Hot Tubs – Do They Require a Special Circuit Breaker?

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Nothing can rejuvenate you more than a leisurely bath in your hot tub / Jacuzzi after a hectic day at work. However, you may often experience circuit breakers / over-current protection device (OCPD) tripping whenever you switch on your hot tub. This is because this electric equipment draws a huge amount of power, and so, a hot tub needs a separate circuit breaker to operate efficiently.

Water and electricity is a deadly combination. Therefore, to enjoy your jacuzzi tub safely without any fear of electrical hazards, you should hire the services of an experienced electrical contractor for installing a hot tub and circuit breaker.

NEC guidelines to be followed for hot tub wire installation:

Generally, there are two different types of jacuzzi tubs available in the market. The smaller tubs need 120V / 20 Amp power, while the larger units run at 240V and 50 amperes. As per Section 680.22-A5 of the NEC guidelines, power supply to both the units should pass through a Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter. In addition, the NEC specifies that you maintain a distance of 5 feet between the hot tub and GFCI. You should also ask your electrical contractor to place GFCI breaker in the same room as the jacuzzi tub and not mount it on the outside doors or walls of the unit.

Many people end up using the over-current protection device as a switch for their jacuzzi, which can prove to be dangerous. This is because constantly flipping the breaker on / off can cause damage to the buss bar. Even a tiny gap in the buss bar can result in electrical arcing, which is one of the main reasons behind electric fires. Therefore, it would be a good idea to install a separate emergency switch for your hot tub along with an individual GFCI over-current protection device.

Reasons behind constant tripping of your hot tub circuit breakers:

One of the most common problems experienced by jacuzzi owners is the constant tripping of circuit breakers when they are using the equipment. Electricians suggest that you ensure you are using a right size circuit breaker for running your device. If the problem persists even after replacing your old circuit breaker and by using a new GFCI especially for your equipment, then you need to pull out your user manual and carry out some checks. Ensure that the filter of your jacuzzi tub is clean and that it is not damaged. The circuit breaker can also trip if there is a problem with the ozonator or air blower of your hot tub.

Keep these tips in mind and enjoy using your jacuzzi tub safely.

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