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What is the difference between a spa and a hot tub?

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What is the difference between a spa and a hot tub?

Our custom spas and hot tubs are always a popular choice with our customers. However, when we get inquiries about them, one of the first things that we’re usually asked is what the difference between them really is.

The terms are often used interchangeably – which actually isn’t too surprising, because they’re not in fact that different. What’s even more confusing is that a hot tub can have elements of a spa and a spa can be used as a hot tub!

Nevertheless, they are different things, and in this article, we’re going to explore those differences to help you decide which would be best suited for your own home, backyard, or lifestyle.

What is a hot tub?

A hot tub is – as the name suggests – a large tub filled with heated water. Hot tubs are generally designed for use by multiple people at a time, and are intended more for fun and general relaxation than they are for any kind of hydrotherapy or water treatment. 

Having said that, hot tubs may still have jets and bubblers, but they are not their primary purpose.

Hot tubs are usually standalone pools that are typically found outdoors and constructed above ground. They may even be portable. 

What is a spa?

Unlike hot tubs, spas are designed specifically to give health benefits, which is why resorts offering a range of health treatments often go by the same name. Home spas use strong jets of water to provide a range of physical and mental benefits, including massage and relaxation.

This is, in fact, the principal difference between the two pool types, because while the term hot tub can encompass any pool or tub with heated water, which can include spas, there have to be water jets for something to count as a spa.

Unlike hot tubs, spas are often inground and can also be integrated into or joined onto a standard swimming pool.

which is better a spa or hot tub infographic

Which is better – a hot tub or a spa?

When trying to decide whether to have a hot tub or a spa, there are two main things you need to consider.

Firstly, what you want to do with it. If you’re just looking for somewhere to sit back and relax, you may be better off with a hot tub. On the other hand, if you particularly want to make the most of the health benefits a good spa can bring, then that will be the way to go.

Secondly, your budget. Because spas contain more features and equipment to create the jets of water that give those health benefits, they are generally more expensive to install, run, and maintain than hot tubs.

Here at Burleson Pools, we are proud to be leading designers and constructors of custom home spas and hot tubs across Huntsville, Alabama and beyond. If you’d like to talk to one of our friendly advisers about our spas and hot tubs, just contact us by giving us a call or by filling in our online form.

We’ll happily discuss your hopes, dreams, and expectations to help you choose your perfect pool, so get in touch with us today.



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