As we get ready to head into spring and customers start opening their spas, it is time once again to review some important steps that will not only maintain, but prolong, the life of a spa cover. These are great tips to pass along to your customers when they purchase a cover.
First of all, for those who have not used their spas during the winter months, it is important to pull the cover off of the spa and flip it over, exposing the bottom to the sunlight and giving it a chance to dry out. This step should be repeated every few months. We do NOT suggest removing the foam inserts from the cover as it is difficult to push them back into the vinyl. Unless the skin is being replaced, it is not necessary to remove the foam.
It is important to clean and condition the top of the spa cover twice a month with a soft bristle brush and mild solution of dish washing liquid. The cover should then be rinsed thoroughly to eliminate the chance of any soap suds getting into the spa water. Once it has dried, a high quality vinyl protectant like 303 Vinyl Protectant (NOT Armor All) should be applied. If the vinyl is not kept clean and conditioned, it could deteriorate prematurely and become brittle. Also, we do not recommend the use of chlorine-based chemicals. Chlorine can destroy the liner and protective film on the foam inserts, causing water-logging which, in turn, will require replacement of the foam inserts. When adding chemicals to the spa, leaving the cover open for a period of at least 30 minutes will allow accumulated chemical vapors to dissipate, maintaining the integrity of the liner and protective film.
There are also a few basic things to keep in mind when using a spa cover. Most importantly, a cover is not a safety cover (unless you have specifically purchased a safety walk-on) and is not designed to walk on, stand on, or sit upon. The tie downs and handles are made to open and secure the cover, and can tear if dragged or lifted without disconnecting all of the tie down straps first. Also, removing sitting snow from the top of a spa cover (preferrably with something soft like a broom) will help maintain the foam and reduce the chance of ice build up on the cover.
A spa cover should last, on average, about five years. If a customer is complaining about a shorter life span on a cover, then either they are not maintaining the cover properly or they have purchased a poorly made cover. Passing along this information will help build a better relationship with your customer and increase the chance of a repeat sale when the time comes.