Are Inflatable Hot Tubs Louder Than Regular Hot Tubs?

Inflatable hot tubs, just like any hot tub, produce some noise as they operate. But how do they compare to traditional hot tubs? Are they much louder?

Inflatable hot tubs are’t typically louder than hard shell hot tubs. Hot tubs usually emit between 41 and 67.4 decibels, making them no louder than average traffic. However, the brand, soundproofing, and location can all affect the noise level. The tub might also be louder if something has gone wrong.

Inflatable hot tubs make great additions to any backyard, but a lot of people are concerned about the potential noise they produce. Let’s take a closer look at what to expect in terms of the noise from an inflatable hot tub and how it compares to other options.

How Noisy Are Inflatable Hot Tubs?

Closeup of hot tub

Inflatable hot tubs produce between 41 decibels and 67.4 decibels, depending on their settings and the specific make and model. For reference, 41 decibels is about the same volume as the average library while  67 is constant traffic.

Some hot tubs are marketed as being relatively quiet, but there will always be some sound produced nonetheless.

If the hot tub is loud in the showroom, don’t assume that it will be any quieter in your backyard. Always assume the worse case scenario, and extra precautions are often made in the showroom to ensure they run quieter to make the sale. 

Every hot tub, inflatable or not, has mechanical parts, and they make noise. This sound originates from the pump that keeps the water moving. There are also the jets themselves and the bubbles that can cause some noise.

These kinds of sounds are inevitable as mechanical parts are always moving and working when the hot tub is in use. The sounds can be louder or quieter, depending on the settings you’re using.

The people in the hot tub also make considerable noise. In order to hear each other over the noise of the bubbles and jets, most people tend to talk louder, making their volume increase, which could disturb neighbors.

Any kind of social activity causes noise, of course, but when you’re competing with a hot tub, things tend to get loud more quickly. 

Are Inflatable Hot Tubs Louder Than Regular Hot Tubs?

No, inflatable hot tubs aren’t necessarily louder than a hard shell hot tub. They tend to be about the same, though not every hot tub is made equally.

Every model and manufacturer produces a slightly different sound, and that volume could increase or decrease based on where you purchase your hot tub from. 

So, although an inflatable hot tub isn’t louder than a hard shell hot tub, there could very well be some hard shell hot tub brands that are quieter than your inflatable brand.  

How to Limit the Noise From Your Inflatable Hot Tub

If your hot tub is too loud for your neighbors, or even for your own enjoyment, then there are several things you can do to help minimize your hot tub’s normal sound output.

Use a Cover

If the noise of water flowing and the bubbling jets are making you anxious about the sound output, try using a cover. A heavy-duty cover — like this one (on Amazon) — can dramatically decrease the volume of the hot tub when it’s not in use. 

Turn the Tub Off When Not in Use

A good rule of thumb is to turn the hot tub off when you aren’t using it. This will cut down on constant noise when you don’t need it to be running.

Turning the tub off will save you on running costs too, as constantly needing to heat the hot tub can run the electricity bills pretty high.

Your neighbors will also thank you for the noise reprieve.

Insulation Mat

Having an insulation mat (on Amazon) has several benefits that make it a useful addition to your hot tub. 

The first is heat retention. Having an insulation mat underneath the hot tub helps keep the heat from escaping through the bottom and prevents the cold ground from sapping it away. This helps keep the hot tub warmer for longer, and it cuts down on your running costs. 

A mat also prevents any sharp objects on the ground from impaling the unit and causing it to rip.

One of the main concerns for an inflatable hot tub is a tear, which often occurs when a missed rock, stick, or other debris on the ground punctures through the bottom. A mat will help prevent this avoidable problem.

Lastly, an insulation mat will cut down on the vibrations of the hot tub. These mats are made from a thick rubber, which reduces noise and absorbs that annoying mechanical sound. If you plan to have your hot tub on the deck, this could be an easy way to avoid the amplified reverberations.

Enclose the Hot Tub

Choosing to enclose the hot tub not only blocks wind and makes the hot tub look more appealing, but it also has the added benefit of muffling sound. You could build a wooden enclosure around the hot tub or plant some thick bushes to absorb the sound. 

This way, people are less likely to be disturbed by the sound of the jets and bubbling water. 

Optimize the Pump

If the hot tub pump isn’t positioned currently, is malfunctioning, or has dirt and debris trapped inside of it, then it could be louder than intended. Optimizing the pump could be your answer to making the hot tub quieter. 

You want to make sure the pump is on a flat and hard surface without any sharp objects, like gravel, underneath.

Don’t have the pump installed anywhere near a wall or against another object, as that will cause vibrational noises to increase. Boxing in the pump can also have the same effect. 

If the pump is already placed correctly, then try to clean it out by following your manufacturer instructions.


Sometimes the noise from a hot tub can be amplified with the vibrations and reverberations from where the hot tub is located. Decking is notorious for this kind of amplification of mechanical sound a hot tub makes. It can also act as a drum and create a low droning hum.

So, in order to diminish the amount of sound your hot tub makes, try moving it to a different location, like on the ground or a cement slab. 

Normal Noises vs. Abnormal Noises: How to Tell the Difference

Jacuzzi hot tub

Generally, the best way to tell if a sound is normal or not is to consider if it was always there.

If it’s a new sound or one getting louder, then it’s usually not something that could be considered normal and most likely will need some further attention.

Squealing Noises

If you started hearing a new squealing noise, then it’s most likely coming from the pump. This is usually an indication that the bearings have worn out. After several years of running and general wear and tear, the bearings will disintegrate and cause that horrible squealing noise. 

The only way to fix it is to replace the pump all together.

Humming Noises

The humming noise is caused by vibration, which can be part of the normal mechanical operation or an indication that something is wrong.

If that humming noise has always been there, then it’s probably just the regular volume of the hot tub, and some of the tips above, like an insulation mat, could help minimize its reverberations. 

However, if the sound has gotten worse, then it’s indicative of something going wrong. Generally, this is seen when the bolts holding the pump have come loose. Simply tightening them should return the hot tub to its regular quiet hum.

Buzzing Noises

If you’ve started to notice a buzzing sound, then it’s most likely a combination of the squealing and humming sound working in unison to create that distinct sound. Check the bolts and make sure they’re tightened. If the sound remains, or changes, then try looking at the pump. 

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