Your hot tub and your hot tub cover were purchased, or will be purchased, hand in hand. One is not often sold without the other and there is one detail that is often overlooked in the purchasing process…
How will you remove the cover to enjoy your spa? Where will you store your cover when your spa is in use?
A hot tub cover lifter is generally a metal frame that attaches to your hot tub and cover and makes it easier to lift your cover off and put it back on. Cover lifters are also used with swim spas. Mounting one cover lifter on each end of your swim spa will deliver the same result.
Hot tub cover lifters are affordable, essential to the enjoyment of your hot tub and add to the lifespan of your cover itself. The use of a cover lifter not only protects your cover from damage it also makes your hot tub more accessible, increasing the amount of time you enjoy your spa.
There are three variations of hot tub cover lifters available on the market. Shelf style lifters, manual pivot lifters, and hydraulic assisted lifters. The one you choose depends on the functionality that you require, the installation process you prefer, the design you like, and your price point.
This is not technically a lifter, but it falls into the cover lifter category. It is a cover shelf and gives you a place to rest your hot tub cover after you’ve removed it without the use of a manual pivot or hydraulic assist lifter. This option is the most physically rigorous of all three options because you need to fold and lift the cover by hand.
A STANDARD LIFTER
Your standard hot tub cover lifter will fasten to your hot tub cabinet, onto your gazebo or onto your deck. It can be high, low, or mid-mounted depending on the height you would like your cover sitting while it is in the open position. These cover lifters do not come equipped with hydraulic assist and are available in a wide variety of designs that vary depending on their manufacturer. There are options for round spas as well.
AN UNDERMOUNT LIFTER
This cover lifter is ideal for those who opt out of drilling into their hot tub cabinet, have a curved cabinet design or have a cabinet equipped with inset LED lighting. The undermount slides under your spa cabinet and aids when lifting the cover off your hot tub then stores it in an upright position.
A HYDRAULIC LIFTER
A cover lifter with hydraulic assist is your ideal lifter option and recommended for larger hot tubs because of the weight of the cover. The dual gas shocks provide extra torque that is especially helpful when your cover ages and becomes heavier due to moisture retention. Most hydraulic lifts give you a top mount only option which leads to a mid-privacy wall when your cover is open. Other hydraulic lifts currently on the market can bring your cover right to the ground, providing you with a clear, streamline view of your yard, children, and pets.
When choosing your lift system be sure that the unit you purchase will fit on your hot tub cabinet and work with your cover. Know the length and thickness of your cover before shopping for your lifter and pay special attention to the clearance requirements of each lifter as they will vary depending on the style of your cabinet. The design of your backyard space also plays a role in the lifter options you have so be sure to ask for recommendations from your retailer or call the manufacturer to be sure the lifter you want to purchase is right for you. You also want to ask about the warranty provided with your cover lifter and its exclusions. Be sure that the material your preferred cover lifter is constructed with will withstand the weather conditions year-round in your area and ask where it is manufactured to ensure you are buying a quality product. You don’t want to be continuously drilling and re-drilling into your cabinet if you need to prematurely replace a bargain cover lifter.
If you are still wary and aren’t sure if you need to or want to install a cover lifter on your hot tub, here are the main reasons you should be using a cover lifter system:
- Your average hot tub cover weights approximately 40-50lbs. Once installed, a cover lifter makes cover removal a one-person job
- A cover lifter also allows quick (stress-free) access to your tub. The easier it is to use your hot tub, the more you will
- Some hot tub cover lifters are made of rust-resistant material making it an all-season accessory
- It alleviates the struggle of physically removing your cover- especially after it absorbs water and becomes a tad heavier. This is especially beneficial for seniors and those recovering from injury
- A cover lifter minimizes possible injuries caused by lifting and dragging your cover to remove it
- They protect your cover. Covers are meant to seal in heat and keep your tub free from debris. If your cover is damaged, it won’t protect your spa the way it should, leading to additional costs for you down the road
- They give you a storage solution for your cover
- It creates a safe area around your tub that will minimize tripping hazards when your tub is in use
- If privacy is a concern in your yard, your cover lifter can also act as a wall. It can place your cover at the side- safely creating an isolated abyss
- Cover lifters are equipped with safety locking devices
Keep in mind that a cover lifter’s purpose spans greater than simplifying the use of your spa. It also protects your cover, which extends the life of your cover and saves you from needing to replace it sooner. Protecting your cover should be a priority since having a properly fitting cover on your hot tub reduces evaporation and chemical use and helps maintain water temperature (which saves you on electricity costs).
A cover lifter is an integral part of your purchasing process because you want to protect your investment, enjoy your hot tub as much as possible and prioritize s