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Your hot tub cover is exposed to the elements all year round. The Sun’s UV rays, rain, snow and ice can adversely affect  cover. Proper maintenance will help your hot tub cover last many years. Knowing which products to use, and which to avoid, can be the difference between a good return on your investment or a recurring expense. Here are some helpful ways to get the best life possible from your hot tub cover.

Cleaning & Conditioning Your Hot Tub Cover

Over time, hot tub covers that are not cleaned and protected correctly can become dry and brittle. This may eventually result in them developing unsightly fading, cracking and deterioration. The most common cause of this happening is the use of damaging products.

A vinyl hot tub cover requires a gentle cleanser just like leather. It is very important to regularly clean your hot tub cover in order to protect the vinyl from wear and tear. Do not use any detergent based soaps, alcohol products, dishwashing soaps, or any cleaning products containing bleach.

Oil based products or protectants are extremely damaging because they amplify sun rays, essentially cooking your hot tub cover. Abrasive cleaners will strip the clear top coating of vinyl causing it to fade, crack, deteriorate and eventually require replacement. It is best to use the products recommended for a hot tub cover or simply use warm water and some elbow grease.

A good way to help prolong the life of your hot tub cover is to keep it clean and conditioned with a product such as Ultrashine Vinyl & Leather Cleaner or Spa Boss Restore. Use of these products not only keeps your cover clean, they will also condition and add UV protection. Applying a quality UV vinyl protection to your hot tub cover three to four times a year will help protect it from the harmful effects of exposure to the sun. SunStrong All Weather Fabric covers do not need to be treated with a UV protectant.

Along With Spring Comes Tree Sap

Pine, maple, birch, oak, elm, ash and willow trees are prone to drop sap, especially in early spring when the sap rises. Tree sap sticks to any surface it touches and forms an unsightly, sticky, hard-crusted blob that’s difficult to remove from whatever surface the sap has touched, including your hot tub cover. It’s a tedious task to remove tree sap, but is not impossible to get the tree sap off your hot tub cover.

First wash any dirt or debris from your hot tub cover with a garden hose and then wipe dry. Cover the tree sap blob with vegetable oil, margarine or mayonnaise and rub it in. The oils will help soften the sap blob and break it up. Tree sap can be easily removed by rubbing in a little margarine, olive oil or mayonnaise to the affected area. Rinse the top with a garden hose to wash away oily residue. Carefully chip away with a fingernail any sap that remains.

Once the sap is removed, clean this area to remove any remaining oily residue. Using a sponge or very soft scrub brush wash the surface of your hot tub cover to remove any lingering traces of sap and oily residue, Wipe dry. Thankfully the “sap season” only lasts about 6 weeks in the spring and gives us delicious maple syrup!

Mold, Moss or Mildew, How to Prevent & Clean

Preventing Mold – Exposed to the elements, hot tub covers can be susceptible to mold growth. Most quality covers are already treated with an anti-mold agent; however, you may need to apply additional protection depending upon your environment.

How to Clean Moss, Mold & Mildew from your cover – During the winter months, you may notice moss or mildew starting to grow on your hot tub cover. This is easy to remove using some Clean & Perfect all-purpose cleaner and the rough side of a sponge. Clean & Perfect is a unique blend of natural enzymes and surfactants making it the perfect indoor/outdoor cleaner, removes grease, grime, soot, mildew, leaf stains, waterline rings and dead insects.

After cleaning off any moss or mildew, treating the area with a 303 Aerospace Protectant will coat the surface and help prevent unsightly fungi from growing back.

NOTE: In extreme cases of mold or mildew on the underside of the hot tub cover where bleach is needed, A WEAK ammonia and water solution or A WEAK bleach and water solution may be required.

You can help prevent any mold or mildew build up by opening up the cover regularly to let your hot tub water breathe

Winter Cover Maintenance

Many people enjoy using their Hot Tub during the winter months. It is an incredible, exhilarating feeling soaking in the hot bubbling water while snow is falling all around you or gazing up at the stars.

Remember to regularly clear the snow from the top of your cover. Hot tub covers are designed to handle a heavy load of snow, however clearing the snow from  your cover will prevent any weight-related damage. A single cubic foot of freshly fallen snow weighs approximately 15 – 20 pounds. If you have a 7’ x 7’ or 8’ x 8’ Cover you can imagine all the extra weight being placed on top of your hot tub cover, remove snow as it piles up during the winter months.

The best way to clear the snow from your hot tub cover is with a broom or a brush. Using a shovel to remove the snow from your hot tub cover could lead to a rip or a tear in the cover. Clearing your hot tub cover of snow regularly will help prevent ice from building up and avoid the possibility of damage.

A person removing ice

The use of a hot tub Cover Cap can add extra protection from the elements. Made from tough, durable woven polyethylene, Cover Caps are designed to limit the wear and tear on your Hot Tub Cover throughout the year and particularly during the harsh winter months. The Sundance Spa Store keeps a variety of sizes of Hot Tub Cover Caps in stock at all four of our locations.

Closed hot tub
Another major contributor to cover failure is damage caused by over-chlorination or bromination, excessive ozone contact, or imbalanced water chemistry. When adding chemicals or spa shock to your Hot Tub, you should leave the cover open for at least 20 Minutes to allow the chemicals to oxidize, circulate and prevent odor build up on the underside of the cover. You can also prevent this by testing & balancing your hot tub water weekly. The alkalinity should be between 80ppm – 120ppm & The pH should be between 7.2 – 7.8

Frequently inspect your hot tub cover for any tears, cuts, holes or pokes to prevent the foam cover from absorbing water making it heavier and harder to lift.

It is always a good idea to make sure your hot tub cover is clipped down in the event of high winds or storms. Clipping down your hot tub cover are each use will prevent the cover from being lifted off the hot tub protecting the cover from any possible damage and protecting the cover lifter from bending or breaking. Cover clips can wear down over time from the elements and may need replacing. Visit any one of our locations for replacement cover clips, we even have a handy trick for replacing cover clips without having to do any type of restitching on your hot tub cover.

Using these simple tips will help maintain your cover’s appearance and get the most out of it for years to come.

Come in to see us at any one of our six locations for free water testing and advice on how to keep your hot tub and cover looking great!