How to Compare Inflatable Spas
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Read some tips on what to look for when comparing inflatable spas.
How to Compare Inflatable Spas
Apart from the usual considerations like size, shape, colour and seating capacity, what other features of an inflatable spa need to be closely examined and before you buy?:
Inflatable Spas, by their very nature, are prone to rupture and puncture if they are over inflated, over filled or placed on a rough surface. The best inflatable spas are those that are constructed from the toughest materials i.e. Laminated Nylon or Polyester Laminated and utilize an internal ‘pocket’ or ‘IBeam’ structure. These types of spa comprise hundreds of individual air chambers (similar to a pocket sprung mattress) that all independently inflate and give the spa a much more rigid and stronger structure to withstand the pressure of the water that is contained within the spa.
Like their bigger and more expensive cousins, inflatable spas need their water to be regularly ‘turned over’ and filtered. The more often this is done in a given period (normally expressed as litres per hour) then the better the filtering ability of the spa and the more clean the water.
Like houses, inflatable spas lose around 30% of their heat through the lid or spa cover. Therefore, the better the means of cover insulation, the less heat that will be lost from the spa's water and the less electricity you'll use to keep the water at the right temperature. The spas with the best insulation are those that have an inflatable lid (that acts like double-glazing) and also have an inner inflatable ring (that acts like an air-tight seal) to hold the lid securely in position on top of the spa.
Inflatable spas tend to come with 2 types of control systems; Internal and External. External control systems place the heater, pump, filter, blower etc in a separate unit, outside the spa which needs to be physically connected by the user to the spa. The advantage of these is that the spa filter is outside of the spa for convenient removal and replacement. The disadvantage is that they can be very noisy when in operation as the internal air blower is not insulated in any way. Internal control systems have the blower mounted inside the spa's wall which means that they are a lot quieter to use due to the insulation provided by both the spa's construction and the water inside it.
Blower & Air Jets
The more powerful the spa's blower and the more air jets there are then the more of an authentic massage and ‘spa experience’ you'll get!
As with all electrical items, the manufacturer's warranty is key to given you peace of mind if and when things go wrong. Inflatable spas tend to have 2 parts to their warranty; electrical/control system part and the shell/liner part. Look carefully at the length of time the manufacturer is prepared to warrant each of these parts before you make your buy decision!