Action 9: Researching pool, spa and hot tubs before purchase

by: Jason Stoogenke Updated:

CHARLOTTE - You may be shopping for a pool, spa, or hot tub, but be careful.

Stephen Beleau spent time and money making his yard relaxing. He shelled out $8,000 for a Dr. Wellness hot tub from RecDirect.

"We basically had problems with it from the beginning. It was overheating," he said.

He says he couldn't get the water below 106 degrees, a temperature the Consumer Product Safety Commission considers dangerous.

"It's unusable," Beleau said.

Then, he says, the tub started leaking. 

Action 9 called the Association of Pool and Spa Professionals. Lisa Grepps recommends researching the brand and buying from a local dealer, preferably one that's sold the brand you want for a long time.

"It gets back to: what kind of follow-up will you have, what kind of a relationship will you have, will you have to call someone in a different state, or can you go down the street and walk in and say, 'I'm having some questions'?" she said.

Action 9 got in touch with LPI, the company that owns both Dr. Wellness and RecDirect. 

One representative emailed, "We welcome your interest in Dr. Wellness Spas and thank you for reaching out to us for information about our company. We are a mid-sized spa manufacturer that continues to see growth each year. Our success can be attributed to, and relies upon, our relationships with the customers and clients we serve. There are many measures of success in business. We measure our success not by the number of spas we sell, but the number of customers who are happy with the spas we manufacture and the service they receive from us."

Another representative, Brian Elmore, said the Beleaus' warranty ran out, but that he "will make sure that service resolves this issue, and will personally walk the service request through the system."

Service technicians made three trips to the Beleaus' home and the company extended their warranty for an extra year.

Beleau says he researched the brand, Dr.Wellness. But, he suggests viewers research the retailer more than he did, as well.