2018’s Ultimate Guide to the Best Inflatable Hot Tubs – with Reviews
Table of Contents
- 2018’s Ultimate Guide to the Best Inflatable Hot Tubs – with Reviews
- Best Inflatable Hot Tubs List 2018
- Best 2 Person Inflatable Hot Tub:
- Best 4 Person Inflatable Hot Tub:
- Best 6 Person Inflatable Hot Tub:
- Best Cheap Inflatable Hot Tub:
- Quick Purchase Guide: What Is Exactly An Inflatable Hot Tub?
- Quick Maintenance and Usage Tips Guide:
- Summing Up
Thank you for checking out our reviews of the top 5 best inflatable hot tubs for your home.
Along with our individual reviews for the top-rated inflatable tubs on the market today, in 2018, you’ll also find our quick purchasing guide at the bottom of this page. This purchasing guide will detail exactly what to look for when selecting the best inflatable hot tubs today.
It is a luxurious dream for many people to have a hydro massage hot tub at their own home, specially a wide social one, where you can invite your friends or family to gather around during the summer – or winter. The costs of a traditional hot tub like that can easily go over $2000, and is exactly where the dream is over for many traditional families that don’t have that budget to spend on such a triviality. For this reason, inflatable hot tubs have been on the rise, due to their affordability, and improving quality.
With their new found popularity, the inflatable tub market has been flooded with hundreds of options, all varying in craftsmanship. For this reason, with the savvy home owner in mind, we’ve rounded up only the best inflatable tubs on the market.
We hope you enjoy!
Best Inflatable Hot Tubs List 2018
#1: Bestway Lay-Z-Spa Palm Springs
At #1 on our list of the best inflatable tubs on the market, we have the Bestway Lay-Z-Spa Palm Springs model.
Bestway does a great job making inflatable hot tubs, and the Palm Springs is their best work yet. Why is it their best? Glad you asked.
Although this tub fits the same capacity (4-6 Person) as the other 4 tubs on our list, the Palm Springs has a larger water capacity. This means that you, your friends, your neighbor, or whoever you invite, will be able sink in luxuriously into this tub. This tub also has other great features. It comes with an easy to operate digital control panel, spa pump, and Bestway’s patented ultra-durable material. This tub can be used indoors, or outdoors, depending on your set up.
#2: Bestway Lay-Z-Spa SaluSpa Miami AirJet Inflatable Hot Tub
Coming in at #2 on our top 5 list of the best inflatable hot tubs today, we have the Miami from Bestway Lay-Z-Spa.
The Miami is a smaller tub on our list, so this is the perfect choice for someone with limited space, but still looking to upgrade their backyard, or patio. It has a 2-4 person capacity, compared to the other hot tubs on our countdown, which are 4-6 person.
Since this inflatable tub is smaller, but from the same powerhouse brand, that is Bestway Lay-Z-Spa, you know that you’re getting an incredible value with this product. It is going to have the same patented, 3-ply reinforced TriTech, that guarantees top of the line durability. The Miami is Bestway’s world’s first premium inflatable spa, and it still remains a top choice in the industry.
#3: Coleman Lay-Z-Spa Inflatable Hot Tub 90363E
At #3 on our countdown, we have the Lay-Z-Spa Coleman model.
Is important to make clear here a fact about the Lay-Z-Spa series. It is a sub-brand of the British Bestway company, and their tubs sold and manufactured under this name are all British. When you see then being sold in dollars in America you are seeing imported products the brand is retailing abroad. Coleman is a brand chosen by Bestway to manufacture some of the Lay-Z-Spa series models in America, often exclusive here, which is the case of this inflatable hot tub. The Coleman’s Lay-Z 90363E follows the formula of the Palm Springs model, it has a 77-inch diameter, is 28-inch tall and support up to 254 gallons of water. Up to 6 people can fit comfortably, and it comes with a heating system up to 104ºF and a standard two-cartridge filter. Like all previous models, it includes the pump to set up the tub, which will take less than 20 minutes, the electrical rate is 110-120V and the set of jets is also the bubble-only patch of 120 jets.
#4: Bestway Lay-Z-Spa Hawaii
At #4, we have the Bestway Lay-Z-Spa Hawaii.
It includes a salt water filtering system and adjustable jets that are both massage jets and bubble jets. The Hawaii model is designed to accommodate around 4 to 6 people. Another cool feature to note, is the Hawaii’s rounded square shape. With this shape, you’ll notice how comfortable that you, and your guests will feel.
The jet heads here are called HydroJets and as we said, have a duo functionality. There are eight big heads that can also be adjusted by hand to the direction that please you the most, while the adjustment of the function is set through the digital controller of the inflatable hot tub.About the salt water filtering system, it makes a robust engine, not considering specifically size, but technology.
This kind of filtering is not very common as it is expensive but works really fine for beach scenarios where the salinity of the water can go beyond the normal. You don’t have to worry either about leaving the sea and getting into the tub right after. The tub filtering will cope with it just fine, while regular machines wouldn’t.Hawaii is not the largest of the tubs in the Lay-Z-Spa series, but it is wide enough to make a spacious hot inflatable tub: a 71-inch diameter and 28-inch tall. The tub is enough to fill 210 gallons of water (795 L), which are heated up to 104ºF (40ºC) within 30 to 45 minutes. You can also set the temperature and the functioning time of the tub through the digital control panel that is implemented over the heating and filtering tank.To set Hawaii things also go smoothly: it will be fully inflated in less than 5 minutes, though you have to follow the instructions accurately to connect the pump and all other hoses appropriately.
#5: Bestway Lay-Z-Spa Paris
At #5, we have the Paris model, again from Bestway.
Paris is a circle-shaped Lay-Z-Spa inflatable hot tub, and while it accommodates freely 6 people, it doesn’t include the beach alike set of extra features. The water filtration system here is the standard for tubs, filtering impurities and keeping the water bacteria free, so it will not suit well an implementation by the beach as the system can deteriorate over time. Paris is ideal for pool side, urban ambients, and one of its exclusive features is the set of LED lights to make it even more pleasant and cosy for social gathering by the night during your pool party.
The LED lightning system is interchangeable, so it can either switch randomly from color to color or you can set only one hue permanently. There are 7 different colors for the LED panel that is installed in the interior walls of the tub. The tub pool itself has translucid walls that allow the lights to illuminate the whole tub.The jets of Paris are bubbles only and they follow a pattern that is also implemented in the next models of the series: the jets here are quite small air streams, 120 total, blowing high-pressure air for a quite bubbly experience. While it doesn’t work like the massage jets, it still offers high pressure jets that can be soothing.
Best 2 Person Inflatable Hot Tub:
Coleman Lay-Z-Spa Inflatable Hot Tub
This jaccuzi from Coleman was designed to comfortably fit 4 people, but we like it more as a 2 person inflatable spa.
Coleman is an industry leader in camping gear, and that industry leading quality is definitely shines with their Lay-Z-Spa hot tubs.
This Coleman Lay-Z-Spa is made with TriTech 3 ply leatheroid, and puncture resistant exterior material. Specifically, 1 layer of polyester mesh, then 2 layers of PVC. This is vitally important. The worst thing that can happen to your inflatable hot tub, is a puncture, or hole. Game over.
Ultimately, you can’t go wrong on date night if you have a Coleman Lay-Z-Spa, a glass of wine (or beers … if you’re like me), and that special someone.
Best 4 Person Inflatable Hot Tub:
Intex Pure Spa 4-Person Inflatable Portable Hot Tub
Our #1 rated 4 person inflatable spa of 2018 goes to the Intex 4-Person Inflatable Hot Tub.
Intex has been making exceptional inflatable hot tubs for greater than 40 years, and this 4-person model is no different.
This Intex inflatable hot tub, designed for 4 people, is made with Fiber-Tech Construction technology.
So what does that mean?
In the past, with most inflatable hot tubs, due to the way they were made, when you sit on the top edge, the tub sags, and doesn’t provide proper support.
With the Intex 4-Person Inflatable Hot Tub, that problem is eliminated. When you sit atop the Intex, the hot tub structure barely budges. This reflects the Intex’s sound structure.
Another key component we love with the 4-person inflatable hot tub from Intex is that it includes a hard water filter. Prolonged exposure to hard water can damage your skin and hair, leaving them irritated, dry, and uneven, so it’s important to avoid unnecessary contact.
Best 6 Person Inflatable Hot Tub:
Intex Pure Spa 6-Person Inflatable Hot Tub
Our #1 rated, 6 person inflatable hot tub of 2018, goes to the Intex Pure Spa 6-Person Inflatable Hot Tub.
Intex also had our #1 rated 4 person hot tub of the year, and have done it again with their 6-person model.
You’ll notice that this inflatable hot tub from Intex comes stocked with 2 inflatable head rests. Most hot tubs on the market, in 2018, do not include this added bonus, so that’s a plus.
This 6-person inflatable hot tub from Intex comes with the same Fiber-Tech Construction design as the previously reviewed 4-person inflatable spa from Intex.
Also, we love that this Intex 6-Person Hot Tub comes with a hard water filter, like the 4-person model.
Best Cheap Inflatable Hot Tub:
Bestway SaluSpa Miami
Our favorite cheap inflatable hot tub of 2018 goes to the Lay-Z-Spa Miami Inflatable Hot Tub from Bestway.
Currently, in 2018, there are over 120 different inflatable hot tub models to choose from, that all vary in price, and quality.
Ultimately, if you’re going the cheap route, you want to make sure you’re getting your money’s worth, and not a piece of crap.
The Lay-Z-Spa Miami is an excellent choice for those on a budget, but like to do their homework to ensure they’re getting a quality product. It’s made with 3-ply PVC, to ensure durability, and has a sturdy I-beam construction.
It’s perfect for date night, but can also comfortably fit 4 people.
Quick Purchase Guide: What Is Exactly An Inflatable Hot Tub?
It can be tricky for some people to purchase an inflatable hot tub as there are so many inflatable bath items these days, sometimes its hard to tell one from the other. For an easy sight check, the inflatable hot tubs will always be sided by robust heating/filtering machines, which are what really differs it from a simple inflatable pool or a simple inflatable tub.A detailed examination and you will know inflatable hot tubs are two-chamber pools and have an array of jet heads, either for bubbling or massaging, sometimes for both features at the same time and, likewise, the robust machine besides them will heat and filter the water, so you have a constant flow of water, it is always stirred – so you don’t have to worry about Zyca mosquito for example.To keep it always clean, these hot tubs have a cartridge filtering system since you are not planning empty it all the time.
And since you will be using the same water for a long while, all the best models come with a chemical floater dispenser which will treat the water and block the formation of algae deposits.All inflatable hot tubs come with the pump system to inflate the set, and all that is automated, so all you have to do is connect the tubes and let it inflate by itself. These hot tubs also are designed with an electrical controller to set all adjustments of water temperature, stirring and filtering for the amount of time you wish.
How Does an Inflatable Hot Tub Work?
Most of an inflatable hot tub system is automated, except for the water filling the set up of the tub pool. You have to find a special place where the tub can stay even on the floor, preferentially with a thermal insulating material, like wood surfaces or even on your lawn. To guarantee it will be well insulated, there is a floor cover that is included in the pack and must be laid before you set the tub parts to be inflated.All the inflation process happens through and automated pump. You just need to connect the tubes and turn it on. Often the inflatable hot tub is made of two parts: the bottom/outer part and the inner/pool side of the set. They both inflate at the same time but are just assembled together with a zipper or other kind of tying system – and this is really great for insulation and safety reasons.
Once the set is fully inflated, you have to fill it in on your own, making use of a garden hose for example. When the tub is ready to use, you can adjust how much hot you want the water to be and for how long you want it to keep heating. The same goes for the jet heads functioning, all can be adjusted and timed by digital controlling. The main difference between the system of an inflatable and a traditional hot tub is the disposition of the motor/engine that filters, heats and blows water and air. On traditional tubs it will be placed built-in, while on the inflatable one it is a sided appliance.
What are the benefits of an inflatable hot tub?
While they look like a cheap alternative version of traditional hot tubs, inflatable models are actually made with sophisticated alternative technology and are a gem of this kind, with a lot of benefits in detriment to an usual set of hot tub at your house. We covered here there most obvious advantages on getting on for you:
- Costs: for sure the first eye popping benefit of an inflatable set like this is how affordable they are. As we said in the beginning of our guide, an inflatable hot tub can cost 80% less than traditional hot tubs, firstly because the material are not as expensive and second, because you will not need to set up a building site inside your house to built-in the tub in a specific location. Traditional hot tubs also require permanent pipe connections and electrical wiring, so if something goes wrong you have to open up walls, leading to more expenses. For very few investment you can get a hot tub at your place and set a social gathering with your friends or family.
- Clever Build: many people think that since inflatable tubs are made of plastic materials they are very easily doomed to get punctured and useless. This is quite unlike with the models we have these days in the market. Most of them are made with the 3-ply technology, which ensures several layers of protection, so it will be very hard to puncture it unless you set the tub over pins. The construct of these tubs is also designed to make them quite damage proof. The inner pool is separated by the outer/bottom part and they both get assembled through a zipper or buttons system, which makes the tub itself much harder to be damaged. When something end up going wrong, is easy to fix and replace.
- Portability: another great benefit of the inflatable hot tubs is the portability. Since you can inflate and deflate it, the set is very easily assembled anywhere. Some models can endure cold weather so you will be able to use it even during the fall and winter seasons, while installing a traditional hot tub in the open is a scenario unlike to many of those models and often has a higher cost. Most of the inflatable hot tubs also have a thermal insulating cover for that kind of use, so even during summer nights when you need to leave the tub for a while, you can cover it and keep it warm for longer.
- Plug and use: since the heating and filtering system of these machines is not built-in, inflatable hot tubs work like any electrical appliance. You plug it on any electrical outlet and turn it on. These systems also make use of 110V electrical circuits, so they don’t require either too much power to heat or filter the water.
- Maintenance: Inflatable hot tubs are easier to manage as they are of ease spot. The filtering cartridges can be cleaned weekly and are quite accessible to reach. The 2-filter systems will require replacing the cartridges every 3 weeks or more, considering a daily usage and depending for how long you stay on the tub, while 6-cartridge systems can endure almost 2 months.
- Welfare: for last, and surely not least, these tubs will offer what all hot tubs are meant to: a pleasant relaxing moment to chill out. While the massaging jet models are much more therapeutic as they can provide the benefits of hydro massage tubs, even the bubble models offer a relaxing and comfortable moment as they sooth the skin smoothly. You share all this with your relatives and friends as hot tubs make some of the best social gathering spots in any season. Who doesn’t love a chat immersed on bubbling hot water?
How to Choose the Best Inflatable Hot Tub?
Size, electrical compatibility and extra features are some of the details that must be further analyzed and compared when you are choosing the best inflatable hot tub to suit your needs. While two models may be quite pair to one each other in excellence, the specific scenario where you will have to install the tub can pose the water shed decision maker.
- Shape: While most tubs in general, either traditional or inflatable, have a round shape, but you can find many other shapes in the market, from square to octagonal to rectangular. This kind of detail is important to consider when you have other people in mind to get into the hot tub with you. Squared tubs are better for tall people as there will be less legs battles in the middle of the tub and people will not get uncomfortable easier. Round, circle-shaped tubs are ideal for thinner people or even for a romantic scenario as it is easier to get cosy. The visual impact also poses a difference that will suit more one or another taste.
- Size: When you see models claiming is ideal for this or that number of people, first you have to bear in mind the size of your people. A 4 person profile may be claimed considering slim, average stature people, so if you have only 2 adults and kids, the tub will make room for more than 4 for sure. This scenario will interchange always depending of criteria of comfort for each person too.
- Jet Heads: Bear in mind that not all inflatable tubs will provide the same kind of jets. If you are looking for a hot tub that works like a hydro massage too you have to stick with the models that have this kind of feature as bubble-only jets will not provide in full the massaging experience.
- Cartridge System: the more cartridge filters a hot tub implements the better. When you have several filter cartridges the maintenance of the tub gets easier as you don’t have to replace them that often. While this kind of build is more often seen on hot tubs that have big capacity of water and people, whenever you spot them give it special preference. The replacing of cartridges on these tubs can take almost 2 years, a lot of time you save money and the bother.
- Electrical rate: Is very unlike to see inflatable tubs with 220V systems, because they will not heat water over 104ºF, and the filtering and blowing systems don’t require a lot of potency. The 110V compatibility is unanimous so, while that doesn’t mean you cannot implement it on your 220V household system, you will need a transformer to make it work.
- Materials: While most models make use of the same kind of fabric formula, you must check carefully how the fabric works for the set. How many layers? Does it work with a chamber system? It is water proof? Easy to clean? The outer fabric is soft or rigid? The materials used for the inner part and the outer part are often quite different and you have to be likewise careful to do not pick models that have a way too soft plastic for the pool/inner part.
- Cover: if you spot a model that includes the cover, it is a plus, however don’t take the cover of an average model as an advantage just because it has a cover. They are quite important to keep your tub not only hotter for longer but also to protect the water from getting contaminated with sitting dust and any other contaminants from the air, from leaves to insects that may be really looking for water. Most brands that don’t include the cover sell it separately.
- Warranty: as it always should be with any product you purchase, good warranty policies are essential, specially for a big product like this set with several different parts. The best models have at least 1 year of full covery, while others may offer lifetime limited warranty and others 2 or more years for parts and 1 years for the tub.
Quick Maintenance and Usage Tips Guide:
Even before your purchase your inflatable hot tub, is good to bear in mind some routines you have to follow to take care of the tub appropriately so it can work well and ensure a wide lifespan.
Area of Installation: Where Can You Set Up the Inflatable Hot Tub?
Be sure you have an adequate area to install the inflatable hot tub you are looking for before you hit the Buy button. Each model has its own guidelines when it comes to external and internal implementation, so if you are looking for a hot tub to enjoy the cold seasons on your own private thermal water be sure the model is resistant to thermal stress as some models really can’t endure temperature way too cold, like to freezing and snowy degrees. As we said before, the area on the ground where you will install the tub must be preferentially thermal insulating. Cold stone floors are not recommended, wood, lawn or even sand and preferential. For cold scenarios, the installation of the set is better over windbreakers like a fence or a wall.
Inflation guidelines: What Level of Air Should the Tub Have?
Follow the instructions for inflation of the hot tub as you should not trespass the recommended PSI measure. For hot seasons this is quite important because the air will expand with heat, specially when the tub is set under the sun. Most pumps that are included with the hot tub include a gauge so you can check those measures. When you inflate too much the tub, pressure will start to damage the connections of the tub with jet heads, tubes and other orifices, and this will lead to leaks, so don’t overboard.
Water Treatment: How Often Should the Water in the Hot Tub Be Changed?
Inflatable hot tubs consume a lot of water, up to 250 gallons (almost 1000 L) so people will not be happy changing it every week as the water bill will become quite salty. On the other hand, the same water can’t be used forever, so soon or later you will have to replace it, but it all will depend on how often the inflatable hot tub is used and how well you treat the water.
Most manufacturers says that one daily occasional use will not require the water to be replaced for at least one month, but you must always be the final judge and the first one to avoid the contamination of the water.
You must be ready to perform the following routines to treat the water appropriately:
- Cleaning the filter cartridges must happen weekly if you are using the tub on a daily basis. You can use hot water and dish soap to remove deposits and bleach to sanitize it properly. Rinse and wash it very well before placing it back. Some people will let it sit on a solution with bleach and water for a full clean up. Check every time whether the color of the cartridge is getting cloudy or not after the cleaning. When it it tainted beyond repair is time to replace for a new one. Manufacturers recommend the replacement every two weeks but once again, you are the final judge. Consider also the quality of the water to judge the replacement. When the filters must be replaced, the water also must be replaced.
- The water must be treated with chlorine and clarifier. One increases the pH of the water and the other reduces it. It is the balance of alkalinity and acidity of the water. Sometimes the water is new and clean but it becomes cloudy because the pH is too high, so you have to balance it with the alkaline. Just like a pool, is very important to treat the water. Some customers look for tubs that have a chlorine filtering system. That is quite unlike. Hot tubs need the chlorine to be up and about circulating in the water, otherwise it becomes quickly a bacteria colony infested, not to mention the proliferation of algae. Hot tubs are not showers or common bathroom tubs, you will not replace the water after use so you really need the chlorine, for better or for worse.
There is also extra chemical to treat the water like anti algae and clogging which will enhance the life span of the tubes and the water in the pool.
Before you get into the tub, shower and remove any body lotions, deodorants, perfume, make up and of course, get into the tub with your body properly hygienized and clean. Most of the contaminants of the water are solutions that come from your skin, from natural oil to all these toiletries that must be removed.If the model you are not purchasing doesn’t include a cover, buy one to keep the tub properly closed and avoid the contamination with external debris and insects. Cover the tub everytime after use.
Hot Tub Maintenance: How Often Should the Tub Be Cleaned?
Whenever you feel the cartridges should be replaced, is time to replace the water and clean up the whole tub altogether, so it will depend on how long it takes to the water get dirty for real.
- Dump the water and once it is empty, perform the cleaning as you would do with your bathtub or shower, but do not make use of abrasive solutions and brushes. Once again, a solution with bleach and dish soap will break the ice. Wash it with a soft cloth, let the solution sit for a while and then wash it well before you fill in again the tub.
- Some manufacturers recommend the cleaning of the tubes system with an anti-clog solution. That requires you to fill in a little bit the tub with clean new water, pour the solution and turn on the jet system to make the water circulate in the whole system and let it take action for the recommended amount of time. This anti-clog cleanig must be performed with the new cartridges already set. Dump the water after the anti-clog cleaning and fill in with another portion of clean water, turn on the jets again to wash any remains of the solution.
- When this whole process is complete you can fill in the tub again and add the chemicals for the water treatment. Don’t forget to also clean the borders of the tub as they may accumulate dust, dirt and skin oil and you will be bringing it all back to the new water since people often place their arms on the borders.
Extra Accessories for your Inflatable Hot Tub
To finish our guide on inflatable hot tubs, is important to note that all manufacturers do not sell their hot tubs with sitting sets, not to mention the models that do not include covers. Let take a look on some models of extra accessories that can make your experience even more complete inside the hot tub as well as tips to whether you should purchase them or not.
- Seats: Bear in mind that inflatable hot tubs, as well as most hot tubs in general, are not deep enough to require sitting spots. All inflatable models come with a air cushioned floor that is quite enough to make you comfortable and still insulate the tub. Optionally though, you can purchase seats, while they are not essential to use the tub, specially because it will lift you up and make the immersion less effective. For people who are short, as well as kids, though, the seats can enhance the comfort.
However, two details must be taken into consideration here to purchase a good seat: the weight and the build of the seat. Some brands manufacture quite flawed inflatable seats. They have been proved inefficient as they will float back to the surface or will move all the time with the strength of the jet streams. You have to consider specially heavy pillow seats that are immersible.
- Headrest: They are already popular among traditional hot tub users and can be purchased and used as well on inflatable tubs. All you need is a water proof head rest and a steady affixation system. Some of the manufacturers of our list have their headrest sets designed specially to fit the curves of their tubes.
- Cupholder: Enjoying your tub also includes drinking, and placing your beverages on the floor is really not convenient. You can set a cupholder tray on the border of the tub and, once again, some manufacturers have these trays developed specially to fit the curves of the tub.
- Waterproof Speakers: You can’t bring your smartphone to the tub, but you can still listen to your favorite music while bathing in your tub and, likewise, keep answering and making calls whenever you need through the waterproof Bluetooth speakers. These little guys are a great addition for showering, bathing and swimming, you can finally set the party in the hot tub with loud music and keep your fix on your cellphone.
- Beach Umbrella: If you are setting your hot tub in the open during the summer, a beach umbrella, or sunbrella, can be really a cool add to the set as you will not have to worry about a harsher sun during the midday and, specially, because is not recommended to get into the tub using sunblock. Many beach umbrellas can be set besides the tub and enhance your comfort and ensure your protection against the noxious UVA rays.
While inflatable hot tubs are not crappy inflatable kid pools, is important to follow these advice’s whether it comes to choose the best model for your taste and also how to take care and manage your inflatable hot tub.
Don’t forget to check our list with some reviews for the cool accessories you can set with your hot tub and, for further information on how to take care of the water of your tub, we recommend a reading on the great water treatment guide Lay-Z-Spa developed for its customers, where you will find all the info you need on chemicals required to treat the water, dosages and how often you should perform these routines.