Infographic for the sauna installation.

Sauna Installation: Mastering Infrared Sauna Set-Up

Estimated reading time: 7 minutes

Saunas have been a part of various European cultures for centuries, offering a unique blend of relaxation, health benefits, and social interaction. 

Today, the trend of installing saunas at home is growing rapidly, especially in the USA.

With the increasing popularity of saunas, it’s essential to understand the nuances of sauna installation to ensure a seamless and efficient set-up.

Key Takeaways

  • Types of Saunas: Differentiate between traditional Finnish saunas and infrared saunas, and decide between indoor and outdoor setups based on preferences.
  • Location Considerations: While saunas can be installed in various home locations, it’s crucial to consider space, moisture management, electrical requirements, flooring type, safety, ambiance, and future maintenance.
  • Installation Process: While setting up your sauna, always refer to the specific installation guide provided. The process involves choosing a location, ensuring all parts are present, setting up panels, benches, and windows, managing cables, and finalizing with the roof and control panel.

Choosing the Right Sauna for Your Space

Before diving into the installation process, it’s essential to understand the different types of saunas available and which one might be the best fit for your home.

Traditional vs. Infrared Sauna

  • Traditional Finnish Sauna: These saunas are heated to temperatures ranging from 170 to 190 degrees. They offer the unique experience of pouring water over hot rocks, releasing steam, and increasing humidity levels between 20 and 40%.
  • Infrared Sauna: Operating at a much lower temperature, infrared saunas use infrared wavelengths to elevate the body’s core temperature. They offer many health benefits, from inflammation reduction to stress relief.

Indoor vs. Outdoor Home Sauna

  • Indoor Sauna: These saunas can be built free-standing or integrated into your home’s infrastructure. Common locations include home gyms, master bathrooms, basements, or home spas. They offer the convenience of being easily accessible and can be customized based on space and preference.
  • Outdoor Sauna: Gaining popularity in recent years, outdoor saunas are perfect additions to backyards, especially near pools. They offer more customization options and size variations, creating a serene outdoor oasis.

Can You Put a Sauna Anywhere in the House?

The short answer is yes but with some caveats.

While you have the flexibility to install a sauna in various locations within your home, there are specific factors to consider to ensure safety, functionality, and longevity.

Space and Size

  • Consider the Size: Before deciding on a location, measure the space and compare it to the dimensions of the sauna you’re considering. Ensure there’s enough room not just for the sauna itself but also for ventilation, access, and any additional features you might want.
  • Open Spaces: Larger areas like basements, garages, or dedicated spa rooms are often ideal because they provide ample space and can handle the heat and moisture generated by the sauna.

Moisture and Ventilation

  • Manage Moisture: Saunas produce a lot of heat and moisture. The chosen location should be equipped to handle this to prevent mold growth and structural damage.
  • Ventilation is Key: Proper ventilation ensures fresh air circulation, helps regulate temperature, and prevents excessive humidity. Whether using natural or mechanical ventilation, ensure the chosen spot can accommodate it.

Electrical Requirements

  • Power Up: Saunas require a dedicated electrical circuit. Ensure your chosen location has easy access to your home’s electrical system and can handle the sauna’s power requirements.

Flooring

  • Material: Using a solid and non-slip flooring material for your infrared sauna, indoors or outdoors, is suggested. Dry and level flooring, including carpet, is suitable for indoor installations. Use concrete, ceramic, vinyl, laminate, tile, or other solid flooring for outdoor installations..
  • Flat and Level Surface: It’s crucial to have a flat and level floor for the sauna’s stability and safety. An uneven floor can lead to structural issues or potential tripping hazards inside the sauna.

Safety First

  • Away from Water: If you have a pool or jacuzzi, it’s best to place the sauna at a safe distance to prevent any electrical hazards.
  • Accessible: Ensure there’s easy access to and from the sauna, especially in case of emergencies.

Aesthetics and Ambiance

  • Create a Relaxing Environment: Consider the overall ambiance of the location. Soft lighting, a view of nature, or even just a peaceful corner can enhance the sauna experience.

Shower Proximity

  • Enhance the Experience: Having a shower nearby is a fantastic addition. It allows for a quick, refreshing rinse post-session, enhancing the overall sauna experience.

Future Maintenance

  • Easy Access: Choose a location where it will be easy to perform maintenance tasks, such as cleaning, checking electrical components, or making repairs.

Installation Step-by-Step Process

Before you begin the installation process, it is essential to note that different saunas may have unique installation requirements. Always refer to the specific installation guide provided with your sauna.

Here is a general step-by-step guide to help you set up your sauna:

Step 1: Identify and choose the perfect location where you will set up and enjoy your sauna.

Step 2: Before starting the installation, ensure all necessary parts are present by referring to the packing list provided.

Step 3: Place the floor panel on a smooth and flat surface, distinguishing the front and back sides.

Step 4: Erect the back panel onto the base, securing it with the help of another person while you insert the side panel. Follow this by installing the left side window panel, ensuring the tongs and grooves are correctly aligned before fastening the outside buckle.

Step 5: Slide in the lower part of the bench, connecting it securely to ensure all connections are firm.

Step 6: Proceed to install the top part of the bench, ensuring it fits securely into place.

Step 7: Insert the right side window panel, aligning the tongs and grooves properly with the back panel.

Step 8: Secure the structure by fastening the external buckles on the sauna.

Step 9: Install the front window panel, ensuring the unfinished side faces inward and the finished side faces outward, aligning the tongs and grooves appropriately.

Step 10: Fasten any remaining buckles to secure the structure.

Step 11: Install the door handle to facilitate easy access to the sauna.

Step 12: Before installing the roof, check all cables and push them in to prevent damage to the wiring terminals. Guide the heater plugs through the holes around the top panel and connect them.

Step 13: Carefully align and settle the roof into its position during installation.

Step 14: Locate the flat connector wires to install the control panel and establish the necessary connections.

Step 15: Insert the stereo into the mounting box before connecting the wires. Connect the round wire to the stereo antenna through the round opening at the back of the stereo, then mount it to the ceiling.

Step 16: Finally, plug the sauna into a wall outlet, and your sauna is ready for use.

FAQs

Can you put a sauna anywhere in the house?

Yes, saunas can be installed in various locations within a house, including bedrooms, bathrooms, basements, or home gyms. The key is to ensure the chosen spot has adequate space, ventilation, and access to electrical connections.

What is needed to install a sauna?

To install a sauna, you’ll need:

  • A dedicated electrical circuit
  • Adequate space based on the sauna’s size
  • Proper flooring
  • Ventilation for moisture control

What are the electrical requirements for a sauna?

It’s recommended to check the product manual of each sauna for specific electrical requirements. Additionally, consulting an electrician is essential to ensure safety and proper installation.

Does a sauna need a floor drain?

While not mandatory, a floor drain can be beneficial, especially for traditional saunas where water is poured over rocks. It helps manage excess moisture and ensures the sauna’s longevity.

Do indoor saunas need insulation?

Yes, insulation helps maintain the sauna’s temperature, making it energy-efficient and ensuring a consistent heating experience.

What is the best floor for a sauna?

Plastic, ceramic, exposed concrete, or stone are ideal flooring materials for saunas. They are durable, heat-resistant, and easy to clean.

Does a sauna need to be airtight?

No, saunas should not be completely airtight. Proper ventilation is crucial to manage moisture levels and ensure a comfortable experience.

How do you ventilate a sauna?

Saunas should have vents or openings, usually placed near the floor and ceiling, to allow for efficient air circulation. This helps manage humidity levels and ensures a fresh air supply.

To wrap up

Investing in a home sauna is a decision that pays dividends in health, relaxation, and overall well-being. 

Whether you opt for an indoor or outdoor, large or small, the key is to make choices that align with your lifestyle and preferences. 

With the right planning and considerations, you can create a spa-like oasis right in your home, ready to offer relaxation and rejuvenation anytime.

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