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2006 Hot Springs Grandee Heating Problem


DrGMatic
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I've seen lots of threads talking about Hot Springs heater issues but have not been able to find a solution so I'd really appreciate any help I can get.

Here's what I've got going on:

The tub has worked great for years, changed nothing in the past couple weeks.

The breaker started tripping a couple days ago

I'd reset the breaker and the tub seemed to work okay, not tripping the breaker in the first 2 minutes like it does now. But after it happened a few times, I opened it up and noticed the check valve for the ozonator was broken off but still inserted into the injector side of the tubing, leaving the output tube of the ozonator dangling. I replaced the check valve and continue to have the same breaker issue.

Upon resetting the breaker, everything lights up on the control panel,the jets all work, the circulation pump appears to work as whirring away and it drives the little waterfall just fine but no bubbles from the bottom of the tub. The green and red led's on the control board both light. It sits liket his for a couple minutes and then, it sounds like a relay trips in the tub and the circuit breaker at the panel trips.

With the heater disconnected, I get 120v between the white wire terminal and ground and between the black terminal and ground on the heater control board. I don't see any charring or evidence of burn on the heater control board.

The tub was working great, didn't drain or fill, so I don't think I could have an air lock.

Where do I go next? I'm handy enough with a VOM to check what I need to check, I just don't know what to check.

Any help is much appreciated as I'm in little position to pay to get the tub working and the local Hot Springs dealer is absolutely impossible to work with.

Thanks, in advance!

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Set your meter to ohms and put one lead in the black or white heater wire end, and the other lead in the green ground heater wire end. If you get a reading of anything but ".O.L" or "0" then the heater is grounded and you need a new one.

Thanks, Guys!

New info:

Still trips the breaker with the heater wires disconnected

Full continuity between the disconnected black and white heater wires

Zero continuity between the disconnected white and green or black and green heater wires

It's the 30 amp breaker that's tripping but it doesn't trip if the 20 amp isn't turned on.

I swapped out the 30 amp breaker and tit did the same thing .

Everything seems to be working fine and then, Click!, a relay trips in the tub and the breaker trips.

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I'd still look for moisture in the circ pump motor, as well as trying to disconnect the main pumps one at a time. Also, take the light bulb out, and inspect the bulb and housing for water as well.

I know this may sound unusual, but this doesn't sound like a bad heater, even though it only trips when the heater breaker is energized. Electricity can take some strange path's, particularly when something gets wet.

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I'd still look for moisture in the circ pump motor, as well as trying to disconnect the main pumps one at a time. Also, take the light bulb out, and inspect the bulb and housing for water as well.

I know this may sound unusual, but this doesn't sound like a bad heater, even though it only trips when the heater breaker is energized. Electricity can take some strange path's, particularly when something gets wet.

Thanks, PS. I'll check that out.

You mention a housing on the circ pump. I haven't looked at it that closely, (but I will!), do I need to pull it out or is there a cover to remove while in place? And, do you reckon I could just see moisture or is it possible there's actually water in it.

And then, phew, sorry for all the questions, if there is water and I dry it out has it caused lasting damage?

Cheers,

K

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I'd still look for moisture in the circ pump motor, as well as trying to disconnect the main pumps one at a time. Also, take the light bulb out, and inspect the bulb and housing for water as well.

I know this may sound unusual, but this doesn't sound like a bad heater, even though it only trips when the heater breaker is energized. Electricity can take some strange path's, particularly when something gets wet.

Thanks, PS. I'll check that out.

You mention a housing on the circ pump. I haven't looked at it that closely, (but I will!), do I need to pull it out or is there a cover to remove while in place? And, do you reckon I could just see moisture or is it possible there's actually water in it.

And then, phew, sorry for all the questions, if there is water and I dry it out has it caused lasting damage?

Cheers,

K

If you can access the back of the circ pump without removing it, that's the way to go. And yes, if it was covered in water, it will still work once dried out, but it's lifespan has been shortened.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Is your Hot Spring equipped with an ozonator? When the check valves go bad, water can get in and cause it to fail. Try unplugging the ozonator from the board and see if the breaker still trips. Sometimes breakers go bad too...

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Is your Hot Spring equipped with an ozonator? When the check valves go bad, water can get in and cause it to fail. Try unplugging the ozonator from the board and see if the breaker still trips. Sometimes breakers go bad too...

Thanks Kreg, I'll do that.

When the check valve broke it actually came apart, part of it in the tubing coming from the ozonator and part of it still attached to the tubing connected to the heater, but the tubes themselves were no longer connected.

And, while it's not as many bubbles coming out of the floor drain, there are some, like 50-60% of normal.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Here's my update:

I turn on the 30 amp breaker, circ pump runs and control display lights up. Turn on the 20 amp breaker and the 30 amp trips immediately.

I unplugged all the components, Ozonator, heater, jet pumps, remote, hi temp, flow sensor, etc. one at a time until nothing is connected to the control board, and the 20 amp breaker trips as soon as I turn on the 30.

Even with everything disconnected, the breaker trips. I even disconnected the relay board from the control board, same thing.

Then, I disconnected, at the relay board, the wires from the service box, so the wires aren't connected to the tub at all. Exactly the same scenario with the breakers.

Then, sort of long story short, I pull the breakers and put my meter to the wiring at the hot tub end. Disconnected at the tub and disconnected at the breaker box, using the 20K setting on my meter I get continuity measurements between the various wires of 60, 30, 130, and -17.

In my "just enough knowledge to be dangerous" mode, I'm figuring I have problem in my wiring between my breaker box and my tub. It's buried in grey conduit but part of it is in a spot in the yard where, because of the amount of rain we've had, is under water.

My plan, unless someone can identify a flaw in my reckoning, I'm going to dig it up and pull new wire.

Thoughs?

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I would suspect a weak breaker and/or a mis-wired breaker before the wire itself. Have an electrician inspect the positioning of the wires and have him replace the breaker in question. See if that does the trick.

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I would suspect a weak breaker and/or a mis-wired breaker before the wire itself. Have an electrician inspect the positioning of the wires and have him replace the breaker in question. See if that does the trick.

I agree with Kreg. It could be the wires but I've seen tubs that were wired wrong somehow work properly for many years and then do the same thing that yours is doing.

I don't want to see you start digging up the yard before confirming all of the wire positions on the breaker/spa terminals.

Which model Grandee do you have? Does the serial # start with G or GG?

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Thanks, Fellas!

It's a GG. I checked at the breakers and it's wired correctly. I pulled the breakers and disconnect all the wiring. With the wiring disconnected on both ends, I still get continuity as described above between them. I'm guessing that between -17 to 130 on the 20K scale doesn't describe a bunch of conductivity but with nothing connected, I'm getting some amount of shorting between the wires, right? Is that enough to trip the GFI? (And what does the -17 tell me?)

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