Most modern spas have circuit boards located inside the equipment area, commonly referred to as the “spa pack”. The spa pack is essentially the brain of your spa. If you find you need to replace the circuit board, it is very important to make sure you replace it with the correct board.
Many boards look identical; however their software may be different. Following these very important tips will help guarantee that when your new circuit board arrives it will work great.
IMPORTANT: Many circuit boards look alike, but may not work in your spa. DO NOT order a replacement circuit board based on appearance. Circuit boards must be identified by a part number and/or chip number. Read below how to identify your chip number.
Do you need to replace your circuit board?
Depending on what’s wrong with your spa, different possibilities may exist causing the malfunction. It’s very important to identify the correct problem so you don’t waste money replacing parts that don’t need to be replaced. To get started, remove the cover on your spa pack.
- A good indicator that your circuit board may be bad is if you are not receiving power to an important piece of equipment such as the pump, blower, heater, etc.
- Checking voltage on the board will allow you to determine whether this is where you are losing power.
- If you look at the circuit board itself, there may be melted components, or burn marks.
If you are unsure that your circuit board is the issue, it is best to seek the help of a professional spa technician.
Replacing Your Circuit Board:
There are a number of companies that make hot tub circuit boards, and each may display the replacement information you need in a slightly different manner.
The information below will cover 3 of the most common brands, and will help you identify which replacement is correct for your spa:
Balboa spa packs have been used by many different spa manufacturers for years and are one of the most common. When replacing a Balboa board, you will need to find the “chip number”.
- The chip number is an alphanumeric number that you will find printed on a white label placed on a black chip on the board itself.
- Almost every chip number will end in a revision number. Examples are “R1A”, “R1B”, “REV. B’ or a similar combination.
- The chip number defines the software used between the topside control and circuit board, and will guarantee that the topside control and circuit board will work together.
HydroQuip, another circuit board industry leader, has made identifying the proper replacement board very easy. Each one of their boards has a part number on a large white label placed directly onto the circuit board. To properly identify the correct HydroQuip board, simply match the part number on the label.
To properly identify the correct replacement for a Gecko circuit board, you will need the “Model” and “Options” numbers. The Model and Options numbers are a series of alphanumeric numbers located on a label on the outside of your spa pack. Using these numbers to identify the correct board will guarantee a proper fit and operation.
If you have a circuit board made by a company not listed in this article, it is a good idea to get help from a professional. Getting the correct replacement board is important. Ordering a circuit board based on looks alone could end up being an expensive and time consuming mistake.
Finding Your Replacement
Once you have found your chip or part number, enter it in the search box. Your replacement board should display in the results.
If a corresponding board does not display, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and a technician will happily find the correct circuit board for you!
Once you receive the correct replacement board, it’s time to install it. Here are a few very important tips to keep in mind when installing your new circuit board:
- Always make sure the circuit breaker is off and the spa is unplugged before attempting any hot tub repairs.
- Take lots of photos of the old circuit board, paying special attention to where each wire is attached to the board, with a camera or your cell phone before you remove it. This will take the guesswork out of attaching all wires back to their proper location.
- Be very careful when handling the new circuit board. Most boards have a number of components soldered to them. Knocking one of them off can destroy the entire board.
- Using needle-nose pliers to remove the wires from the old board and to attach the wires to the new board will lessen the risk of damaging the wires.
- Make sure when installing your new circuit board that the jumpers and switchbanks are matched to the circuit board you are replacing to ensure proper hot tub function. Jumpers are small and can be hard to see, so make sure to take your time and find every jumper.
Electrical work around water can be especially dangerous. Make sure that when you’re replacing a circuit board (or any other electrical component) that the power is completely disconnected.
If you do not feel confident replacing the circuit board yourself, seek the help of a hot tub technician or licensed electrician.
Still have questions about finding the correct replacement or installing your new circuit board? Post a comment below!