Another case, it seems, of a Bestway spa heater failing. My case does not seem as extreme as some others I have read, but thought I would share it anyway.
I bought my Lay-Z-Spa in December 2006 as a Christmas present to myself. I installed it outside on my patio, and used it very successfully for a few months, turning it off occasionally when the weather was bad (mainly to save electricity!) and always cleaning it out and replacing the filter when I heated it up again. I packed it up for a couple of months whilst I was on holiday, then re-inflated and filled it again around April 2007.
It occasionally struggled to heat the water to the set temperature, but I found that the chemical balance was out which had led to high debris in the water, in turn resulting in a blocked filter. Cleaning the pump and replacing the filter cured the problem and it was soon up to temperature again. A spell of bad weather then prompted me to turn it off for a couple of months.
Then, just after Christmas 2007 I came to re-heat the spa from cold, only to find it was not heating the water AT ALL. I did my usual cleaning out and filter replacement routine, but it made no difference. This was particularly annoying as it was now 5 days outside the 12 month warranty period. I emailed Bestway, who gave me a checklist to try, but it was all fairly obvious and I'd tried everything on it already. I requested a free pump replacement (the heater element is not a replaceable item), but was told (predictably) that the 12 month warranty MEANT 12 months, and 5 days meant me having to pay for the new pump.
By this time I was dealing with Carol at Bestway and, to be fair, she was nothing but professional and efficient. I found it best to be polite but firm, and after a couple of phone calls Carol has offered a 33% discount off the price of the pump. Seeing as I only paid £250 for the spa in the first place, compared to some websites selling them for £500 or more, I will probably pay the £100, especially as the new 'improved' pump will have a 12 month warranty.
I mentioned the long list of complainants I have discovered on Ebay and Amazon, and was told that most failures will be the result of people not following the installation and maintenance instructions properly. This may well be true in a lot of cases, but I still feel there is a design fault with the pump. Let's hope the new pump lasts!