We all love to go to the sauna for relaxation and to eliminate toxins. But why go through all the bother of going out of your house, to reach a spa or gym that has a sauna, where you could even catch an infection if you’re unlucky, when you could build a sauna in your own home. You could also buy an already built home sauna, but if you check out some reviews, you will see that these saunas can be quite expensive. Sauna kits on the other hand are far cheaper and quite easy to install. Next, we will be taking a step by step approach to building a home sauna.
1. Choosing where it should be placed
The sauna must have easy access to electricity and plumbing, therefore be really careful when you choose the room to put it in. If there is enough space in it, the best spot to place it is the bathroom, because you have access to what you need for it, and in the bathroom you have better privacy than in the other rooms. Plus, it doesn’t get as easily affected by steam as the other rooms, keeping in mind that you take showers and baths in it anyway. You need to take a shower after using the sauna, so try your best to put it there for your own convenience.
2. Constructing the sauna
Do this the easy way, and buy a home sauna building kit. It doesn’t cost much, and you find in it everything you need to build the sauna. Set up the floor, walls, and the flat roof of the sauna, and you are done without much effort. It will only take you a weekend to set it up this way, instead of having to make all the materials yourself.
You have to wire the sauna for the light switch, the light, and the sauna wire conduit. It’s better to go with an electrical type of sauna, rather than a gas sauna heater, because it’s safer, simpler, and you need to consult a professional when you make the gas version anyway.
You have to insulate the sauna, it’s mandatory. By insulating it you lower the operating costs, because the heat doesn’t escape the sauna easily. In addition, insulating the sauna provides a sound barrier, giving you a more relaxing experience when you are inside it. You have to insulate both the interior and the exterior walls, and you could do it by using R-11 insulation for the interior, and for the exterior use R-19. To have even better results, add foil to reflect the heat better, this way adding a foil vapor barrier of R-1 value. The foil doesn’t melt and it’s odorless, therefore don’t use any other material to provide this extra insulation, while protecting the wall with its help.
On the floors and walls you should use cedar paneling. Simply nail cedar panel boards all over the room, including on the ceiling. Make sure the boards cover all the insulated area, and if any of them are larger when you reach the ceiling, just trim them to fit perfectly. When you’re finished, it will definitely look professional and gorgeous.
6. Sauna heater
Since we established that it’s safer to use an electrical heater, go and buy the model you desire, and simply install it in your home sauna. It’s preferable to place it at the center of the wall that is facing the door. This way, the heat will flow evenly throughout the room, and its position won’t be an inconvenience. You won’t have a hard time installing it, because all sauna heaters come with an installation guide, so you don’t have to be a professional to do it. Place rocks around the sauna heater or on it with the help of a grill, and when you start using it, pour water on the rocks when the place has heated up to produce vapors.
7. Set up the benches
Depending on the size of your sauna, build some benches from wood boards which you nail together. Usually, sauna benches are 18 inches or deeper, but if you intend to make a big sauna which will be used by many people, make more sturdy benches. You can build two long benches that will be placed surrounding the walls that are next to the sauna heater wall, and you fit how many people you want in it this way.
8. Install the door
The sauna door doesn’t need to be large. You could go for a narrow door, so when you open the door, there isn’t much heat loss. Buy a special sauna door made from wood from any provider, and install it yourself. It’s better this way, because if you’re not a professional, the door might not shut correctly, or heat could escape through it when it’s closed.