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Is a Wood Hot Tub Kit Right for You?

If you're a "do-it-yourself" kind of person and you're looking into getting a hot tub, you might want to try building one from a kit. It's a good way to get your hands dirty and feel that you've accomplished something without having to build your hot tub completely from scratch. Several companies selling wood hot tubs offer kits that require home assembly.

Smaller personal tubs can be assembled from a kit by yourself in most cases. But if you're looking to tackle a large spa, you may want to recruit a friend or two to help with the heavy lifting and for when you need an extra set of hands to keep something in position. All kits include detailed instructions that are generally easy to follow in a step-by-step manner. So, you'll quickly be able to ascertain if you'll need help or not.

Before you hot tub kit arrives, pick out a good spot for assembly. This spot will also be where you use the tub, in all likelihood, although smaller wood tubs are easily transported by a few adults working together. On that topic, keep in mind that a full hot tub (small) will weigh in the 1500-2000 lbs. range (more with a few adults in it), so plan accordingly and pick a spot that can handle that much weight.

Most hot tub kits will include the following pieces: wood slats (staves), metal banding to hold the whole thing together, a pre-assembled floor, pre-assembled bench seating, and detailed instructions. If you're looking to do more than assemble the various pieces and want to customize your hot tub by adding your own flare (to the seating, for example), it can be done. It may be best to wait until your kit arrives so you can check out the specifications and measurements of the included benches and how they are attached to the base of the tub. Then it's a simple matter of taking your notes to the lumber yard and choosing the materials you want to use in place of what was shipped.

If you do change any of the components that come with your hot tub kit, be careful! You'll want to use materials that can handle the constant presence of water without rotting or causing the tub to leak. Redwood, cedar, and teak are among the best choices. Good luck!

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