Can You Run Hot Tub Jets with the Cover On?

Hot tub jets help disperse chemicals when we add them and jets ensure the water gets circulated evenly, eliminating cold pockets. But if refilling or adding chemicals, can you run hot tub jets with the cover on?

Hot tub jets can be run with the cover on. But if chemicals have just been added, it is best to leave the cover off for 20 minutes as the mist of the water and chemicals could damage the underside of the cover over time. 

But the jets naturally come on each time the filter cycle kicks in periodically, and there is no need to remove the cover when that happens.

The jets will turn off automatically after 15 minutes.

In this article, we’ll explore issues around whether it’s cool to run the jets while the cover is on. We’ll find out if hot tub jets turn off automatically, whether they need to be on to heat a hot tub, and whether they can damage the underside of a hot tub cover.

We’ll also check out if chlorine damages the underside. Lastly, we’ll learn how to fix a waterlogged hot tub cover.

Let’s dive right in…

run jets cover on lg

Do hot tub jets turn off automatically?

Hot tub jets do turn off automatically. Most high-speed jets turn off automatically after 15 minutes, while some low-speed jets turn off automatically after two hours.

Low-speed jets can be turned on in most cases by pressing a button. But they also kick in automatically whenever a filtration cycle is happening.

High-speed jets and waterfalls get turned on manually by pressing the same buttons a 2nd time. But fear not. If you turn them on with a button, they’ll turn off automatically with no action needed on your part.

Do jets need to be on to heat a hot tub?

Jets do not have to be on to heat a hot tub, and in fact, cannot be on for 110v hot tubs to heat. However, turning them on will speed up the heating process on 220v hot tubs as it ensures the water gets circulated better and eliminates any cold pockets. 

So, the jets are not necessary to heat up a hot tub, but they help make the process faster. The heater heats up the water while the jets help circulate it around, ensuring it’s evenly heated.

After all, it can take up to 8 hours to heat a hot tub.

So do jets speed up the process of heating? If so, how much? The biggest factor in how long the heating process takes is the temperature of your garden hose.

But in a recent article, I get into all the tips and tricks of heating a hot tub the fastest way possible, including just how much time it can save to keep turning the jets on while it’s heating.

Just click the link to read it on my site.

But it’s vital to note, however, that the jets should not be turned on until the hot tub is full.

Will the jets damage the underside of a hot tub cover?

The jets will not damage the underside of a hot tub cover. However, if chlorine or other chemicals have just been added, it is better to run the jets with the cover off due to the effect of the chemicals on the underside of the cover.

Remember, jets turn themselves on and off with the filtration cycles and rarely pose any problem to the hot tub cover.

The cover should ideally always be on when the hot tub isn’t being used, as it helps keep leaves, bugs, and debris out of the hot tub.

It also helps keep the heat in.

The more your cover is off, the more heat and water evaporate into the air. Then you’ll have to top off the water more often, and the heater will be kicking in more frequently and raising your electric bill.

Will chlorine damage the underside of a hot tub cover?

Chlorine can damage the underside of a hot tub cover. Chlorine is a harsh chemical and a close cousin of household bleach. Coming into contact regularly with the underside of a cover can cause the cover to become severely damaged over time.

The plastic vapor wrap part of the underside of the cover often receives the harshest treatment from the chemicals. So, it’s ideal to leave the cover off for 15-30 minutes after adding any chemicals, especially if you turn the jets on.

But even if you’re careful, how long does a hot tub cover really last?

This is the theme of a recent article of mine where I revealed how long they last and if it’s easy to replace the foam in the cover.

I also addressed the question of whether it’s possible to repair a hot tub cover that has become torn or has a hole in it.

Just click that link to read it on my site.

How do you fix a waterlogged hot tub cover?

Fix a waterlogged hot tub cover by removing the vinyl cover to allow the foam pieces to air dry for 24-48 hours, turning the vinyl inside out, clean the vinyl lining and allow it to dry, and then use a patch kit to fix wherever the water was getting into the cover. 

Then just put the foam back, and you should at least get a few more years before needing to get a new cover.

But let’s check out what the steps entail.

Remove the vinyl cover

Carefully remove the vinyl lining. Start by unzipping it. You don’t want to be aggressive about this as you don’t want to risk damaging it.

After removing the foam that was inside the vinyl, dry the foam out on the patio where the sun’s rays can reach it.

Or you could dry it out in your garage with a fan blowing on it.

In a recent article of mine, I showed how to dry out a hot tub cover.

I also explained why hot tub covers get waterlogged in the first place, whether waterlogged Styrofoam will dry out, and whether the foam in the cover can be replaced.

Just click the link to read it on my site.

Clean the vinyl inside and out

While the foam is being dried, turn the vinyl cover inside out. Now we’re going to clean the inside and allow it to dry. Be sure to use cleaning products that eliminate mold and mildew.

I like this product on Amazon for this purpose.

This cleaner has almost 25,000 near-perfect reviews and is safe on most surfaces, including vinyl.

Wash the area thoroughly and allow it to dry before applying a patch on the hole or tear that was allowing the water to get into the cover.

How to patch a torn hot tub vinyl cover

For fixing small holes or tears, I LOVE the product Tear-Aid Vinyl Repair Patch Kit (click to see the current price on Amazon).

Here are the specific steps:

  1. Roughen the patch site before applying it to the vinyl by rubbing sandpaper lightly to ensure that it is rough and porous so that the patch can easily adhere to it.
  2. Clean the area around the tear with rubbing alcohol and allow it to dry
  3. Cut the patch to the right size, about 1-1.5 inches larger than the tear or hole.
  4. Peel and stick the patch over the hole

It’s a relatively simple job, but if you want greater detail on all those steps, check out a recent article I have.

I get into those steps in much greater detail, but I also cover a few other options and contingencies for different situations.

Just click that link to read it on my site.


In the article, we explored issues around whether it’s cool to run the jets while the hot tub cover is on.

We found out if hot tub jets turn off automatically and if they need to be on to heat a hot tub.  And we checked out if they can damage the underside of a hot tub cover.

We also looked at whether chlorine will damage the cover’s underside, and we wrapped things up by looking at how to fix waterlogged covers.

Photos that require attribution:

Jacuzzi by Grant Guarino and New cover for the hot tub by Ryan McFarland are licensed under CC2.0 and were cropped, edited, color-adjusted merged, and had a text overlay added.

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Jeff Campbell