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Hot Tub Vinyl Liners

A solution for many wooden hot tub problems.
The Pool & Spa Informational Website

Considerations and Solutions.


Scroll down to browse through some archived SPA and Hot Tub questions and answers.  Please click the Spa Topics Link, on top of every page, to access a complete listing of Spa and Hot Tub Problem subjects, an alphabetized Website Table of Contents, Spa and Hot Tub Equipment Information, About Alan Biographic Material and a Spa and Hot Tub Glossary. Use the other links to access additional subject information. More information about some new & unique products, for Spas and Hot Tubs, can be found by visiting The Website Store. You'll never know what you'll find and that's always fun. Be better prepared and avoid costly problems!

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How to decide, if a hot tub liner is the best option? Vinyl Hot Tub Liners serve two purposes: make the hot tub water tight and separate the wood from the effects of the water and the chemicals. A new vinyl liner can add new life to an old wooden hot tub. If problems arise, refer to the Spa Problems Page, as a source of problem-solving information, broken down into various categories.  Scroll down the page and click on the linked keywords, catch phrases or images, in the archived answers below, to access additional information, on that topic or product.

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▼     Helpful, Problem-Solving Information, in a question and answer format.     ▼

Hot Tub Needs A Vinyl Liner?

We have a 3 1/2 year old wooden hot tub which is used twice a week or less. We have maintained it with chlorine granules, non-chlorine shock, sodium bicarbonate, and "enzyme". There is a copper ionizer in the system, as well. In the past year, we have noted that the wood surface is deteriorating, with lignin building up on the surface and floating in the water. Additionally, purple crystals have appeared and will not go away. They coat the surfaces and stick to the filter. Having read that the purple crystals are probably copper cyanurate, I turned off the copper ionizer, but it didn't change anything. I have not measured cyanuric acid level. We needed a water pump replacement, so have drained the spa. The surface of the wood cannot be scraped clean, and sanding doesn't work on damp wood. I am planning to let it dry a few days, then sand it, clean the filter and flush the lines, then refill and start over. Dry wooden tubs tend to leak, so I don't want it all dry. How can I avoid these problems in the future? Thank you very much.
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Jack S., Berkeley, CA, 10/24/2016

I think that the time has come for you to add a vinyl liner to your hot tub. It will stop the leaks, make control of the chemistry easier and add years
of life to the tub. It may not have the look you want, but it would be the right thing to do. It will probably have to be custom made. On the plus side, you will find the water chemistry easier to maintain. It is important to monitor the copper content. There are many models of the ColorQ Digital Water Analyzer and several are designed, for use with ionized pools, spa or hot tubs. I hope the advice helps.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 10/25/2016

Installing A Hot Tub Liner?

Alan,  I bought a custom fit liner for a wood hot tub that I built. When putting the liner in, how does a person wrap it over the top all the way around a tub?  It keeps slipping off on the opposite side. Is it a two person operation? How do installers do it?

J. F., Pawnee Okla., 3/7/2013

I'm no expert on this, but it does seem like you could use a second person or else use duct tape to secure it as you go around the tub perimeter. It will be necessary to secure the liner in place with a cap, strap or band around the top. The hot tub liner should have to stretch a little to conform to the walls of the tub. I suggest that you ask the supplier how much of an overhang has been allowed for. I hope that I have been of assistance. Enjoy the tub.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 3/7/2013

Hot Tub Liner And Seats?

Once you install a liner in a wood tub, what do you do about seats? Thanks.

Bruce B., 5/11/2009

A hot tub liner serves two purposes:  it keeps the water away from the wood and it keeps the water from leaking out.  You don't have the same issues with the seats.  I suggest that you discuss possibilities with the hot tub dealer.  Enjoy the tub.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 5/11/2009

Thanks for your reply.  But if you screw the seats to the tub, through the liner, isn't the integrity of the liner then compromised and the possibility of leakage increased.  I'm trying to salvage my leaky wood tub by lining it?

Bruce B., 5/12/2009

I did check this out! You will have to screw through the liner to attach the steps. However, to maintain the watertight conditions you should use some silicone caulk. Put a dab into the pilot holes, and some behind the liner and in front of the liner around the holes. That should prevent any leakage. Enjoy the new look.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 5/12/2009

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Bumps In The Wood?

We purchased a house a couple of years ago that had a wooden hot tub (spa) in the back yard that is several years old. We have done a reasonable job of ensuring the water alkaline, pH, etc. are OK. However, over the past month, we have noticed that there are small bumps on the inner walls of the tub. We can feel them, but you can't see them through the water. It feels like you can scratch them off. Can you tell me what they might be and how we should treat the tub? Thanks.

Mark H., 4/6/2007

Obviously, something is happening to the wood. It is a natural product that is filled with water, so such things are not unimaginable. I am not an expert on wood and there are several popular ones used to make hot tubs. I am not sure what you can do or even if something can be done. You might have to consider a hot tub liner. Vinyl liners will help preserve the wood, make repairs less likely and will keep the tub water tight. I hope that I have been of assistance.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 4/6/2007

Adding A Vinyl Liner To A Wooden Hot Tub?

I have a wooden hot tub and it is beginning to show its age. There is some leaking and some rough spots. Would it be possible to get a liner made to fit this tub? Thanks in advance for the help.

Jeff. N., 3/2/2009

Getting a liner made to fit your hot tub is no problem, but you will have to find a company that makes custom liners. Good luck and I hope that I have been helpful.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 3/2/2009

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