Updated on March 5, 2020 by Mary Bowen
This DIY hot tub makes use of a simple passive water heating technique. Water is heated by fire and pressure.
The cold water in the tub is sucked up into a copper or steel pipe that is coiled through a hot fire and is sent back to the top of the tub. The water cycles through until the tub reaches the desired temperature. All you'll need is:
You will also need: water, wood, matches, and a hot tub thermometer.
This winter our copper coil froze and burst so we re-adjusted our coil.
Instead we used 10 six inch sections of steel pipe and 10 elbows.
Not only was this coil easier to build but it heated the water much faster.
The results were amazing and it works better than the previous set-up! You can build yours out of either type of pipe.
First, if using copper pipe, pack the copper pipe full of sand and coil it so it can easy sit in
the fire ring. GO SLOWLY! The trick to this is patience. Leave the ends
of the pipe about two feet long. Or create a steel "coil" like this:
It takes about 4 hours to get the tub to 100 degrees.
Hot tubbing like this is an experience. It is fun to build the fire, to feed the fire, then finally enjoy the tub. All the waiting is worth it when in the evening you can jump in the hot tub right before you go to bed.
One word of warning, however, always stir your DIY hot tub before jumping in. The hot water all ends up in the bottom and, if unstirred, will unpleasantly surprise the first person to get in by being cool on the top and burning hot on the bottom. So...always stir.
If you live in a cold climate you should consider either making an easy way to drain the tub or some way to prevent the pipes from freezing and bursting. Enjoy you DIY hot tub!!
Matt Bowen lives in Northern California with his wife and ten children. He enjoys gunsmithing, swimming, and supporting his children in their endeavors which includes his acting debut as Sir Angus in Outlaws of Ravenhurst. Matt is a jack of all trades, master of none. With the help of Drinking with the Saints he has learned to make some pretty good cocktails.
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