The ABCs of Cedar Wood-Burning Hot Tubs

Basking in a cedar wood-fired hot tub is an exquisite way to relish the great outdoors. Imagine the tranquil ambiance of a crackling fire, the enticing aroma of burning wood, and the warm water swirling around you. It’s a bona fide spa experience right in your own backyard.

Yet, this bliss doesn’t come without some effort. However, the rewards far outweigh the work involved! Let’s unravel some of the common questions you might have about cedar hot tubs before you take the plunge.

How Often Should You Drain a Cedar Hot Tub?

We advise draining your hot tub every few days to prevent bacterial buildup. Heating a hot tub with a wood fire is swifter than using electricity, and refilling it is a breeze. This is an ideal setup for those who enjoy relaxing weekends at their cabins. Just fill it up, heat the wood, and unwind. Remember to drain before heading home, ensuring your tub is ready for the next blissful weekend.

How Much Firewood Will a Cedar Hot Tub Consume?

A cedar hot tub’s stove, typically made from aluminum, would require a moderate-sized load of DRY firewood. It’s an excellent way to utilize the abundant firewood available at your cabin. The best part? You can maintain your off-the-grid lifestyle as it requires no electricity!

How Long Does It Take to Heat Up?

Expect a heating time ranging from 1.5 to 4 hours for reaching your preferred temperature (up to 105°F), depending on your hot tub size and the prevailing weather conditions. An insulated cover could expedite the heating process.

How Long Will The Heat Last?

With an insulated vinyl pool cover, your hot tub should maintain its heat with a daily temperature drop of around 15°F – 18°F. You can reignite the fire if you want to maintain the heat, which will take less time compared to a full drain-and-refill cycle. The drier your firewood, the longer the heat will sustain.

How to Maintain Water Cleanliness?

Monitor your hot tub water for signs of algae or greasy films, which indicate a water change is necessary. We recommend changing the water every four days to a week. The most effective way to maintain cleanliness is to drain and refill it with fresh water regularly, as chemical use is not advised.

Is There a Need for Chemicals?

No, there’s no need for chemicals in a wood-fired hot tub. You may add natural and biodegradable products like salt, herbal extracts, or essential oils for an enhanced experience. Avoid non-biodegradable products as they could stimulate bacterial growth or algae. UV-purification systems can keep the water clean for extended periods, but refrain from chlorinated supplements as they can damage the wood.

What Maintenance Does a Cedar Hot Tub Need?

A well-maintained cedar hot tub can last over 30 years. We advocate semi-annual treatment with linseed oil (externally only) and a wood protection agent, along with regular non-caustic soap cleanings. Avoid painting or treating the hot tub’s interior. As the design prevents dampness at the bottom, there’s no need to clean or treat it.

How Much Water Does It Require?

A round cedar hot tub can hold up to 1500L/400 gallons of water, depending on the size. Ensure a steady supply of fresh water for refilling.

How to Prevent Freezing?

For regular use in cold weather, our hot tubs are designed to handle freezing temperatures. However, leaving your tub unattended in sub-freezing weather requires some cautionary measures. These include using a stock tank heater, draining most of the water, utilizing floating empty plastic milk jugs as shock absorbers, or gradually heating the tub if a layer of ice forms.

If the tub freezes completely, melt the ice cautiously to avoid damaging the aluminum stove. Slowly start a fire, adding some water on top of the frozen surface. Remember, a regular heating schedule helps prevent freezing, plus it offers a great excuse for a regular dip!

For cabins with limited winter water access, some owners use a unique method to prevent damage from expanding ice. They secure a partially inflated inner tube to the bottom of the full tub. The submerged inner tube absorbs the stress from the ice expansion, keeping the tub intact.


Investing in a wood-burning cedar hot tub offers a unique, eco-friendly relaxation experience. Despite requiring some maintenance, the warm, soothing waters are more than worth the effort. Happy soaking!

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