Hot Tub Relay Failure Causes

Troubleshooting hot tub relays on a spa circuit board such as Balboa or Gecko is tricky.  Often the board is just replaced, but when having to repeatedly change out circuit boards, other things may cause the problem.  If the pump relay is burning out, does it happen to just one relay or multiple relays

A relay may burn out because of the following reasons:

-          Too High an AMP ( current ) draw. Pumps will pull over four times their amp rating as an in-rush current. This usually will not adversely affect a relay unless it is turned on and off too often.

-          Pump problem.  The pump may be defective or may be stressed and pulling too much Amperage. You must to a current measurement to see if the current being used exceeds the pump rating ( 15A Max )

-          Loose wire terminal connection(s). This will cause the circuit to overheat and the relay may go first.

-          Bad relay – On a rare occasion a relay may have a poor ( cold ) solder joint and act like a loose connection causing the circuit to overheat. ( not likely the problem with multiple boards in the same spa pak )

-          Be sure the pump relays aren’t being mistaken for a heater relay(s).  Heater relays are subject to the same conditions as pump relays but they are also affected by pressure switches where an improperly adjusted pressure switch can cause a heater relay to chatter ( on and off quickly ) and therefore overheat and burn out.

So there are some reasons why hot tub relays may fail.  On systems with pressure switches, be sure to adjust them properly so they do not cause the heater relay to chatter.

For replacement hot tub circuit boards, visit Canada’s The Hot Tub Superstore or Spa Sauna Direct in the U.S.