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Wood Fired Hot Tubs

People have been reaping the benefits of hot water therapy for eons. The ancient Greeks and Romans were the first civilizations to have recorded evidence of using hot water for recreational and therapy treatments, sometimes on a daily basis.

A Brief Look Back
Wood fired hot tubs can find their origins in the barrel. The practice of making barrels to hold liquids goes as far back as 1000 years. Among other things, these barrels typically held ale and wine. Because of their natural ability to resist decay and rot, most barrels were constructed out of cedar or oak. These barrel making techniques eventually lead to the development of primitive hot tubs.

Skip several centuries ahead to the 1970's and the "plastic revolution". Thanks to the versatility of plastic, spa tubs came to be invented, causing the more traditional wooden hot tub to be all but fogotten. However, plastic is no substitute for wood. Though it took some time, people eventually began to discover this fact on their own, prompting a return in popularity for the wooden hot tub.

It is important to note, though, that "spas" and "hot tubs" were not originally the same thing. Spas had several massage jets located throughout the tub while hot tubs were used primariliy just for soaking in.

Benefits of Wood Fired Hot Tubs
Most modern hot tubs have all the amenities of today's best spas, including jets, 2-stage pumps, electric or gas heaters, and filters. Hot tubs are rarely made with oak any more because cedar has proven to be the superior wood when it comes to resisting rot. Cedar is also exceptional at remaining water-tight as well as having a high insulating ability. And the fact that cedar smells so fresh and soothing doesn't hurt.

Wood fired hot tubs, though, remain true to their roots. They have the appearance of an oversized barrel and come with very few bells and whistles.

Heating Your Hot Tub
Getting your hot tub, well, hot doesn't take much besides a heater, some fuel and of course water. While wood is probably the best fuel for your heater, you can also use coal, oil, propane or diesel to get things hot and steamy in the tub. If you're using wood as your fuel, you'll need about 15lbs to get your tub heated. Although this may seem like a lot, it is actually one of the more economical ways of heating your hot tub.

Getting it to Work
So how do wood fired hot tubs work? This type of hot tub has a special type of water heated that is designed specifically for burning wood. What makes this type of hot tub so great is the fact that you don't need a circulating pump or electrcitity to get the water heated and moving. Instead, as the water heats up, it creates a natural pumping action of the water which causes the hot water to circulate throughout the tub.

Since you don't need any extra gadgets, pumps or chemicals, wood fired hot tubs require very little extra maintenance. Moreover, the simplicity of the system means that there is almost no additional cost to you aside from the cost of wood. Initial costs, however, will require that you pay for the preparation of a proper fondation for your hot tub to sit on.

If you're thinking of putting in a hot tub in your backyard or at your cottage, then consider installing a wood fired hot tub. Sometimes, simple is best.

Hammer Have a question about your hot tub? Then visit our Hot Tub forum to talk with other DIY-ers about all your hot tub dilemmas.