One of the most common problems with hot tubs that are aging is pump failure. If your tub is over 5 years of age, various components – including the pump – will start to show signs of wear and tear, and may require replacement.
The pump of a hot tub is a crucial component. It essentially helps to keep the water clean by moving it through the filter, helping to distribute the chemicals which keep the water sanitary. It also propels the water through the jets, providing the hydrotherapy action that soothes muscles and aches.
Hot tub pumps are made up of two main parts: the wet end that has the impeller (that moves the water), and the electric motor that turns the impeller. Pumps can vary in horsepower and be 1 or 2 speed. Some smaller or 110V spas may have one pump, while larger spas may have 2 pumps which can each be controlled separately on the spa control pad. Some larger spas may also have a separate circulation pump which circulates the water through the filter and distributes the chemicals added to the water. These are generally on a programmable timer and not controlled by an on-off button on the keypad.
Regular water and filter maintenance, and turning the pumps off when the spa is not in use, are key to ensuring that the pump works properly and lasts as long as possible. One of the most common problems for water flow and equipment failure is that hot tub owners do not clean or change the filter as often as they should. When the filter becomes excessively dirty and filled with debris, it forces the pump to have to work a lot harder than it should, which inevitably causes it to break down earlier than necessary. Regularly cleaning and changing your filter can take lot of undue pressure off the spa pump so it lasts longer. Maintaining the proper pH in your spa is also important to avoid corrosion and chemical build up in your jets and equipment.
Signs of Hot Tub Pump Failure
There are a number of signs to watch for to determine whether or not you need a new spa pump:
▪ Malfunctions that prevent the motor from turning (this can include frozen bearings or shafts)
▪ Humming, whistling, banging or whining noise
▪ A jammed impeller
▪ Leaks around the pump
▪ Low or no pressure coming through jets
▪ Water not circulating
If you notice any of these situations, you should have a closer inspection of the pump. Most likely, a replacement will be warranted. You will need to note the horsepower and whether it is a 1 or 2 speed pump. You will need to replace it with an equivalent hot tub pump – but there are several top brands available.
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