Hot tubs come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes. Today, we will compare the pros and cons of owning a small hot tub and a large hot tub so that you can better decide which one is better for you.

How Do You Define A Big Hot Tub & A Small Hot Tub?

Before we get into comparing large hot tubs and small hot tubs we should first define what a large hot tub is and what a small hot tub is. Given the wide variety of sizes and shapes that hot tubs come in nowadays, this can be more difficult than it sounds, however. For this article we’ve decided to define hot tubs based on these criteria:

  • Small hot tubs will have no more than 5 seats and seat 4 or fewer adults comfortably. They will also hold no more than 1200L of water when filled.
  • Large hot tubs will have 6 or more seats and will be able to seat more than 4 adults comfortably. They will also hold more than 1200L of water when filled.

These definitions will help us compare hot tubs of different shapes and layouts. Though there will likely be some hot tubs that don’t fit well within these criteria, the vast majority of currently available hot tubs should. Now that we have that out of the way, let’s start comparing them!

Seating Vs Energy Efficiency

Probably the biggest differences that you will find between large and small hot tubs is their relative energy efficiency and available seating. By definition larger hot tubs will have more seating available than smaller hot tubs. Similarly featured smaller hot tubs, on the other hand, will be more energy efficient due to their smaller water volume. Simply put, the less water you have to heat up, the more energy efficient it will be to keep the water heated properly.

Whether you give the advantage to big hot tubs or small hot tubs in this case will simply depend on how many people will be using the hot tub on a regular basis. If you need to be able to fit 4 or more adults in your hot tub on a consistent basis, a large hot tub is going to be better for you. If you’re instead only looking to get 2 or 3 people in at a time, a more energy efficient smaller hot tub might be a better fit.

Who’s Using The Hot Tub?

Another factor to consider when comparing larger hot tubs to smaller hot tubs is the size of the people that will be using the hot tub on a consistent basis.

Not only do smaller hot tubs have less seats than larger hot tubs, their seats are also generally slightly closer together. The footwell in the centre of the hot tub will also typically be smaller than those found in larger hot tubs. For these reasons, people that are a little broader than average or those that are 6′ 2″ or taller will generally not be as comfortable in most small hot tub as they will be in most larger hot tubs.

Installation Flexibility

When shopping for a hot tub it’s important to consider where you will be installing it in your backyard. Ideally you will want it installed somewhere close to your back door (to minimize the cold winter walks to your hot tub) while also leaving enough room for accessories like cover lifters and steps.

Due to their smaller footprint, small hot tubs will generally give you more flexibility when it comes to installation. If you have some space constraints in your backyard we recommend going with the smallest hot tub

Option Availability

Most hot tub manufacturers offer additional options or packages to your hot tub to add new functionality or improve existing features. Hydropool hot tubs, for example, offer several options and packages on their hot tubs that allow you to improve your hot tubbing experience in several ways, including:

  • Increasing the number of jets, pumps and lights in the hot tub.
  • Allowing you to control your hot tub through a phone app.
  • Reducing your maintenance and chemical usage.

These additional options allow you to further customize your hot tubbing experience to better suit your needs. Some hot tub manufacturers, however, restrict the options and packages that are available on their smaller hot tubs. If you’re dead set on getting a certain additional feature, you may have to buy a larger hot tub.

Key Takeaways

  • Assuming that both have similar features and insulation designs, smaller hot tubs will always be at least slightly more energy efficient than larger hot tubs.
  • In general it’s best to scale the size of your hot tub with the amount of people that will be using it on a regular basis. There’s generally not much point in having a 10 person hot tub if there will only ever be 2 or 3 people using it at any given time.
  • Larger hot tubs not only have more seats than smaller hot tubs, those seats are also generally slightly larger and more spaced out. This means that people who are a little broader or taller than average might end up being more comfortable in a larger hot tub, regardless of how many people are using it.
  • Before purchasing a hot tub, consider where you will be installing it. Make sure that you have space for not only the hot tub, but also accessories like steps and cover lifters. If your available space is limited, consider getting a smaller hot tub so that you will have the room you need to fit everything.
  • Some hot tub manufacturers restrict the options that are available on their smaller hot tubs. If you’re dead set on having a certain option or package you may need to purchase a larger hot tub.

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