Leaving on a jet plane? Finally taking that trip with the kids to Disneyland? No matter where you’re going on vacation, if you’ve got a hot tub, you probably have some questions about what to do with it before you go. The good news is, we have answers, and you’ll be happy to know that vacation prep for your hot tub is easier than fitting everything in your suitcase — we promise!

Pre-Vacation Hot Tub Care Checklist

No matter how long you’re going to be gone, do these things before you head out to keep your hot tub in good shape and extend your relaxed vibes upon your return.

1. Test and Balance the Water

Check the alkalinity and calcium hardness of your hot tub water, and balance it as needed. This will protect your hot tub from scaling and corrosion while helping your sanitizer be more effective against any bacteria in the water.

2. Clean or Replace the Cartridge Filter

This is an important step if you want to come home to clean hot tub water. If your filter is less than a year old and your garden hose isn’t put away for the winter, give it a rinse. If it’s too cold to use your garden hose (i.e. winter in West Michigan), rinse your filter in your bathtub or a utility sink. If your filter is more than a year old, replace it.

3. Add and Adjust Sanitizer

Put in enough sanitizer to get through vacation. Keep in mind that no one will be in your hot tub while you’re gone, so the sanitizer won’t be used up as frequently. This means you can lower the output. Just remember to turn it back up when you return.

4. Shock Your Hot Tub

Once your hot tub water is properly balanced and sanitized, treat your hot tub with spa shock and run the pump with the cover off for 20 minutes to circulate the water. This is best done as close to your departure as possible.

5. Lock Your Cover

To keep your neighbors from taking their own staycation and prevent debris from getting in your hot tub, make sure your cover is on and locked. Also make sure there aren’t any tears, cracks, or other issues with your hot tub cover before you leave home.

Hot Tub Care for an Extended Vacation

If you’re going to be gone for quite a while, say two or more weeks, and you can’t bribe anyone to spa-sit, your best bet is to winterize your hot tub. This process will not only remove the water from your hot tub but also all of the lines and equipment to prevent anything from freezing and causing damage. You can schedule to have one of our friendly Service Professionals at Zagers winterize your spa for you so that you have peace of mind. Then, when you get home, you can then simply refill your spa and follow our easy 6 Step Hot Tub Startup Process.

Should I Lower the Temperature of My Hot Tub Before Going on Vacation?

Some people are in the camp of lowering the temp on their hot tub before going on vacation, because it can save on energy costs. While this is technically true, the amount you save is negligible. By maintaining your regular temp, your filtration cycles stay the same, helping your water stay clean and clear, so we recommend keeping your hands off that dial.

Have Questions?

If you need help prepping your hot tub for a vacation, we’re here for you. Visit any of our locations or contact us with your questions. We just ask that you pack us in your suitcase and take us with you (only sorta kidding 😉 ).