Wood-Fired Hot Tubs Are Making a Comeback

The New York Times

Remember the Farrell's wood-burning hot tub? Well, it looks like wood-burning hot tubs are making a comeback. A recent article in The New York Times says that people are moving back to these "low-tech models" for environmental reasons, affordability, and "a personal desire to slow down and commune with nature."It probably doesn't hurt that wood hot tubs are more affordable, too. The average cost of a wood-fired hot tub is around $3,000, while electric tubs with jets typically cost $3,000 to $7,000 or more, with extra operating costs adding on an additional $350. But wood-burning tubs cost practically nothing extra for owners who use their own wood.

As for the green features:

Many owners of wood-fired tubs also point out that they do not burn fossil fuels or pour sanitizing chemicals in their water. Generally, they explain, the water in wood-burning tubs is used for a short time and then drained, while in conventional spas the water remains for months. Moreover, they say, the water in conventional tubs is usually kept continuously warm — a practice they liken to keeping a car idling in the garage in case someone might want to go for a drive.

But is that really the case?

Others say wood-fired tubs are not all that green. Although wood is a renewable resource, its smoke does contribute to air pollution. And Kirstin Pires, a spokeswoman for the pool and spa association, noted that conventional tubs had become far more energy efficient because of consumer demand and new public standards, like those mandated by the California Energy Commission in 2006.

Read the full article at The New York Times.

(Image: Liz Vidyarthi)

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