Moving and Packing Tips

How to Move a Hot Tub by Yourself

Moving house can easily turn into a source of anxiety for months to come. Additionally, special items are a challenge. Whether you are moving a hot tub a short distance or to a new property, this is a huge appliance that requires a minimum of 4 helpers, upper body strength, and a decent amount of knowledge about disassembly and reassembly.

In other words, you’re going to need some help moving it, either from friends or professional movers.

Still, this blog post will be of use to those of you who:

  • Are about to move house;
  • Are interested in the proper way of moving a hot tub;
  • Have enough helpers and are willing to move the hot tub by themselves.

How hard is it to move a hot tub?

A standard hot tub is about 450 pounds when empty and could weigh close to 3000 when full. Of course, these numbers could vary depending on the size of the tub and the material of the shell. Plastic hot tubs tend to be lighter, while acrylic and vinyl ones are heavier.

So it goes without saying that trying to move it by yourself won’t be easy and will require good planning, the proper tools and organisation. Still, you need to keep in mind that the risk of injuries or damage to the hot tub remains very real.

Therefore, booking a moving company instead and asking specifically if they move heavy items is the safer option. If you are planning to move additional items with the hot tub, make sure you know their weight, too. It will help the professionals decide what kind of vans you will need for your move, to avoid being fined for gross vehicle weight.

However, if you are still set on moving your hot tub yourself, we provide detailed directions on proper planning and a list of the right supplies that can make the move successful.

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What equipment do you need to move a hot tub safely?

Getting ready for the move will take lots of preparation. It’s advisable to start about 3 months in advance. Here is what Fantastic Services recommends.

  • At least 4 helpers – Moving a hot tub is definitely not a one-man job. You need at least 4 able-bodied helpers. Each of them should be able to lift a corner of the tub, while you slide a furniture dolly under it. This is heavy-duty work, so don’t forget to treat your helpers after the job is done.
  • Two furniture dollies – It’s not advisable to lift and carry such a heavy item, so using a furniture dolly is a must. Depending on the size you might have to get at least two.
  • Moving straps, working gloves and blankets – Lifting the hot tub on a dolly requires moving straps, so you’ll need at least 4 for each corner. And since they could leave burns on your hands, we recommend using working gloves as well. The blankets are used to cover the hot tub during transportation.
  • An appliance dolly – You can rent one of these at your local home improvement store. An appliance dolly is your best friend if you need to move the hot tub up or downstairs.
  • A large van with a ramp – If you’re only moving the hot tub to another location in your home, you won’t need this. But if you’re moving to another address, you’ll need the right-sized van. For that, you should measure your hot tub and make sure the moving van is able to accommodate it. And don’t forget to make sure the van is equipped with a ramp, so you don’t have to lift the tub off the ground, risking injury.
  • 4×4 lumber boards – You can get these from your home improvement store. They’re used to centre the dollies and help ensure no one gets their fingers squashed during unloading.

How to move a hot tub by yourself

1. Disconnect the hot tub

Hot tubs are connected to an electrical outlet, so unplug them before you do anything. The Fantastic Services moving team always recommends putting away all cords and taping them to the exterior of the appliance. This way nothing would be dangling around and no one would trip on it. In this case, you could also place the cord in a plastic bag so it doesn’t get wet.

2. Drain the water

Find your manufacturer’s directions and see what they say about draining the water from the hot tub. You’ll most likely have to use a garden hose and drain the water directly into the street gutter. The standard hot tub can be filled with about 400 gallons of water and pouring all that in your yard could damage the vegetation. Once you’re done, clean up the surface with the proper detergent.

3. Plan the moving route

Walk around and make a note of the potential obstacles in the transporting route. Does the route include stairs? Should you move some items out of the way? Is the gate opening big enough for the hot tub to pass? Will you carry it from the back entrance or from the front? Make your plan according to these questions and you and your helpers will have an easier time on moving day.

4. Lift the hot tub

Finally, moving day is here. The surroundings are as clear from obstacles as they can be, you have all your moving supplies, and your helpers are ready for some heavy-duty work. Each of your four helpers should put on their working gloves and use the moving straps on each corner of the tub. They need to lift the entire tub. Always remember to lift with your knees and not your back.

5. Slide the furniture dollies under the tub

Align the dollies under the tub in a way that they would be centred and keep the tub balanced. Let your helpers carefully place the tub on top of the dollies. To ensure that the hot tub doesn’t fall off, secure it to the dollies with the moving straps. Now all that’s left is to push it to the moving van.

6. Load the hot tub into the moving van

Once you’re certain the two dollies are properly aligned and the tub is securely strapped, you can proceed with carefully pushing the tub towards your transport vehicle. Make sure there is one person from each side to support the tub.

If you have to go up or down the stairs, you’ll have to lift the tub on its side and use an appliance dolly. Wrap the dolly’s straps around the tub and make sure they’re secured tightly. Have 2 helpers support the dolly from the back and 2 helpers support the dolly from the front. Go up or down the stairs one step at a time. Don’t be hasty.

Lower the moving van’s ramp and slowly push the dolly inside. Have two people support the tub from either side to make sure it goes smoothly.

Once the tub is in the van, you should cover it with moving blankets and secure it to the inside of the van. This way you will reduce the chance of damage during transportation to a minimum.

7. Unload the hot tub

Once you’ve arrived at the new location, the first thing you should do is remove the moving blankets. You might be tempted to keep them on the whole time, however, even if they’re taped securely, they will make it uncomfortable for the tub to be moved around the new place.

After removing the moving straps and blankets, set up the ramp and push the dolly down along with the tub. Have your helpers support from each side, so it doesn’t fall down. Carefully roll the tub to its new location, making sure your path is clear of any obstructions. Use an appliance dolly should you need to go up or down the stairs.

Just like with putting the tub on the dolly, you’ll have to take it off the same way by using the lumber boards. Set up the 4×4 boards on the spot where you want to place the tub. Lift the tub from its corners and slide it over the boards. The boards will help ensure no one gets their fingers caught when you lower the tub to the ground.

Now that the job is done, it’s time to reinstall the tub, clean it, fill it up and switch it on. What better way to treat your helpers than with a tub party?
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Rely on the pros to take this heavy work off your hands

By now you should know how difficult it is to move a hot tub from one location to another. Not only could you damage it during the move, but you could also seriously injure yourself and your helpers if you’re not careful.

What you need is a professional team of insured movers who would guarantee the success of this operation. You can always rely on reliable movers from Fantastic Services to do the job for you!

Need a professional moving team?

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  • Hot tubs are extremely heavy items, so it’s recommended to leave the job to a professional moving company instead.
  • Should you choose to move the hot tub by yourself, you’ll need at least 4 helpers, 2 furniture dollies, an appliance dolly if you have stairs and a big enough van.

Image source: shutterstock / Sergio Sergo

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