It is not difficult to learn how to build a sauna. More and more people are beginning to recognize the tremendous health benefits of using a sauna. This has created a new market for home saunas. The options you have for building your own are exploding. You can choose to do all the work from scratch or literally have a pre built unit delivered right to your home. Before plunking down your money to get one of your own there are several things to consider.
There are some basic decisions to be made to ensure your sauna fits your situation and lifestyle. Which style of sauna, where are you going to put it and how much work do you want to put into the construction of this home addition are all considerations. Another basic question is whether having a sauna is even right for you.
Consider the different types of saunas. They can be divided into 2 basic styles depending on the heat source. The traditional sauna is heated with a stove, which also heats rocks surrounding the stove. The stove can be powered by wood, gas or electricity. Water can be poured onto the heated stones producing steam. This is known as a wet or steam sauna.
A more modern version is the Infrared, FarInfrared or FIR style. These all refer to the use of Infrared heaters called emitters. This style heats the people and objects in the sauna instead of the air and does not involve heating rocks. Because there are no rocks there is no steam. Many traditionalists consider the steam to be an integral part of taking a sauna. On the plus side there is a lot of evidence that indicates the heat from an infrared emitter penetrates deeper into the skin producing even more of the health benefits people are looking for.
Location is an important decision to make. There are indoor and outdoor saunas. Tradition dictates outdoor locations but convenience and environment sometimes dictate indoor placement. Outdoors may offer the option of jumping into a cool lake or a roll in the snow. This can be an exhilarating addition to your routine but may not be for everyone.
Indoor saunas offer convenience and reduced building costs since part of the existing building can be used as part of the structure and running utilities such as electricity and water is less involved than it would be outdoors. In any case, indoor or outdoor, there should be water for rinsing off and a room for changing available.
How much time, energy and money are you willing to put into this project? The ease and affordability of getting a home sauna is probably much greater than you expect but there is a huge amount of flexibility within the choices you have. Not too surprisingly there is a general tradeoff between price and elbow grease. For a few thousand dollars you can get a complete unit delivered to your home ready to install. It can take literally a few minutes to plug in some Infrared or electric stove models and you are ready to roll. On the other end of the spectrum you can buy a precut kit or individual components for a few hundred dollars and spend a week or two building a complete custom sauna.
When researching your options the terms pre built, prefab, pre-cut and custom kit describe the general categories of choices.
Deciding if a sauna is right for you is a personal matter. In general most people are amazed at the health benefits and felling of well being that can be gained from regular sauna use. After thousands of years of use there is a lot of accumulated evidence showing the health benefits. Improvements to the circulatory system, skin, immune system and mental health are just a few. You should beware that many people become addicted to their sauna routine and it becomes an indispensable part their life.