A four-person hot tub works wonderfully for parties or for the family, but choosing one can sometimes be an intimidating process. The first decision you must make when choosing a four-person hot tub is whether you want a wood hot tub or the more common acrylic hot tub. Both have their advantages and disadvantages, and to choose which one is right for you, consider how often the tub will be used, what kind of purchase budget and operating budget you can afford, and how much maintenance you are willing to perform on your tub.
You will want your four-person hot tub to be spacious enough to accommodate four adults comfortably. A wooden hot tub is circular and deeper than an acrylic tub, meaning the way in which people will sit in the tub will be different than the more laid back, ergonomic acrylic tubs. A wooden four-person hot tub will allow for more room, and more than four people can probably fit in the tub, while an acrylic tub will fit only four people comfortably in the same amount of space. People will be able to enjoy the ergonomic seating in an acrylic tub, and jets are likely to be strategically placed in the acrylic tub.
Choose a tub that will fit your budget. Acrylic four-person hot tub options will require a larger electric motor and electric heater to both heat the water and run the jets. The monthly electricity bill will be higher than that of a round tub, which retains heat more efficiently. Wood hot tubs can also be wood-fired hot tubs, meaning there are no electricity costs associated with the tub. This is a good option for people on a budget, but also for people who may want to put the tub in a location far from an electrical source. The downside is consistency, or a lack thereof: the temperature of the water of a wood-fired hot tub will not stay as consistent as a tub with an electric heater.
If you are certain only four people will be using the tub at any given time, try to shop with friends who can hop in the dry tub with you and see how comfortable the seating is. With four people in the tub, there should be little overlap of legs and arms, though just about all tubs will have some sort of overlap. Sit in all the different seating positions and note the position of the jets. Make sure they are placed where the massaging effects will have the most impact.