How to buy a Cheap Hot Tub cover
Now some outfits out there are offering covers for like two hundred bucks, but what they don’t tell you is that the inner core uses thin 1 pound foam inserts. They may not even be tapered to allow for rain and melting snow and ice to properly run off. Cheap is expensive when a poorly tapered cover starts to form pits and indentations from rain and puddling water. These grooves and indentations start to form little pits and then bigger pits and pretty soon, you have a nice built-in bird bath right in the middle of the spa cover.
How to get a Waterlogged Cover
Adding insult to injury, these guys use a very thin plastic (1 or 2 mil) to cover the foam core, so that is all there is to protect the inner core from becoming waterlogged. Once you have a waterlogged cover, you will know it. It can become extremely heavy. How in tarnation did a new cover get waterlogged so fast? Well it does not take much to drop a cover over the edge of the spa when removing it, or drop it or ding it up against the cabinet etc.. One little split in the lining is all it takes for water to start making its way inside the core. Then more and more water gets in, the core gets heavier and mold and bacteria start to have their festivities inside so then the cover is not only darn heavy, it smells too.
Now you surely can use a cover lifter to help avoid dropping the cover or otherwise mishandling it, but starting out with better materials and workmanship on a quality cover will help you avoid the hassle and get a good 7 year or more life out of the cover.
Customize a Good Quality Cover
You would’t start putting a lot of nice decorations on a Charley Brown Christmas tree, and you wouldn’t pick nice fancy colors to go on a dud of a cover either. To order the best hot tub cover you can get, start with a basically great cover that is stitched where it needs to be stitched, reinforced where it needs to be reinforced, has the appropriate thick core and vapor barrier and uses center channel reinforcement and steam stoppers to save energy. It should also have UV inhibitors to avoid premature fading in the sun and use strong zippers and handles so they don’t break off. Then you just pick your color and enjoy your hot tub.
Some outfits will say, don’t measure, we have your model number in our database. That does work most of the time, but sometimes it doesn’t – like when the hot tub manufacturer changes cover sizes after upgrading their mold and model, or when the database has inaccuracies. It doesn’t take but a few minutes to walk on out to the existing cover and put a tape measure across it.
How to measure a hot tub cover:
1) Measure length
2) Measure width
3) Measure skirt length (the little flap that hangs down from all sides)
For a square-corner type cover, that is all you need to do. Those with round covers, just measure once across anywhere – that will be your diameter.
Slightly tricky part for those with rounded corners:
A round corner has a radius length. Of course, we don’t exactly know the spot on the cover where you could put a protractor pin in and swing it around perfectly matching up to the outer edge of the cover, so we use basic geometry to get the same radius measurement a different way. We take a carpenters square and hold it across a corner and note at what measurement the cover starts to leave the straight edge of the side of the cover and make its way around the corner. At that point the rounding begins, we read off the measurement from the carpenters square or t-square. That is the radius length because that distance happens to be equal to the actual radius that creates the corner.
Even the best carpenters may not have a square handy, so improvise and use 2 yard sticks or long rulers or even one piece of 2×4 and a tape measure. Anything that will make a 90 degree angle when you put them both together across a corner so that you can get a measurement from the point in space where the cover would end if it were straight and not rounded, to where the rounding begins. If you still have a question about this, see the Hot Tub Outpost video on measuring a corner radius for a hot tub cover. Or just put ” I still don’t know how to measure a corner radius” along with the other measurements and spa model name/model. The more clues, the less questions will be asked after your order, but if there are any questions, the cover manufacturer will contact you prior to actually making the custom cover.
To order a custom hot tub cover, just pick a color, measure the cover, note anything unusual about the cover, provide the skirt length measurement of how long the flap is down all sides and if needed, add any comments about further customization (such as – I don’t want the cover locks etc..).
It’s easy to order a replacement cover online for almost any hot tub model at www.HotTubOutpost.com.