If you own a hot tub, you probably know the basic safety precautions — don’t stay in your hot tub for more than an hour at a time, keep your hot tub is in a well-ventilated location, be careful about soaking while pregnant, etc.
These are all fairly obvious safety guidelines, and generally, adults have enough common sense about staying safe without having to read an entire blog article about it. However, when it comes to kids, the recommended safety precautions are not quite as obvious. In fact, they may surprise you. Hence, today’s blog …
Here are some tips for keeping your kids safe in and around the hot tub at your home in Greenville, Asheville or anywhere between.
How Young Is Too Young?
While your 3-year-old may be begging you to let them play in the hot tub, we do not recommend it. Most authorities will tell you that any child under 5 years old is too young for the hot tub. Another good benchmark is the height test. If your child isn’t tall enough to stand in the middle of the hot tub, then they probably shouldn’t be in the water. After all, even adults — being far less sensitive to the water’s heat and chemicals than kids — should sit with the water no higher than chest level. If a child is struggling to keep their chin above water, they haven’t quite grown into your hot tub yet.
How Long Is Too Long?
The hotter your hot tub is, the shorter the time your kids should be soaking in it. We recommend 5 to 15 minutes depending on 3 things:
- How old your child is
- How hydrated your child is
- How hot the water is
Kids’ body temperatures and heart rates are much more sensitive to their activities and surroundings than those of adults. Therefore it’s important to carefully monitor these things when your child is in the hot tub or spa. It’s a good idea to lower the temperature in your hot tub to 98 degrees if you plan to have kids soaking in it. If, however, your hot tub is at the maximum heat of 104 degrees, keep timing closer to 5 minutes.
Regardless of whether your child is sitting in the hot tub for 5 minutes or 15, make a habit of keeping water nearby so they can stay hydrated.
Is It Okay To Dunk?
Dunking in a hot tub is a bad idea for two reasons. First bacteria thrive in warm, moist environments (and can lead to hot tub foam buildup), so if your child is prone to ear infections, hot tubbing — and definitely dunking — may be a bad idea.
Another reason to avoid dunking in a hot tub is to avoid the risk of their hair getting caught in the hot tub drain, resulting in their head being held under water. Even if you’re not planning on putting your head under water, you should never use your hot tub if the drain cover is damaged or missing.
Do I Need A Hot Tub Cover?
Hot tub covers are a MUST, and hot tub covers with locks are definitely recommended. Obviously, you’d supervise your children closely while they’re in the hot tub, but what about when it’s not in use? Kids are curious creatures, and hot tubs are fascinating things. You can’t possibly monitor your tub all the time, but you can put a hot tub cover on it to keep your kids out of the hot tub when they shouldn’t be there.
Want to take safety a step further? Add a fence around your hot tub as well!
What Do My Kids Need To Know?
While you definitely do not want your kids to know how to unlock the hot tub cover, you do want them to know how to turn the circulation pump on and off. If there’s ever an emergency and the spa needs to be turned off quickly, it important that even your kids know what to do.
Now that you’re familiar with the most important safety guidelines for kids and hot tubs, let Hot Springs Pools & Spas help you with repairs, maintenance or an installation! You can call us in Greenville at (864) 676-9400 or Asheville at (828) 687-8080. We’d love to hear from you!