With the extended cold snap in the Northeast and the groundhogs all in agreement that we are in for at least 6 more weeks of winter, saving energy when using your hot tub can save you a pretty penny.
The worst case scenario is that the strong winds blow open the cover while you are away and cost you hundreds of dollars in extra hydro electricity payments. It is best to assure that all 4 tie-down straps are securely fastened so your cover does not blow off. It may also be prudent to put additional weighted items on the cover if high winds are expected, but not jaggy or sharp items that can dig into the cover foam and cause indentations which can allow water to pool, freeze and cause further cover damage.
Keep your hot tub covered when not in use. This one is obvious, but most of the lost energy goes out the top so keeping the heat and water in and the cold elements out will assure you are not wasting energy.
Clean your spa filter regularly. It does not seem like cleaning the filter can make that much difference, but if the filter is plugged up or partially clogged, the pump will have to work harder to move water through it and to heat the spa causing more energy to be spent on keeping the pump running. This inefficiency could show up on your electric bill, so clean the spa filter or filters every few weeks to assure optimal performance.
Program your filters in off-peak hours. If you are in an area with a “smart meter” or variable rates where hydro costs go down at night, then set your filter time to be at night when electricity costs less.
Use a floating spa cover to add another layer of insulation between the surface of the water and the underside of the cover. These floating covers will save electricity when the spa is not in use for a longer period of time.
Be sure to keep the spa water level from dropping too low as that can cause air to enter the system or worse, cause the spa to stop heating and go into a flow error.
Keeping a regular eye on the hot tub in the winter will assure it is ready for you come the spring! (which should be any day now…)
Enjoy your spa!