Investing in a 100 % heartwood, clear Western Red Cedar barrel tub from Forest Lumber & Cooperage is a smart and long term move. Adding preservative or stain is unnecessary since the wood is naturally decay resistant, and has a great aesthetic quality. However, that does not mean that proper maintenance is not required.
If a stain is not applied, then the wood will turn a silver grey color. If you do choose to use a colored stain, make sure to choose a water borne penetrating stain and not a latex or a solvent-based finish. Those choices will inevitably peel and flake away. Do not stain the inside, just the outside and the top edge.
If the water in a wood burning tub is drained after 48 to 60 hours, then no chemicals are required. Just leave one to two inches of water in the tub to maintain the swelling on the wood. When you are ready to use the tub again, simply drain that minimal amount and lightly scrub the interior with a long handled scrub brush and mild soap. Rinse it out and add fresh water.
If your water source is limited, install our circulation and filtration system for wood-fired tubs. This allows for an ionizer to sterilize the water with very little chlorine added, and prevents algae growth. Electric tubs use the same water sanitation regime as plastic tubs, and the chlorine can be minimized down to 1/3 by using our ionizer.
With our Thomson Tech ionizer chlorine is best used in moderation, as one part per million is all you need. Wood has proven antiseptic properties, so the amount of required chemical additives is reduced.
Choose a phenomenal hot tub from Forest Lumber & Cooperage!