Our old house came with a hot tub. But in my opinion the previous owner had the tub installed oriented the wrong way, which bothered me for several reasons:
- You had to climb over the control panel to get into the tub.
- The built-in step down into the water was positioned on the cover lift side instead of being at the entry point from the upper deck.
- You needed to take the deck halfway apart whenever it was time to change the water or access the mechanical systems.
If they had installed the hot tub rotated just 90 degrees clockwise, all three problems could have been overcome. Now this thing weighs about 900 lbs empty, and I wasn’t about to ask ten friends to come and help me move it and probably hurt themselves in the process. Remembering what Archimedes said, “Give me a place to stand and with a lever I will move the whole world” I came up with a plan. I didn’t need to move the whole world, just my hot tub. Thank you very much for the idea Mr. Archimedes…
Moving the hot tub – rotate and graduate (*)
After removing the cover lift, disassembling the deck, and disconnecting the electrical lines, I used a 2 foot crowbar and a bunch of 2×4 and 4×4 scraps to lift the empty tub up bit by bit until it was high enough to slip four Harbor Freight moving dollies under the corners. Then I carefully lowered it down onto the dollies rolled the whole thing into its new position by myself. Once it was placed correctly, I just repeated the process in reverse to remove the dollies and slowly lower the tub back onto the concrete patio. Reconnect the electrical supply and rebuild the deck and there you go.
(*) I had a teacher in high school algebra who loved to say “rotate, graduate” when we were learning about cartesian coordinate rotation matrices. This hot tub story has nothing to do with algebra, but I like the saying anyway.
Moveable Lower Deck Segment
I solved the mechanicals & drain access problem by rebuilding part of the lower section of the deck on heavy duty casters. Now I can just pull a pin that holds it on and slide it out of the way to get at the access panel and change the water as needed. Woohoo. The black circles on the risers of the steps are LED deck lighting from Lowes.
I added the wedge stairs made from a bunch of scrap trex material at the back side to follow the retaining wall. This used to be a 2 foot drop off the top deck platform.
All done and ready for action
We moved in 2016 and no longer have a hot tub at our new home. While it was fun to use while we lived there, I don’t miss all the water changes, chemicals, and general maintenance required for a hot tub. It’s like a big chemistry experiment, what with the pH balancing, anti-corrosion, chlorine, and other chemicals required to keep the tub clean and safe to use. The electricity cost to keep 500 gallons of water at 100 degrees is not insignificant either.