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Spa Warranties

Always understand that a warranty is only as good as its manufacturer. You should take into consideration both the longevity of the manufacturer and their service history. It is very important to carefully review a manufacturer's warranty before you purchase a hot tub to ensure that you are getting the best service and the most for your money. Some parts (i.e. an ozonator) may not be warranted by your hot tub manufacturer, but by the manufacturer who produced the part. It is important in those cases to be sure that your retailer will support those warranties. Also consider the relationship between the dealer and the manufacturer. You will not be able to count on a dealer who has changed their manufacturer affiliation several times over the past few years.

The dealer should be able to prove a long and stable relationship with the manufacturer to assure you that your warranty will be supported. Almost all manufacturers provide different types of warranty coverage for the different parts and elements of their hot tubs. Keep in mind that the length of the coverage is usually determined by dividing in half the time that the manufacturer perceives the part to last. The following sections explain what to look for in a warranty:

  • Shell. The spa shell is the most important part of your hot tub because if it fails, it can be the most costly item to repair or replace. Look for an extensive warranty, understanding that often there are two types of protection in shell warranties, structural and surface.

  • Structural Warranty.The structural warranty covers the shell's ability to hold water. Most manufacturers of quality spas offer a minimum of seven years.

  • Surface Warranty. The surface warranty protects against delamination, discoloring, blistering, and cracking - any type of cosmetic blemishing. The surface warranty usually offers less coverage than the structural warranty. We recommend looking for a manufacturer that provides a minimum of five to ten year of surface coverage.
  • Accessories. Accessories cover everything from ozonators to cover lifters. Often times, these accessories are not manufactured by the same people who built your hot tub. Therefore, you will often be presented with a separate warranty from the manufacturer who built the part. It is important to check that your dealer will support this warranty in the case that repairs are ever needed.
  • Cover. The cover is likely to be the first thing that will need to be replaced on your hot tub. While most manufacturers provide covers with the purchase of a hot tub, these covers are usually not of the highest quality and will need to be replaced within two to three years. Covers can be expensive to replace, usually costing anywhere between $300 - $600. This type of coverage will ensure that the cover will be able to withstand all of the normal abuses from customer mishandling, its constant removal and replacement, and nature's elements for at least five to six years.
  • Electronics. Most manufacturers utilize computer activated electronic controls. These controls are sensitive to moisture and vapor, and have a high susceptibility to problems due to the inherent nature of the product. Look for a solid warranty that provides at least three to four years coverage.

The biggest problems with electronic controls, however, are electrical storms, lightning and customer mishandling. An electrical storm could easily destroy the entire electrical system, costing well over $1,000 to replace. This is the reason we highly recommend looking for a No Fault warranty that covers "Acts of God" as well as customer abuse. This ideal warranty will protect you from extensive repair costs.
  • Equipment. All of the hot tub's parts (i.e. pumps and blowers) and plumbing should be covered within the warranty for at least three years. If the parts and plumbing are not covered, it could lead to potentially serious problems that can be costly to repair. Also be sure to find out if there are any fees associated with parts that need to be shipped from various locations - not all retailers will carry parts for all of the hot tub models that they sell.
  • Heating Element. The hot tub's heating element is usually the second item that will need to be replaced. The minerals and chemicals in your water can adversely affect the heating element over a period of time. The warranty should be longer than one year for your protection.

  • Cabinet. The cabinetry is usually not covered for an extensive period of time. This is due to the fact that wood cabinetry requires regular maintenance by the consumer in order to keep it in top form. A one year warranty is sufficient. Simulated wood cabinets offer longer warranties as the cabinets last longer.
  • Labor. There is usually little or no coverage within the warranty for labor costs. However, there are almost always extended service contracts which are made available to the consumer, and we highly recommend purchasing one.
  • Obligations of User. It is important to carefully review the warranty for any obligations of the owner. Some manufacturers require that the consumer pay for all labor and repair expenses. Also, if repairs are unable to made on site some manufacturers require the consumer to pay the shipping costs of transporting the spa, or its parts, back to the original manufacturer. This can be very expensive, potentially costing well over $1000.

Acts Invalidating the Warranty. This section is important to read because some manufacturers insert clauses into the warranty that are unfair to the consumer. Look for out of the ordinary things that invalidate the warranty. For example, does the manufacturer require you to use only their brand of chemicals? Does it restrict you from using certain types of chemicals? Does it prohibit you from exposing your spa from direct sunlight? (An especially unfair clause for those with outdoor spas.) Read this section carefully before any purchase is could end up saving you a significant amount of money, as well as headaches.

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