Can I Put a Hot Tub on My Deck?
When deciding on a location for your new hot tub, you may consider whether placing it on a raised deck is possible. Yes, it is definitely possible to put a hot tub on your deck! However it does depend on the size and weight of the filled hot tub and the deck specifications, so make sure to consult a local engineering or construction expert.
Not all decks are built the same so when deciding if your deck can hold a hot tub here are a few things to consider.
How Much Weight Can a Deck Hold?
When calculating the strength of your deck, or the amount of weight it can hold, you’ll need to know the exact type of building materials with which it is built and the capabilities of those building materials. You also need to check the required local city codes when adding a deck to a home or yard.
When installing a deck, you will need to consider your regional location. For instance, if you live somewhere that gets a lot of snow in the winter, you’ll need to calculate the weight of the potential snow accumulations and how that will impact the strength of the deck.
Then keep in mind the weight of the people who will stand on the deck, along with other possible furniture or accessories that will also be placing weight on the building materials.
How close together are your deck joists? This is a question you will need to answer because the space between joists directly affects the strength of the deck. Twelve inches apart, for instance, is stronger than sixteen inches, and so on.
If the deck is two feet or lower from the ground, it might be able to hold as much as 100lbs per square foot, but any higher than that, and the rule of thumb is 50lbs per square foot.
How Heavy are Hot Tubs?
Here are two questions to consider when determining if your hot tub can sit on a deck.
- How large is the hot tub you are purchasing and how many people is it made to fit?
- How many gallons of water does it hold and how much weight will that add?
There’s some math and engineering involved, and you’ll need to consider all of it. A really basic way to think of this, without the calculations for your specific spa, is that most hot tubs, when filled with water and people, can easily weigh 5000+ pounds.
Can your deck to hold that amount? Yes, but you’ll need to consult with your local construction or deck design expert to be 100% sure. Don’t forget to decide on the size of your spa prior to this, because a smaller spa might be easier to place on a deck than a larger one.
If all this math has you feeling intimidated or overwhelmed, you’re not alone. There are so many factors at work in this equation, and it’s enough to make a person’s head spin. However, luckily for you, there are several great alternatives to placing your spa on a deck.
Our first recommendation is always going to be a reinforced concrete pad. Your concrete foundation should be a minimum of four to six inches thick and reinforced with rebar or mesh to ensure it can hold the entire weight of the filled spa without cracking or breaking.
Other materials that will suffice include concrete pavers or bricks, pea gravel, or crushed rock. For safety reasons, it’s always best to consult with an expert about how best to prepare your chosen materials and how that preparation can affect the safety of your home and the integrity of your spa.