Few things would make your hot tub less appealing than the remains of insects and animals that fell into it. Some animals can also damage the hot tub itself.
Here we’ll offer some tips for keeping your spa water free of pests and protecting the hot tub from the damage they can cause.
Use a Hot Tub Cover
The first and best defense against pests around your hot tub is the spa cover. It protects the water from insects that might land or fall into it, and keeps rodents and larger animals from trying to take a drink. Always place the cover over the spa when it’s not in use, even if you plan to use it later the same day. Discourage any use of the cover as a surface for food, drinks or sitting.
Properly maintaining the cover is an important part of using it as pest control – the drier and better fitted it is, the less it will leave gaps for curious creatures.
Don’t Have Food Around the Hot Tub
Eating in or near the hot tub can cause spills and crumbs and can completely throw off the water chemistry. Of course, dropped food can also attract everything from ants to mice to raccoons.
Additionally, avoid feeding pets or keeping pet food dishes anywhere near the spa, even if it’s indoors. Even a nearby bird feeder is a risk.
Treat the Water
Properly treated water (see link in the previous section) is pleasing to human bathers, but can be less so to reptiles and amphibians, which prefer natural, untreated water. Maintain a healthy water chemistry to keep your hot tub less attractive to frogs and toads.
Seal Up Gaps
Water is not the only thing attracting pests to your hot tub. The interior beneath the shell itself houses plumbing and electrical equipment that gives off heat, which is especially alluring during the colder months.
Rodents living in your hot tub is not only gross, it means they’ll likely chew on pipes and wires, use the area as a bathroom and generally damage the system. This is both unsafe and unsanitary for bathers.
Small rodents can squeeze into gaps far smaller than 1 inch, so carefully inspect the exterior panels for any openings.
Beyond ensuring proper placement and closure of the panels, place wire wool into gaps that can’t be closed (such as where the pipes enter the spa panels).
Never seal gaps with adherent or non-porous materials. Heat needs to be able to escape to a certain degree, and you need to have easy access to the electrical and plumbing equipment for maintenance and repair.
Place Deterrents Around the Area
Stop pest problems before they start by making the area around your hot tub repellant to small animals.
Certain plants and oils that are safe for and attractive to humans are often the opposite to creatures like mice.
For example, you could plant mint close to the hot tub. Or soak cotton balls in peppermint oil and place them around the spa area. You could also sprinkle diatomaceous earth on places where pests might congregate.
Whether it’s a classic mouse trap or a no-kill cage trap, traps are a surefire way to reduce the pest population around your hot tub. If you use traps that will kill the pest, check them on a regular basis. If all else fails, call an exterminator. Afterward, ramp up your monitoring, checking vulnerable spaces and materials for new infestation. Finally, use your hot tub often. Human activity itself is a deterrent to a range of pests and goes a long way toward keeping them at bay.
Please contact your local Aqua Living dealer if you have any questions.