Difference Between Hot Tub And Spa – Know What You Buy


Hot water immersion vessels come in all shapes, sizes, and forms. There are different types of hot water therapy, but most terms are often used interchangeably. When someone refers to a hot tub, spa, or jacuzzi, for example, are they talking about the same thing? What about whirlpools and jetted tubs? For leisure or parties and entertainment. Some of these vessels share similarities, but here’s a look at the difference between hot tubs and spas.

Differences Between Hot Tub And Spa



The word spa is often associated with a wellness resort. Spas or day baths are also commercial establishments where people receive aesthetic services such as facials, deep-tissue massages, salt glows, manicures, pedicures, body wraps, among other services. Since prehistoric times, there has been a belief in the curative powers of mineral water.

However, the spa is also an American term for a hot tub equipped with strong jets that mix air in water for massage purposes. There are two spas and hot tubs: portable and in-ground or custom-built.

In-ground or custom styles are referred to as spas. They can be adjacent or attached to an in-ground swimming pool, while others are standalone units, custom-built or set into the ground. Some versions are sturdy portable models designed to look like custom-built in-ground models that can be positioned on a raised platform. Others are custom-built and made from the same materials pools are made of like fiberglass, gunite, concrete along with copper, stainless steel, and copper. In-ground spas are most likely what you’re going to see at a gym or hotel.

Hot Tub

Hot Tub

A hot tub, on the other hand, is more specific in describing a tub with many massaging jets placed strategically. This is typically a small pool of heated water or a large tub used for hydrotherapy or pleasure. As such, the term hot tub is often used to refer to an above-ground portable spa. While there are a wide variety of accessories for hot tubs, all the components, including the electrical system and plumbing, are built inside the tub. A hot tub is usually filled with a garden hose and can be drained anytime or relocated to your new premises when you move.

Hot tubs range from simple models with a few jets to sophisticated acrylic shells with a high jet count. Traditional hot tubs were round redwood vessels, but they have come a long way since then. Today’s hot tubs are highly sophisticated and generally offer a much better experience than in-ground spas because they’re easier to care for, more energy-efficient, more comfortable, and provide better massage and hot tub therapy for you and your family. It helps in reducing stress and anxiety when needed.

Portable models can be designed to accommodate anywhere from two to eight or more occupants. They can be made of inexpensive materials such as vinyl or latex or materials such as polyethylene, fiberglass, acrylic, or another type of plastic. Some hot tubs are built with recycled materials such as barrels or metal bins, while others are made from traditional wood.

Bottom Line

There sure are plenty of different terms to describe hot water immersion vessels. The pointers should provide some clarification on the similarities and differences between hot tubs and spas. Traditional hot tubs are made of wood, whereas spas can be portable or adjacent to an in-ground swimming pool, while others are standalone units, custom-built or set into the ground.


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