A hot tub is a large bathtub with underwater jets where people soak and socialize. It can be installed inside or outdoors and is powered by mechanical pumps that circulate water through the jets.
Cabinet panels are an important part of a hot tub’s insulation system and add a decorative touch. However, over time or due to severe weather conditions or shipping and handling, they may get damaged.
Removing the Panels
If your hot tub has a panel that you would like to replace, it is a fairly easy process. First, you need to turn off the power to the hot tub at the breaker box and then remove the access panels on each side. Once those are removed, you can start removing the other panels. It is important that you do this before you fill the spa, as any water left inside could cause damage.
After the screws are removed from each panel, it is a good idea to set them aside in a safe place where they won’t get lost. Most panels have snap caps that match the color of the wood grain, and these should also be removed and placed in a safe place. This will make it easier to screw the new panels back into place.
Once the screws are removed, it’s time to prep the new panel. This may require some wood slats to be cut down in length and then screwed into place. This step is important as using the wrong screws can lead to the panel cracking and failing over time. Using the proper screw size, washers, and threaded inserts for wood will prevent this from happening.
Before installing the panel, you should sand it down with a belt, orbital, or block sander to remove any wood dust and ensure that all surfaces are smooth. Once sanded, it is a good idea to stain the panel to protect it from moisture and rotting. There are a variety of outdoor stains available for your panel, so it’s important to choose one that your manufacturer approves.
Lastly, you will need to cut the panel into a few manageable sections. This will help it to be hauled away and will allow you to work on smaller areas at a time. Typically, it’s recommended that the panel is cut into no more than two feet wide sections.
After the panel is cut, it’s important that you drain the hot tub. This will ensure that any water that is still inside of the tub will be drained and not left behind. This can be done by removing the drain cap on the quick drain valve and then routing a female garden hose end to it. Then the other end of the hose can be routed out away from the hot tub, and the drain is opened. Once drained, the drain cap can be replaced finger tight but do not overtighten.
Often the most obvious sign it is time to replace a hot tub panel or skirting is if the panel face is cracked or damaged. Fortunately, the panels are simple enough to remove and install new ones. It is important to make sure to use the proper screws and washers for your specific panel, or you may cause damage to your spa or even rust the underside of the deck.
You may also find that the topside control panel is damaged or not functioning correctly, and it will need to be replaced. This is an easy replacement, but if you are installing a different type of topside panel, make sure it is the same size and shape as the current one in your Master Spas to ensure there are no wires that need to be disconnected. Before you install the new topside panel, turn off the power at the RCD and unplug the upper control panel connector from the spa pack controller. You can then carefully plug in the new panel and ensure that all of the connections are tight but be careful not to over-tighten, as this could damage the electrical insulation within the connector.
Another common problem is when the shell of your hot tub becomes hairline cracked. This can be due to the age of your hot tub, people sitting on the edges, or even poor manufacture. This crack can become worse if it is exposed to moisture or water, so it is important to have it repaired as soon as possible to prevent further problems with the shell of your hot tub.
To repair a cracked panel, you can use a screwdriver to pry up the panel in several places. You will then need to gently sand the panel with a belt, orbital, or block sander until smooth. Clean the panel thoroughly and then apply a wood stain to protect it from moisture and dirt. You can buy the appropriate outdoor wood stain at most home improvement stores but be sure to read the directions on the product and choose a good quality brand such as Minwax or Cabot.
Once the panels are removed, it is time to check for and replace speakers if needed. Also, if the panel in question is damaged, the skirt vents may need to be replaced as well. These are important to allow air to flow around the working spa replacement parts of your hot tub, keeping them cool and running smoothly.
Before unscrewing any screws, remove the snap caps from all of the screw holes. This will help prevent the screw from coming loose in the future. Set the snap caps aside in a safe place, being careful not to lose them. You will also want to remove the thumbscrews and any other screws attached to the panel you wish to replace. Once again, set them aside in a safe place so you do not forget where they go when it comes time to reattach the panel.
It is always recommended to power off your Master Spas hot tub before removing any panels or replacing the shell of the hot tub. Inside the panels are electrical wires and parts for the pumps and heaters, radio, and speaker systems.
A good hot tub cover is vital to the proper functioning of your hot tub, but it also offers extra insulation and protection from yard debris and UV rays. The best cover is made for your specific model and filled with high-density foam, making it a tight fit over the hot tub shell. The cover is also insulated and features a skirt designed to fully wrap the hot tub, keeping it warm and offering an attractive exterior. Skirt vents are another important feature, allowing air to circulate freely and preventing condensation and ice from forming under the cover.
Skirt vents should be cleaned regularly and replaced if they show signs of wear or are compromised by rodents or other pests. You should also keep a close eye on your vapor barrier under the cover. If it isn’t in good condition or has been damaged by the weather, the humidity under the cover can cause wood rot to studs and other underlying structures, so you need a fan that can remove moisture quickly. This fan should be a quieter and more robust version of your bathroom or kitchen exhaust, as it is exposed to high humidity and should be rust-proof.
If you are replacing a digital topside spa panel, disconnect the old one and inspect that the new one is the same shape and size, as well as the wire connectors are the same. You should also apply a bead of silicone around the hole in the shell where the new panel sits to hold it in place and to seal the gap to keep out water.
A lightweight lifter is ideal for removing and replacing your cover, as it makes the task much easier and safer than trying to carry or drag the weighty thing over your head. This particular model from Puri Tech is compatible with square hot tubs up to 96 inches and is easy to install. It has a built-in handle and folds down to stow in the middle of your cover for a quick and simple installation.