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Best Portable Hottub 2019: Enjoy SPA Procedures Right At Home

Want to have fun with a company or friends or just relax? There’s no better way to combine both than using a portable inflatable hottub. Non-expensive, portable, and lightweight – it’s a great alternative to its stationary counterparts. Isn’t it great to have a SPA module right at your house? But how to choose a suitable model when the market is full of offers? In this ultimate guide, you will learn the rules of choosing the best hottub, and read reviews of ten worthy variants.

Table of Contents:

What Is A Portable Hottub And Where Is It Used?
Compare The Best Hottubs
How To Make A Perfect Purchase?
How Did We Chose And Test The Best Portable Hottubs?
Top-10 Portable Hottubs
1. Coleman SaluSpa Inflatable Hot Tub
2. SaluSpa Palm Springs AirJet Inflatable Hot Tub
3. Intex PureSpa Portable Bubble Massage Spa Set
4. Goplus Outdoor Spa Inflatable Hot Tub
5. Lifesmart Rock Solid Simplicity Plug and Play Hot Tub
6. MSPA Relaxation M-009LS Lite Alpine Square Outdoor Spas
7. Hudson Bay Jet Spa with Stainless Jets
8. M-SPA Tekapo Hydrotherapy Portable Inflatable Hot Tub
9. Essential Hot Tubs SS125210300 Newport-14
10. AquaRest Spas AR-300 with Easy Plug
Setting Up Inflatable Hot Tub
Frequently Asked Questions
Conclusions & Our Recommendation

What Is A Portable Hottub And Where Is It Used?

A portable hottub is actually the same thing as a usual hottub with one difference: it can be installed anywhere – in your garden or even house. It consists of a portable blowup swimming pool and the massage or a bubble-generating unit. Before we plunge into reviewing and comparing the best hottubs, let’s find out what are the peculiarities of portable models.

In-Ground

Such tubs are usually built adjacent to swimming pools and require a lot of work. They are very expensive but can be customized as the user wants. Besides, such tubs are costly in maintenance and operation. Alternatively, people install a concrete hot tub.

Molded Hottubs

Such hottubs are good for hydrotherapy when you cannot afford an ultra-expensive SPA module. Although they are not as lightweight as inflated variants, they are quite durable and not very expensive. Such tubs are easy to mode to some certain spot and install. Molded hot tubs are not very aesthetic, but they tend to last long and provide all basic functions for a fraction of cost.

Inflated Hottubs

An outdoor portable hottub works like a blowup swimming pool: it can be placed wherever you need, and perform pretty much the same things: massage, warming, aeration, SPA. Such models are cheaper, more lightweight. It might lack some things like music, drink holder, or vibration, but generally, this is a great alternative to stationary units.

Swim & Exercise Spa

This is one of the most expensive options. Such tubs are usually built into a deck or a special room with a lot of space. SPA hottubs are bulky and need some foundation to be placed on. Due to their large sizes, they can be used for exercise and SPA procedures. Swim hottubs are not only more expensive by themselves – but they also require a lot of electric energy to keep up the temperature and perform all of their functions.

Compare The Best Hottubs

Item/Characteristics

 

 

Capacity

Water capacity

Electricity   rate

Maximum heat

Water flow

Heating time

The weight of the unit without water

Coleman SaluSpa Inflatable Hot Tub

Coleman SaluSpa Inflatable Hot Tub BUY NOW AMAZON 4-6 people 254 gal 110-120V, 12A 104°F/40 °C 320 gal/h 2-3 °F/h 85.9 pounds

SaluSpa Palm Springs AirJet Inflatable Hot Tub

SaluSpa Palm Springs AirJet Inflatable Hot Tub BUY NOW AMAZON 4-6 people 242 gal 110-120V, 12A 104°F/40 °C 320 gal/h

2-3 °F/h

76.5 pounds

Intex PureSpa Portable Bubble Massage Spa Set

Intex PureSpa Portable Bubble Massage Spa Set BUY NOW AMAZON 4 people 210 gal 110-120V 104°F/40 °C 460 gal/h 2°-3°F/h

87.2 pounds

Goplus Outdoor Spa Inflatable Hot Tub

Goplus Outdoor Spa Inflatable Hot Tub BUY NOW AMAZON 4-6 people

210 gal

110-120V

104°F/40 °C

N/A 2-3℉/h 50 pounds

Lifesmart Rock Solid Simplicity Plug and Play Hot Tub

Lifesmart Rock Solid Simplicity Plug and Play Hot Tub BUY NOW AMAZON 4 people 195 gal 110-120V 108°F/42 °C ~460 gal/h 2-3 °F/h 269 pounds

Hudson Bay Jet Spa with Stainless Jets

Hudson Bay Jet Spa with Stainless Jets BUY NOW AMAZON 6 people 264 gal 110-120V

104°F/40 °C

N/A 2-3 °F/h 55.5 pounds

MSPA Relaxation M-009LS Lite Alpine Square Outdoor Spas

 MSPA Relaxation M-009LS Lite Alpine Square Outdoor Spas  BUY NOW AMAZON 4 people 171 gal 110-120V

104°F/40 °C

N/A 2-3 °F/h 49.5 pounds

M-SPA Tekapo Hydrotherapy Portable Inflatable Hot Tub

 M-SPA Tekapo Hydrotherapy Portable Inflatable Hot Tub BUY NOW AMAZON  6 people 225 gal 110-120V 104°F/40 °C 320 gal/h 2-4 °F/h 65 pounds

Essential Hot Tubs SS125210300 Newport-14

Essential Hot Tubs SS125210300 Newport-14  BUY NOW AMAZON  4 people 200 gal

110-120V (can be converted into 240 V)

15A

104°F/40 °C 460 gal/h 2-4 °F/h 320 pounds

AquaRest Spas AR-300 with Easy Plug

AquaRest Spas AR-300 with Easy Plug  BUY NOW AMAZON  2 people 160 gal 110-120V 104°F/40 °C N/A 2-3 °F/h 308 pounds

How To Make A Perfect Purchase?

How to buy portable hottub that will totally live up to your expectations? There are a few aspects to take into consideration.

Size & Capacity

How many people are you going to accommodate in your hottub? While small models can place 3-4 people, larger ones are enough for a company of 6 people. Want to throw a hottub party? Then consider a model with sizing up.

Auto Timer Function Availability

If you don’t want to be distracted by setting up a proper temperature, switching the unit on and off, order a hottub with a timer. It will switch the unit off automatically after a certain period of time, or as soon as certain water temperature is reached. This is a great function for sustaining water temperature and saving electricity.

Speed Of Heating & Energy Usage

As a rule, the speed of heating depends on the power of a hottub. The more expensive and advanced model you buy, the higher it is. Compare the input and output power in units to find the most cost-efficient one. Note that it may take 12-24 hours for your hottub to heat water to the desired level.

Set Up Simplicity

The vast majority of blowup hottubs are very easy in installation and set up: you just put the insulation layer on the floor, then place the unit and inflate it adding water afterward. It can be done by any user following instructions. When it comes to molded portable hottubs, things are way more difficult: the unit should either fit in the doors or be installed somewhere outside near the source of electricity and water. That makes things a bit more complicated, not mentioning a heavy weight of ceramic and plastic constructions.

How Did We Chose And Test The Best Portable Hottubs?

In order to select worthy models, we read portable hottub reviews – it helped us to understand which options deliver the best quality for their price. As soon as we picked up ten great hottubs, our specialists tested them to evaluate the time required for blowup, heating time, convenience, safety, reliability, and additional features. All the information we got is summed up in our reviews for you to make an informed decision.

Top-10 Portable Hottubs

Read descriptions, recommendations, pros and cons of every blowup hottub to figure out which model deserves to be installed in your home or backyard.

Coleman SaluSpa Inflatable Hot Tub

Coleman SaluSpa Inflatable Hot Tub

Review

Non-expensive and spacious, Coleman portable hottub is a great solution for a company of 4-6 people. The unit is very easy to assemble: no tools needed, and there’s a DVD with step-by-step instruction for maintenance and setup. All essentials are included (inflation hose, filter cartridge, insulated cover. The heating system features an automatic start/stop timer. The hottub walls are made of TriTech material that ensures optimal comfort and lasts long.

Our opinion

This hottub is simply a bestseller with lots of positive reviews. It features all basic functions and doesn’t require much time for handling and maintenance. A cheap, trouble-free option.

PROS

  • non-expensive;
  • easy setup;
  • optimal capacity.

CONS

  • no water treatment chemicals included;
  • the pump isn’t convenient in use.
SaluSpa Palm Springs AirJet Inflatable Hot Tub

SaluSpa Palm Springs AirJet Inflatable Hot Tub

Review

Another great Saluspa portable hottub ensures fast heating and accommodates 4-6 people. Like the previous model, it is set up easily and reaches 104°F temperature. There’s a DVD explaining the process of installation and maintenance, and no tools are required for setup. However, this model has a few extra features. For example, there’s a chemical floater included, and an advanced water filtration system. To top it off, there’s a digital control panel and soft walls made of durable material.

Our opinion

This is a non-expensive unit, but it has a few problems, such as pump leaking, or inability to keep water hot while bubbles are being made. You just get what you pay for.

PROS

  • non-expensive;
  • automatic shut-off;
  • easy setup.

CONS

  • pump leaks;
  • not long-lasting.
Intex PureSpa Portable Bubble Massage Spa Set

Intex PureSpa Portable Bubble Massage Spa Set

Review

What is special about this hottub? It has an insulated cover for maximum safety, and to filter cartridges for clean water. With a capacity of 4 people (210 gallons), this hottub would be enough for a small party. Aside from the heating system, it also includes floating pool chlorine dispenser, a thermal ground cloth, an inflation hose, and, of course, a carry bag.

Our opinion

According to Intex inflatable portable hottub review, the unit is not very reliable. It should be maintained properly and treated accurately to prevent breaking and decay.

PROS

  • non-expensive;
  • has several filter cartridges for efficient cleaning.

CONS

  • not durable;
  • quite small.
Goplus Outdoor Spa Inflatable Hot Tub

Goplus Outdoor Spa Inflatable Hot Tub

Review

Like Intex portable hottub, this model was also designed for 4 people. Goplus provides a great spa experience thanks to multiple bubble jets and one of its most outstanding features is an advanced water treatment system. Hard water is softened thanks to crystals contained in the filter. That also prolongs the service life of the entire spa system. What else? The whole kit includes inflation hose, filter cartridge, PU cover, rubber plug, ground cloth, and a repair set.

Our opinion

The unit is convenient in setup and use, but it’s not recommended for being used in cold weather – the heater isn’t strong enough to sustain maximum temperature.

PROS

  • cheap;
  • great water filtering system.

CONS

  • the heating system is too weak, so the unit is better for being used indoors.
Lifesmart Rock Solid Simplicity Plug and Play Hot Tub

Lifesmart Rock Solid Simplicity Plug and Play Hot Tub

Review

Want a better quality for a higher price? Then consider an electric portable hottub from Lifesmart. It’s not inflatable, but can be installed both outdoors and indoors. The unit features a Deluxe Balboa digital control and lights, as well as various SPA options, such as bubbles and massage, and even waterfall feature. The sandstone shell resists to wearing serving for years and keeps warmth better. Another advantage is that this hottub is very easy in installation: simply put it on the spot, add water, and plug in.

Our opinion

We’d recommend this model for those who are ready to pay for quality, and don’t necessarily need a blowup hottub. This unit holds the temperature at the optimal level and can be used during wintertime.

PROS

  • efficient heating system;
  • easy setup.

CONS

  • expensive;
  • small capacity.
Hudson Bay Jet Spa with Stainless Jets

Hudson Bay Jet Spa with Stainless Jets

Review

Being a large softside portable hottub, the model from Hudson Bay can accommodate up to 6 people. It has a great hard-water filtering system and uses several filters to make clean SPA water. The heating system warms the water up to 40 degrees Celsius. Installation is a no-brainer with the instruction included – no tools are needed. The set features everything you need: an inflating hose, cover, filter cartridge, and so on.

Our opinion

That’s a budget solution for hottub parties: the unit provides all basic functions and has a thick insulating wall on the sides to keep heat for long. It’s not clear whether the model is reliable, and materials are durable – we found no reviews covering this information.

PROS

  • large capacity;
  • great water softening system.

CONS

  • the heating unit can be quite weak to warm up such a great amount of water.
MSPA Relaxation M-009LS Lite Alpine Square Outdoor Spas

MSPA Relaxation M-009LS Lite Alpine Square Outdoor Spas

Review

The modern freestanding portable hottub from MSPA Relaxation is made to hold heat and serve long. Although it has a low capacity of 171 gallons (4 people), most reviews are satisfactory. The walls are made of PVC and PVP layers, and the metallic silver elements reflect warmth to sustain an optimal water temperature. There are 108 air jets, and the pump is very quiet. Thus, it’s a good unit for relaxation and pleasant SPA experience.

Our opinion

Generally, this unit is worth the money – it provides all essential features while staying affordable. The hottub is made of high-quality PVC and PVP materials and can serve a few years if maintained properly.

PROS

  • low noise level;
  • lightweight;
  • high-quality materials.

CONS

  • low capacity;
  • poor customer service.
M-SPA Tekapo Hydrotherapy Portable Inflatable Hot Tub

M-SPA Tekapo Hydrotherapy Portable Inflatable Hot Tub

Review

This is one of the best portable hottub models you can buy for such money. The model has 6-layer PVC material to prevent leaking and features 132 bubble jets for gentle and effective massage. Auto-filtration works during 4 hours. With capacity of 6 bathers and safe design, this model outperforms its counterparts. For additional convenience, remote control was included.

Our opinion

Generally, this model is worth paying some extra bucks only thanks to its capacity. Durability and reliability are on the same level as other models.

PROS

  • high capacity;
  • many bubble jets;
  • remote control.

CONS

  • mediocre quality of pump;
  • slow heating.
Essential Hot Tubs SS125210300 Newport-14

Essential Hot Tubs SS125210300 Newport-14

Review

Want to use your portable hottub during winter? Consider this model. It has a sturdy construction, 14 water jets, and a durable stainless-steel heater. The hottub accommodates 4 bathers and heats water up pretty quickly. Additional protection is guaranteed by an insulated cover with locking clips. The unit is quite easy to install, and with its 8’ GFCI cord, you don’t need to make any electrical connections or wiring – just plug it in.  This is a worthy model for hydrotherapy that’s expected to last long.

Our opinion

This is a top-rated model that will live up to your expectations. The hottub is very easy to handle, so we recommend it to beginners and those who don’t want to waste time on the installation of a blow-up model. However, the unit is quite heavy and is likely to fit either backyard or a large bathroom.

PROS

  • durable and solid construction;
  • no need to work with wiring and connections.

CONS

  • low capacity;
  • heavy;
  • isn’t mobile.
AquaRest Spas AR-300 with Easy Plug

AquaRest Spas AR-300 with Easy Plug

Review

Although this hottub isn’t large (it would be ideal for two people), it delivers a great SPA experience. There are 14 stainless steel water jets that can be adjusted, and a cascading waterfall that’s lighted by 9 LEDs. This module can be installed both outdoors and indoors, but there’s no electric heating system – the water simply goes through the pump, which means you need the source of hot water (from a hose or directly from a tube). Therefore, in terms of water temperature, it can be the most powerful portable hottub, but it’s definitely not as mobile as blowup models.

Our opinion

This unit is definitely not for backyard parties – this is an expensive SPA hottub that provides exceptional rest and comfort for those who are ready to pay and don’t care about portability.

PROS

  • many great functions;
  • durable;
  • water can be heated up to a higher level than 40 degrees.

CONS

  • low capacity (2 people);
  • low mobility.

Setting Up Inflatable Hot Tub

Say, you’ve bought an Intex 4 person portable hottub: in your hands, you have a large bunch of something that should be turned into a swimming pool. What to start with? Let’s figure it out step by step.

  1. Read the manual. That will save you hours of manual labor and frustration, or maybe the entire hottub. Check the list of spare parts and pieces carefully, look in the box and find them. Make sure that every little detail is included – if not, contact the manufacturer and ask to send it to you.  If you don’t have a manual, most likely, you can find it in Google or manufacturer’s website. Some models come with DVDs explaining the installation process (YouTube is full of instructions, too).
  2. Select the spot for installation. This should be a flat, even surface without any sharp objects that can damage the walls of your blowup hottub or cause inconvenience. That should be a place with access to electricity and water (both indoors or in your backyard/porch). Avoid using an extension cable because it creates the risk of fire. If you are unsure you can organize optimal water supply, call an electrician.
  3. Mind the hottub’s filled weight. If you want to install a hottub outdoors, or in a deck, make sure that it’s strong enough to support the weight of the hottub with users and water altogether (even a small portable 2 person hottub can weigh more than 2,000 pounds). In case of any doubts, contact a specialist. It’s recommended to put a hottub on the ground floor so that it wouldn’t cause structural damage.
  4. Electric safety is a priority. Make sure that a hottub isn’t located near sockets because water spills can cause a short circuit.
  5. Think of a windbreak. If you place your hottub outside, think about how to protect your company against the wind. It might be installed near bushes, a hedge, or a wall. A windbreak will reduce the rate at which water cools down, which will also save you money.
  6. Inflate the tub then move it to its place. Choose an open space to inflate the unit without any obstructions, then carry it to its spot. This way, you will have enough space to attach all connectors and pipes without any inconvenience. Although an inflated hottub isn’t heavy, you will need help: someone should carry the motor unit.
    When you inflate the hottub, don’t overdo. First, it might put strain on seams and either weaken them or rip. Many inexperienced users make this mistake and end up blaming manufacturers for “low-quality materials”. Secondly, if the walls get too rigid, they can distort under the pressure of water inside.
    Do not overfill the hottub – it can also cause problems with water temperature, massage system, and leaking.
  7. Add the chemicals for keeping water clean. It can be any chemical floater or sanitizer you prefer (bromine and chlorine are the top choice for users). Keep water sanitized – it will not only prolong its life but eliminate the need to replace it frequently and re-heat.
  8. Plug in the heating unit. Now when the hottub is installed, and the water is inside, you can switch the hottub on and wait until the water heats up. It can take from 12 to 24 hours – everything depends on the power of a heating unit.

If you follow all portable hottub steps for installation correctly, the unit should work continuously without leaking and problems with electricity.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How And How Often Should I Disinfect And Chlorine Water?

A: Ideally, you should add a sanitizer or a disinfecting agent every time you add fresh water to the tub. While a hottub is being used, you should check the sanitizer levels and add some when it gets low (special testers will help you with that). This should be a part of your weekly hottub maintenance.

Q: Can You Use A Portable Hot Tub Inside?

A: Theoretically, any portable hottub can be installed indoors. But keep in mind that you will need to find a source of water to fill in the pool. It’s not recommended to place a hottub on upper floors – it can have a negative impact on the house structure and even cause cracks and deformations.
Besides, when a tub is placed indoors, the user should always mind the electric safety and keep the unit away from open sockets and wires.

Q: Will It Survive If Stored Outdoors In A Northern Winter?

A: It depends on the model of a unit. While molded hottubs made of ceramics or composite materials can last long and easily survive through low temperature, the same cannot be said about blowup models. If you have a temperature under 20 °F during winter and don’t plan to use your inflated hottub outside, it’s better to store it indoors. The PVP walls can freeze all through and get easily damaged because of any shock.

Q: How Loud Is The Pump?

A: It also depends on the model of a hottub. As a rule, the noise level is up to 50 dB. Molded models with pump hidden inside can operate more silently than their inflated counterparts.

Q: Can It Be Used In Near Freezing Outdoor Temperatures?

A: Theoretically, any hottub can be used during winter time and freezing temperature. However, exterior cold can impact the temperature of water. If the heating system is too weak, it won’t be enough to sustain an optimal temperature level. Therefore, using a cheap blowup hottub with a primitive heating unit can be a bad idea.

Q: How Long Does It Take To Set Up?

A: If you have experience with hottub installation and follow the instruction step by step, the setup process might take about two hours. During this time, you will prepare the spot, inflate the pool, and organize all connections.

Q: When Is It Best To Change Your Hot Tub Water?

A: In fact, water can be changed once in 3-4 months for as long as you keep it sanitized and clean. Chemicals will eliminate bacteria and refresh water. If you sense a bad smell, or the water looks dirty, it’s definitely time to change it and check out the filter – it might be the time to change or clean it.
How to reuse and clean portable hottub filters? You can place them in water with bleach and anti-scum chemicals. Leave for a few hours and clean them manually using a brush. Make sure that dirt, scum, and rust are removed totally.

Q: How To Setup My Inflatable Hot Tub?

A: The detailed instruction is provided in the previous section – it will guide you through the process step by step.

Q: How Often Do I Need To Change The Filters?

A: Actually, it depends on the type of filter and water softness. As a rule, routine cleaning can be done once a week, and thorough cleaning – once in three months. Cleaning of the filter includes removal of dirt and debris, body oils, bacteria, and other residues.

Conclusions & Our Recommendation

A portable hottub is not a luxury anymore – the Internet is full of great models, and you can easily find a blowup unit for less than $400. However, there are many aspects to consider, and overall quality is one of them.
After reviewing ten worthy hottub models, we are ready to name the top picks for our readers. If you want a simple inflated model around $300, choose Coleman Saluspa – it’s way more durable than Intex inflatable portable hottub and other similar counterparts. If you are ready to pay for comfort and don’t mind buying a molded hottub, select either Lifesmart Rock Solid Simplicity, or AquaRest Spas AR-300 – they cost over $2,000, but last long.
For partying and large companies, select blowup models: M-SPA Tekapo is our ultimate choice.

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