How Do You Drain A Hot Tub For Winter (Here’s How…)

By James Brockbank •  Updated: 07/16/21 •  12 min read

How do you drain a hot tub for winter?

It would be best to drain a hot tub for winter by turning on all jets, removing minerals and deposits from the hot tub using Oh Yuk Hot Tub Cleaner, and turning off power to both the pump and the heater before emptying all the water. You should dry off any remaining water in the hot tub using a dry towel and allowing it to dry out completely. Adding Propylene Glycol Antifreeze into the pipes after it’s been drained and fully cleaned will also help in protecting the spa in winter. You can apply a vinyl conditioner or a coat of wax to protect it from extreme elements before installing its cover for storage.

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I recommend the Superior 1/4 HP Thermoplastic Utility Pump to help drain your spa.

The best thing about hot tubs is that they can be used all year round. However, some aspects might hinder you from using your hot tub during the winter. In such a case, you can drain your hot tub by emptying all the water and drying it completely for storage.

You could drain your hot tub for winter if you are traveling or busy with other activities. There’s no point in leaving the hot tub lying idle and at risk of damage due to pipe-freezing as a result of extreme temperatures. If you think you will not be using your hot tub in winter, you should prepare it by draining all the water and dry it clean.

I recommend this measure to ensure that you prevent the growth of mold and mildew and eliminate the costs of maintaining the hot tub when it will not be in use.

In this article, I’ll talk more about draining your hot tub for wintertime.

Let’s get started!

Can I Drain And Refill My Hot Tub In The Winter?

Any time is a good time to drain and refill your hot tub, including winter. I have found that cleaning a hot tub regularly increases its service life and reduces operating costs. It is essential to change the hot tub water regularly, no matter the cleaning compounds you use. 

If you choose a cleaning session in winter, you’ll only need to follow the right procedure in draining and refilling your hot tub. I always recommend starting by gathering all the necessary equipment before the commencement of the process.

You may need a submersible pump, a hot tub shell cleaner, and clean rugs. A submersible pump will take about ten minutes to empty the hot tub, while the spigot method will take you about an hour.

After draining the hot tub, clean every component keenly to ensure the removal of all dirt. Pay keen attention to cleaning the filters and the valves and remove any dirt. You should also clean and dry the shell properly.

Refill the hot tub by placing a garden hose into the hot tub and turning on the water. It is important to note that this refill method can create an airlock. The airlock might make the hot tub work improperly and cause damage to the circulation pumps or the jet for running with air bubbles. You can prevent the airlock from forming by using the correct fill hose. The hollow standpipe beneath the filter can also help in preventing the airlock from forming.

You should activate the anti-freezing mode on your hot tub if you live in freezing areas. The settings allow your hot tub to use a sensor that periodically monitors the climate to run the pump if temperatures fall below a given level. This will help prevent freeze formation. You should then cover your hot tub firmly for later use.

Is It Okay To Leave A Hot Tub Empty In The Winter?

There’s nothing wrong with leaving your hot tub empty in the winter. It is appropriate to leave the hot tub empty if it’s being repaired. You can also leave the hot tub empty after winterization because you will be leaving home for an unexpected period. You can also prepare your hot tub for summer by leaving it empty over the winter. 

If any of these cases apply to you, I recommend emptying the hot tub to avoid damaging its components from freezing. Besides, there’s no point in using electricity and cleaning chemicals if you’ll not use the hot tub during the cold season. You can empty the hot tub, clean it and cover it in readiness for use in summer.

It’s also good to ensure that the entire hot tub is completely dried because the remaining wetness can cause molds and mildew growth. If the plumbing systems are not drained and dried completely, they might freeze the pipes when the hot tub is empty in winter.

Therefore, I emphasize cleaning and drying for as long as you have to in order to make sure that everything remains fine when you leave the hot tub empty in winter.

I recommend the ULTCOVER Waterproof Hot Tub Cover to protect your spa during the cold winter months.

Can I Put Antifreeze In My Hot Tub?

Yes, you can. Winterizing a hot tub is not all that complicated, but it does require some work. If you are closing down your spa for the winter then one of the first steps should be to add antifreeze into pipes and lines in order to avoid leaks or damage from freezing temperatures when they drop well below zero degrees Fahrenheit. However, make sure no one uses the hot tub once it’s been treated with antifreeze so as not to contaminate anything else inside!

Here’s how to add antifreeze into your hot tub when preparing for winter:

Screw that drain plug tight! To protect against freeze damage this winter season pour Propylene Glycol Antifreeze through every opening where water can get inside or out of your spa while also soaking up as much excess liquid on surfaces like floors and trays as possible using absorbent towels for added protection during these frigid weeks ahead!

After you have placed the hot tub cover back on top of your hot tub, be sure to place plywood over it. This prevents any damage from snow and ice as well as waterlogging during wintertime. If this happens, then there is a whole other situation for you to deal with! Finally, make sure that before long summer arrives again; remove both the tarp and wood boards so they are not in contact with chlorine or heat when next used – remember safety first!

can you use a hot tub in winter

What Do You Do When Your Hot Tub Drains Water?

There are a couple of things you should do when your hot tub drains water during the winter. The first thing you need to do is run the shop vacuum when removing water from the jets and pipes. The vacuum helps in removing water from all the channels in your hot tub. You should run the shop vacuum for about a minute in each opening to ensure no water remains.

The next step is to power off the breaker switch before proceeding to dry any remaining water droplets from the hot tub and its components. A shop vacuum or towel will help you at this stage.

Proceed to the filter canister, pump housing, and the heater to drain any remaining water. It would help if you loosened the couplers on your pump and heater to remove any drains or bleed valves on the equipment.

Ensure that all water is gone by using a shop vacuum before tightening your couplers and plugging the drains again. Keep each jet nozzle in an open position for the shop vacuum to blow water from the piping.

You should then use the right cleaner on the shell and dry thoroughly when you’re done with the cleaning exercise. Place the cover and secure it in position from the winter storm. Also secure the hatch door of your equipment from mice and other critters because they could cause expensive damage.

The last step should involve securing a cover cap over the hardcover to prevent water from leaking in the hardcover. The winter cover or tarp will help protect your hot tub if it is made of a wooden cabinet. I recommend these measures to keep your hot tub safe over the winter.

Tools and Equipment To Winterize a Hot Tub

How To Winterize A Hot Tub In The Winter

Below are some important steps on how to winterize a hot tub:

1. Turn Off The Power To Your Hot Tub

You should turn off the power completely by ensuring that no electrical energy gets to your hot tub. Therefore, reach the breaker or unplug your hot tub if it’s not hard-wired.

The essence of cutting off the power is to prevent electrocution to you and anyone helping you. Water and electricity do not mix. Remember that safety should always come first.

2. Drain The Water And Store The Filters In A Safe Place

The first step in draining the hot tub will involve removing the drain cap and attaching a garden hose to the drain spout. Allow the hot tub to drain to an area that can accommodate such a huge volume of water. A sump pump will help if you’re looking to drain the water more quickly but make sure to check the hot tub regularly to prevent the pump from running dry.

You might notice that an inch or two of water will remain in the hot tub at this stage. Don’t feel bothered by this because you’ll remove it at a later stage in the winterization process.

Remove, clean, and dry the filters for storage in a safe place. Blow the lines and remove the remaining water with a sump pump. Clean and dry the shell properly. You should also clean the cover at this stage before you place it back on the hot tub.

3. Cover Up Your Hot Tub With A Tarp Or Blanket So That It Doesn’t Get Damaged By Snow

I have mentioned earlier that a blanket or a tarp will protect your hot tub cabinet if it is wooden and prevent water from leaking into the hot tub’s hardcover.

4. Clean Out Any Debris From The Inside Of Your Hot Tub, Including Plants And Leaves

Debris and plant leaves are common if you’re fond of leaving your hot tub uncovered. Leaves can fall into the hot tub if it’s located in the backyard near some trees. Whichever the case, ensure that you remove all debris and foreign materials from the inside of the hot tub.

5. Clean All Surfaces Using A Brush Or Spray Cleaner

I have realized that most people tend to neglect cleaning the hot tub surfaces when they are winterizing. External cleanliness is as essential as internal cleanliness because it helps keep the hot tub in good condition. It also improves the general appeal of your hot tub. Therefore, take your time to clean all the hot tub surfaces with a brush or a spray cleaner.

6. Add Antifreeze

The antifreeze will prevent the freezing of any water in your hot tub. It is critical to put antifreeze if you live in an area where temperatures reach the freezing point. The antifreeze will keep your hot tub safe from the damage associated with frozen water in the lines.

7. Close Up The Hot Tub For The Winter

This is the last step in winterization. Your hot tub will be safe until next time you’ll be ready to use it again.

How Do You Drain a Hot Tub For Winter: Conclusion

how do you drain a hot tub for winter

I have seen that draining your hot tub in winter is not a complex process. It is about removing all the water, cleaning its components, and drying them to the maximum. You need a cover after drying the hot tub and a tarp to further protect the hot tub over the winter season.

I have also seen that you can drain and refill your hot tub in the winter, provided you’re following the proper steps.

Any time is appropriate to drain your hot tub. It is also okay to leave the hot tub empty in the winter as long as it is drained, cleaned, and dried correctly. You can put antifreeze if the hot tub has water over the winter.

If it is empty and protected, there will be no need for antifreeze. After the water is drained from the hot tub, clean, dry, and cover it until you are ready to use it again.

I hope you found this article on how do you drain a hot tub for winter helpful.

Thanks for visiting

James Brockbank

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