Hot Tub Cover Full of Water

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I have owned a hot tub for a few years and it has been my experience that I am having to replace the hot tub cover because it gets full of water and extremely heavy. Any suggestions on how to prevent this from happening or on how to prolong the effect? It seems like we need to replace the cover every 2 to 3 years. Thanks!
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wrote:

I used to have that problem. Then I bought a cover online from a place called Roberts Hot Tubs. I ordered the "thicker" cover for better insulation, but also ordered the optional "double wrapping" of the foam blocks, which helps keep them dry longer. That cover is now 5 years old and is still okay. The top surface is finally starting to rot from exposure, so I used contact cement to glue a piece of matching green plastic tarp over it. I expect I have a few more years to go before replacement. It was a little cheaper than what my spa dealer wanted for an exact replacement of the original cover that completely fell apart, got water-logged and failed after 3 years. Roberts doesn't make the covers themselves, so I expect you may find the same thing from other sources, too.
I have no connection to Roberts, except as a satisfied customer, but since I bought that cover, someone from Roberts has posted here a few times. I chalk that up to eerie coincidence. It's a small world.
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I built my own cover our of 3" urethane foam and fiberglass. That, and a 1/2" ethafoam layer between it and the tub, which isolates it from the humid heat of the water seems to last well. It's over 15 years old now. The ethafoam layer could help with the commercial covers also. I got that at a "foam shop". The heavier blue stuf lasts a lot longer than the cheaper white stuff with the chlorine exposure.
When you lay the first glass cloth, make it the bottom. Support the edges on bricks or 2x4 chunks, and the center will droop. The result, when it is turned over, is a slightly dome shaped cover so the water runs off when it rains.
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wrote:

Interesting idea. Thanks!
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I bought a replacement cover online that was made to my specs from a place in TX about 6 years ago. It's still doing OK, but it is starting to get heavier. The original one lasted twice that long, but it was indoor for 10 years, which I think makes a big difference. Outside with cold temps, you get more condensation that eventually water logs them.
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ours also lasted almost 3 years before it weighed about a ton. The Hot Springs guy said it's normal. I don't know how the hell it gets in though.....
s

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We had a spa that was used year round for about 8 years without a problem with the cover. Maybe it depends on both the core material and the exterior covering. It never absorbed water.
Wayne
On Fri 21 Nov 2008 11:24:52p, Steve Barker DLT told us...

--
Wayne Boatwright
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Steve Barker DLT wrote:

Stitched vinyl cover over something porous will do that. (At least on the few covers I have seen.) Boat cushions and old kapok life vests we had in my youth did the same thing. My BIL, on his retro wooden wood-fired hot tub, just buys a sheet of blue foamboard every year for 20 bucks, and weighs it down with brick chunks. Not pretty, but effective. I think I told him he should go with foil-skinned style next year, to cut down on the UV breakdown, and that an RV store probably has some sort of plastic edging that could dress up the cut edges of the circle to keep the crumbs from flaking off. High-quality aluminum furnace tape, applied when the foam was brand new, would probably work as well. A couple long bungee cords would keep it from blowing away unless wind was strong enough to actually break it up. Or even a couple smooth 2x2s that fit into decorative wood handles around the edges, which would also make it easier to get in and out of his climb-in tub.
I oughta make up a spec sheet and a sketch, and send it to him, while I am thinking about it....
Of course, if cost was no object, a non-folding slab cover dipped in vinyl (like a pool float or gym workout pad) would probably be rather waterproof, unless the skin got nicked. It'd take two grownups to get it on and off, though.
-- aem sends...
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I suspect that most of the water comes from the spa. A vapor proof layer between the spa and the cover might make a huge difference, if anyone wants to try an experiment.

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wrote:

There is a vapor proof layer already, Bob. The foam blocks in covers are wrapped with a layer of poly. That poly breaks down over time and then the foam starts to retain water. Some manufacturers use better poly and heat seal it, while others just use a sheet of poly to wrap it like a christmas present and hold it together with masking tape. Beyond that, I discovered that some manufactures have an option for double wrapping the foam with two layers of poly. It's not an expensive option and it results in a cover that lasts a LOT longer.

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On Sun, 23 Nov 2008 08:14:26 -0500, snipped-for-privacy@dog.com wrote:

The poly breakdown happens faster if the cover is exposed to intense sunlight all day long (as was the case with our hot tub, located on the south side of the house). The new covers have not only the double wrapping, but also a sloped shape to the poly to get the water to run off faster, which also should help the cover last longer.
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So adding your own replaceable layer should make a difference.
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If the cover comes off the foam, removing it during the summer, remove the deteriorateing waterproof layer and letting it dry out in the sun, then adding a new waterproof layer might lengthen its life.
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wrote:

Actually, I'm not sure that it would be nearly as effective. The wrapping for the foam blocks is a large bag with only one opening, which gets sealed. In my case, there is a bag over a bag, put on from opposite directions and then sealed. A "layer" would not really do as much to protect the blocks from absorbing moisture. It might help a little, though. Double wrapped from the factory seems to be the cheap, easy, and reliable fix for the problem. Not sure I'd want to have to deal with a seperate sheet of something everytime I opened or closed the spa. That sounds like an ongoing nuisance to me.
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Mine is attached to the bottom of the lid. It lifts with the lid. It is all hinged with a hydraulic lift to open it.
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trax wrote:

I saw a tip for keeping water from collecting in a boat cover. Seems like a simple solution - keep and inflated beachball in the boat to support the cover. Got a beachball in yer tub?
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you wrote:

Hot tub covers are stiff and at least 3" thick. There's nothing to "hold up". Many of them are now made strong enough for people to stand on them. A beach ball isn't going to do anything.
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01dyna wrote:

Forgive my hot tub naivete ...... I thought they had tarp covers :o)
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On Sun 23 Nov 2008 12:11:21p, Norminn told us...

If you have never had one, theres no reason you would know. The covers are constructed that way to provide insulation and hold the heat in, as much as for simply covering the tub to prevent evaporation and debris.
--
Wayne Boatwright
(correct the spelling of "geemail" to reply)
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Wayne Boatwright wrote:

And the cover holds water because...............it melts and sags? Doesn't have a shape that naturally lets water run off?
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