Finding The Perfect Hot Tub Temp (And When To Take A Break)

Hot tub temperatures usually range from 90˚F to 104˚F, and the perfect temperature depends on factors like your age, health, and personal preference. It can therefore take some time to find the ideal temperature for your tub, but once you do, you’ll be hard-pressed to spend a day without soaking and relaxing in your hot tub! 

While the perfect hot tub temperature depends on factors like age, health, and personal preference, most people find a temperature between 100 and 102 degrees Fahrenheit to be ideal. If you feel tired, lightheaded, dizzy, or nauseous — or if you notice burns on your skin — it’s time for a break.

Let’s take a closer look at how to determine the right temperature for your tub, the maximum temperature you can use, and when you should take a break, so that you can enjoy a good soak without worrying about your health. 

What’s the Highest Temperature a Hot Tub Can Go?

Senior couple in bathrobe checking temperature in outdoor hot tub

A hot tub can typically reach a maximum temperature of 104˚F — but that doesn’t mean you should set yours that high. There’s no right or wrong temperature to use; the perfect temperature is ultimately one that provides you with the best experience. 

Once you find the ideal water temperature, you can fully enjoy the benefits of hot water, which doesn’t only offer relaxation but can also help you treat conditions like insomnia and muscle pain.

What’s the Ideal Hot Tub Temperature?

It’s important to note that the ideal hot tub temperature varies with each person and depends on several factors, like health, age, and personal preference.

However, there are a few recommended guidelines you should keep in mind:

Set Temperature Below 104˚F for Adults 

According to the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission, temperatures above 104˚F, or 40˚C, can be dangerous for adults because they can cause heat strokes. For a relaxing and comfortable soak, it’s best to set your hot tub temperature between 100˚F and 102˚F. 

If you’re completely healthy, you can safely soak at these temperatures for around 15-30 minutes at a time.  

Start Low and Gradually Raise the Temperature

Set your hot tub temperature to 98˚F or 99˚F, and gradually increase the temperature while you soak so that you can enjoy a revitalizing massage without overheating your body. 

If you feel the urge to sit on the cooling steps or get out of the hot tub after a few minutes, then it’s a sign that the temperature of the water is too high. 

Consider Everyone’s Preferences

When soaking with your family or friends, make sure you consider the health and age of every person in the hot tub and choose a temperature that’s suitable for everyone. 

Once you set a temperature that’s perfect for everyone, it’s best to keep it relatively stable, as continuously lowering and raising the heat can increase maintenance and operational costs. 

How Long Can You Safely Stay in a Hot Tub?

If you set your hot tub temperature between 100˚F and 102˚F and keep a cold water bottle handy, then it’s generally safe to soak for 15-30 minutes, or as long as you’re comfortable. 

However, keep in mind that your health and age can impact how long you can safely soak in your hot tub. Here are a few other factors to consider:

Overall Health 

Your overall physical condition and health determines how long you should stay in your hot tub. For example, pregnant women should never soak in a hot tub with a temperature higher than 102˚F, and even then, it’s best if they only soak for 10 minutes max. 

People suffering from certain medical conditions, like heart disease, circulatory problems, high blood pressure, or diabetes should also consult their healthcare providers or doctors before taking a dip. 

If you take certain medications, like anticoagulants or those that induce drowsiness, then make sure you consult your healthcare provider before entering a hot tub as well. 


If you’re a healthy, non-pregnant adult, then you can safely soak at 102˚F for as long as you’re comfortable without worrying about any adverse effects. 

However, keep in mind that the same doesn’t apply to healthy children. Children under 12 years of age shouldn’t soak at 104 degrees for more than five minutes, while soaks for up to 15 minutes are safe at temperatures ranging from 98 to 104 degrees. 

A helpful practice is to prevent your kids from fully immersing their bodies and use hot tub booster seats (on Amazon) to keep most of their body out of the hot water while they spend time in the hot tub. 

Signs It’s Time for a Hot Tub Break

Excited female enjoys while splashing warm water during spa procedure in whirlpool

There aren’t any hard and fast rules for how long you should stay in your hot tub, but you should know how to tell when it’s time for a break. Remember that if you soak in your hot tub for too long, it could lead to overheating and other serious problems.

Some warning signs you should look for include: 

Lightheadedness or Dizziness 

If you start to feel lightheaded or dizzy at any point while you’re soaking, it might be a sign that the temperature of your body is higher than you think. Step out of the hot tub and cool down for around 15 minutes. 


Most people don’t realize their body is overheating until it’s too late. However, you can easily prevent physical illness by knowing what signs to look for. A few early symptoms of overheating include:

  • Headache
  • A decreased or increased heart rate
  • Not sweating at all or sweating profusely
  • Tingling sensation in your skin
  • Weakness or fatigue
  • Dizziness

If you feel any of these symptoms, step out of your tub and sit in a cool, dry space immediately. Drink plenty of water and pay close attention to your body. If you feel the symptoms progressing, call 911. 

Vomiting and Nausea  

Intense heat can sometimes result in vomiting and nausea that aren’t related to heat stroke or heat exhaustion. That said, nausea could be your body’s way of indicating that you should get out of your hot tub and drink a lot of cool fluids. 

Burns on Your Skin

Burned or reddened skin could be a sign of sensitive skin, but it could also be a sign that you should step out of your hot tub. Though it might be nothing more serious than a heat rash, it’s better to consider it a sign that you need a break from the intense heat. 

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