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Author Topic: full foam vs thermopannels  (Read 58993 times)

benalexe

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full foam vs thermopannels
« on: June 22, 2008, 06:14:18 am »
I was recently in a dealer who carried only full foam tubs and he was saying that the cheaper ones are thermopannel and the LIPA (Long Island Power Authority)  has tested the full foam and showed they are very very energy efficient.  I thought the thermopannel were effficent too until he told me he raw hard data.

Just wondering if anyone else had any thoughts.  

FYI the spa I also saw did not have an air blower.  I personally would really miss it.

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full foam vs thermopannels
« on: June 22, 2008, 06:14:18 am »

wmccall

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Re: full foam vs thermopannels
« Reply #1 on: June 22, 2008, 08:09:09 am »
This question is the reason the Dead Horse section was created.  
Member since 2003.  Owner Dynasty Excalibur 2003-2012.   Sundance Majesta from 2012-current

Zep

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Re: full foam vs thermopannels
« Reply #2 on: June 22, 2008, 09:29:18 am »
wmccall....but for incoming freshmen it's a new question!



Tailhooker

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Re: full foam vs thermopannels
« Reply #3 on: June 22, 2008, 11:22:31 am »
Quote
I was recently in a dealer who carried only full foam tubs and he was saying that the cheaper ones are thermopannel and the LIPA (Long Island Power Authority)  has tested the full foam and showed they are very very energy efficient.  I thought the thermopannel were effficent too until he told me he raw hard data.

Just wondering if anyone else had any thoughts.  

FYI the spa I also saw did not have an air blower.  I personally would really miss it.
The war is about to start again.  You can look at some of the older pages and fine whole threads on this.  In a nutshell the dealers that sell thermopane will say they are better and the dealers that sell full foam will say that they are better.  As I am not a dealer or a energy expert (nor do I want to spark the war again) I will refrain from adding my opinion to this question.

Dave

Micah

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Re: full foam vs thermopannels
« Reply #4 on: June 22, 2008, 12:04:33 pm »
I think I can sum up this argument with a few points.
Full Foam:
1. full foam does a good job of keeping heat from leaving through the bottom of a spa.
2. Full foam does a great gob of keeping the pipes secure. Secure pipes move less. The less a pipe moves the less leaks you will have.
3. Full foam makes it a bitch to fix a leak (most spas have a 5-7 year warranty against leaks, so that is the repairman's problem.

Thermal Pane:
1. Thermal Pane does a good job of keeping heat from leaving through the bottom of a spa.
2.Thermal Pane leaves the pipes open where it is easier to find and fix leaks. (since the pipes are hanging and can move they will weaken the glue and clamp joints much faster...so there will be more leaks to fix.)

The truth:
1. Heat rises. It finds the path of least resistance to escape.
2. In an average climate you loose 90% of you heat through the cover (or where the cover meets the spa)
3. If I were a customer concerned with energy and heat loss, I would spend more time making sure I get a GREAT cover and not being so concerned with "marketing hype"insulation methods.

For the record I own a full foam spa from Jacuzzi. If I found a spa that I love, I would have no problem owing a Thermal Pane spa.

Jacuzzi, Hot Springs and Caldera dealer in Los Angeles

Swell-Tub

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Re: full foam vs thermopannels
« Reply #5 on: June 22, 2008, 12:30:59 pm »
Micah hit it on the head.

I was going to say the last paragraph. Now I do live in Vegas but I bought a spa blanket from Dr. Spa and my heater does not come on very often. Of course it is 108 degrees outside but the blanket keeps the heat in the tub during the evening. Heat rises, do you insulate the attic or the basement of your house? I'm no engineer but full foam vs. cabinet insulation is the insulation in the walls of your house. Full foam helps keep the pipe joints in place. Pane insulation helps access the pipes. I'll bet you won't see much difference in heating costs between the two.

See I almost said the same thing Micah did, I should have just said ditto.....

Scott  ::)
2008 Jacuzzi J-470

Vanguard

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Re: full foam vs thermopannels
« Reply #6 on: June 22, 2008, 10:33:44 pm »
Unless you get a T-P spa that isn't sealed tight.  The cheap T-P spas aren't sealed.  Arctic does a good job of sealing everything so the T-P works for them better than the cheap ones.

If you get a cheaply foamed spa the same thing can happen.  Some foam is such low density, it doesn't do much good.

Either way, if you go with a high quality spa, you'll have good insulation.

I do still have my preference, but I won't go into that here.
« Last Edit: June 22, 2008, 10:35:58 pm by aquatub »
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Chas

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Re: full foam vs thermopannels
« Reply #7 on: June 23, 2008, 12:17:17 am »
Quote
The truth:
1. Heat rises. It finds the path of least resistance to escape.
2. In an average climate you loose 90% of you heat through the cover (or where the cover meets the spa)

Sure sounds good. Unfortunately, it is completely wrong. Heat goes in any direction from warm to cool (hot to cold). Any direction.

Hot air rises, but that is not germane to this discussion. But don't feel bad, it comes up every time this discussion does.

So does the analogy comparing insulation in a house attic. No connection whatsoever. One is a box of air at 72F, the other is a box of water at 102F with air spaces around it.  

If you take a poorly insulated tub and put a great cover on it, you will still pay a fortune to keep it hot. You will also hear a lot more noise, and have the plumbing rattling around when the pumps start up.

Also - the less dense foam insulates better than the more dense foam. More air.

 8-)
Former HotSpring Dealer - Southern Cal.

Swell-Tub

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Re: full foam vs thermopannels
« Reply #8 on: June 23, 2008, 12:38:04 am »
When water is hot, the molecules are hot so they want to get away from each other and expand. Also as temperature rises, the molecules go crazy in the sense that they move faster. That's why when water is heated, it rises, and boils.

I love having this conversation. Have we talked about this before?

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Steve

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Re: full foam vs thermopannels
« Reply #9 on: June 23, 2008, 01:25:20 am »
I suggest pouring a tall drink, get a snack, find your most comfy chair (although you didn't sit in it prior to buying it  ;) ) and search the PAGES of debate on this subject over the past 5 years on here benalexe...

nuff said...

Micah

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Re: full foam vs thermopannels
« Reply #10 on: June 23, 2008, 02:23:55 am »
Quote

Sure sounds good. Unfortunately, it is completely wrong.  

If you take a poorly insulated tub and put a great cover on it, you will still pay a fortune to keep it hot.

 8-)
So the study that shows that in an average climate (Southern California to be exact) you loose 90% of your heat through the cover or where the cover meets the spa. Are you saying that is incorrect.  
Jacuzzi, Hot Springs and Caldera dealer in Los Angeles

drewstar

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Re: full foam vs thermopannels
« Reply #11 on: June 23, 2008, 08:45:45 am »
Quote
So the study that shows that in an average climate (Southern California to be exact) you loose 90% of your heat through the cover or where the cover meets the spa. Are you saying that is incorrect.  


SO CA is an "average" climate?  :-?

07 Caldera Geneva

Dr. Spa™ Ret.

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Re: full foam vs thermopannels
« Reply #12 on: June 23, 2008, 10:01:52 am »
Study? What study?

As chas says, HEAT does not rise. Heated substances though do rise. Air or water, when heated expands. This make it lighter than what's around it, and it rises. This, is called convection. Once that heater "substance" hits a solid barrier, convection ends, and conduction take over. Heat will conduct rather equally in all directions. Hence the reason homes floors are insulated  :)

Now, as for more heat escaping through the cover compared to the sides of a spa.... well, figure out the R values. The average cover is R-12 - R-14. Put 6" - 10" of full foam insulation around a spa and yeah, way more heat will travel through the thinner cover.
If you can't sell it on eBay, it may not even qualify as landfill.

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Tailhooker

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Re: full foam vs thermopannels
« Reply #13 on: June 23, 2008, 10:13:33 am »
Quote
I suggest pouring a tall drink, get a snack, find your most comfy chair (although you didn't sit in it prior to buying it  ;) ) and search the PAGES of debate on this subject over the past 5 years on here benalexe...

nuff said...
That's what I tried to say earlier!!! ;D

Spatech_tuo

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Re: full foam vs thermopannels
« Reply #14 on: June 23, 2008, 10:59:04 am »
Quote

Now, as for more heat escaping through the cover compared to the sides of a spa.... well, figure out the R values. The average cover is R-12 - R-14. Put 6" - 10" of full foam insulation around a spa and yeah, way more heat will travel through the thinner cover.

It all depends on the combination of your spa. If it is a well insulated spa with a cheapo low R cover then sure, you'll lose a great deal of energy out of the top. If however, you have a great cover and poorly insulated sides then much more of that energy loss will be out the sides than in the previous example.

You don't just need a good cover, you need a well insulated spa in ALL directions.
220, 221, whatever it takes!

Hot Tub Forum

Re: full foam vs thermopannels
« Reply #14 on: June 23, 2008, 10:59:04 am »

 

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