Winter FAQ - New England Spas

Winter FAQ

My hot tub is not heating

If your hot tub is not heating, has lost power, or has a leak, do not drain the spa. There is a high chance of encountering a potential freeze situation which may damage the hot tub’s components, or rupture its plumbing, and is not covered by warranty.

We recommend that you do the following:

  • Shut the breaker off, remove the filter and any other objects that might be in the spa (this could be the cause of the shut down)

  • Put a space heater (small ceramic heater) in the spa’s equipment area and set to LOW HEAT, HIGH FAN. (See example 1 below)

  • If the equipment area is not large enough to fit a space heater, face the space heater towards the equipment and make a shelter using the panel and enclose with a tarp to keep as much heat inside as possible. Set the fan to LOW HEAT, HIGH FAN. (See example 2 below)

Make sure not to place the space heater in direct contact with, or up against, any equipment, wires, or surfaces to avoid potential damage. The fan should be facing towards the components. 

  • If you are not comfortable using a space heater, a small incandescent droplight may be sufficient to prevent damage. (See example 3 below)

  • Close the spa’s equipment area either by reinstalling the panels, or creating a tent with a tarp.

  • Never drain the spa as a response to an issue in cold weatherThe spa should be kept full and topped off. A full spa has a much greater chance of surviving a cold snap than an empty and improperly winterized spa.

The tub may very well thaw out and start working fine if the filter was the problem (may need to reset the breaker if it has tripped). This will also keep the spa from further freezing issues, and should be continued until a service appointment can be made (if needed).

*We have space heaters and extension cords available at all stores.

We recommend maintaining the temperature of your spa at a minimum of 100 degrees during the winter months. Should a short power outage occur, heat loss will be minimal if your spa temperature is 100 degrees and you keep the spa covered. 

Can I drain and refill my hot tub in the winter months?

We do not recommend draining and refilling your hot tub once the weather has consistently been below 38 degrees. There is a high chance of encountering a potential freeze situation which may damage the hot tubs’ components and is not covered by warranty. If you absolutely need to drain and refill, plan to do so when the weather breaks and it’s a warmer day. Make sure your spa’s equipment is thawed.

What should I do if I want to empty my hot tub for the winter?

We do recommend keeping your spa open and enjoyed during the winter months. If your concern is energy cost, please contact us for suggestions.

If you do want to empty your hot tub for the winter (winterize) the hot tub: follow detailed steps in Owner’s Manual or contact our store for assistance. Damage caused to your spa by improper winterizing is NOT covered by your spas’ warranty.

Precaution for starting and filling spas in the winter (if your hot tub is being delivered in the cold months and you are filling it for the first time):

Filling and starting a spa when the temperatures are below 38 degrees requires the following:

The pumps and components in the equipment area should be thawed prior to filling. Some residual water from manufacturer quality assurance testing can possibly remain in the spa and plumbing thus preventing water flow thru the plumbing. If there is frozen water in the pumps the spa will not turn on or it will turn on, but there won’t be any circulation/spa water action and the motor will hum. Make sure to shut off spa until defrosting is done.

For the following make sure NO contact is made with any materials so as not to cause melting or fire. Both of these processes should only be used while someone is at the spa to monitor for safety reasons.

On a Sundance spa, and most Hot Spring spas (aside from the Jetsetter): place/ hang a drop light (60 or 75 watt bulb) or place a small space heater (set on LOW HEAT, HIGH FAN) in the right hand equipment area until the lines / pumps are thawed

On a Jetsetter Hot Spring spa: face a small space heater toward the equipment (set on LOW HEAT, HIGH FAN) with a plywood lean-to over the heater and equipment area, also cover lean-to with a tarp and secure it so it won’t blow against heater.

If you have a service call scheduled in the winter:

When there is snow on the ground please do the following to prepare for a service visit:

  • Make sure that the spa and a pathway to it are shoveled out.

  • Any access panels are removed (if the spa panels are not directly accessible).

  • Steps in front of the spas are set aside.

  • Cover should be clean of snow (we recommend sno-brums vs. shovels!)


Example 1 - Space Heater

Example 2 - Space Heater - Small Area

Example 3 - Droplight

Information and Directions Disclaimer:

New England Spas assumes no liability for any incidental, consequential or other liabilities from the use of this information. All risks and damages, incidental or otherwise, arising from the use, alteration or misuse of the information contained herein are entirely the responsibility of the user. Although careful precaution has been taken in the preparation of this material, the user of this information must apply it carefully to their circumstances. We assume no responsibility for omissions or errors.