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Can A Hot Tub Cover Be Dried Out? Here's All The Information You Need!

Hot tub covers becoming waterlogged is very common. It would not happen overnight, but with time you would see the cover slowly becoming heavier and water leaking through it. That is how you know your hot tub cover is soaked with water and needs to be taken care of. But, can a hot tub cover be dried out? Or would you need to replace it altogether?

Yes, hot tub covers can be dried out, provided you are following the right instructions and techniques. As the first step, you would need to pick a sunny day so the cover has the chance to sit in the sun. Secondly, you would need to remove the foam from the inside. You will most likely have to clean it first and then dry it with its vinyl cover.

Have you ever wondered, what caused the cover to soak up so much water in the first place? It’s very easy to identify these small mistakes we all make while handling a hot tub cover. If you want to know more about it, keep reading the article. You will find a step-by-step guide on how you can dry out your tub cover perfectly every time!

What Causes Hot Tub Covers To Become Waterlogged?

Before you get into the details of what causes the hot tub covers to soak up water, you would have to understand the mechanism behind it. It's fairly simple, so let’s get right into it.

Most covers use foam or polystyrene materials as their base. This is because these float wonderfully on top of the water, hence keeping the tub covered perfectly. These foams are then attached to thin or thick sheets of polyester bags, depending on their sizes.

After this foam structure is created, it is covered with vinyl on all sides. Depending on the manufacturer, this layer is either stitched or stapled with factory-grade staplers. Some companies use zippers too. So, as you can tell, the hot tub covers are made with water-resistant materials, so it will take quite a while to get them waterlogged.

In most cases, tearing of the vinyl covers is the source of water seeping in. You probably noticed that the exterior of the cover started to peel or had small holes after a few months. It happens due to insensitive use. When you uncover the tub and throw the heavy cover on the ground, it causes damage. Make sure you don't do this again.

So, when the cover has holes, water can easily get inside. You might think that since the foam is covered in plastic, it wouldn't matter. But that assumption is wrong. Because after a while, water starts to get inside the plastic too, through small nooks and crannies. As a result, you end up with a waterlogged hot tub cover.

There may be another reason behind why covers soak up water, namely, heavy objects are placed on top of them. Due to the weight of the object, the cover may come in contact with the water below. In other words, the water will inevitably make its way inside if you have holes in the hot tub cover.

When the inner foam gets in touch with the water, it will expand and get heavy. The water molecules would also make it quite dense, as air particles would get trapped inside. Hence, making it difficult to handle, and carry to hot tubs. Plus, this also reduces the quality of the cover, because it becomes less effective as time goes on.

How to Dry Out The Hot Tub Cover: Step By Step Guide

Drying out a hot tub cover is not a difficult task, but you do need to be careful. For starters, you would have to choose a sunny day. Otherwise, the polystyrene would take forever to dry. You would also need to consider looking for extra parts for the cover, just in case you need it. Apart from these, you can also fix the waterlogged hot tub cover by following this step-by-step guide.

Step 1: Take off the Cover

As said, waterlogged covers can become quite heavy. So, do some inspection beforehand, and make sure you are using extra hands if necessary. Otherwise, the weight could result in back pain and joint pain. Therefore, it is advised to ask for assistance when you are removing the hot tub cover.

Next, unzip or open the vinyl outer cover. Make sure to not rip it off, because then you would have to purchase another one. Plus, look for any tear or damaged areas, and handle those gently. It doesn't take long for these little holes to become large and cause additional problems.

Step 2: Remove the Interior Foam

After opening the vinyl cover, you would be ready to remove the inner foam part. Just a reminder, as the cover is waterlogged, the foam would be extremely dense. So, this is also a two-person job. As a way to remove the foam from the vinyl cover, one must hold the cover and pull the foam out. However, the foam may tear apart due to the water inside of it, so be careful.

Avoid dropping the waterlogged foam on the ground too. The task can be done easily if you start with one corner first, and move on to the others. Thus, less pressure would be applied to the foam, thereby reducing the chances of it breaking. These can be quite costly to replace, so handle them with a little caution.

Step 3: Open The Plastic Or Vapor Barrier

As mentioned previously, the foam would be covered with another plastic protection cover. It is important to open this part too, because a waterlogged cover means this plastic barrier has been damaged with time. So, repairing this is one of the essential tasks. You would notice, the barrier might be leaky. That’s because that water is escaping from the inner foam.

You have to inspect whether or not this plastic barrier is reusable. Look for holes or damages. If the plastic is thin and barely holds water, it may need to be replaced. If not, just clean it with mild soap and a soft-bristled brush. Allow it to dry overnight by laying it flat on the floor. Make sure you put something heavy on each corner so it doesn't fly away.

Step 4: Clean the Vinyl Cover

Wash the vinyl covering after you have cleaned the plastic barrier. As previously stated, you must check for damages first, and then decide whether or not you want to reuse it. So, once you decide it is going to be repurposed, you will need to clean it in step four. Vinyl is heavier than plastic but is fragile, so make sure to use soaps that are vinyl safe.

Alternatively, you can wipe it with some mild soap water. After that, again, let it air dry in your backyard or porch. It’s recommended not to use the vinyl cover if there is a significant amount of damage, as it can allow water back in. In cases like this, it would be wise to purchase another cover for safety.

Step 5: Reapply Plastic Barrier

As the next step, you have to reapply the plastic barrier on top of the foam. However, before that, you must ensure both of the materials are thoroughly dried. You can fix small tears in the plastic with plastic patches. Seal it with waterproof glue, so water can’t damage it any further.

After that, with the help of someone, you have to place the dried foam inside of the barrier. Make sure you have perfectly aligned the corners with the plastic. Keep in mind, there can be no air inside of it. With the help of a vacuum, remove any excess air, so the foam and plastic can be perfectly placed inside the vinyl cover in the next step.

Step 6: Reapply The Vinyl Cover

Make sure your vinyl cover is perfectly dry and in good condition. Now, carefully assemble the foam and plastic in the cover. Make sure you properly seal or tie the zippers.

Therefore, your hot tub cover is now all dried and fixed. For extra precaution, you can try spraying water on top of it, and check if there is still any leakage. It would appear as air bubbles, so you would easily understand.

How to Prevent Water From Getting Onto A Hot Tub Cover

You can take these steps after getting your waterlogged cover fixed, or even from the start to be careful. Those are very simple and easily doable things, so it should not be hard for you to follow along. Let’s check them out!

1. Purchase High-Quality Cover

In the market, you will notice that the covers you would find are in a range of prices. It’s not always good to go for the cheapest options, because in the end, you would eventually have to take this extra work of drying them.

So, buying a good quality cover would save you time and effort in the long run, even if you have to spend some extra money on them. Think of it as an investment, to make things easier.

2. Treat Vinyl Materials 

The vinyl cover is the first layer of protection against moisture from the inner foam. So, keeping it protected would lead you to many years of good service.

Any damage or tear might even lead to mold and bacterial growth, which can later affect the hot tub water as well. So, using certain chemicals that keep the vinyl strong is recommended. You can buy 303 UV Protectant Spray to get similar benefits!

3. Chemical Choices

When it comes to protecting your hot tub's cover, you should also consider what you put in the water. Not all chemicals are compatible with vinyl covers.

So, it’s better to take off the cover whenever you are using chemicals in the hot tub. In this way, mold growths and leaks can be prevented.

4. Dry the Cover Regularly

This step is very important because drying the cover every other week or so would prevent it from a lot of damage in the long run.

To remove excess water, place it under the sun and wipe it off with a cloth. Alternatively, you can take out the inner pieces, and let them dry separately. This would ensure that your cover is completely dry all the way through.

5. Inspect the Cover

A regular inspection of the cover can also save you a lot of trouble. Check for cracks, leaks, or air bubbles every 2-3 weeks. If you see any, fix them as soon as possible.

If you keep this in mind, you will be able to prevent your cover from becoming completely soaked and heavy. That's why it's so crucial you do this.

Waterlogged hot tub covers can be quite a task to handle. However, I hope this article has helped you learn more about can a hot tub cover be dried out. To conclude, if you follow the right guidelines, you can easily dry and reuse the tub cover. Thanks for reading and I hope this article was able to help you with your problem.

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Written by Ferdi Vol
Ferdi Vol is a pool and hot tub owner who has been working in this industry for over 5 years. He has learned all the ins and outs of maintaining pools and hot tubs, as well as how to privately own one. Ferdi Vol is also passionate about blogging, researching topics that he shares with his readers online via this blog.
About Ferdi Vol
About Pool Uncle
Pool Uncle is a blog that focuses on helping pool and hot tub owners get the right tools, maintain their pools and hot tubs, and learn about how to care for them. It provides readers with all of the information they need to keep their pools clean, safe, and looking great. The website also publishes original articles about pool maintenance topics such as filtration systems or algae prevention techniques.
About the Author
Ferdi Vol has been in the swimming pool and hot tub as an owner for over 5 years. His experience ranges from owning a pools and hot tubs and maintaining them. He’s learned about pumps, filters, chemicals, cleaning products, treatment systems… you name it!
About Ferdi Vol
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