Saturday, November 21, 2009

Should You Get a Solar Hot Tub?

By Stanley Gerterd

If you are trying to save money on electricity you might be interested in getting a solar powered hot tub instead of a regular type. One concern of any new hot tub owner is always how much the heating bill will be for the hot tub and is there any way to reduce it? On the surface, a solar hot tub sounds like it might be a solution but is it really going to work and save energy like you want it to?

Hot tubs typically don't completely turn off and maintain the temperature at a high level so the unit is always using power to some degree. This is actually cheaper than turning off the power and letting the water cool between uses. One thing any hot tub needs to keep in the heat and use the least power is a cover that traps the heat. If you have a cover that does not do the job, you will have costly heat loss that will use unnecessary energy.

Some hot tub covers have solar cells on them to assist with maintaining the heat but of course you need to live in a sunny climate for this type of cover to be effective. If you dont live somewhere where the sun is out frequently, any sort of solar accessories for your hot tub will probably be a waste. The reason why the manufacturers don't make solar tubs is this very reason that most people don't live in a place where there is sun year round.

If you do have a lot of sun, is it really worth the extra price you might pay to get one? Will you truly save energy and how long will it take for you to recoup the extra dollars you might have to spend to get one? These are questions you should research before you spend too much time and money equiping your hot tub with solar cells. Solar cells are usually expensive so you have to know what you are doing first.

Of course, if you are just trying to save energy and go green you will not care about the money savings or whether it is truly economical. But solar hot tubs are kind of like the hybrid car in that they might not be worth it in the end. Now that gasoline prices have gone back down, sales of hybrid cars have plummeted because they are so much more expensive and not worth the extra investment. Solar hot tubs are probably much the same in that you may never get your money back in energy savings.

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