Summer in Oregon is an ideal time of year to add a hot tub to your backyard, patio, or another area of your property. The benefits of hot tubs are numerous and can extend well into the fall and winter months even in a cooler climate like ours. However, there are a number of installation and other ongoing concerns you’ll need to consider along with the benefits.
In short, improper hot tub wiring and ongoing electrical hazards can cause fires and serious injury or death due to electrocution. We’ve compiled a list of electrical concerns to consider if you’re thinking about installing a hot tub on your property:
- Hot tub electrical wiring. While some small, portable hot tubs can run on 120V power supplies (and even then, you’ll need a high-quality GFCI circuit available for use – never use an extension cord), the majority require 240V. In most cases, you’ll need a 50-amp breaker on your main circuit panel as well as a cutoff box between the circuit panel and hot tub itself. Professional installation is necessary to achieve proper, safe, hot tub electrical setup – never DIY.
- Hot tub internal wiring components. If you’re purchasing a used hot tub, pay close attention to the wiring pack inside it. Over time, weathering, rodents, door edges, and even DIY electricians can cause significant damage to internal wiring packs. Your best bet is to have a professional hot tub technician inspect the wiring and address any concerns directly.
- Existing power sources. Never install a hot tub within reach of other power sources, including outlets, exterior lighting, or appliances. Similarly, keep external fans, heaters, and other plug-in items away from hot tubs. These items pose an electrocution risk while connected to a power source – do without them or utilize battery-operated items instead.
- Nearby metal items. Another source of electrocution concern are metal items near the hot tub. These items could hold electrical current from another source and ground with an occupant of the hot tub upon touch. The safest approach is to remove all nearby items from the hot tub area.
Hot tubs can be a great addition to your patio or backyard, but only if they are installed properly and safely. Utilize a professional electrician to ready your home for your new hot tub, and a professional hot tub technician to ensure all connections are safe. For more information about outdoor or recreational electrical concerns, contact Winters Electric, LLC today.