Which Hot Tub Brands to Avoid in 2024 (And Ones To Buy)

which hot tubs brand to avoid in 2024

With the rising popularity of at-home hydrotherapy, the hot tub market has exploded with options to fit every budget and backyard. But faced with countless brands making lofty claims, how can buyers determine quality tubs from duds before making a costly investment?

This definitive guide reveals the inside scoop on which brands fail to deliver on their promises in 2024 – and which emerge as trustworthy manufacturers worthy of your hard-earned dollars.

After scrutinizing construction materials, warranty coverage, customer reviews, and after-sale support across dozens of hot tub makers, clear winners and sinners emerge.

Discover the 10 brands guilty of profits over performance to avoid at all costs this year. Learn the telltale signals of shoddy craftsmanship and corner cutting that spell future frustration for owners.

Then explore the 5 premium hot tub brands that repeatedly delight customers with exceptional quality, efficiency, and durability year after year.

How to Spot Hot Tub Brands to Avoid

With an investment as large and important as a hot tub, you don’t want to get stuck with a dud. But with so many brands on the market, how can you tell which ones will cause headaches down the road versus which ones will bring you decades of relaxing soaks?

Here are the key signs to watch out for to avoid getting duped into buying from a low-quality brand.

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Lack of Service Agreement

One of the biggest red flags to watch out for is if a brand does not offer a service agreement or warranty on their hot tubs. Given the intricate nature of hot tub systems, breakdowns, and repairs are inevitable.

Without a service agreement, any repair costs fall 100% on your shoulders. Those bills can easily total hundreds or thousands of dollars depending on the brand.

Only buy from established brands that include at least a 1-year service agreement.

Poor Warranty Coverage

Speaking of warranties, you should also scrutinize what exactly is covered and for how long.

Inferior brands often have warranty periods of just 1-2 years and have loopholes that let them off the hook for covering common issues.

For a major investment like a hot tub, look for at least a 5-10 year structural warranty and coverage for the major components too.

Negative Customer Reviews

Do your research before buying! Take the time to read through independent customer reviews on sites like Consumer Affairs.

If you notice a pattern of negative reviews calling out things like chronic breakdowns, difficult repairs, or unhelpful customer service, take it as a big red flag to avoid that brand.

No matter how appealing a brand’s marketing is, real-world experiences reveal their true quality.

Bad Reputation

Along with the specific issues mentioned in reviews, take note if a brand has a generally poor reputation.

Trustworthy manufacturers will have a proven track record of happy customers, transparent business practices, and making good on promises. Brands without that goodwill should make you pause.

Cutting Corners on Construction

Shoddy construction often goes hand-in-hand with poor brands. Check out the materials used – does plastic dominate or high-end composites? What about the insulation?

Every brand touts energy efficiency, but inferior insulation means you’ll be stuck with higher electrical bills down the road. Listen to veteran hot tub owners on which brands cheap out on fundamental construction.

Terrible Customer Service

Even reliable hot tubs require some maintenance and repairs over their lifespan. How a brand treats you when issues inevitably come up says a lot about their overall quality.

The top brands have knowledgeable support staff that respond quickly and handle any warranty issues smoothly. Brands with a reputation for unhelpful service will leave you frustrated and footing big bills. Avoid them!

Brand Comparisons

Finally, comparing brands head-to-head can make differences clear. For example, Laguna Spas is notorious for leaking issues while Hot Spring Spas has a long history of excellent construction that prevents leaks.

Do your homework to learn which brands repeatedly come out on top – or bottom – when compared by owners.

By keeping these telltale signs in mind, you can size up hot tub brands and determine which ones come up lacking in quality, service, and overall value.

Now let’s look at 10 brands guilty as charged on all accounts that you should avoid in 2024.

Top 10 Worst Hot Tub Brands
1. Hot Spring
2. Caldera
3. Aleko
4. Life Spa
5. Coleman/Bestway
6. Jacuzzi
7. Laguna Bay spa
8. Future Spa
9. Thermospa
10. Dimension One Spa

The 10 Hot Tub Brands to Avoid in 2024

which hot tub to buy in 2024

After careful analysis of customer reviews, complaints, and brand reputation, we can definitively say these are the 10 hot tub brands you should steer completely clear of in 2024.

#10 Dimension One Spas

Kicking off the list is Dimension One Spas. Despite no reviews on their own website, third party consumer sites peg them with a mediocre 3.2 star average rating – and it’s easy to see why.

Owners frequently complain about major leaks developing within weeks or months of use. The culprit seems to be the cheap, plastic-like materials used in construction that warp and degrade rapidly.

Beyond leaks, Dimension One tubs suffer from haphazard construction leading to an uneven internal structure. Owners also report pumps, hoses, and fittings that fail quickly due to apparent design flaws. And good luck getting support from their customer service department for any of these issues.

Overall, too many fundamental issues exist with Dimension One Spas to justify the investment.

#9 Thermospa

Next up is Thermospa, widely regarded as one of the absolute worst brands based on customer satisfaction surveys. Similar to Dimension One, you won’t find any reviews on their own website – probably because they’re overwhelmingly negative elsewhere.

One massive complaint is late delivery times, with some owners reporting waiting months before receiving their paid-for tub. Installation also proves challenging since Thermospa provides unclear instructions lacking the needed details.

The problems continue even after making the tub operational. Owners frequently cite quick-developing leaks, likely stemming from the poor construction and materials characteristic of this brand. Also expect minimal help from their customer service.

Overall, there are far better options than gambling on the consistently subpar Thermospa.

#8 Futura Spas

Futura Spas has consistently underwhelmed owners, earning just 2.5-3 stars for the past three years running. Reviewers call out defective cabinetry prone to cracks and finish degradation after exposure to weather.

On the electrical side, blown fuses seem abnormally common. Like other bottom-tier brands, Futura matches these lackluster products with equally poor customer service. In fact, they openly charge owners money for repairs on parts still under warranty. Save yourself the hassle and avoid Futura Spas entirely.

#7 Laguna Bay Spas

While not a household name, veteran owners are well-acquainted with the consistent disappointments of Laguna Bay Spas. Their tubs simply fail to stand the test of time, with leaks appearing sooner than later.

Owners believe that the subpar sealing is due to shortcuts taken during the manufacturing process.

Mechanical issues also crop up faster than expected, with pumps and jets failing ahead of schedule. Again, warranty coverage provides no relief due to fine print exceptions and poor service.

Until they overhaul manufacturing and support, Laguna Bay Spas stays on the Do Not Buy list.

#6 Jacuzzi

Jacuzzi is undoubtedly the most well-known brand on this list of hot tubs to avoid. Their reputation stems primarily from poor after-sales support that neutralizes the otherwise decent quality of their products.

Specifically, owners report warrantied parts failing shortly after expiration of Jacuzzi’s short 1-2 year coverage period.

Attempts to have defective parts repaired or replaced under warranty are frequently declined or met with resistance from customer service. Given the high repair costs involved, Jacuzzi’s lack of support after the sale equates to a raw deal (i.e., an unfair situation) for owners.

#5 Coleman/Bestway

The Coleman and Bestway brands dominate the inflatable hot tub niche, but consistently fall short in real-world performance and longevity. Their main sin is failing to properly heat water, with owners reporting up to 24 hours of waiting for barely lukewarm temperatures.

The experience worsens with their inclusion of unpowered “dummy” jets that lack any massage functionality. Between lackluster heating and jets, expect a mediocre soak at best. And good luck finding support once the short warranty expires on these brands’ cheaply constructed tubs.

#4 Life Spas

Life Spas advertises heavily as a premier spa brand. But their actual track record is anything but luxurious.

Customers cite the brand’s uncomfortable hot water – which sometimes escalates to dangerous boiling due to shoddy heating systems. You’d hope their customer service would address these problems quickly – think again.

The overwhelmingly negative reviews speak for themselves, with the brand averaging just 2.5 stars. From false advertising to delivering broken tubs to ignoring regular maintenance needs, Life Spas fails to live up to even modest standards.

#3 Aleko

Aleko inflatable hot tubs initially seem like a good value proposition. But as owners report, looks can be deceiving.

Their key gripe (complain or concern) is units arriving with serious defects right out of the box. We’re talking entire heating or pumping systems non-functional on arrival. Other times, the inflatable tub portion leaks air unevenly, preventing proper setup.

And don’t expect timely support after delivery, either. Aleko is notorious for unresponsive customer service that leaves owners high and dry. Equally concerning is their warranty of just 90 days – clearly inadequate coverage for such error-prone products.

Save yourself the headaches and go with a higher quality inflatable brand.

#2 Caldera Spas

The Caldera brand offers plenty of enticing marketing fluff as a premium spa experience. But the unpleasant reality for owners is an endless stream of mechanical issues and monthly maintenance costs.

Key problems relate to tricky controls, frequent filter clogs, and rapid degradation of essential components like pumps.

When issues pop up (and they will), Caldera’s customer service is severely lacking. Most queries are met with scripted responses rather than solutions.

All in all, this brand fails to deliver on both product quality and customer satisfaction.

#1 Hot Spring

Topping off our list of hot tub brands to avoid is industry giant Hot Spring. Their presence at the summit may be surprising given their reputation.

However, our ranking focuses specifically on their customer service – or lack thereof.

Owners report waiting months for responses on urgent repair requests while covered under warranty. Even smaller concerns like filter replacements or programming changes take weeks for assistance. Considering the premium paid for their brand name, customers expect far better service.

Until Hot Spring massively overhauls its customer support, we strongly recommend looking to other established brands for your hot tub purchase. The level of frustration simply isn’t worth it.

Factors to Consider When Buying a Hot Tub

best hot tub brands in 2024

With so many brands and hot tub models to choose from, it can be overwhelming trying to find the perfect hot tub. But by carefully considering these key factors, you can zero in on the best option for your needs and budget.

Types of Hot Tubs

The first decision is which fundamental type meets your needs:

Acrylic: It’s the most common type, constructed from molded acrylic resin for durability, surrounded by cabinetry. Offers a variety of sizes and configurations powered by pumps and heaters.

Inflatable: This affordable option is made from fabric-reinforced PVC inflated by an air pump. Quick setup but less durable over time. Limited sizing and jet power.

Custom Built: Constructed from tile, concrete, or other materials for a permanent free-standing or in-ground spa experience. Highly customizable but installation is complex.

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Size and Capacity

Hot tubs range dramatically in number of seats, ranging from 2-person models up to 10+ person party sizes.

Consider your typical soaking group as well as future plans to choose adequate capacity. Also, factor in potential exercises if opting for a swim spa.

Jet Types and Configuration

Jet quantity and placement determine the massage intensity and which muscle groups are targeted. Compare jet type (rotating, directional, dual, etc.) and locations to suit your hydrotherapy preferences.

Advanced Features

Higher-end models offer extras like multi-color LED lighting, Bluetooth audio, touchscreen controls, automatic cleaning cycles, and even WiFi connectivity. Decide which hi-tech features fit your budget.

Energy Efficiency

Ask sellers for detailed electrical, heating, and pumping specs to estimate operational costs. Also consider insulation quality as poorer insulation increases energy waste.


Larger pumps and air blowers can create disruptive noise. If the tub will be located near living spaces, prioritize options with noise reduction.

Ease of Maintenance

Easy maintenance ensures your hot tub stays sanitary and operational. Seek self-cleaning features, easily accessible filters, clear water indicators, and simpler chemical/pH handling.


A good warranty protects against early part failures and defects. Carefully review what exactly is covered, proper claim procedures, and who pays for service calls.

Brand Reputation

Established brands with proven track records consistently build higher quality and more reliable hot tubs. Customer reviews reveal a brand’s strengths and weaknesses. Stick with reputable hot tub manufacturers.

Buying a hot tub is meant to be a joyful experience. Keeping these key factors in mind will help you filter out the duds and find your perfect hot tub!

Top 5 Best Hot Tub Brands
1. Arctic Spa
2. Master Spa
3. Nordic Hot Tubs
4. Bullfrog Spa
5. Marquis Spa

The 5 Best Hot Tub Brands to Buy in 2024

woman soaking in hot tub outside at night

After steering clear of the lemon brands in 2024, which hot tub makers truly earn your hard-earned money through high quality, reliability, and service? Here are the top 5 best hot tub brands to invest in this year.

#5 Marquis Spas

Kicking off our list of hot tub heroes is Marquis Spas.

This brand stakes its reputation on building high performance hydrotherapy hot tubs catered to soothing sore muscles and joints. Using advanced jet configurations and water flow patterns, Marquis Spas targets specific areas like the back, neck, feet, and more.

Owners love the variety of customizations available, from multi-color LED lighting to powerful stereo systems to keep the good vibes flowing. But what truly earned Marquis a top 5 spot is their budget-friendly prices.

Cost-conscious shoppers can invest confidently knowing Marquis tubs deliver substantial therapeutic value without breaking the bank.

#4 Bullfrog Spas

If ultimate jet customization is your top priority, look no further than Bullfrog Spas.

Their hallmark feature is the patented JetPak technology allowing you to interchange and arrange jets in endless configurations. With 18 jet types and 16-seat styles, you can truly design your ideal hydrotherapy experience.

Bullfrog builds their tubs to the highest quality standards, evidenced by their robust 5-year warranty that surpasses nearly every competitor. Owners also rave about the significant energy savings achieved thanks to Bullfrog’s highly efficient equipment designs.

While their hot tubs come at premium prices, the comfort and customization make it worthwhile.

#3 Nordic Hot Tubs

Sharing Bullfrog’s reputation for quality craftsmanship, Nordic Hot Tubs is a less costly option for buyers seeking value.

Using high-end composites and expert construction, Nordic tubs provide an incredibly durable soaking experience. Their massage coverage stands out with the ability to target both the upper and lower body simultaneously.

Nordic’s proprietary Dual Therapy system utilizes adjustable, high-flow jets placed along each seat and the tub floor. Owners love the ability to customize the perfect full-body massage in every soak.

While less loaded with tech features than some brands, Nordic nails the fundamentals with robust construction and hydrotherapy.

#2 Master Spas

The aptly named Master Spas delivers such excellent quality and reliability that they’ve earned a reputation as one of the most durable and longest-lasting brands available.

Their secret lies in utilizing the best composite shell materials and rigid foam insulation coupled with precision craftsmanship.

Owners say these hot tubs literally feel rock solid and can withstand years of heavy usage without any wear.

Master Spas also pioneered using noise reduction features to cut down on bothersome pump noise. Their hot tubs exude quality through and through.

#1 Arctic Spas

Claiming the coveted top spot for 2024 is Canadian-based Arctic Spas.

This brand has perfected the crucial yet often overlooked factor of energy-efficient insulation. Their proprietary Full-Foam Thermal Lock insulation system translated into energy savings of up to 70% over competitors.

Beyond efficiency, Arctic Spas build their tubs to remarkable quality standards – not surprising given their origins in frigid Canada where durability matters. Owners call their hot tubs a “buy it for life” investment thanks to the unparalleled construction.

For the ideal blend of quality, efficiency, and comfort, Arctic Spas is the brand to choose in 2024.

Expert Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your Hot Tub

women relaxing in hot tub outside

Investing in a hot tub is just the first step – proper care and maintenance are crucial for ensuring its longevity and performance.

Follow these pro tips from industry experts on getting the maximum return from your hot tub investment.

Maintain Proper Water Chemistry and Filtering

Achieving that perfect soak requires keeping your water sparkling clean and properly balanced.

Test pH, sanitizer and mineral levels weekly using approved test strips. Adjust as needed with spa-specific chemicals from your tub retailer. Supplement with enzyme cleaners or clarifiers for added water quality.

Don’t neglect cleaning or replacing filter cartridges regularly – dirty filters impede circulation.

Keep Covers Secured

An unlocked hot tub cover is an invitation to danger. Get into the habit of double-checking if the cover is securely fastened every time you exit your hot tub using the safety locks.

An intact cover maintains heat, saves electricity bills, and prevents accidents. For heavy covers, consider installing a mechanical lift system for easy access. Keep covers locked whenever the tub is unattended – safety first.

Follow Electrical Safety Guidelines

Water and electricity demand caution. Protect your tub with GFCI outlets and conduit-shielded wiring installed by a licensed electrician.

Upgrade inadequate electrical circuits to avoid tripping breakers. Always turn off the breaker prior to repairs. Also, refrain from operating underwater lights with the cover in place.

Clean Filters Frequently

Filtration keeps water circulating and free of contaminants. But the filters themselves need frequent cleaning as they quickly become clogged with oils, debris and minerals.

Check filters monthly and aim to rinse or replace when flow becomes obstructed. Having backup cartridges on-hand means never draining your spa to clean filters.

Only Use Approved Cleaning Products

Never introduce household cleaners or detergents into your hot tub – the results could be hazardous, even damaging.

Only use branded cleaners made exclusively for hot tub applications. Read all labels thoroughly and follow dosage directions precisely.

Inspect Jet Fittings and Gaskets

Intense water pressure makes inspecting jets, fittings and gaskets imperative. Scan for cracked or loose components before each use of your hot tub, replacing deteriorated parts as needed.

Get Professional Annual Maintenance

While much hot tub care you can handle yourself, investing in professional maintenance yearly is highly recommended.

Technicians will conduct a deep inspection of all critical components, identify emerging issues, perform expert cleaning, and keep your hot tub performing optimally for years of soothing comfort.

Consider Tub Enclosures

Shield your investment from weathering elements by constructing a partial or full enclosure around your hot tub. Ventilation remains important, especially for gas heaters, but enclosures protect surfaces and components while reducing heating bills. Keep leaves, debris and dirt at bay so you can stay focused on relaxation.

Follow these tips and your hot tub will provide an oasis of comfort and relaxation for years on end.


Choosing a hot tub brand may seem daunting at first, but doing your research pays off. Now that you know which brands to avoid in 2024 due to poor construction, unreliability, or terrible customer service, you can focus on the quality manufacturers worth investing in.

Stick with proven brands like Arctic Spas, Master Spas, and Nordic Hot Tubs in 2024 to maximize comfort, hydrotherapy, and energy efficiency. With proper maintenance and care, a top-tier hot tub will provide decades of soothing soaks and happy memories ahead.

Remember to carefully weigh size, features, warranty coverage and brand reputation as you shop. The upfront effort is well worth it to select a hot tub that exceeds your expectations for years to come. Soon you’ll be on your way to total relaxation in your own personal, at-home oasis.

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