New Home Tanning Bed Owners Quick Start Guide
Congratulations! You are now the proud owner of one of the finest
home tanning beds made. We understand that you are in a hurry to get started, and
probably have a few questions, so we created this booklet to help you get started.
It is in Question and Answer format, so you can jump to any question you already
have, or just browse the entire booklet. We assume you have already installed your
tanning bed and have it connected to the proper power supply. If not, see your
owners manual for instructions on these tasks.
How do I clean my tanning bed?
You should only use the UVA SunSystems brand acrylic cleaner that came with your
SunMaster, Alpha Sun or Virtual Sun tanning bed. It is a concentrate, so you will
put about a capful in a quart spray bottle. Follow the instructions on the bottle.
Never use Windex or similar cleaners on your tanning bed, they will cause damage,
and are more expensive anyway. Replacement cleaner is around $11 for a 16oz. bottle
that makes over 16 gallons, costing you well under a dollar a gallon.
How many minutes should I start out tanning?
Use the Exposure Schedule on the bed for a guide. Most people will start out around
5 minutes, and work their way up. Never stay in so long you actually get RED.
The goal is a tan, and getting a burn (even slight burn) actually slows down the
tanning process. You do NOT have to burn before you tan!
Should children use the tanning bed?
We believe that children under 16 should not use a tanning bed. Their bodies are
still growing and they are most sensitive to overexposure to UV than an adult. It is
obviously your responsibility to make these decisions and great care should be taken if
you decide to allow your child to use a tanning bed. Under all circumstances, they
should not use a tanning bed unsupervised. We would strongly recommend you encourage
your child to wait until they are at least 16 years old before tanning regularly, inside
Do I need to "warm up" the tanning bed?
No, but you may find it more comfortable to warm it up if you have the tanning bed in a
cool place, such as a storage area, or any other area that does not have heating/cooling.
A few minutes is usually enough.
Do I really need to wear the goggles?
Yes. Really. Your eyes are very sensitive, and the UV your new bed puts out is
very strong. We usually ship your bed with Sunnies (the most popular brand) but
there are many alternatives if you want something different. Eyewear is very
inexpensive and is very necessary.
How often can I tan?
Most people find that every other day is plenty to get and keep a great tan. Never
tan outside on the same day you tan inside, and if you have to be outside, use SPF 15 or
higher. Remember, overexposure HURTS your tan, it doesn't help it. Moderation
is the key. It is better to have less exposure, more often, than overexpose.
How often do I need to change the lamps?
Every 3 to 5 years, depending upon how heavy you use the tanning bed. You should buy
and use a Tanning Bed Rebuild Kit (abour $25) when you replace the lamps to recondition
your acrylics. Lamp prices range from $10 to $16 each, plus shipping.
How often should I clean the inside of the tanning bed?
You should clean inside the bed, including the reflectors, the lamps and both sides of the
acrylic using a Tanning Bed Rebuild Kit about once a year if you use it regularly,
otherwise every two years. As a rule, you should clean inside at least ONCE between
lamp changes, and at every lamp change. The entire process takes about an hour.
Be sure to check your fans to see that they are working properly each time you
How many times a day can my bed be run?
Assuming you mean once per person, how many people can use the bed in a day? As many
as you want. Your home tanning bed is NOT designed for commercial purposes (no timer
port, no hour meter) but it uses the same electronics and lamps as a commercial bed, so it
is designed to be used continuously. If you are using your bed commercially, you
should instead buy a bed with the proper connections for commercial use.
How often will I replace the acrylic shields and hydraulic
Only when they require it. Be sure to keep your tanning bed in the UP position when
not in use to extend the life of the pistons. Also, clean your acrylics with UVA
brand acrylic cleaner after each use, and the Tanning Bed Rebuild Kit once every year or
two. You can expect many years of use from these parts.
How often will I replace the "lamp starters" and
(Not all beds use these parts. SunMaster beds do not use these, for example) Lamp
starters need to be replaced only when they fail to ignite the lamps, which would be in
about 5 to 10 years in a home tanning bed. Buck Boost transformers should never need
What if I need to make a warranty claim?
Call 1-800-274-1744 and speak with our Service Department. We cover the
shipping and the cost of the phone call for all warranty claims.
What if I need parts or service out of warranty?
Again, call 1-800-274-1744. We have parts for every tanning bed we have ever sold
since 1985 and support every model we sell during its usable life. Most repairs or
parts replacements can be done by the tanning bed owner with ordinary tools. We will
assist you over the phone in replacing parts for any tanning bed we sold, for the usable
life of the product.
Do I need to take special precautions with animals while I tan?
When you tan, animals and other persons should not be in the room at the same time.
This is to protect their eyes from the UV. Many animals (birds in particular)
are very sensitive to UV, and care must be taken to prevent overexposure to their retinas.
What is the total maintenance required?
It differs depending upon usage, but below is a typical recommended schedule. The
Novus products listed are included in the standard Tanning Bed Rebuild Kit, about $25.
After every tanning session:
Clean the top and bottom acrylic with UVA cleaner/disinfectant (diluted) per the bottle
Once a month: Use Novus #1 to polish the
acylics to prevent buildup. Clean the exterior of the bed using warm water or your
Once a year: Remove the acrylics, clean the
lamps and reflectors. Clean the acrylics on BOTH sides with Novus #2 after you have
removed any scratches with Novus #3. Check to insure that the cooling fans all work
properly, and clean the vent holes for them.
Once every 3 to 5 years: Replace the lamps,
and do your yearly cleaning. Expect to buy a new Tanning Bed Rebuild Kit each lamp
purchase (it has enough product for 3 to 4 yearly cleanings)
What if I have more questions?
If you purchased a new Alpha Sun or Virtual Sun from us, call us at 1-800-274-1744 for as
long as you own your tanning bed. If you purchased a new or used SunMaster, you can
use the same phone number. SunMaster tanning beds have free lifetime support, fully
transferable, even if you bought the tanning bed used.