Mistakes Can be Avoided When Building your Sauna Kit

Posted on 21 November 2017

When building your personal sauna kit, it’s wise to follow some of the proven guidelines.  In fact, not doing enough pre-planning is a mistake to avoid while building your sauna kit. Another obvious mistake to avoid while building your sauna kit is not dealing with a reputable sauna dealer.

Learn how to properly build your sauna kit to avoid mistakes

At Saunafin, experienced staff can provide the right type of advice to properly build a variety of sauna kits. At the same time, they can advise about specific mistakes to avoid while building your sauna kit. Throughout the GTA, homeowners can fully rely on Saunafin to build it right.

Saunafin specializes in pre-fabricated sauna kits; sauna material kits; special infrared saunas; as well as steam generators. With everything under one roof, Saunafin can provide it all.

Pre-planning your sauna will help avoid costly mistakes

  • The allotted space should be adequate enough for both seating and reclining.
  • As a rule, there should be 2 feet of bench space per person. For comfortable reclining, the bench should be 6 feet or longer
  • Upper bench widths should be 20" – lower bench widths should be 16". A sauna spaceshould not have angles, alcoves or vestibules (too much wasted space and can affect heater efficiency). Two bench levels are important
  • The upper bench is for maximum heat; the lower bench is for stepping up or for sitting at  the lower temperatures.

The advantage of having a shower close by

Before sauna, shower using soap to cleans the body.  For many people, saunas are a "hot-cold" cycle.  Depending on your experience, preference and tolerance, most people will sit in the sauna for 7-to 15 minutes.  Then step into a cold or cool shower (or jump in a lake if one is handy).  Repeat the hot-cold cycle two, three or four times as desired.  Once you are finished your sauna, take one last cool shower.  Damp dry and then sit or lay down for 10-20 to air dry and relax.

Making sure that the sauna is properly ventilated

  • Sauna ventilation is not required for safety reasons, but it makes the sauna experience more comfortable. And improper or insufficient air flow can impede heater operation.
  • Sauna venting is not like venting for a shower. You are not venting humidity (saunas are basically very dry) and you do not vent to the outdoors.
  • Sauna vent inlets and outlets are inside the house.  If possible the outlet vent should direct exhausted air back to the inlet vent area.
  • (Note for exterior saunas. Obviously, if your sauna is outdoors, you can't vent into the house.  For an outdoor sauna, some will skip the venting initially and only add it later if required.  For outdoor venting, exterior should have "muchroom cap" style cover so air from outside does not blow in to sauna.
  • It's best to install a lower vent (for air intake) and an upper vent (for exhaust).
  • The lower vent brings in air for added comfort, while the outlet vent expels used air.
  • The lower vent should be close to the floor and close to the sauna heater (allows the heater to work efficiently).
  • Outlet vent should in the far corner from the sauna heater and inlet.  The upper outlet vent is usually placed about 6" below the ceiling.
  • Typically, no ductwork is required for the vents.
  • Sometimes outlet vent through far wall is not possible.  In such cases, it may be possible to vent through ceiling and duct exhaust air over drop ceiling to an available space.

Ceiling height of the sauna and door installation

The norm for a sauna ceiling is 7' from the floor. This height allows for heating efficiency.  Depending on heater model, the ceiling can also be as low as 75" if desired. Saunas taller than 7' have more of the "hottest" air above the sauna seating area, so they will not feel as hot. 

As for the sauna door, it must open outwards for safety reasons, and should not be installed with a lock. The sauna door should be 24" wide (standard) in order to prevent the unnecessary loss of heat.

Sauna height affects inside temperature variations

Sauna heat is stratified because heat naturally rises from the floor to the ceiling. That is why two tier benches and a lower ceiling height are so important.  At 7', you are sitting closer to the warmest air in the sauna. A high ceiling causes heat to be above bathers' heads.  Excessive ceiling height is definitely a mistake to avoid while building your sauna kit.

Be sure to follow our guide to properly build your own sauna kit. We hope it helps make the construction process quick and easy. As soon as your sauna kit is installed the relaxing begins! Contact our sauna experts for any building issues along the way.

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