Just about all new hot tubs come with hot tub controls already installed in the enclosure to ensure easy operation of heating devices, jets, lights, and so on. There is usually no need to replace hot tub controls unless they break down or cease to work altogether, in which case the owner can contact the hot tub manufacturer to obtain a replacement control unit. People who build custom hot tubs, however, may need to consider the different types of hot tub controls and what each unit can do for the tub. Heater controls, jet controls, lighting controls, and energy saving features are all options for control units on a hot tub.
Hot tub controls fall into two general categories in most cases: 220 volt controls and 110 volt controls. The controls one will need will depend on the size of the hot tub and the electrical outlets available to service the tub. Just about all large tubs will require a 220 volt set up, as most of the components within the tub will require this higher voltage. Smaller tubs and portable units sometimes use the 110 volt option, but this is less common and somewhat limiting in what components can be used. Be sure to choose the controls that work with the specific hot tub unit the homeowner owns.
Specific components within the tub enclosure will require specific controls. All tubs feature some sort of heating unit, but not all units are electronic. Wood-fired heaters, for example, require no controls other than opening the lid and adding more firewood. A gas-powered tub will require a gas regulator to control the level of heating of the tub water. An electronic heater will require a simple control that raises or lowers the temperature and displays the current temperature on a digital display.
Some hot tub controls feature additional control options, such as the activation or deactivation of an ozonator, a component that works in conjunction with chlorine or bromine in the water to further kill bacteria and provide a clean and pleasant bathing experience. The ozonator control may be featured on the same control panel as other hot tub controls, such as heat and jet activation. The jet activation controls are often on/off buttons, though some hot tub controls will allow the user to control the intensity of the jets. This is generally a more expensive feature. Lighting features, too, are most often on/off switches, though some controls may allow for dimming or even changing the color of the light.