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About emt1581

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  1. I looked at inflatables just to test the water and see if we would even use the tub because it seemed like a cheap way of testing things out. A LOT easier to write off $300-$400 compared to $3k-$30k for a fiberglass/non-inflatable tub. Up front during the first week I researched I found the same as you...I found what I WANTED to find. That these inflatable tubs are amazing and gives you a cheaper option that lets you have a hot tub. But once I started trying to find the cracks in the system and the downsides, those seemed to be far more prevalent compared to the "I've owned it for a year with zero issues" reviews. Notice how you've NEVER seen a review that talked about satisfaction long term like 2+ years?? These are largely disposable. Plus, because I am not starting to educate myself on real hot tubs (quality, construction, parts, companies, etc.) I can say these aren't even remotely in the same league in any capacity other than being containers that hold water. Intex used to make a tub with jets AND bubble ring...now it's just bubbles. So essentially what you have is a blower that pushes air into a ring and then that air floats to the surface of the water. Compare that to a hot tub with actual pump(s) and jets that uses a lot more force to get water moving (instead of air) and it's enough to massage muscle/skin tissue. That's just one example. As for brands... there's different levels of inflatable. Some are more kicked up and supported than others as far as construction and those higher end ones can go to $600-$700-ish. But for the spa-in-a-box plain inflatables, I found the best customer support, quality, and support info/videos for the Intex. Coleman seems to be decent to. Beyond that I'm convinced there's a parent company that is just using different coloring in their tub and pump housing and they are making all the off-brands. I'm in a similar boat that you are, and despite how different these are to real hot tubs, I still might buy one just for kicks. But I have zero expectation that it'll still be functioning 2 years from now or that I'll be as satisfied compared to a real hot tub. But I'm about a month in to my hot tub education. And once you get in to the different pumps, heaters, jets, insulation, cabinets, companies, connections, customer service, etc....it's a LOT to learn and understand. I actually came one click away from ordering this hot tub. And again, still might....but it's definitely on the lowest tier of the hot tub hierarchy. So just like with an inflatable you have to 100% know exactly what you are getting and what you are sacrificing for the price. I'm fine with no waterfalls, speakers, etc. I just want a cheap tub to massage my back. We'll see what I end up with. At this point, although I don't own one I learned pretty much everything I could learn about inflatables so feel free to ask follow ups. I'm not in the "go be poor somewhere else" camp. 😉
  2. Thanks for sharing. You said you went with a lower priced acrylic tub....what make/model did you choose? Someone suggested taking a look at this one for my needs... https://www.wayfair.com/outdoor/pdp/cyanna-valley-spas-5-person-20-jet-spa-with-led-lights-cvas1000.html I don't think it's acrylic but is it a step up in quality and performance? I just want something that'll relieve tense muscles, can fit around 4 adults and a kid, is durable and easy to maintain. EDIT: I see it's made from polyethylene as well so no real improvement there if we're considering potential for toxicity. Thanks!!
  3. Wanted to come back to this topic. It has caused me to rethink the purchase of a hot tub made by Strong Spa. I'm looking at an Essential Arbor 20 which is an economic/entry level hot tub made by Strong Spa, marketed through Amazon. But after a few years have passed, are the points about construction still valid as it pertains to Strong or have improvements/changes been made in recent years? Thanks!
  4. For the last week or so I've been looking into rotationally molded tubs as a giant step up from the inflatable tub I had been considering. However they aren't the 100 jet $30k tubs either. They appear to be decent entry level tubs from what I can read. Problem is, other than a few articles which seem to be more of an advertisement than an independent review as well as the reviews from people that have bought them on places like wayfair, amazon, etc.... I've found no in-depth discussion of them on any of the hot tub forums. Just some random comments saying how the jets weren't as powerful as the 220 tubs. What I can't seem to find any info on is how to repair/replace parts, especially ones NOT behind the cabinet door/panel. Say a jet breaks...are you screwed because it's buried in foam and not accessible or are they easy to work on? What is customer service like if I need a repair/assistance with one of these Amazon, Wayfair, Costco, etc. tubs?? Here's the one that seems most attractive for it's Balboa components, price, capacity and number of jets. Hopefully there's at least one or two who will give this thread a look that can shed some light on whether it's a decent tub or not. Essential Arbor 20 Jet Thanks!!
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