.
While you may never be able to escape maintenance costs altogether, you can find a model that still provides all the benefits you want without tons of time-consuming maintenance or excessive costs.
A hot tub is a big investment, so it needs to be able to last through the years. There are a few specific criteria I looked at here, most notably:
- Material. Inflatable hot tubs made of plastic are going to have a shorter shelf life than fiberglass or a more durable material.
- Jets. Are they stainless steel and rust-resistant? They better be, or else you’ll end up paying replacement costs shortly after your big purchase.
- Mold resistance. The construction and design of the tub often dictate how susceptible it is to molding. Stay away from tubs that have a lot of small crevices that are hard to clean where mold will thrive.
Also, take a look at the warranty! If anything goes wrong, you want to make sure you are covered.
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