I love soaking in my hot tub. But I don’t always like what it does to my electric bill. Floating thermal blankets are marketed as a way to cut costs. But do floating thermal blankets work?
I decided to check into it and here’s what I discovered:
Floating thermal blankets do help a hot tub retain 95% more of the heat that would normally evaporate into the air. They are most ideal for those who experience very cold climates in winter or those in sunnier climates who want to use the sun to work with the spa blanket to raise water temperatures naturally.
But there’s a lot more to know about thermal blankets, how they work, and whether it’s a gimmick or not. So let’s dig in further.
In this article, I am going to cover what a thermal blanket is, how it works, and specifically how much energy you can expect to save by using one.
But aside from a thermal blanket, does lowering or turning your hot tub off in between uses save energy?
The answer, which might surprise you, I cover in this recent article. Just click that link to read it on my site.
— Yeah !! (@STRIPEBULL) April 22, 2018
What is a spa blanket?
The spa blanket is basically a thick plastic sheet cut to perfectly cover the surface of your hot tub. It floats on the surface of the water.
It acts as an insulator underneath your normal hot tub cover, retaining as much heat as possible. In simple terms, your hardcover is responsible for keeping cold air out, and the thermal blanket keeps warm air in.
By insulating heat, you’re able to maintain an optimal temperature. This allows you to lower energy costs.
A spa blanket is especially useful for those who live in colder climates and want to enjoy their hot tub in the winter. Heating up water in lower temperatures can be quite expensive, so it’s no surprise that many hot tub owners look to the spa blanket as a solution.
For example, in Texas where I live, my electric bill still only goes up $20-$30 per month like normal, even in winter. But if I lived in Minnesota, you can bet it would go up a lot more.
So a thermal blanket can help control those costs.
But, they can also be perfect for those who live in sunny areas. In these cases, the sun beating down on the hot tub works in conjunction with the thermal blanket to naturally raise the water temperature a few degrees without actually having to bump it up on the heater controls.
So you can save money that way too.
You can get spa blankets just about anywhere they sell hot tub supplies. But I’ll link to my favorite one on Amazon down below.
They are a lot more suitable for hard-sided tubs, but they can also be used for inflatables. It’s one of the simplest ways to add extra insulation to your hot tub without adding any extra cost to your electric bill.
Hot Tub 101 Tip: Add a thermal floating blanket to conserve energy. Here’s why! pic.twitter.com/D306bk3O0w
— Ocean Quest Spas (@OceanQuestSpas) April 14, 2014
Do hot tub blankets work?
The short answer is yes they do work.
But how effective they probably depend on 2 factors:
- What temp do you set your hot tub to?
- How cold does it get where you live?
For me, living in central Texas, I don’t think I would see a huge impact on energy costs since it doesn’t really get all that cold here.
But, if it gets around freezing or below during winter where you live, a thermal blanket can definitely help!
Not only will a hot tub blanket retain heat, but it will also make your hot tub cover last longer.
If you have ever owned a hot tub, you’ll notice the build-up that occurs underneath the top cover. A hot tub blanket will protect your top-cover from damaging chemicals.
Hot tub blankets are surprisingly simple to use and don’t require much maintenance.
All you need to do is add them to the surface of your hot tub and that’s it! And they are light and easy to move. So taking it off when it’s time to soak is a breeze.
If you’ve been looking for a way to retain heat in colder climates, you can’t go wrong with a hot tub blanket.
They are also great for helping speed up how long it takes to heat a hot tub after you’ve changed the water!
How long does that take? Anywhere from 3-8 hours. Luckily, in a recent article, I get into all the factors that affect that range. But I also cover all the things within your control that can speed that up.
Just click that link to read it on my site.
— Daily Funny Tips (@TipsFunny) July 20, 2016
How can I make my hot tub more energy efficient?
As mentioned above, hot tub owners are constantly looking out for ways to cut down energy costs.
In a recent article, I broke down how much electricity a hot tub uses on average each month. Typically a hot tub won’t cost you more than $20-$30 per month, but results may vary.
In that article, I get into a few crucial tips which can really cut down on energy costs. Just click that link to read it on my site.
So how do you cut down energy costs while still enjoying the luxury of your hot tub? There are a few ways to do it:
- Block Wind – Wind can extract a lot of heat from your tub. By simply adding some type of privacy screen to your setup, you can increase heat retention during those times you have your cover open.
- Turn Off the Jets – Okay, the jets are nice, but they don’t need to be on at all times. Killing the jets will help lower the amount of energy required to keep your hot tub going.
- Lower the Heat – If you know you’re going to be out of the tub for a while, there’s no harm in lowering the heat. All that wasted energy can add up! Just avoid lowering it every time you get out and then bumping it back up again. Back and forth will cost you more.
- Make Sure Your Cover is Tight – Tightening your cover (around the corners) will ensure that cold air doesn’t get inside the tub. This will help keep your tub at an optimal temperature.
- Use a Spa Blanket – The main purpose of this article is to explain how a spa blanket can help to retain heat. It helps to insulate your tub which will, therefore, lower your energy costs.
Making your hot tub more energy-efficient isn’t that hard.
You just need to be a little creative. Most hot tub owners neglect certain aspects of owning a tub, so they see a huge spike in their electric bill.
What is the best kind of hot tub blanket?
There are many options available.
The best hot tub blanket is, of course, depending on which kind of hot tub you own. But the best one I’ve seen is from Spa Depot.
It’s trimmable, 16 mil thick, and out of the box is 8′ x 8′.
The other good news is that while it doesn’t have a ton of reviews, every single one is 5-star. Free shipping from Amazon rounds out the perks.
They claim it reduces heat loss due to evaporation by 95%! The reviews all shared a similar theme of using it to not only reduce energy costs but using it to boost the water temperature without having to engage the heater.
CLICK HERE to see it on Amazon
How much electricity does a floating thermal blanket save?
As mentioned above, the average hot tub owners spend about $20-$30 per month of electricity.
A thermal blanket will reduce heat loss due to evaporation by 95%.
There are many variables as to how much you can save, but the average calculation comes out to about $5 per month.
Which is not bad considering you’re going to be using your hot tub for years.
Did I cover all you wanted to know about whether floating thermal blankets work?
There’s no doubt that a spa blanket can help you reduce your energy costs as a hot tub owner.
So whether you’re in the north or midwest and looking to help lock in the heat during a cold winter, or using one in the southwest to boost water temps without having to bump it up on the control pad, you should be happy either way.
Happy hot tubbing!