Hot tubs are a major plus almost anywhere, but here in the high country, they add even more value to your Breckenridge home than in other parts of the country.  Picture enjoying the company of family or friends after a long day of skiing.  What's more relaxing than a nice soak session surrounded by snowy mountains?

If you rent your property, a hot tub is almost always on the list for your prospective renters when they are selecting their lodging for their trip.  Add value to your investment!

Here we will walk you throught the basics of choosing a hot tub/spa.

Get Your Permit!

Your first step be to obtain a permit from the Town of Breckenridge, or Summit County.  These permits have requirements for support, the surrounding area, and even water use.  If your property is on a well, like many are in the high country, you may need to apply for an additional use permit as well.  Do your research!

Different Types of Spas and Their Costs

The most popular spas for decks are 4- to 8-person models costing from $3,000 to $18,000.  There are also small heated in-ground pools, and we've even seen a custom wood burning hot tub!

Choosing a spa can be challenging. You’ll need to select from a dazzling number of accessories, including cup holders, colored LED lights, even waterproof keyboards.DSC_9793.jpg

The top recommendation is for “full-foam” insulation—a high-density, closed-cell polyurethane foam that fills the cavity between the fiberglass tub shell and the outer cabinet and helps reduce heat loss. In addition, full-foam insulation helps reduce noise and adds stability to the entire unit.

Check installation costs as well. They'll be dependent on the size of the spa and the ease of getting it where it needs to be. In some cases, limited access (like the balcony of a condo unit) may require the use of a crane to lower the spa into place.

Adding Structural Components to Carry the Weight

The safest—and most cost-effective — location for a spa is the lower level of a deck. A deck only a few steps above ground, if built to code, should be able to support 100 lbs per sq. ft.— a filled 8 x 8 spa at 6,000 lbs. works out to about 94 lbs per sq. ft., just within limits. Check your local codes for any restrictions governing the installation of a spa on a deck.

Even better is a reinforced concrete pad, a great option if you're planning a new deck or intend to add onto an existing deck. A 4-inch slab will safely bear 115 lbs per sq. ft.


If you want the tub on a deck more than a couple of feet above ground or on an upper level of a deck, things get more complicated. You’ll need to hire a structural engineer to provide specs for a site-specific framing structure to support the weight.  The necessary framing for a typical backyard deck may cost only a few hundred dollars, but expect to pay much more if your deck is a high-flying structure perched on a slope.  We see a lot of these types of decks in the high country, with homes perched on a slope taking advantage of the views.

Accessing Power and Water

Spas require a nearby source of electricity. Because water is involved, any electrical hookup for a spa must include ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) protection. This nifty device shuts down the system within milliseconds if it detects the tiniest change in current flow caused by a short circuit. Some spas come with an extension cord with a GFCI built in that can be plugged into a 110-volt, 20-amp circuit.

Larger units require at least one dedicated 220-volt, 50-amp circuit. In addition, there must be an emergency shutoff within sight of the spa, but not closer than 5 feet or farther than 50 feet. 

Water access is simple; spas fill with an outdoor hose. The spa then heats and circulates the water. Insulated tub covers limit evaporation, but the tub will need occasional topping off. When it's time to empty the unit, all spas have built-in hose bibs so you can drain the water.  This is where being on a well can make owning a spa a little tricky.  You'll need to make sure you are permitted to use additional water based on the production of your well.


Getting in and out of a spa provides opportunities for mishaps. A handrail is a good idea for older—and younger—users. A cover with a lock is a must if you have children.

If you plan to build your spa into the deck, it may seem best to drop it into the deck so that the rim of the tub sits on the decking. Unfortunately, this makes it easy for people to fall in or step on the cover, and also complicates getting into the tub. The ideal arrangement is to set the spa partially into the deck so the rim is 17 to 24 inches above the decking. That way, bathers can sit on the rim, swing their feet over, and enter the water.

Who should you use in Breckenridge/Summit County?

Rocky Mountain Hot Tub Company:



Founded in 2000, Rocky Mountain Hot Tub Company is located in beautiful Breckenridge, CO.    Specializing in sales, service & repairs.

We sell Bullfrog Spas and service & repair all other brands.  We also sell parts and chemicals for all your spa needs. 


Affordable Mountain Hot Tubs :

 (970) 453-2887
Breckenridge, CO

Heavenly Times Hot Tubs & Billiards:
970 513 7727
Dillon, CO