If you need to replace your swim spa cover this year, there are few important things you should consider. A swim spa cover is your spa’s first line of defense against debris and harsh weather conditions and is the key to saving on energy costs as a well-insulated cover will prevent heat from escaping from the swim spa when it’s not in use.
Here’s what you should know before buying a new swim spa cover.
When to Replace a Swim Spa Cover
A typical foam filled swim spa cover usually needs to be replaced every two to three years.
Look for any rips or tears in the vinyl, check the underside of the cover and look for deterioration from mold build-up and chemicals. A replacement swim spa cover is needed if your old one is heavy and waterlogged and a struggle to remove. This is a clear sign that the foam cores are saturated with water.
CHOOSE SUNBRELLA INSTEAD OF VINYL
All vinyls are rated by HOURS outdoors. Sunbrella is rated by YEARS outdoors. Your new swim spa cover should be covered in Sunbrella that will be more resistant to UV damage, fading and discoloration from the sun than vinyl ever could be. By the way mildew inhibitors in the vinyl will never prevent the build-up of mold that causes those unpleasant odors. The spaces in the foam, and in between the layers of plastic are a near perfect breeding ground for mildew. No amount of cleaning will get rid of it.
IS COVER THICKNESS IS IMPORTANT?
A typical foam filled swim spa cover will be from four to six inches thick. Foam cover dealers like to push thicker covers saying they will stand up better to the elements. But the truth is the thickness has nothing to do with why the cover gets heavy or fails. It’s the steam from the spa. If the cover getting heavy was caused by the weather then a roof over the spa would stop it from getting heavy. Thicker foam would do a better job insulating if it were used in dry conditions. However as soon as it is put in use over a source of steam the insulation value will always go down quickly.
So what’s a better solution? Well it would be better to have the cover lay right on the water since that’s what we are trying to keep warm. Since air is the best insulator, it should use layers of air to insulate. It should have a natural dome shape so wind and weather will flow easily away. The layers of air are the key to keeping heat from escaping from your spa, therefore saving you money on energy costs.
If you live in an area that receives a lot of snow during the winter, a rigid foam cover will always fail under a heavy wet snow load. Whereas an air filled swim spa cover that rests right on the water will be able to withstand a much greater snow load, as well as providing greater insulation.
LOCKING STRAPS FOR SAFETY
Locking straps on a spa cover will not only keep it from blowing off during heavy winds, but they are a good safety feature to have to keep small children and pets from getting into the hot tub when you’re not around.
CHOOSING A COLOR
Choosing the right color for your spa cover is a fun but important decision, as they can enhance and complement your surroundings. Fortunately, Sunbrella is available in about 80 different colors. Instead of choosing between some shade of gray or brown you actually get exactly the color you want. And Sunbrella won’t fade for years. It will still be just as bright ten years after you first put it on your spa.