Install a Sauna Outside with Proper Care and Consideration


Infrared saunas emit infrared light, which is absorbed by your skin, making you feel warm. And yes, you can put these saunas outside, in your backyard, or inside your house. Both options have their advantages and disadvantages, so it’s essential to consider what works best for you.

The Best Place to Put an Infrared Sauna Outside

When you’re deciding where to put your infrared sauna, think about two important things. First, make sure there’s an outlet nearby, because the sauna needs electricity to work. If you’re putting it outside, check if there’s a GFI outlet close by with enough power. Second, think about how much space you need for the sauna unit. Whether it’s for one person, two people, three people, or more, make sure you have enough room wherever you decide to place it.

Constructing the Infrared Sauna Outside

Putting an outdoor sauna together might seem simpler for venting since you don’t have to worry about indoor fixtures. However, it’s crucial to pay close attention to the structure itself. Make sure it meets local building codes, stays safe, and can handle the weather like heat, snow, and wind. You might even consider adding a cover or awning for extra protection.

Since infrared saunas work by sending light waves to your cells instead of heating the air around you like traditional saunas, insulation is key. If the sauna isn’t well-insulated, you might not get all the warmth and sweating benefits, especially if it’s chilly outside. So, when setting up your outdoor infrared sauna, ensure it’s well-insulated to keep the heat inside.

Benefits of Keeping a Sauna Outside

There are some reasons why you may prefer to place your sauna in your backyard:

  • Placing a sauna near your front door offers a quick escape without leaving your property, making relaxation more convenient.
  • Putting your sauna in your backyard saves indoor space, giving you more room inside your home.
  • If you consider having an infrared sauna for outdoor use, you can use it as a pool house, and during sauna sessions in winter, you can take quick dips in the pool for added enjoyment.

However, an outdoor traditional sauna can also enhance your garden’s appeal and boost your property’s value, adding charm to your outdoor space.

How to Properly Maintain Your Infrared Sauna When Used Outdoors

Here are some easy ways to clean and take care of your sauna, so it stays in good shape for a long time:

Before Your Sauna Session

  • Before you step into your sauna, make sure your feet are clean to avoid dirt and sweat piling up. It also helps prevent mold from growing inside your sauna.
  • Take a shower before using the sauna to reduce the dirt, sweat, and grime left on the benches and floors afterward.

Cleaning Your Sauna

  • Keep your sauna clean by vacuuming or sweeping it regularly and giving it a deeper clean at least once a month.
  • Remember to turn off the sauna before cleaning to avoid working at high temperatures and prevent harmful chemical releases.
  • Stick to chemical-free products and warm water for cleaning; baking soda mixed with water works well.
  • Use fine-grit sandpaper for stubborn stains or scuff marks. If necessary, you can pressure wash the sauna inside using a wide-patterned nozzle with low pressure.

Caring for the Wooden Interior

  • Avoid using hard water to prevent lime buildup caused by magnesium and calcium salts, which may require sanding discs for removal.
  • Do not apply protectants or sealants inside the sauna to prevent the wood from absorbing moisture, as the heat can release toxic chemicals from these substances.
  • Always use towels during sauna sessions and wash them immediately afterward; keep extras on hand for guests.
  • Regularly wipe the wooden interior with warm water and a soft cloth to maintain its appearance.
  • If your lumber warranty has expired and the wood looks faded, sand down those areas for touch-ups, ensuring to clean away wood chips to avoid splinters during future sessions.

Caring for the Exterior

  • Use a wood-penetrating oil for outdoor saunas.
  • For deep cleaning, use a pressure washer on a low setting.
  • If you decide to stain the outside, make sure the product contains a UV inhibitor to help the wood resist sunlight.

Heater, Door, and Vent Care

  • Fix a sauna door that won’t close by sanding uneven spots.
  • Stop a sauna door from swinging open by adjusting the latch or using cardboard.
  • Smooth sauna vent slider corners to reduce drag.

On-going Maintenance

  • Replace cracked sauna stones fast if they break from temperature changes.
  • Use stones made for your sauna heater. If not, pick dark stones that hold heat.
  • Tighten bands in the first months of sauna use.
  • Over time, add more filler staves—it’s normal.

Consider an Infrared Sauna for Outdoor Use

Ready to enjoy the benefits of your outdoor infrared sauna? Remember, cleanliness and maintenance are key to keeping it in top shape. Keep your sauna clean and well-cared for by following these simple tips. From cleaning the interior to caring for the wood and ensuring proper functioning of the heater, door, and vents, a little upkeep goes a long way. So, take a moment to review these guidelines and keep your outdoor sauna a relaxing oasis for years to come!

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