How to Drain a Hot Tub

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Learning how to drain a hot tub is very important when maintaining and ensuring the longevity of your spa. If you learn how to take care of it, it will take care of you.

Hot tubs can be a great way to relax after working out, or to rejuvenate. They offer the same benefits as pools, but also need care like any other hot water appliance would. They will last longer if you take good consistent maintenance into your own hands!

It is important to occasionally drain and clean your hot tub. Otherwise, you may end up with an unpleasant smell or buildup that will make it difficult for guests enjoy their time in the spa. The process of draining and cleaning your hot tub isn’t hard, but some people may find it difficult to locate the drain plug. Thankfully once you’ve found this easy-to open valve there’s not much more than maintenance work left!

It is important to pay attention to the type of drain valve so that you understand how it opens and closes. It can be frustrating trying to pull or rotate the valve in an attempt to start the draining process so be patient.


Options on How to Drain a Hot Tub

When it comes time to drain your hot tub, there are three main options:

  1. Through the drain spigot (a.k.a. drain plug).
  2. Using a submersible drain pump.
  3. With the help of a wet or dry vacuum.

Before you drain the tub, cut off the power supply so the jets and pumps don’t accidentally turn on during the draining.

It’s important to know the laws in your area for discarding chemically treated water. Some towns may have laws that restrict how you can handle this type of waste, so make sure it is legal in your city before proceeding!


Using the Hot Tub Drain Spigot

The spigot is located on the outside of your hot tub, near near the bottom rim. The primary spigot will let water out while still leaving any deposits inside.

If your drain spigot is located directly over a drain in the ground, just open the valve to allow the water to flow into the drain. If the drain or sewer is situated farther away, attach a garden hose to the spigot, position the other end of the hose over the drain, and open the valve. Note that if your drain or sewer is positioned uphill of your hot tub, you’ll need a submersible pump to drain the tub completely.

When the water has drained from your hot tub, it will likely leave some puddles behind. If you don’t own a wet or dry vacuum to suck up these extra droplets, or simply want an easier way of removing them just use some elbow grease and vigorous brushing.


Using a Submersible Pump

The best way to drain a hot tub is by using a pump. The pump will forcefully move all the water out with minimal effort on your part, and it can be done in less than five minutes (depending on the strength of your pump)!

Get started by attaching an outflow hose to the side of the pump, then place the pump flat on the floor of the hot tub near the center. Make sure the hose is long enough to reach the nearest drain or sewer. If it isn’t, attach a garden hose to the outflow hose to extend it. All you have to do now is turn the pump on and let it remove the water.

Remove the leftover water that’s left over by placing the pump directly into a puddle to siphon the water. Make sure the pump is always drawing water. Taking in too much air can cause the pump to overheat.


Using a Wet or Dry Vacuum

Using a wet or dry vacuum is slower than using a submersible pump, but faster than using the drain spigot.

Attach the vacuum’s hose to the machine and place the open end of the hose in the water. Turn the vacuum on so water starts flowing through the hose. Once it does, turn the vacuum off and disconnect the hose from it. The water should continue to flow. Position the open end of the hose over a drain or sewer to let the water pour directly into it.

Once the water becomes too shallow to be siphoned out effectively, reattach the hose to the wet or dry vac and use it to draw out the remaining water. Make sure you vacuum up all the small pools of water at the end.

How to Drain a Hot Tub (Instructional video)


Draining and cleaning your spa can be time consuming. If you’d rather have a professionals do it, please contact us. Our team will provide the service and address any other maintenance needed.


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