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Spa Repairs


Altazi

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Greetings spa owners, repair techs, and all. As a spa shopper, I would like to get some idea as to what kind of repairs and/or maintenance are encountered in the owning and using of a spa. I would like to enter into spa ownership with my eyes open, so to speak. I would like to know the cause of the problem, what was needed to repair the problem, and the cost to the spa owner.

I imagine problems fall primarily into three categories: factory defect, user abuse, and normal wear-and-tear. What kind of problems are usually found within these three categories? What stupid things do owners do? Are any spa brands or models more prone to needing repairs? Any known for being especially robust? Please be specific regarding brands & models, if possible.

For maintenance, I would like as little hassle as possible. My spa will be located at a vacation home, where I will be away for weeks at a time. It wouldn't be practical for me to have to travel just to check water quality, etc. I imagine that a spa service company could do this sort of thing for me, but I would like to select a spa that inherently requires as little maintenance as possible. I will spend thousands to save hundreds, if it means more convenience. I admit to being lazy! :)

Thanks in advance for your advice & comments. Please correct any misconceptions I might have.

Altazi

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With homes that are week end or where you will be gone for a long time you need to put a redundant freeze protection on the spa if it is cold in winter. Freeze damage is very expensive and is not covered under any warranty.

For our customers with this we recommend using Eco One to keep the spa clean while you are gone. We have a few customers who have second home in the Colorado mountains who do both.

If the main power to the spa is cut off by the GFCI, you need a redundant system to keep it from freezing.

The number one cause of freezing is GFCI tripping in winter after a few years of everything being just fine.

I have seen plenty of frozen hot tubs. There are two things you need one is a closed cabinet. The second thing is down time without electricity.

The common repairs on our spas over time are caused by customers who don't look inside the cabinet to see if the pump seals are dry. If a pump seal wears out after 5 to 10 years it will take out the motor, as well as cause the spa to trip the GFCI. A $50 to $80 seal job saves $500 in pump replacements.

On spas with the circuit board not capable of holding up because the motors are too strong for the relays, the circuit board will have some failure. We have ways of rebuilding boards for any brand of spa.

After participation in warranty work for 16 brands of spas, and running a fix em all service center, most problems are caused by improper engineering of spas. Most spa companies do not have engineers on staff.

If the suction draw is restricted, the pumps just run to darn hot. If the electrical controls are barely able to run the high current equipment, then the boards wear out. Tiny, circ pumps are notoriously bad at getting blocked because they are so tiny on the inside.

:)

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Thank you for responding, Jim.

I figured that, with all of the spa repair tech types on this forum, I'd get all kinds of answers. I'm not sure how to interpret the lack of responses. Are all of the spas out there so trouble-free, that there is nothing to report? :blink: Are the answers so damning that no one wants to admit to the problem here? Come on, guys, don't you think this is critical information for any spa shopper wanting to go in with his eyes open?

Thanks in advance for your kind assistance.

Regards,

Altazi

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I'm also a prospective buyer and would like to second the motion. My biggest fear is a leak developing in a fully foamed system. Is this fear exaggerated? Or do all spas leak at some point in time, especially after the warranties are over?

Leak repair on some spa is a real nasty job.

We hate spending time on leak repair, so we make them easier to find.

All spas will eventually leak. It is a matter of parts aging.

The thermally sealed design is far superior to full foam for both better energy efficiency and for repairs.

Full foam is some sort of securty blanket for the old timers who have been selling it for a long time. It is difficult for them to realize the difference.

Hot Spring is the hardest to work on, because the foam is used to hold up the spa. It is a non structural shell.

Call around and ask.

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Greetings spa owners, repair techs, and all. As a spa shopper, I would like to get some idea as to what kind of repairs and/or maintenance are encountered in the owning and using of a spa. I would like to enter into spa ownership with my eyes open, so to speak. I would like to know the cause of the problem, what was needed to repair the problem, and the cost to the spa owner.

I imagine problems fall primarily into three categories: factory defect, user abuse, and normal wear-and-tear. What kind of problems are usually found within these three categories? What stupid things do owners do? Are any spa brands or models more prone to needing repairs? Any known for being especially robust? Please be specific regarding brands & models, if possible.

For maintenance, I would like as little hassle as possible. My spa will be located at a vacation home, where I will be away for weeks at a time. It wouldn't be practical for me to have to travel just to check water quality, etc. I imagine that a spa service company could do this sort of thing for me, but I would like to select a spa that inherently requires as little maintenance as possible. I will spend thousands to save hundreds, if it means more convenience. I admit to being lazy! :)

Thanks in advance for your advice & comments. Please correct any misconceptions I might have.

Altazi

I have only been repairing tubs on and off for 10 years. I do not work for any particular brand and have worked on many different brands. As far as the reason for repair I would say normal wear and tear is the biggest culprit, user abuse second, and factory defect last. Motors, heaters only last so long and it seems to be right outa warranty 5-7 years that these need to be replaced. Either of those 2 items would be about a 1-2 hour repair based on travel time. I get 65 bucks an hour. Pump 2-4 hundred, heater 1-2 hundred for parts. Some last longer some don't. Pump seals I have seen go never, and in less than a year. I think alot of that has to do with owner water neglect. And keeping with that catagory of repair, broken jets and knobs happens both because of owner abuse and just plain wearing out. 99 percent of all my repairs are in the equipment area, not in the foam.

Most of the major brands seem to last for 10-15 years before they start to become a problem tub. I have seen older tubs with very little trouble and I have seen 7-10 year tubs even from the major players that were problems. I have seen value brands last 10-15 years with very little trouble and I have seen value brands last 5-7 years only, before they were no longer cost effective to repair. I have a good friend who is on his 3rd tub all three cost him less that 3 grand he has owned tubs for almost 20 years. Is that such a bad deal? Maybe not.

Based on where your summer home is (climate) if it gets colder than freezing, (and i don't mean 25 is the coldest I mean 10-15 and below) I would not leave your tub unchecked for more than a week, no matter what brand or insulation style. If it goes down because of a power interuption it will need to be fixed before freeze damage. But most techs in this area have thaw capabilitys and long term freeze protection capabilitys even without power. Eco One as mentioned is a good way to keep your water clean as mentioned but there are other methods also and chlorine can be used if your adding weekly.

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I have only been repairing tubs on and off for 10 years. I do not work for any particular brand and have worked on many different brands. As far as the reason for repair I would say normal wear and tear is the biggest culprit, user abuse second, and factory defect last. Motors, heaters only last so long and it seems to be right outa warranty 5-7 years that these need to be replaced. Either of those 2 items would be about a 1-2 hour repair based on travel time. I get 65 bucks an hour. Pump 2-4 hundred, heater 1-2 hundred for parts. Some last longer some don't. Pump seals I have seen go never, and in less than a year. I think alot of that has to do with owner water neglect. And keeping with that catagory of repair, broken jets and knobs happens both because of owner abuse and just plain wearing out. 99 percent of all my repairs are in the equipment area, not in the foam.

Most of the major brands seem to last for 10-15 years before they start to become a problem tub. I have seen older tubs with very little trouble and I have seen 7-10 year tubs even from the major players that were problems. I have seen value brands last 10-15 years with very little trouble and I have seen value brands last 5-7 years only, before they were no longer cost effective to repair. I have a good friend who is on his 3rd tub all three cost him less that 3 grand he has owned tubs for almost 20 years. Is that such a bad deal? Maybe not.

Based on where your summer home is (climate) if it gets colder than freezing, (and i don't mean 25 is the coldest I mean 10-15 and below) I would not leave your tub unchecked for more than a week, no matter what brand or insulation style. If it goes down because of a power interuption it will need to be fixed before freeze damage. But most techs in this area have thaw capabilitys and long term freeze protection capabilitys even without power. Eco One as mentioned is a good way to keep your water clean as mentioned but there are other methods also and chlorine can be used if your adding weekly.

Thanks for those answers Roger and Jim the Jim. I think Altazi is my reflection because reading his posts almost identically represent my approach to purchasing my first hot tub. I do a lot of research, ask a lot of questions, and analyze all info disemmenated from dealers in the showroom and on this site. As we all know, there is a lot of bias and vested interest amongst those who make a living selling spas. I do not and therefore am approaching my purchase as analytically as I possibly can. I have read the opinions of Jim the Jim and agree with him on the fully foamed vs. thermal barrier issue of leak repair. I am wet testing the Arctic next week and comparing it with the Artesian and the Barefoot (Hawkeye Mfg). Arctic seems to be the biggest and best player in the thermal insulated market and would probably perform well in the Chicago wintertime. Does anyone have any opinions on the Vita brand which we will also be wet testing soon. I have heard both good and bad about them, but they seem to have some interesting designs and product features. Sorry Jim the Jim, I would look at the Haven line, but CO is a bit too far to travel to wet test. Bottom line is that buying a hot tub is like buying a vehicle; you just hope you don't get a lemon regardless of brand!

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Thanks for those answers Roger and Jim the Jim. I think Altazi is my reflection because reading his posts almost identically represent my approach to purchasing my first hot tub. I do a lot of research, ask a lot of questions, and analyze all info disemmenated from dealers in the showroom and on this site. As we all know, there is a lot of bias and vested interest amongst those who make a living selling spas. I do not and therefore am approaching my purchase as analytically as I possibly can. I have read the opinions of Jim the Jim and agree with him on the fully foamed vs. thermal barrier issue of leak repair. I am wet testing the Arctic next week and comparing it with the Artesian and the Barefoot (Hawkeye Mfg). Arctic seems to be the biggest and best player in the thermal insulated market and would probably perform well in the Chicago wintertime. Does anyone have any opinions on the Vita brand which we will also be wet testing soon. I have heard both good and bad about them, but they seem to have some interesting designs and product features. Sorry Jim the Jim, I would look at the Haven line, but CO is a bit too far to travel to wet test. Bottom line is that buying a hot tub is like buying a vehicle; you just hope you don't get a lemon regardless of brand!

Roger, HMM? As far as my records go you work for a full time job and have never been a full time spa service tech.

If you live in Chicago, we have plenty of "showrooms" at the customer's homes. The customers for Haven are loyal to us because of the product and because of us as people. We are honest and caring. The products are not just a little better than other spas. There are huge differences in the whole design.

Email me and you will be surprised at the responses from customers in Chicago.

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Roger, HMM? As far as my records go you work for a full time job and have never been a full time spa service tech.

If you live in Chicago, we have plenty of "showrooms" at the customer's homes. The customers for Haven are loyal to us because of the product and because of us as people. We are honest and caring. The products are not just a little better than other spas. There are huge differences in the whole design.

Email me and you will be surprised at the responses from customers in Chicago.

Honest?

No. Your lies have been documented to the point of ad nausiem. ETL, Service, Engineering, Customer Satisfaction, Your credibility....etc etc. etc

Caring?

No. Your hate filled responses litter the internet like garbage thrown from a van full of drunken high schoolers.

Anyone who reads your posts is laughing out loud right now.

Folks, don't buy a 2nd rate tub that's been modifed in a barnyard with absoleuty no regard for saftey, from a company that has no service department.

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Roger, HMM? As far as my records go you work for a full time job and have never been a full time spa service tech.

And your records would indicate that I do what for a living full time? Here let me help you out, a licensed plumber with 27 years of experience. And as much as you want to make it a complicated piece of machinery Jimmy it is a very very very simple piece of plumbing. And for the past 10 years I have worked on many many simple pieces of plumbiing called Hot Tubs. Been offered many jobs with several dealers of said simple plumbing, and Justifiying my experience with someone like you is really below me but hey....you mentioned my name.

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If you live in Chicago, we have plenty of "showrooms" at the customer's homes. The customers for Haven are loyal to us because of the product and because of us as people. We are honest and caring. The products are not just a little better than other spas. There are huge differences in the whole design.

Email me and you will be surprised at the responses from customers in Chicago.

http://www.selberg.org/~speed/erik_journal.html

http://www.selberg.org/~speed/havenspas/fi...sage-boards.htm

http://www.selberg.org/~speed/havenspas/fi...ory/factory.htm

http://www.selberg.org/~speed/havenspas/files/general.htm

http://www.selberg.org/~speed/havenspas/files/as.htm

http://www.poolandspa.com:8080/upload/spa%20specialist.jpg

Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain

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