How Long Does It Take a Hot Tub To Heat Up?

In this post, we explain different factors involved in heating up a hot tub and provide tips on how to avoid wasting energy and money heating up the water.

Before buying a hot tub, many people ask how long it takes to heat the water inside the hot tub. After all, there's nothing worse than being at the hot tub and waiting for the water to get hot.

The answer to this question is pretty simple—the hot tub takes about 3 to 8 hours to heat up on average or about 3 to 5 degrees per hour. But sometimes, it can take longer depending on other factors such as water temperature, ambient temperature, hot tub size, heating element, and insulation.

Let's discuss each one and find out how long your hot tub will heat up.

Factors Affecting the Heating Time of a Hot Tub

heating time of a hot tub featured image

Base Temperature

How long before your hot tub reaches your ideal temperature depends on your starting temperature. Some owners leave it running all the time so they won't have to wait too long. But this also comes at a cost, i.e., higher electricity bills.

base temperature

If you don't use your hot tub often, you may want to shut down your hot tub until you need it. Remember to heat it up a day before and keep it warm until you're about to use it.

On the other hand, if you plan to use your hot tub regularly, maintaining a base temperature of 5 degrees below your ideal hot tub temperature can save you more money over the long haul than turning it on and off every day.

Key Takeaways: Keeping your base temperature as close as possible to your ideal hot tub temperature will reduce the time it takes to heat up your hot tub.

Ambient Temperature

Ambient temperature can also affect the time it takes for your hot tub to reach the desired temperature setting. A warmer climate means shorter waiting times. In a cold climate you'll have to wait a little longer.

Wind blowing over your hot tub will also slow down the heating process. Putting a windscreen around your hot tub will help fix this issue.

Key Takeaways: Climate will have a massive impact on how long your hot tub will heat up. Turn your hot tub on a day before if you're living in colder countries.

Hot Tub Cover

Covering your hot tub can cut the time heating your hot tub. This keeps heat and water vapor from escaping into the air, allowing heat to accumulate more efficiently in your hot tub.

hot tub cover

Hot tub covers are inexpensive, and you can easily find something online that matches your hot tub. But they can make a difference in how long it will take for your hot tub to heat up.

Hot tub covers also help maintain your hot tub's temperature if you regularly plan to use your hot tub.

Key Takeaways: Invest in a good hot tub cover. It keeps your water clean, but it also helps maintain temperature and makes heating up a lot faster.

Tub Insulation

The hot tub will hold in its heat longer if it is insulated. The heat can escape through cracks and seams in the hot tub, but it can also leak out through tiny cracks in the hot tub cabinet. Ensuring that your hot tub is well insulated will also help decrease waiting time if you want your hot tub to maintain its temperature in between use.

tub insulation

Key Takeaways: Always check your hot tub's insulation before buying one. A well-insulated hot tub is an energy-efficient hot tub.

Heating Element

Your heating element will also determine how long it will take for your hot tub to heat up. The higher the rating, the faster your hot tub will reach your desired temperature setting.

You can upgrade your hot tub's heating element, or you may choose a hot tub with a higher rating if you haven't already bought one. Just be aware of additional costs on your electricity bills if you decide to purchase or upgrade to a heating element with a higher rating.

Key Takeaways: Faster heating can sometimes come at a price. If you can't afford an upgrade or pay higher electricity bills, consider other less expensive options.

Turning Jets On or Off

Turning on the jets and water features will help warm up the water much faster and keep it nice and even. Without the jets, the hot tub will still have pockets of cold water, so the temperature of the whole tub won't be as warm.

The circulating action from the jets flushes these pockets of cold water, mixing the cold water with the heated water. Just remember to ensure jets are fully submerged before turning them on. This reduces the time needed for your hot tub to heat up.

Key Takeaways: Jets turned on makes heating more efficient, allowing your hot tub to reach your ideal temperature faster.


Hot tubs take a while to heat up. But there are ways you can expedite the process and not have to wait an eternity to start soaking in your hot tub. So choose your method, weigh the pros and cons and enjoy your hot tub experience as often as you like!