Spa pool regulations in New South Wales (Rules, recommendations and more)

Wondering what the rules and regulations are for installing a spa pool or swim spa in NSW, Australia? In this article we answer your questions and explain what you need to know for a safe, straight-forward installation.

Spa building regulation

When you’re installing a spa pool or swim spa, finding the right information and working out what rules apply to your space can feel a little overwhelming! We understand. That’s why we’ve explained everything you need to know in a clear and simple way.

After reading this article you should have a good understanding of the rules and requirements for installing a spa or swim spa in New South Wales.

If after reading this article, you feel like you need help, we can do the certification for you or refer you to a local certifier.

Click the button below to contact our certification specialist.

Spa pool regulations in New South Wales - your questions answered

What information does this article cover?

The first section of this article applies to New South Wales and covers spa building permits, registrations, installation, safety barriers and general questions for this region only. The second section covers rules that apply Australia-wide including:

  • where to place your spa or swim spa
  • spa installation
  • electrical requirements
  • customising your spa
  • using your spa
  • Spa World™ learning centre

Please note the majority of spa-related questions also apply to swim spas.

Important: This document provides a simplified overview of current regulations in reference to Spa World™ products. It is not a complete guide. We advise all customers to seek independent advice in relation to their own personal site requirements. The information in this article was accurate at the time of writing. This can change without notice and you must check the latest information with your local council.

Spa regulations in New South Wales - your questions answered

Do I need a permit for my spa in New South Wales?

Portable spas with a water capacity of up to 2,000 litres in most cases do not require a building permit. However, it is recommended that you consult your local council or certifier to confirm that there are no additional requirements for your site.

Portable spas and swim spas with a water capacity of more than 2,000 litres do require building approval.

This may be in the form of a CDC (Complying development certificate) that’s provided by a private certifier.

The other option is a DA (Development Application) which is provided by your local council, depending on requirements specific to your site. Please contact your local certifier to find out what option you require.

What happens if I choose not to get a permit?

It is against the law to not get a permit but that is only the start.

If you choose to not get a permit, then you most likely will run into trouble when you go to sell your property and this will incur far greater cost than doing it prior to installation.

WARNING: If there was an accident that involved your spa or swim spa, and you did not get a permit, it is likely that your insurance would not cover you and you could be open to civil and criminal action.

Please get a permit. It is worth it.

Watch: Spa, swim spa rules & regulations - New South Wales

Does my spa pool or swim spa need to be registered with the council in New South Wales?

Yes, spa and pool owners need to register their pools on the online New South Wales government swimming pool register in order to avoid fines.

Do I require a building permit to build a small deck for my new spa in New South Wales?

A building permit is required for decks that have a floor area that are greater than 25 square metres, greater than 1 metre above the existing ground level, or less than 900 millimetres to the boundary.

Does my new spa need to be fenced with a pool safety barrier in New South Wales?

According to the Swimming Pools Regulation 2018, a spa pool does not need a safety barrier surrounding the spa pool if it is covered and secured by a lockable child-resistant structure (such as a door, lid, grille or mesh) that:

  • (a) is well constructed and does not have an opening that a testing apparatus can pass through, and

  • (b) is securely fastened by a device that is well constructed and does not have an opening that a testing apparatus can pass through.

However, some certifiers and councils will have the expectation that any spa pool or swim spa that needs a building permit, also requires a pool safety barrier. Please check with your local certifier for more information.

Can I install my spa over an easement in New South Wales?

If you intend to position the spa pool or swim spa so it’s located over an easement or an asset of a relevant authority (for example, the council), legislation may require you to apply for consent. We recommend that you contact a certifier. You’re likely to save time and money by doing this. You can also visit your local council.

What specifications are required for a spa or swim spa slab for the foundation in New South Wales?

Concrete slabs designs for the foundation of spas and swim spas are specific to each site and must be designed to suit the relevant soil type. If you have an existing slab that you wish to put a spa on, you may be required to have an engineer certify it as being suitable for the foundation of the spa.

Do I need a registered builder to carry out building work for my spa pool safety barrier in New South Wales?

In general you don’t need a registered builder to do this type of work. You can choose to be an owner-builder. However you may need to apply for an Owner Builders License if the value of the work is greater than $10,000.

Yes. A boundary fence can act as part of a barrier to a pool if the height of the fence is at least 1800mm on the inside. A boundary fence also needs to have a non-climbable zone with a 900mm radius from the top of the inside of the barrier.

v3 boundary fence

Does my new spa need a CPR sign in New South Wales?

Yes, by law you need a cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) sign displayed near your spa or swim spa, in case of an emergency. The sign must be in good condition and can easily be read from a distance of 3 metres.

Do spas from Spa World™ have electrical approvals?

Yes, all Spa World products have the relevant electrical approvals where required by legislation.

If you require a copy of these certificates, please email

Spa building regulations in Australia - your questions answered

Inground swim spa site preparation

Can I put a spa or swim spa into a deck?

Yes, you can install a spa into a deck. It’s important to keep in mind that there are many things to consider in order to have trouble-free use of your spa for years to come.

For more information, head to the Spa World™ learning centre.

Can you manually carry or lift a spa into position?

Spa pools are heavy and we do not recommend that you lift one manually. It is best to read our pre-delivery guide for professional advice and handy tips before making plans to move your spa.

Do I need a crane to install a swim spa?

Yes, you will need a crane to install a swim spa. There are several options to consider, depending on accessibility to your spa space. A Hiab truck may be able to do the job, otherwise it will be necessary to hire a crane.

How do I get a spa or swim spa in my backyard?

The answer to this question will depend on access to your property and the desired location of the spa pool or swim spa. There are a number of points to consider before your spa delivery and when you purchase a spa from Spa World™ you will need to send through property access details. Watch this short video to find out what information is needed before your spa is delivered. You can also visit our learning centre for more details.

Watch: How to film your Spa World™ delivery access

Can I install my spa in-ground?

Yes, you can install your spa in-ground or into a pit. However Spa World™ does not provide in-ground shells. For more information, we recommend you check out the Spa World™ pre-delivery guide.

Does my spa need a concrete foundation?

We recommend that you use engineered concrete slabs for your spa foundation and can even provide you with a generic engineered design. However if you would like to place your spa on a different foundation, it should be certified by an engineer. To learn more, read A solid foundation for your spa - what you need to know.

Do I need approvals for my spa pool?

Depending on your situation, you may need approval from your local council to install a spa pool or swim spa in your desired location. We recommend you make contact to find out what requirements apply to you.

Does my spa need to be fenced?

Fencing requirement guidelines depend on many factors including product and location and this can vary between states. We advise customers to contact the local council or certifier before installing a spa.

Does Spa World™ offer an installation or compliance service?

The Spa World™ team does not install spa pools or swim spas or issue certifications for your installation. Spa World™ can refer you to a certifier (Surveyor) that can help you with regulations for your installation.

Spa World™ does offer delivery services, for a fee, to customers who live within a particular radius of a Spa World™ Showroom location. To find out if your spa can be delivered to your property, please contact your local Spa World™ showroom.

Where can I find information on spa installation or delivery?

The Spa World™ pre-delivery guide will provide you with all the information you need before installing your spa. When you make your spa or swim spa purchase, you will be assigned a Spa World™ concierge who will look after you and make regular contact from the moment you make your purchase through until after delivery.

Watch: Your personal spa expert, here to help

Do I need to contact a plumber when installing my spa pool?

No, you do not need to contact a plumber. However, if you’re installing your spa pool or swim spa into a pit, you will need a plumber to ensure an adequate drainage system is in place in order to prevent the pit from flooding.

The concrete slab for my spa is not level - What can I do?

Floor levelling products are available to help you create a level surface. If you have a fall of more than 20mm over the length of the spa, you may be able to use wedges chocks to make the surface level. We suggest you email

Wondering what the most common spa foundations are and what measure you need to take before installing your spa? Read this article to learn more.

Who can carry out electrical work for my spa, swim spa or plunge pool installation?

All electrical work must be completed by a qualified electrician.

What is the maximum distance a heat pump can be installed from the spa circulation pump?

We recommend the distance between the spa heat pump and spa circulation pump should be no greater than 3 metres. The height distance between the two pumps should not be any greater than 1 metre. To learn more, read this article: How do I install my heat pump.

What are the power requirements for my spa?

To find out what power supply you need, refer to the tech sheet for your Spa World™ spa which can be located and downloaded from the product page on our website.

Do spas and swim spas need electrical and plumbing approvals?

All spas need to have both certifications in order to be sold legally in Australia and New Zealand. It’s important that a spa meets all approvals for the safety of you, your family and friends. Email for more information.

Can I run my spa on an extension lead?

No, a licensed electrician must install a dedicated power supply that meets local and national regulations.

Do I need a hard cover for my spa?

Yes, when your spa or swim spa is not in use, it needs to be covered. The covers available at Spa World™ are lockable and provide a high level of insulation. Effective insulation will help reduce the running costs of a spa. Please note that leaving an empty spa uncovered and exposed to the sun will damage the acrylic shell and is not covered under warranty.

I am allergic to chlorine or don’t like the smell of chlorine – Can I use salt in my spa pool?

Spa World™ offers salt systems for swim spas but there are other solutions including peroxide-based systems on offer that may be better suited for you. For more information, read what to use instead of chlorine in a spa pool.

Can I choose the design and layout of jets in my spa?

No, this is not a possibility because the spas are designed and engineered to function for optimum performance and meet the relevant regulations.

spa jets with strong water flow

Can I leave a spa pool empty?

Yes, you can leave your spa without water in it. However, you must follow the shut down procedure in your manual and ensure the hardover is in the correct position. This is to reduce the effects of direct sunlight or too much heat on the spa shell. Leaving an empty spa uncovered and exposed to the sun will damage the acrylic. This is not covered under warranty.

Can I have a cold spa in summer?

You can operate your spa with cooler water in the summer. However, if the outside temperature is 40 degrees celsius, the temperature of the spa water will also be high due to ambient temperature. If you truly want a cool spa in summer, you may need to purchase an optional heat pump which can both heat and cool the spa water. Heat pumps can also save up to 70% on spa heating costs compared to electric heaters.

Can I install a spa pool inside my house?

Yes, it is possible to install a spa pool inside a house if the desired destination point for the spa is accessible. We recommend that you ensure your ventilation and drainage system in your house functions properly. This is to minimise any damage if the spa was to ever develop a leak.

Can I turn my spa off when not in use?

Yes, you can turn your spa off between uses however we don’t recommend that you do this. That’s because the spas are designed to filter and heat when not in use. When you turn the spa off, the filtration system cannot function and your water will need to be replaced or treated excessively in order to be safe.

spa pool

In Summary

We hope this article has helped answer your questions about the rules, regulations and what you can and can’t do with your new spa or swim spa.

If you need help or have further questions, please get in touch with our Certification Team. We can help with advice and put you touch with recommended certifiers in your area. Click the button below to contact us.

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