Hot tub hook ups

Hiring a professional electrician who knows all the building codes to hook up your hot tub could save you a lot of money and time. 

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How to Install Hot Tub Electrical Hookups
If you are planning to install a hot tub in your backyard, you will need to make sure that you have the proper electrical hookups to power it. A hot tub requires a dedicated circuit with a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) breaker that protects it from electrical shocks. You will also need a manual disconnect device, also known as a spa panel, that allows you to turn off the power to the hot tub from a safe distance. In this blog post, we will show you how to wire a hot tub and install a spa panel following the National Electrical Code (NEC) guidelines and local codes. As with all electrical projects, we recommend that you consult an electrician before wiring a hot tub and have the wiring professionally inspected before using your hot tub.

Step 1: Gather Tools & Turn Off Power
The electrical tools you will need to wire a hot tub are:

Voltage tester
Set of screwdrivers
Wire stripers
Side cutters
Hole saw kit
Fish tape
Electrical tape
If using PVC Conduit, a PVC cutter
Hacksaw for all rigid metal conduit
Before you begin, shut off the power to your home from the main breaker box1.

Step 2: Mount the Spa Panel
The spa panel is a manual disconnect device that will prevent false tripping, which can happen when a hot tub is wired directly to a two-pole GFCI breaker. Mount the spa panel to the wall of your house according to the manufacturer’s instructions. The panel should be located in sight of your hot tub but positioned at least five feet away1. This distance reduces the potential hazard of someone touching the panel while making contact with the water in the hot tub.

Step 3: Lay the Conduit & Pull Wire
Install the conduit in a trench. Conduit is a long tube of metal or PVC that will hold the electrical wires. Consult your local building code to determine how deep to lay the conduit. Some conduit trenches must be as deep as 18 inches1. Use a shovel to dig the conduit trench.

Run four wires (two hot wires, one neutral wire and one ground wire) from the main breaker panel to the spa panel through the conduit. Use fish tape to pull the wires through the conduit. The wires should be rated for wet locations and have a gauge that matches the amperage of your hot tub circuit breaker2. For example, if your hot tub requires a 50 amp breaker, you should use 6 AWG wires.

Run another set of four wires from the spa panel to the hot tub through another conduit. Use fish tape again to pull the wires through the conduit. The wires should be long enough to reach the hot tub control panel with some slack.

Step 4: Wire the Spa Panel
Open the spa panel and locate the two-pole GFCI breaker inside. Connect the four wires from the main breaker panel to the GFCI breaker terminals according to their color coding:

Connect both black (hot) wires to the brass terminals marked “LINE”.
Connect the white (neutral) wire to the silver terminal marked “LINE”.
Connect the green (ground) wire to the green terminal marked “GROUND”.
Connect another set of four wires from the GFCI breaker terminals to an outlet box inside or outside of the spa panel according to their color coding:

Connect both black (hot) wires to brass terminals marked “LOAD”.
Connect white (neutral) wire to silver terminal marked “LOAD”.
Connect green (ground) wire to green terminal marked “GROUND”.
Close and secure the spa panel.

Step 5: Wire the Hot Tub
Open the hot tub control panel and locate where you need to connect your wires. The wiring diagram may vary depending on your hot tub model, so refer to your manufacturer’s instructions for details.

Connect four wires from outlet box inside or outside of spa panel according to their color coding:

Connect both black (hot) wires to terminals marked “L1” and “L2”.
Connect white (neutral) wire to terminal marked “N”.
Connect green (ground) wire to terminal marked “GND”.
Close and secure hot tub control panel.

Step 6: Have Spa Inspected
Before you fill up your hot tub with water and turn on power, have an electrician inspect your wiring and test your GFCI breaker for proper operation. If everything is done correctly, you should be able to enjoy your hot tub safely and comfortably.

Using a phone charger internationally

Can you use your regular cell phone charger that you buy in the United States overseas? That all depends on the charger and the input voltage on the charger. If the chargers input voltage is a 100-240 you can use the charger in a 110 outlet in America. The 220 outlets in the Philippines can have both of what's required to fall within the range of the input voltage.

Tips for an Energy Efficiency Upgrade

Your appliances may be working fine and the lights may turn on when you press the switch but it doesn’t mean that behind the walls, everything is working properly. In older houses, it is very important to check the electrical wiring and see if they need to be upgraded. For one, it will save you from potential damage. Here are some tips if you are planning an energy efficiency upgrade to your wiring:

Look Out For Aluminum Wiring 

Aluminum wires, which are installed in most homes built in the 60s and 70s, are considered a safety hazard because their wiring loosens up over time. Loose wiring can cause overheating and lead to a fire when plugged in. while upgrading your electrical system ensures that your electrical wires are safe and don’t need changing. Potential problems can be addressed by installing copper connectors. 

Add More Power Outlets

The standard household power used to be sixty amps but today, with the number of home appliances and gadgets, it is not enough. Homes need up to 200 amps to run flat screen TVs, computer gadgets and air conditioners. Not having enough power outlets in the home can cause damage to the wiring by overburdening the electrical outlets. 

Plan for the Future

When you are getting an energy efficiency upgrade, don’t just get the necessary work done which will last for a short time. Think about your electrical use and wire upgrades in the long term. If you're spending a certain amount now, you might as well spend enough to keep your living comfortable for a number of years. Don’t go for the minimum amount of work needed to be done but the maximum limit.

Signs of Electrical Trouble

Electrical wiring is one of the most important upgrades in a home, which should never be delayed. Old, worn out wires can be the cause of trouble leading to frequent house damages and fires. If you're living in a home that is more than 50 years old, you must call in an electrical expert to check the wiring. Sometimes, homeowners see no apparent signs of electrical trouble, which can end up causing damage. 

Homes usually have knob and tube wiring components, which are dated and found in older homes, or aluminum wiring components found in most new homes. But signs such as discolored switches and outlets, a persistent burning smell and blown fuses are a typical cause of concern for most homeowners. Getting help to find any electrical problems can make sure that your home and family are safe before a problem arises. If you're worried about electrical problems, watch out for the following signs of trouble:

  • Loose or improperly working switches. Once you switch a light on, it should light up and not flicker. 

  • Warm outlets or switches. Dimmer switches are generally warm due to the amount of resistance they build but other than that, no switch or outlet should be warm when you press it. 

  • Plugs that are loose can be a fire hazard in the house. 

  • The use of extension cords is also a sign of electrical trouble as it overloads a circuit. Install more outlets in the house for increased use. 

  • Rust on the electrical panel or meter can indicate hidden water leakage.

Electrical problems shouldn’t be taken lightly and on any slight sign of trouble, home maintenance experts should be called in. Although re-wiring is not as necessary but if the wires are very old, some changes in the electrical system can ensure peace of mind.