Is there anything fancier than a hot tub on your backyard? Few things can beat the elegance of a good hot tub as a centerpiece of a hardscape project. You can take a step further and combine a hot tub with a beautiful paver patio. Let’s talk about the possibilities of pavers for a hot tub.
Your main concern when installing a hot tub, is to place it on solid, resistant ground. The material underneath the hot tub needs to be able to withstand heavy loads and be perfectly leveled, otherwise the shell might crack.
Due to their resistance, pavers can be the perfect material for a hot tub base. However, there are some important things that must be taken into account. So let’s talk about those things and help you make sure you’re doing everything perfect.
Pavers For a Hot Tub: What to Watch Out For?
Pavers are a wonderful choice for a hot tub base, but there’s one important aspect about it. If not installed perfectly, things can get catastrophic real fast.
A typical paver installation is done on what we call a flexible base. This base is done by a combination of gravel and sand base in which the pavers are placed upon.
On normal circumstances, the project can safely be tackled from a DIY perspective, as long as the size of it is not too big. However, to install a patio to be used as a hot tub base, that can’t be done.
In this case, the installation needs to be performed by the most qualified professionals available. The patio needs to be nothing short of perfect when it comes to drainage and leveling of the pavers themselves.
The right pavers must be chosen as well. Ideally, you want to work with bigger pavers to minimize the number of grout lines. Also, the pavers need to be perfectly flat, without any kind of high texture.
What Type of Paver to Use?
Pavers can be made from a great variety of materials. Some work perfectly for a hot tub, others not so much.
Hot tubs can, obviously, produce a lot of heat on their base. For that reason, you’ll want to chose pavers that are more resistant to high temperatures.
Also, and here is where things can get complicated, with all that water going around, your pavers need to be protected against water absorbance. In order to do that, you’ll have to seal them. However, the heat from the hot tub can damage the sealing. So you can see how that’s a complicated situation.
So the best pavers for a hot tub are the ones who are naturally resistant to fire, as well, as flat and, if possible, on large variations. The ones who can fit all these boxes are concrete pavers, flagstone, and porcelain pavers.
With high resistance to heavy load and heat, concrete can work perfectly as a hot tube base. It does require sealing, preferably one designed specifically to repel water.
Of all the options, concrete pavers are the ones with more options of design and colors available. They are easy to acquire and are the most affordable option, with a price ranging from $4 to $6 per square foot.
Flagstones are large irregular slabs of sedimentary stone. They are highly resistant to heat and can withstand a lot of weight, although not as much as concrete.
It is a quarried material, so it is a very expensive option, with prices ranging from $15 to $22 per square foot. It is naturally porous, so it also requires a water-repellent sealing.
Porcelain paver have been growing in popularity in recent years due to their high durability and easy maintenance. In one aspect, porcelain pavers gets ahead of the competition: they do not require sealing.
Porcelain is a naturally non-porous material. Porcelain pavers are cooked under high temperatures and extreme pressure, which created a material highly resistant to heat and incredibly sturdy.
With a price ranging from $7 to 9 per square foot, it is the middle ground between concrete and flagstone, but it has the big advantage of not requiring sealing.
So, as we discussed, the orders of business when it comes to use pavers for a hot tub is to make sure to use pavers that can bear heavy loads and resist to heat, as well as to have a perfectly leveled installation.
It is no small business. The best way to approach the installation of paver for your hot tub is to hire professionals to help you. They can make sure you have the right pavers for it, as well as make the installation perfectly leveled.
This is particularly important if you choose to go for flagstone or porcelain, which are typically more difficult to install.
We here at S&S have been providing help with the maintenance and installation of pavers around the Sarasota and Manatee counties for the past 11 years. If you happen to be around the area, we would be happy to help you with your hot tub installation and make it as perfect as you want.