Slipping into a warm hot tub is one of the best ways to end a long day, but how warm is too warm? Choosing the ideal temperature for your inground hot tub is about more than just personal preference, you also need to consider your family’s health and budget too. It will take some time to figure out the right temperature but once you do, you can soak in complete comfort. 


Hot tub temperature basics


Use your inground hot tub’s controls to turn on your hot tub and set your temperature before you hop in for a soak. To confirm the temperature, you may want to use a separate thermometer as occasionally digital readings can be unreliable if there are any hardware issues present. 

Most hot tubs are kept between 32-40°C and it is recommended to not exceed that limit for safety reasons. Most newer hot tubs include a limiter so that you can not exceed that temperature. If you have an older tub it may not have a temperature limit, so be extra careful when setting your temperature.


What risks are associated with setting your inground hot tub’s temperature too high?


The reason it is not recommended to exceed 40°C is that doing so can potentially cause dangerous health issues including: 

  • Heat rash
  • Heat cramps
  • Heatstroke
  • Heat exhaustion

Seniors, young children, those with chronic health issues and pregnant women have an increased chance of developing these negative side effects, so it is recommended that they either avoid use, use at a lower temperature or limit their time in the hot tub.

Young children are especially vulnerable to high temperatures as their bodies do not have the same heat tolerance as adults. Children younger than 5 should probably avoid hot tubs altogether and older kids should limit their time to around 5 minutes a session. 

Even if you are in fantastic health it is recommended that you limit your soaking time to 15-minute sessions. 


How do I find the ideal temperature for my hot tub?


This will involve some trial and error and may change depending on who you are soaking with and what time of year it is. 

It is recommended that you start around body temperature (37°C) and then slowly increase from there until you are comfortable. 


What about my energy costs


Heating an inground hot tub can be expensive and the higher you set your temperature, the more money you will spend. If you like to keep your hot tub at the highest temperature and you only take an occasional dip, consider turning the water temperature down while it is not in use. If you do use your tub frequently, turning the temperature down between uses may actually increase your energy costs as you will constantly be reheating your water. A more energy-efficient plan for that latter scenario would be to find a slightly lower temperature you can consistently keep your hot tub at, that is still comfortable.

It is also important to note that your hot tub temperature should not go below 82°F or you run the risk of your pipes freezing in the winter.