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Jerry's Posts

Hot Tub at Playboy Mansion Needs Some Love…

April 18th, 2011 by

Health scare: Playboy bunnies pose under the marquee at the Mansion before the party. Officials have found the Legionella bacteria in a hot tub

Being experts on the subject of hot tub maintenance, I was surprised to see this outbreak come from one the most infamous hot tubs that exist in LA.

It would be real easy to make a moral correlation here but I’ll refrain from the obvious……

Article below.

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Health officials have confirmed that the bacteria that causes Legionnaires’ disease was found in a whirlpool spa at the Playboy Mansion where more than 100 people fell ill in February.

The Los Angeles County Health Department presented its findings on Friday at an annual conference at the Centres for Disease Control in Atlanta. The legionella bacteria also causes a milder illness called Pontiac fever.

Health scare: Playboy bunnies pose under the marquee at the Mansion before the party. Officials have found the Legionella bacteria in a hot tub.
Struck down: Investigators found the bacteria which causes Legionnaires' at the Playboy Mansion after scores of people fel ill on the same day
Struck down: Investigators found the bacteria which causes Legionnaires’ at the Playboy Mansion after scores of people fell ill on the same day
Investigation: 200 guests fell ill after attending a fundraiser at Hugh Hefner’s Playboy Mansion in February

Symptoms, which include fever and headache, are the same as those suffered by the Playboy Mansion partygoers. The people who fell ill were at the mansion to mark the end of the three-day DOMAINFest Global Conference on internet business. The conference took place at the Fairmont Hotel in Santa Monica.

On the second night, there was a party at the Sky Bar on Sunset Boulevard in West Hollywood. The finale on the third night was at Playboy founder Hugh Hefner’s famous mansion. Within 48 hours after leaving it, scores of people reported coming down with symptoms including fever, respiratory problems and violent headaches. About 700 people from 30 countries attended the conference.

DOMAINFest asked people who were at the event to fill out a confidential survey to help in the health department investigation. Officials ended up speaking to 439 people and found that up to 200 of them had a fever and at least one other symptom. Sixty-nine people reported falling ill on the same day.

Something in the air? Public health investigators believe the illness which affected 200 guests may have been spread through the atmospheric fog
Something in the air? Public health investigators believe the illness which affected 200 guests may have been spread through the atmospheric fog. Dr Jonathan Fielding, director of the county Department of Public Health, said that Legionella bacteria are commonly found in moist environments. Pontiac fever, which is caused by bacteria, typically lasts two to five days and treatment is usually unnecessary, ktla.com reports.

The bacteria are not spread from person to person, they are inhaled in water vapor from hot tubs, showers and even air conditioning systems. Some of those who became ill originally suspected a fog machine that was used at the party in February.

A Playboy spokesman said at the time: ‘There is no truth in the rumor that anyone caught anything at the Playboy Mansion, nor is there any evidence. ‘None of the Playboy staff became ill, the deejay was in the middle of the fog and she didn’t get ill. ‘We have been contacted by the Health Department and the Playboy Mansion is cooperating fully with the investigation.’

One partygoer, Elliot J. Silver, said: ‘It is scary that everyone came down with the same thing at the same time. ‘It knocked me on my ass. A lot of people are blaming the Playboy Mansion on the blogs, but you can’t be sure.’

- Legionnaires disease is one of many bacterias that can cause sickness, from improperly sanitized and filtered hot tubs.

Thanks;Jerry

Our Spa Covers Bring Joy

April 14th, 2011 by

hot-tub-spa-consumer-reviews

 

Another happy client. We get dozens of emails like this every week.  Our staff cares about the clients and the products we sell. Our customers share their Joy back to us – and we just love it – keep your letters (and emails) rolling in!

 

Just emailed to Lietta:

“Our hot tub cover arrived today. We love it. Thanks for the quality workmanship. Here’s a quick snapshot I made to send to my wife, who stayed at our office while I met the delivery guy and put the spa cover on the tub.”

spa-cover-brings-joy

Thanks;

Jerry

Hot Tub and Spas Warm Water Research

April 13th, 2011 by

spas-are-relaxing-but-why?Bruce Becker, a physician and research professor at Washington State University, recently remarked about warm-water immersion with an analogy. “You know when you come home from a long day at work and you’re stressed out?” he asks. “You want to sink into a hot bathtub and go, ‘Ahhh.’ I’m trying to figure out what the hell that ‘Ahhh’ is all about.”

Becker’s efforts focus on the benefits to the autonomic nervous system of soaking in water with a temperature of 102 degrees Fahrenheit. An individual’s autonomic nervous system helps him or her adapt to changes in environment and affects such vital functions as heart rate, digestion, respiration, salivation, circulation and even sexual arousal. While in a constant state of flux, its two subsystems — the sympathetic nervous system (which escalates under stress) and the parasympathetic nervous system (which promotes calm) — fall into balance when the body is immersed in warm water, according to Becker’s findings.

Hot Tubs Bring a “Balanced State”

That balanced state has been associated with a reduction in the risk of cardiovascular disease, improved memory, enhanced cognitive processes and increased concentration. “The autonomic nervous system responds to warm water immersion the same way it responds to meditation or a number of other relaxed states,” Becker says.

While such claims seem logical on the surface, there has been little scientific evidence to support them before now. “Spas have a perception of being used for fun and socializing,” says Chris Robinson, a division director for the Hot Tub Council. “That seems to be limiting their demographics and not promoting their full utility. We know, empirically, that spas make people feel better. They relax you, help you sleep better and provide benefits for sore muscles. But there has been no proof of that medically.”

That’s why Becker’s research at WSU’s National Aquatic & Sports Medicine Institute — funded with grants from the Hot Tub Council, the National Swimming Pool Foundation and AQUA’s parent company Athletic Business — is considered so important. Most of the current literature on immersion focuses on subjects in a supine floating position, rather than in the seated position that is more common in a spa.

Becker presented the initial results of his research at the World Aquatic Health Conference last October and expects to conduct related studies throughout 2010. Specifically, he plans to explore how long the autonomic nervous system remains balanced after warm-water immersion, as well as the effects of immersion on moods, cognitive function and memory.

“The technology to look at this easily, non invasively and in an aquatic environment has not been around all that long,” says Becker, NASMI’s director, whose interest in aquatic therapy dates back to the 1980s, when he started working with elite athletes through Nike’s Olympic Development Program.

“I’m a rehab doc by training, so I’ve used water as a rehab and recovery environment through much of my professional career and have been frustrated by the lack of supporting research to really document what’s happening. Do I know that it works? Yeah. Do I know why it works? No.”

The Hot Tub Experiment

In Becker’s experiment, three tubs filled with water — each large enough to hold as many as four adults — were housed in one of the research laboratories at NASMI headquarters. One by one, 16 college-age students and 16 adults between the ages of 45 and 64 took turns sitting for 24 minutes in each of the tubs during evaluation sessions conducted by Becker and his team of researchers in 2008 and 2009. Resting measurements of heart rate and blood pressure were taken to establish a baseline, and participants’ core body temperature, heart rate, blood pressure, pulse, circulatory functions and respiratory status were monitored during their immersion time in each tub. In between his or her immersions, the test subject would sit for 12 minutes outside of the water in order to reestablish the baseline.

The first tub was filled with 87-degree water. Any cooler than that, and people would start shivering, Becker says, “so we settled on a temperature that most people certainly wouldn’t define as cold. When you get into it, it doesn’t feel cold, but you’re sitting immobile. I participated in the study, and my teeth were chattering in about six minutes.”

The second tub contained what researchers referred to as a “neutral” temperature of 94 degrees, and the “hot” tub registered at 102 degrees, “which isn’t hot by the way some people set their hot tubs,” Becker says. “If you set the hot tub at 104 degrees, which is what most commercial facilities do, people are not able to stay in long enough to get the therapeutic benefits out of it that they could if you set it to a cooler temperature. In our study, most people really were pretty anxious to get out after 24 minutes. We tried going warmer than 102, and they just couldn’t stay in, or they got really lightheaded when they got out — if they managed to stay in for the entire time.”

The two age groups analyzed were chosen because of their healthy youthfulness, in the case of college students, and because middle-age adults have sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems that typically remain in a greater state of flux.

At his research’s most basic level, Becker and his colleagues found that immersion in warm water tends to reduce stress levels for all participants. The degree of stress reduced varied from subject to subject, but all of them responded in the same way.

Robinson, who also is the business manager for Lucite Acrylic Sheet, the division of Lucite International that makes surface material for residential spas, is simply pleased that Becker has gotten this far. “I’d like to think this is the beginning of a paradigm shift in the way people think about spas,” he says. “This promotes hot tub use for general therapy, and I think we can use that to help people realize how they can benefit more from the experience. The more of these general studies we can do, the better off the industry will be.”

Underwater Exploration

Bruce Becker’s research at Washington State University may be the first of its kind to focus on how warm water affects the autonomic nervous system. But several other projects are seeking to help facility operators and users better understand water’s healing power.

Among the most significant development is a new aquatic rehabilitation component of the U.S. Army’s Wounded Warriors program. Mary Wykle, a Northern Virginia Community College professor who believes soldiers and athletes have similar rehab needs, is coordinating the program at Wounded Warrior Transition Units, which provide critical support to wounded soldiers and their families. Currently piloted at Fort Lewis, Wash., and Virginia-based Fort Eustis and Fort Belvoir, the aquatic element is expected to eventually involve as many as 10,000 soldiers and will include two phases. One will prepare the wounded for recovery from injuries, and the other will help them return to active duty or civilian life. Projected results include pain reduction, enhanced fitness, and improved range of motion, balance, and core and extremity strength.

While the program isn’t formally a research project, data will be gathered on participants’ progress by location, gender, age, rank and injury, and then compared to that of soldiers in traditional rehabilitation programs. “It’ll be interesting to see, as the results of that program begin to come in, whether or not there is an enhanced level of potential funding,” says Becker, a physician and WSU research professor who helped design the aquatics component for the Wounded Warriors program. “Obviously, the things that we’ve found with warm-water immersion may be profoundly helpful in post-traumatic stress disorder.”

Thanks;

Jerry

Cal Spas is Quick to Respond to Hot Tub Buyers

April 12th, 2011 by

cal-spas-coversI saw this release this morning.  Many industry people will be quick to speak of Cal Spas in a “Not so Kind” light, but the fact remains they respond to consumer trends quicker than anyone.

So, from my perspective if a company produces a product that is “green” and also happens to be a great bang for buck, that’s a winner.  Now it’s up to their dealers to provide the service and that’s where the bad or good reputation really happens.

If you are shopping for hot tub – shop a few different dealers and brands, and you’ll know whats best for you.  The release is below.

Cal Spas Launches Eco-Conscious Hot Tub Line

Hot Tub Giant introduces Gen II™, an energy-efficient acrylic hot tub series

Los Angeles, CA—(April 11, 2011)

Cal Spas, the world leader in stylish, Home Resort products is pleased to announce the launch of the Gen II™ Spa Series, an efficient entry-level “Plug & Play” hot tub lineup.

“At Cal Spas, we are constantly driving to meet the demands of the consumer market,” said Casey Loyd, President of Cal Spas. “After months of market research we found that consumers are seeking eco-conscious products that fit their lifestyle and budget. We launched the Gen II™ Spa Series because it meets the demands of over 60 percent of the market by offering an efficient, high performance entry-level hot tub with a budget-friendly price tag. The Gen II™ Spa Series is ideal for consumers that want to purchase a hot tub to enhance their lifestyle without ‘breaking the bank’.”

The Gen II™ Spa Series includes four exclusive models and is the most efficient and cost-effective full-size, acrylic hot tub series in the industry. It features a high performance one-of-a-kind 1.5 HP pump, offered exclusively through Cal Spas, that lowers energy costs by efficiently circulating and filtering 100 percent of the spa water. The Gen II™ is also equipped with a convenient “Plug & Play” kit, which reduces installation costs. With the “Plug & Play” kit, Gen II™ hot tubs are easily installed without the expense of an electrician since consumers can simply fill up a Gen II™ hot tub and plug it into any working electrical socket prior to use.

Thanks;

Jerry

Bear Eats Spa Cover

March 30th, 2011 by

We hear many great stories of how spa covers meet their demise but rarely do we see or hear of bears munching on our hot tub covers.

These pics come to us from a client who “loved” their spa cover from HotTubWorks.com and unfortunately a big furry friend from the forest liked it too.

A new spa cover is on the way……

bear eats spa cover

bear eats hot tub cover

Great Spa Covers Make Winter Fun

March 29th, 2011 by

This is a fun example of some hard working spa covers that did the job! Spa covers not only keep heat but they also provide needed protection from harsh winter elements.

spa-cover-snow

photography

spa-cover-snow-3

Those are some great snow storms, which we don’t see here in Orange County, California!

For you hardy souls in the North, you should try to keep heavy snow off of the spa cover. A few inches, maybe up to a foot of dry and light snow is OK, but excess snow (especially wet snow) can be heavy, and could break your spa cover.

Use a regular snow shovel to remove the snow, but leave an inch or two on the hot tub cover, so you don’t risk tearing the vinyl fabric. Or use a push broom – or maybe a big leaf blower? How about a blow torch? No, maybe not…

Thanks;

Jerry

NEC Exempts Hot Tubs and Spas From Requirement

March 23rd, 2011 by

By Rebecca Robledo | 3.23.2011

The National Electrical Code has been temporarily changed to exempt portable spas from bonding requirements.

spa-and-hot-tub-parts--cords-and-connectorsIn 2008, the National Fire Protection Association added language requiring that pools and spas be connected to a bonding grid under the deck to prevent shock hazards. The mandate didn’t differentiate portable hot tubs from inground spas or pools.

“It would have meant that any portable spa would require an equipotential bonding grid underneath it, and anytime you’d move the spa, you’d have to move the installation as well,” said Carvin DiGiovanni, senior director, technical and standards at the Association of Pool & Spa Professionals. “Equipotential bonding may serve a purpose, but it doesn’t apply to portable spas.”

Manufacturers and retailers alike called the mandate prohibitively expensive and unnecessary. For homeowners to tear out portions of the deck and install a bonding grid could cost more than the hot tub itself, they said. Furthermore, currently the units must meet UL and ANSI/APSP standards, making a bonding grid redundant. And, finally, when portable spas are installed above ground, it’s nearly impossible to experience a shock from the deck, they said, because a bather would not be on the deck and in the water at the same time.

“In [an inground] swimming pool, you can be in the water, then crawl out on the deck surrounding it, and if the deck or water is electrified you could get shocked,” said Larry Nicholson, senior electronic engineer at Watkins Manufacturing in Vista, Calif. “If you’re stepping out of an above-ground spa, you won’t have one leg in the water and the other touching the deck,” added Nicholson, who helped draft the argument to alter the requirement.

Industry officials tried to enact a change in time for the 2011 code writing, but met with resistance from the NFPA. APSP then submitted a request for a tentative interim amendment (TIA), which is essentially a temporary addendum to the body of the code that had already passed. It automatically goes up for reconsideration during the next code-writing cycle.

Bonding wires and grids no longer will be needed on portable spas in states and localities adopting the 2011 NEC. Those still enforcing  the 2008 language, however, may still require the grids. In those areas, professionals may try to show local building officials a copy of the TIA, found here, to try getting a waiver.

To push a TIA through, those requesting it must prove that the proposed change has technical merit and addresses a potential safety risk posed by the code language. The first committees hearing the proposal agreed that the change had technical merit, but didn’t believe it was an emergency. APSP appealed the decision, submitting that it did potentially put consumers at risk.

“People were having to tear up their whole patio and repour the concrete, and it was costing more to do that than to actually purchase the spa,” Nicholson said. “[The requirement] was forcing people to say, ‘You know what? I’m just not going to get a permit.’ I’ve seen installations where the electrical job was absolutely atrocious, and it was because the homeowner was doing it on their own and shortcutting things.”

A higher committee overturned the original decision.

The NEC is revised every three years, at which point all TIAs are automatically put up for reconsideration and public comment so that, if approved, it is adapted in the body of the code. The next NEC comes out in 2014.

It seems certain that at this next meeting, the NEC will accept the amendments as presented by the APSP.

Thanks;

Jerry

Spa & Hot Tub Show in Novi, Michigan

March 17th, 2011 by
novi-pool-spa-show

 

If you live in MI and want a spa or hot tub, or a pool, then this is the show to attend.  I attended some years ago and the saving and selection were amazing.

Every weekend is a vacation for a homeowner with a pool, spa, hot tub and backyard living amenity from the Novi Backyard, Pool & Spa Show, March 22-24, 2013 at Suburban Collection Showplace.

Exhibits display products and services from the major outdoor living environment categories including inground and aboveground pools, spas, swim spas, decks, patios, fencing, outdoor living spaces, patio furniture, outdoor court systems, patio enclosures, sunrooms and accessories.

 

Novi Backyard, Pool & Spa Show

The 18th annual Novi Backyard, Pool & Spa Show will run from Friday, March 22 through Sunday, March 24 at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi (formerly the Rock Financial Showplace).

“We will help you create the backyard of your dreams,” said Mike Wilbraham, show producer of ShowSpan, Inc. “From hot tubs, spas and pools to sunrooms, patios and decks – the show has what you need for the perfect ‘staycation’ every weekend.” The show is sponsored by the Michigan Pool & Spa Association, member of the Association of Pool & Spa Professionals (APSP).

Hundreds of ideas, products and services are available from the major outdoor living environment categories on display including inground and aboveground pools, spas, swim spas, decks, patios, fencing, outdoor living spaces, patio furniture, outdoor court systems, patio enclosures, sunrooms and accessories.

Homeowners will find the information they need about buying a pool or spa at show exhibits. Experts are available with tips and advice on purchasing, planning, maintenance, safety, exercise, health, financing and landscaping.

“Just think of the fun you can have with family and friends right in your own backyard,” said Wilbraham. “Our professionals are available to assist you with all of your planning and purchasing needs for the spring and summer season.”

Suburban Collection Showplace is located at 46100 Grand River Avenue between Novi and Beck Road in Novi. Show hours are from 3 – 9 p.m. Friday; 11 a.m. – 9 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $8; $4 for children 6-14 and children 5 and under admitted free. Discount coupons for $2 off adult admission on Friday and Sunday are available at show’s Web site. On site parking is available for a fee. For more information, visit http://www.NoviPoolShow.com or call (800) 328-6550.

Spa Cover Lifters Buyer’s Guide

March 16th, 2011 by

spa-cover-lifterIn owning a spa or hot tub, you should know some basics to increase the benefits and reduce costs. One of these important things is having a new spa cover. This will help you by conserving power because the cover will hold the heat inside of your tub.

In addition, hot tub covers are a great help in keeping your water clean and clear, protecting your spa from unsafe bacteria and other dirt-sources. In general, a spa cover is an essential component of your hot tub health care.

Spa Covers Can become heavy

At first, it may only weigh something like 30 0r 40 lbs.. But ultimately, the longer you have it, the dense insulation inside the  spa cover will become much heavier. In some cases, its weight can increase as much as fourfold.

This will make you think that besides the great advantages, a spa cover can also offer some trade-offs. At times, because of the really heavy cover, you may find yourself abandoning and merely uncovering half of the tub for use.

However, this problem has a wonderful solution – a spa cover lift. Hot Tub Lifters can assist you with the removing and secure storage of your spa cover.

Types of Spa Cover Lifters

Lots of options are available in spa cover lifts. Most of these choices use a mechanized lift to truly lift the cover for you. Other models are meant to hold the cover securely every time you push and pull it off of your hot tub.

Furthermore, many of these alternatives will offer you covers that are held in a position away from the ground. This helps to prevent scratches as well as damage to your spa cover from coming in contact with soft, muddy areas – and also holds it steady where it won’t easily fall over, or be in the way of people moving around the spa. This feature makes the spa lift worthy of the costs due to the indisputable fact that spa covers are not cheap to replace.

Take Some Measurements

measuring tape

Before you buy a spa cover lifter, it is necessary to take into account the clearance regarding the tub in addition to the enclosure or boundaries around your spa. Gather information about the clearances you have, to match up to those needed in your cover lifter, to find the lift that is ideal for you. Some hot tub cover lifters need up several feet or clearance, although some only require 6 inches of space to operate.

Which Spa Cover Lifter is best?

Certainly, any tub cover lifter could be an extremely essential instrument in maintaining and also protecting the spa. The spa cover lifter can be priceless because of its help in keeping the cover out of the way every time you use the spa.

Generally speaking, the more you pay for your spa cover lifter, the better quality device and construction it has. We have a range of prices from $120-280 on spa lifts currently. Something for every need and budget.

A spa cover lifter will help you with the maintenance, safety and protection of your spa cover. See our huge selection of hot tub cover lifts, at hottubworks.com to save on top brand name spa cover lifters.

Hottubworks.com celebrates Alea’s Birthday

March 14th, 2011 by

Alea Cozzi is a wonderful person.  It’s really that simple. She’s loyal, smart, funny, kind, authentic, considerate, responsible, supportive, brave, caring, fair, generous, …. and she has great style. I guess you might get the picture.

My life is better because she’s in it. ~ Happy Birthday, Alea!

photo
Thanks;

Jerry