Hot Tub Shells: Every Thing You Need To Know About Them

Hot tubs have been around here since the days of the Ancient Greeks and Romans, but modern hot tub shells are more advanced than ever before. Hot tubs are a great way to relax after a long day or enjoy quality time with friends and family.

One of the main components of a hot tub is the shell. Hot tub shells are the exterior walls of the spa, which come in a variety of shapes and sizes.

Before selecting a shell for your hot tub, it’s important to understand what type of material is used for each one and its benefits. Even the pricing can vary significantly depending on the type of material used.

So if you know what shell you want, you can find the best hot tub for you!

In this article, we will be sharing everything you need to know about hot tub shells so you can make a better-informed purchase.

What are tub shells?

Before we jump into how to choose the right hot tub shell, let’s start with understanding what a hot tub shell is and why it’s important.

A hot tub’s shell is essentially the housing for your hot tub. It provides structure, strength, and support for the spa’s components like jets, pumps, and plumbing. The type of material used in a hot tub’s shell can vary greatly and have a huge impact on the hot tub’s overall durability.

Different types of materials used for hot tub shells include acrylic, fiberglass, stainless steel, and wood. Each material has its own pros and cons, so it’s important to do your research before making a decision.

What is a hot tub shell made of?

Acrylic hot tubs are one of the most common types of hot tubs on the market. An acrylic hot tub shell is made of a durable acrylic material that is often reinforced with fiberglass. This makes the shell resistant to cracking, staining, and fading over time. Acrylic shells are relatively lightweight which allows for easy installation and transportation as well.

Other hot tubs may use plastic shells that are made from a combination of rotomolded plastic, plastic powder, and resin. Plastic shells are often the most affordable option on the market but it has a dull matte finish which is not ideal for those who are hoping for a glossy surface.

There are also wood, stainless steel, and fiberglass hot tub shells available on the market.

Just as we mentioned earlier, each material has its own unique pros and cons so make sure to do your research before making a purchase.

Different types of hot tub shell materials

Here are some of the most common types of hot tub shell materials available in the market:

1. Acrylic shell

Acrylic shells are probably the most common type of shell available on the market. Its double-layer construction makes it resistant to cracking, staining and fading over time. It is also relatively lightweight which allows for easy installation and transportation as well.

2. Plastic shell

Plastic shells are often the most affordable option on the market. However, they are also more prone to wear and tear over time compared to other types of materials. But if you manage to find a good quality plastic shell, it could last for years. Plastic tubs are also quite light and easy to move around.

3. Vinyl shell

The next type of shell is vinyl, which provides great insulation and durability. Vinyl shells come in a variety of colors and textures, so you can choose one that suits your preferences. Additionally, they are less prone to cracking and fading in comparison with other materials. Thanks to the insulation and heat retention properties, these shells also provide energy efficiency and can help reduce energy costs. The vinyl liner also requires less maintenance compared to other types of materials.

4. Fiberglass shell

Fiberglass shells are considered one of the most durable and scratch-resistant options available on the market. Thanks to its non-porous properties, it can also be easily cleaned and maintained. Plus, these types of shells offer a sleek design for your hot tub, making it look more aesthetically pleasing. These shells also retain heat very well, so these are both energy efficient and cost-effective.

5. Wood shell

Wood shells are probably the most expensive option on the market but they also offer great insulation and aesthetic appeal. The wood can be stained or painted to match your décor as well. Additionally, some wooden shells have a polyurethane coating that helps protect them from bacteria and water damage. Cedar and teak are some of the most common types of wood used for hot tubs.

Does the hot tub shell affect the hot tub water?

Not really! It might affect the heating time of your hot tub, as certain materials will provide better insulation than others. But the water itself should be unaffected by the type of shell material.

The pH level of your hot tub depends on the chemicals and other treatments you use for cleaning and maintenance, not on the shell material. What component affects the water is the filter. The filter will help keep the water clean and free of bacteria and contaminants, so it’s important to regularly change or clean your filter depending on what type you have.


So there you have it! There are many different types of hot tub shell materials available on the market, and each one offers its own unique set of benefits. Consider all the factors before making your decision so that you can choose the best option for your needs. Don’t forget to also take into account maintenance requirements and overall cost when choosing a shell material. Good luck!