Hot tub deck designs are the most practical way to ensure your deck can handle the weight and use of a hot tub. At up to 8000 pounds when in use, hot tubs require special deck designs to ensure their safety.
Adding a Hot Tub to Your Deck
The deck is one of the most logical places to add a hot tub. It's close to your home, so access to water, a water heater and electricity are right nearby. Most decks are located at the back or side of a home, giving some privacy to the users, while the deck itself can become a gathering place for friends and family alike.
Simply placing a hot tub on the deck, though, is not something that most decks can structurally handle. Additionally, for aesthetic reasons, you'll want to build the hot tub right into your deck, giving the sides and decking of the tub itself the same materials.
What You Need to Know About Hot Tub Deck Designs
Hot tubs can come in many shapes and sizes. They can accommodate multiple people at once, or be built for a cozy two. They can come with their own decking or shell, or they require a deck to be built up around them.
In any case, if you are choosing to build your new hot tub into your new or existing deck, you will need to make sure of a few things first.
The size of the hot tub itself typically refers to the internal dimensions. This does not include any frame or decking around the tub, or room for plumbing, generators, heaters or electricity. Get the template for the hot tub itself and find out exactly how much room it is going to need to stand by itself. You may find that you will need to enlarge your deck at one end to accommodate it properly.
Your hot tub could weigh upwards of 8000 pounds when filled with water and people. You will need to reinforce your deck below where the hot tub will sit to ensure that it can handle this weight.
You have a few choices when it comes to the placement of your hot tub and how it is installed. Since hot tubs can be as many as 25 inches deep, plus exterior decking, if the tub is placed directly on the deck floor you may require steps to get into and out of the tub. Wet steps can be slippery, so consider building a secondary platform on your deck a short ways away from the tub itself. Sink the tub halfway into the upper level to eliminate the need for stairs directly into the tub. Alternatively, you can also sink the tub straight into the main deck so its rim is flush with the deck. This will require a platform below your deck to support its weight.
Your hot tub deck design is not complete without a frame or decking for the tub itself. While many hot tubs come with a plastic frame, many homeowners choose to build a deck around it, to help it blend in with the rest of their home.
Consider using the same wood and stain for both the deck and the hot tub surround for a cohesive look. You can also take materials from the rest of your yard, such as pool decking or patio materials. Make sure if you use stone or another heavy material that you take this additional weight into account when reinforcing the deck.
Building Your Tub
Hot tub deck designs are frequently built around two things; the size and shape of the tub and the size and shape of the deck coming off the home. Make sure to have plans made of both and to take a look at how they will fit together before you begin to build. While it is possible to add a hot tub to an existing deck, it is far easier to build with one already in mind.
Take your time, measure and reinforce accordingly and make your deck the hot spot of the neighborhood.