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LED Lighting for Pools, Spas and Hot Tubs

Jul 13, 2016 | Building or Buying a Hot Tub

The use of LED lighting has been gaining popularity in the pool and spa lighting arena for the last several years. There are a number of reasons why this has been happening and here are just a few of the most popular reasons. LED lights are long lasting, they are energy-efficient and they can offer a multitude of color changing possibilities.

One of the bigger reasons for the gain in usage and popularity is that the price points for these lights have become far more reasonable. Even though some portable spa manufacturers have been using LED lighting for quite some time, these color changing LED lights could be a little costly to replace should that be necessary. Just to give you an idea how crazy the cost could get, a color changing light unit set up for a 5″ pool light could cost as much as $300 just for the bulb.

An example of this would be: a clear 12V spa or hot tub light bulb would typically retail for a cost of around $2.00 – $4.00 for a replacement. A color changing 22 LED unit would cost about $80.00 -$110.00 for a fixture that fit in that same light assembly. Of course manufacturers buy in bulk so the cost to them is far less than to you the over the counter consumer.

LED lighting facts

However, in the span of just a few years, technology and costs have improved significantly and it won’t be long before LED lighting will likely replace most forms of hot tub LED lighting, beating out the competition in terms of economics, performance and appearance. Even fiber optic lighting is starting to take a back seat to LED lighting in many applications. This is mostly because of the cost aspect again.

That all being said, one of the biggest reasons low voltage LED lighting has become so popular in my mind is the safety aspect. LED light typically runs on 12V-14V and often less than 1 amp, whereas for the longest time pools and spas, (more so pools), used 110V lighting. With that type of line voltage, the risk of electrical shock was ever present with 110V lights. Yes, the lights were required to be on GFI circuit protection, but what if the GFI breaker failed? If a light shorted to the water and someone entering the water was not aware of this, they would likely suffer electrical shock or even death.

Some more big benefits of Hot tub LED lighting is it uses less energy, LED lights can last significantly longer and they open the door to all kinds of cool design possibilities.

For my custom built spas customers, I now strongly recommend going with LED hot tub lighting for their projects. In addition to the cost savings to operate, the very cool color changing aspect, the long service life, the LED light set up we use is so simple to install, even someone with no experience can install one in in less than 5 minutes!

Got questions on what we use in our DIY hot tubs, spas and swim spas? Contact me anytime or visit

Gene Trumbull
Custom Built Spas

Call With Questions (860) 571-8440



Remember, my Mission is to help you, as my customer, build a beautiful hot tub of your own! I can show you how to build Spas, Hot Tubs, Swim Spas, Plunge Pools, Cocktail Pools or Exercise Pools at incredibly affordable prices! Everything you need to know is outlined in my series of easy-to-follow books and videos that cover a simple, step-by-step process that I’ve developed and refined over the years.

I will teach and help you with everything you need to know about building your own spa, hot tub, or swim spa yourself, regardless of what your DIY skill levels are and at a cost, YOU determine YOU can afford. As my customer, I’ll work with you at your own pace until your project is done and comes to life! For over 25 years now I’ve been helping people just like you, build their own hot tubs, spas, and swim spa projects. So, are you’re ready to let me help you build your project? Then what are you waiting for, let’s do this!

Custom Built Spas