deck-load capability for hot tub

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  #1  
Old 05-05-03, 03:31 PM
patturner
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deck-load capability for hot tub

Is there a simple way to determine a deck's load capability for a hot tub? We've ordered a hot springs portable spa to place on our existing deck. The tub's literature gives the filled load weight. I'm just wondering if there's a way to determine if our deck will hold it, including a couple of people, or will additional support be necessary. We really don't want to have to do unnecessary work, however, don't want a big problem either!!!!

Thanks for any advice!!

pat t.
 
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  #2  
Old 05-07-03, 09:43 AM
L
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Location: Arlington, WA
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I would play it safe and beef up the deck before I put a tub on it.

A couple hundred dollars to do that, or risk destroying $5,000 of tub and possibly hurting somebody.
 
  #3  
Old 05-20-03, 01:10 PM
mechengineer
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Pat,

this is a great question that depends on a lot of factors. 1) how close your supports will be to the spa. Is this an integrated spa design? (Spa flush with the deck) or will the spa be on top of the deck? As well as many other factors.

A great place to check is your local building code dept. They may actually require certain supports just for the spa (for instance my local code requires a concrete pad under the spa if it is integrated). If not, they may be able to help you or give you a few guidelines. Another good place to check is Lowes or Home Depot. They have good software that will predict loads and the needed supports. They will be glad to help you design your deck (They think you are going to spend money with them) They don't need to know where you are buying materials from.

Good luck

--Matt
 
  #4  
Old 05-20-03, 03:28 PM
petrsjo
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A typical hot tub will weigh about 5,000 pounds when it is filled and it will have a footprint of about 50 square feet (7' x 7'). That amounts to about 100 pounds per square foot load on the deck. Decks are typically built to accomodate around 40 lbs. live load and 15 lbs. dead load per suare foot for a total of 55 lbs./s.f. So, before anybody even gets in the tub, that tub has probably exceeded (by 100%) the bearing capacity of that deck!!

In other words, without substantial modification (if even allowed), don't even think about it.
 
  #5  
Old 05-28-03, 07:23 AM
patturner
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I just want to thank you all who replied to my post. Each response was a big help. We've already had a "deck guy" out, and he's done a great job adding that extra support.

Thanks again.

pat t.
 
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