About Spa Covers:
Spa Covers are an essential part of a spa. Up to 80% of all heat loss in a spa is due to evaporation. Spa covers also protect the acrylic or fibreglass shell of a spa and all it's plastic fittings from UV and heat from the sun. A bare acrylic/fibreglass shell can reach temperatures in excess of 70°C. Spa covers also prevent debris from entering the spa when in use. In some jurisdictions a lockable spa cover can also be an important safety item to prevent drownings.
Who Makes Spa Covers?
In Australia, there were previously several companies that made spa covers. The biggest were Hardback, Pinz & Australian Spa Covers. They provided spa covers to end users, trade customers, but by far the biggest buyer of covers were the manufacturers such as Sapphire, Spa Industries, Monarch, Heritage, Lanark and more.
Unfortunately most of the manufacturers no longer exist due to the high cost of materials and labour in Australia. Australian Spa Covers has taken over Pins & Hardback spa covers and is by far the largest spa cover manufacturer in Australia.
There are a few Chinese spa covers. Some are of good quality, but many are of inferior quality compare to Australian-made. Sadly you never really know which are good or bad, as branding is often non-existent or poorly-established in Chinese spa covers.
How Long Do Spa Covers Last?
The lifespan of a spa cover can vary depending on several factors, including the quality of the cover, how well it's maintained, and the environmental conditions it's exposed to. A good-quality spa cover typically has a good, usable life of 5-7 years, but some may last longer with proper care and maintenance. All spa covers eventually succomb to water-ingress via osmosis, heat, ozone, and UV breakdown.
Here are some factors that can affect the longevity of a spa cover:
Quality of materials: High-quality spa covers made from durable materials like marine-grade vinyl and reinforced foam cores tend to last longer than cheaper alternatives. Good-quality spa covers have the foam wrapped in another layer of heat-sealed plastic.
Maintenance: Regularly cleaning and conditioning the cover can extend its lifespan. UV-resistant protectants can also help protect the cover from sun damage. You may also be able to invest in a spa cover cover, or "spa bra."
Associated Products: Spacare Vinyl Restorer | Aerospace 303 Spa Cover Protectant | Spa Bras
All spa covers should be opened several times a week to allow off-gassing of chemicals such as chlorine, ozone, and bromine.
Avoid placing objects on your spa cover. Your spa cover is not a table. They are not intended to bear weight. Extra weight on a spa cover will speed premature deterioation.
Be kind to your spa cover. Protect it, and it will protect your spa.
Climate: Spa covers in regions with extreme weather conditions, such as intense heat, cold, or heavy precipitation, may wear out more quickly.
Frequency of use: Frequent removal and placement of the cover can cause more wear and tear, so how often you use your spa can impact the cover's lifespan.
Proper storage: Storing the cover correctly when not in use, such as using a cover lifter and keeping it off the ground, can help prevent damage and prolong its life.
Weight and debris: Keeping heavy objects off the cover and regularly removing leaves, snow, or other debris can prevent stress and damage.
Pets and wildlife: If you have pets or wildlife in your area, they may scratch or damage the cover unintentionally.
It's essential to inspect your spa cover regularly for signs of wear and tear, including cracks, tears, waterlogging, or fading. When you notice such issues, it's typically a good idea to consider replacing the cover to maintain the insulation and energy efficiency of your spa. Proper care and maintenance can significantly impact the lifespan of your spa cover, so be sure to follow the manufacturer's recommendations for care and cleaning.
We do not recommend bromine tablets, as bromine tablets are the biggest cause of failure of almost all parts of a spa. They typically keep the water looking great, but due to the corrosive nature of bromine and it's acidic attributes, this causes damage over time.
Never use "trichlor" chlorine in any spa.
For some examples of damage from corrosive environments, see this page.
When Should I Replace My Spa Cover?
If the condition of your spa cover is deteriorating in any way, from issues with the material to changes in shape, it could result in heat being let out and intruders being let in. Look for holes, cracks and tears, dry and brittle patches, fading, bleaching and any other signs of deterioration.
Water-logging: High quality spa covers have vapour barriers that prevent moisture from penetrating through to the insulation, but over time, with wear and tear, this barrier may eventually fail. If it does, it creates the perfect environment for bacteria, mould and mildew to grow in, which in turn creates a health hazard for you and your family. What’s more, moisture will accelerate the deterioration of the cover and even the spa it protects. If your spa cover is heavier than usual, or if moisture comes to the surface when you press on it, it may be waterlogged.
Locks, Hinges, Handles: When any of these are broken, it's likely time to replace your spa cover.
Odours: If your spa cover emits foul odors, or any algae, goo, etc is forming, it's best to replace the spa cover.