If you’re shopping around for a hot tub you will probably notice that there are two main types of offering; 13 amp and 32 amp. Other than the seating configuration, the power requirement (i.e 13 amp or 32 amp) is the biggest consideration you will have to make.
But what’s the difference? What are the pros and cons? And how do you know which is the best option for you?
This article will cover everything you need to know about what this amp business is all about, and exactly what you can expect with either option.
What is a 13 amp Hot Tub?
You may also see a 13 amp hot tub referred to as a ‘plug and play’ hot tub. These are powerful hot tubs that can be run from a standard 13 amp plug socket (that’s the standard plug socket you will have throughout your home). Hence they are sometimes referred to as ‘plug and play’ as you don’t need any special electrical work doing to run the tub.
A 13 amp hot tub is a relatively new product to the market, as in previous years it was unheard of to run such a powerful machine as a hot tub from a standard plug socket. The product has evolved over time as some customers have looked for savings on additional electrical work (required for a 32 amp hot tub).
What is a 32 amp Hot Tub?
A 32 amp hot tub is the most powerful version of a hot tub and requires a 32 amp electrical supply to run. You may have one of these supplies already in your garden or yard area, but most customers have to have a 32 amp power supply installed by an electrician before purchasing the hot tub.
Great, so what is the difference between 13 amp and 32 amp hot tubs?
Savings vs Power
The key difference is obviously a 13 amp hot tub is not going to be as powerful as a 32 amp version. However, they do cost on average around £1000 less than a 32 amp version of the same hot tub. In addition, you are also going to have a saving if an electrician is required to fit a 32 amp power supply (this could be anywhere between £300 – 800 depending on your location etc.)
It is also worth noting that even if you go for the 13 amp option, it is still recommended to have an electrician fit a dedicated 13 amp socket outside that is water protected. Don’t be tempted to run an extension lead from a plug in the house – believe it or not, we have seen this done! This is a very dangerous way to power a hot tub and we strongly advise against this; water and electricity don’t mix!!
N.B Always make sure any work you have carried out is done by a qualified electrician.
There are further savings on the overall electricity usage when considering the 13 amp version, so expect your annual electricity cost to come in lower as well.
This all sounds great, but the obvious trade-off is the power. A 13 amp hot tub is limited to one pump, whereas our 32 amp hot tubs have three jet pumps. This makes for a noticeable difference in power when the hot tub is running.
The other big tradeoff on a 13 amp hot tub is that the heater cannot run concurrently with the jet pump. This power restriction means that when the jets are on the heater must be off, whereas on our 32 amp range you can run the pumps and heater simultaneously.
This may not be noticeable on warm days, but on cold days it means a 13 amp hot tub can drop in temperature quite quickly. If the hot tub is well insulated this may not be a major issue, but if you enjoy a long soak at a hot temperature it may not be the best fit for you.
Also note that the 13 amp range comes with a 2kw heater, whereas the 32 amp range comes with a 3kw heater. This means that the 13 amp hot tubs will take a bit longer to get the water up to the desired temperature.
Number of jets
A 13 amp hot tub will always have fewer jets than a 32 amp version, usually roughly around half the amount. Most of our 13 amp hot tubs have 40 jets (aside from the Hallboro which has 54), in comparison to anywhere between 55 and 100 jets on the 32 amp range.
As the 32 amp hot tubs have more power available, this means they will give you better efficiency overall. For example, the heater will not have to heat up the water as often as the 13 amp version, therefore making it more efficient.
It is also worth noting that a 32 amp hot tub can run both the heater and massage pump at the same time, whereas the 13 amp cannot. So if you wanted to run the foot massager in the 13 amp version, the temperature could potentially drop in the meantime. You would also have to switch off the massager and activate the heater again to get the temperature back up if required.
Choosing the best hot tub for your needs
Hopefully, now you have a better understanding of the key differences between the two ranges. Both products are excellent in their own right, and the choice really falls down to your individual situation…
If you have the budget for it and are willing to get an electrician to fit the 32 amp power supply externally, we recommend the 32 amp version. The extra power is massive value for money considering the 20% extra you will pay, as the performance is noticeably improved over the 13 amp version.
Consider the Ashboro for our bestselling 32 amp hot tub – currently on sale!
If you are going to be an occasional hot tub user, for instance, the occasional soak or using it when friends and family visit, a 13 amp version should suffice just fine. You will still experience a massively improved spa experience from the inflatable options on the market, without the extra expense of a 32 amp version.
Consider the Stoneboro for our bestselling 13 amp hot tub – currently on sale!
If you are looking for a hot tub for the health benefits (i.e. muscle soak), then a 32 amp may be the best option as it offers more power to the jets and massagers.
Still can’t decide or would like some further information visit https://www.gfdliving.co.uk/hot-tubs