DIY ideas for Spa cover lift


Old 11-16-05, 09:12 PM
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Question DIY ideas for Spa cover lift

Have been looking at purchasing a spa cover lift, but after looking at the models available and the prices of $150 +, I figured I'd ask if anyone here has ideas on how to build a DIY Spa cover lift. I am thinking about using PVC or other materials I can find at "Depot." It seems like a project someone could knock out in an hour or so. Does anyone have ideas or plans that they have used on their own spas? I have seen some plans on Ebay, but wanted to get others opinions before I went any further.
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Old 11-17-05, 05:41 AM
Join Date: Oct 2002
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I was thinking of trying to build my own cover lift also. I donít think pvc alone will be strong enough. Things that I have considered using include ĺĒ copper water pipe or rigid metal (electrical) conduit. I like the copper pipe idea better because you can permanently solder the joints. Iím sure both materials will work, but they might cause staining as they corrode. To solve this I considered painting or covering the pipe with heat shrink tube. For the hinges you can simply use a block of wood with a hold drilled in it.
Good luck.
Old 11-17-05, 09:14 AM
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Looks like you will be busy, once you get that spa installed you will no doubt need to relax in it! I have never seen any do it yourself plans for spa lifts. But in your construction keep in mind that as a spa cover gets older the foam core tends to retain water. When this happens it will get very heavy, even weighing over 100 lbs. So if you use PVC it may not over the years support the weight. You will also want to use some sort of hydraulic assist. Good luck.

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Old 11-17-05, 10:50 AM
Bog Bonzai
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Smile Cover made easy

If the newage metal studs that you can buy at the depot are aluminium you could easily build the frame out of them. They're thick enough to use 2" styrofoam. Hinges will screw right on to them. If they're steel I might reconsider using them. They're light and rigid enough.

I have a simple bi-fold cover that just flips off, easy to handle. No real need for a lifting mechanism unless you want one for the simplicity covering/uncovering.
Old 11-17-05, 05:35 PM
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Thumbs up Good ideas!

The cover I have is a bi-fold design
I think I may try Homer's approach with the copper pipe and Rust-o-leum spray paint. I agree with Him and DPW about the weight issue with using PVC. I didn't even think about the fact that the cover could and probably will get water logged. In fact, I am going to remove the insulation from the cover, ensure that it is dry and then water proof it. I have seen threads where folks have gone down to the marine supply store and have the insulation wrappped with the shrink plastic that they use to protect boats for the Winter. I think this is a great idea, but I am not that close to a marina.
The Metal stud idea that Bog has would definitely fit the strength profile, and it would probably not oxidize as much as copper, but I think it would look bulky.
Old 11-19-05, 07:42 PM
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I have had two different spa covers and neither of them absorbed water so I don't think that will be a major problem.

A simple stand on the outside of the spa might be the easy way to go. I made one many years ago and it was a great improvement over letting the cover go all the way to the floor/ground. Make the stand so it holds the bottom edge of the cover about 12-18" below the top of your spa. Opening the cover is easy. Flip over one side, get in the spa and tip the cover up on to your stand. When finished soaking simply tip the cover back onto your spa.

Once I got older and wiser I spent the money and bought a cover lift and it was the best money I have ever spent. It is spring loaded so it carries most of the weight of the cover and it has worked perfectly for about seven years now.

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