Last updated: August 10, 2021

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A home sauna is a worthwhile alternative for people who like to treat themselves to some relaxation. Many enjoy the benefits of saunas, but do not feel comfortable in a public sauna area. Especially for your health, it offers countless benefits, which we will explain to you in more detail in this article. Body and mind benefit greatly from regular sauna sessions, as many people feel stressed in everyday life.

Saunas are also a good way for athletes to relax their muscles after exertion. This leads to a faster recovery of the body and you can continue your training faster. In the following text, you will learn what you need to consider when choosing a sauna and tips on how to build one yourself.

In our home sauna test 2022 we explain what is important for the perfect home sauna and what you should consider when buying one.




Summary

  • A home sauna is a sensible investment in your health and relaxes body and mind.
  • If you prefer to relax alone but still want the benefits of a sauna, a home sauna is a good alternative.
  • If you want to enhance the look of your garden and have your own wellness area, buy your own barrel sauna.

The Best Home Sauna: Our Picks

Guide: Questions you should ask yourself before buying a home sauna

What do you have to consider when buying a home sauna?

When buying a home sauna, you should make sure that you have a suitable room in your house. This can be the basement, attic or any other room. The only important thing is that there are electrical supply lines and that you can supply the room with sufficient air on a regular basis.

After you have been in the sauna, you should ventilate the room to prevent the formation of mould. In addition, the floor should be resilient and not very demanding, so that you can walk on it even with wet feet.

For ease of use, the operation of the home sauna is also a point that should play a role in the selection of your sauna. Modern models are easy to operate and offer the possibility to control the temperature, time and humidity individually.

There are also different types of wood. Inexpensive saunas are usually made of Nordic spruce, which is often used in ceilings and walls. Hemlock fir is very suitable because it does not resinify and abachi wood because it has no knots in the wood and you can sit on it very comfortably without getting splinters.

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A home sauna brings the feeling of wellness into your home. It also has many health benefits.
(Image source: pixabay.com / Semevent)

What are the differences between home saunas?

In the previous article, we already learned that there are different types of wood in saunas that have different functions. Basically, we distinguish between solid wood, log and element construction. Furthermore, there are great differences in terms of durability and quality.

If you want to buy a high-quality sauna, it is important that it is made of robust wood.

There are also big differences in size. You can get models for four or more people, but here you should of course first and foremost consider how much space you have available. If you have a large room, you can use a larger sauna with only two people to get the feeling of a sauna in a swimming pool or sauna landscape.

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Decision: What types of home saunas are there and which one is right for you?

If you want to buy a home sauna, there are three alternatives to choose from:

  • Finnish sauna
  • Infrared sauna
  • Steam bath

What distinguishes a Finnish sauna and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

The best-known form of sauna is the one in which you sweat in high humidity. There are different temperatures, the lowest being 60 degrees, which sauna novices in particular prefer, all the way up to 95 degrees.

The humidity is between 10 and 30 %. In the classic sauna, you can refresh the air with infusions in between and thus additionally increase the humidity. The perceived temperature also rises. You can make the steam bubble by waving a towel over it. Infusions come in a wide variety of scents. Eucalyptus is particularly good for the respiratory tract.

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Home saunas come in many different sizes and are suitable even for small rooms.
(Image source: pixabay / Zerocool)

Most saunas have seating and reclining levels. The warm air rises from the bottom to the top, and if you get too hot upstairs, you can lie down on a lounger further down. As a rule, you should take two to three saunas, but each should last no longer than 15 minutes. Afterwards you should take a cold shower and relax after the last sauna session.

Rest on the sofa or a lounger and drink plenty of water or juices, as your body loses a lot of moisture through sweating.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of an infrared sauna?

The infrared sauna has several advantages over the conventional sauna. The temperatures are much more pleasant at 45 to 65 degrees and the body receives heat directly from the infrared rays. It is heated from the inside, so to speak. In fact, you sweat almost as much as when you exercise. People for whom the sauna is too hot and physical exertion too strenuous are exactly right with this gentle form of sauna.

The circulation is less stressed, which is a great advantage for people who are overweight or have circulation problems.

The body heats up the infrared light as soon as it hits the skin. Depending on the wavelength, the rays penetrate the body to different depths and generate heat there. By using an infrared sauna, you can purify your body, strengthen your immune system, promote blood circulation and relieve muscle cramps.

Infrared sauna

  • How does it work? The infrared rays penetrate the upper blood layer and generate deep heat.
  • How warm does it get? Temperatures of 20 to 60 degrees are reached, the stay is more pleasant for many people than in a sauna.
  • How long to preheat? The infrared sauna is usually heated up in 15 minutes.
  • How long do I stay in it? You sit in an infrared sauna for between 20 and 40 minutes a day.
  • How much do you sweat? In an infrared sauna, you sweat a lot so that toxins are optimally eliminated.
  • What size? An infrared cabin is available for just one person.

Steam sauna

  • How does it work? In the steam sauna, the skin is heated by the air and steam from the outside.
  • How warm does it get? In the steam sauna, the temperatures are between 45 and 55 degrees Celsius. In contrast to the sauna, this is relatively low. On the other hand, the humidity is 100 percent.
  • How long to preheat? A steam bath should be preheated for about 30 minutes.
  • How long do you stay in it? An optimal session lasts about eight to twelve minutes. It should not be longer than 15 minutes.
  • How much do you sweat? You tend to sweat less in a steam bath than in a sauna.
  • What size? Steam saunas are available for two people and more.

Classic sauna

  • How does it work? Here, too, the skin is heated by the air from outside.
  • How warm does it get? High temperatures of 80 to 100 degrees are the rule and therefore rather unsuitable for people with cardiovascular problems.
  • How long to preheat? It can often take up to two hours for the sauna to heat up.
  • How long do you stay in it? As a rule, a sauna session should not last longer than 15 minutes. However, it is advisable to take at least three saunas per session, which means that you should allow up to two hours in total.
  • How much do you sweat?The heat in the environment causes comparatively little sweat to form.
  • What size? Saunas come in many different sizes. Small saunas are 150 x 200 centimetres.

What distinguishes a steam bath and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

The difference between a steam bath and a classic or Finnish sauna is that the humidity is approximately 100%. The infusion causes the sweat that the body secretes as protection against heat to stop evaporating. The infusion intensifies the heat effect because the air is stirred up and the body heats up even more.

A steam bath can be used by people who find a classic sauna too hot, as the temperature here is only 40-50 degrees. Especially beginners in the field who want to make their first experiences with sauna, people with cardiovascular problems or with respiratory problems often enjoy this form of sauna.

Buying criteria: These are the factors you can use to compare and evaluate home saunas

In the following, we would like to show you a few criteria that should help you when buying your home sauna.

Size

If you want to install a sauna in your house or flat, the ceiling height of the room should be at least 2.20 metres. If you want to place the cabin in the middle of the room, you will even need a height of 2.40 m.

When choosing your perfect home sauna, it depends on how many people in your household use the sauna. Each person needs about one square metre of space, so for four people the sauna should be four to five square metres.

Electricity consumption

When calculating the cost of your sauna, it is important to remember that a sauna consumes quite a lot of electricity. An average sauna heater consumes 6 to 8 kW. If you go to the sauna for two hours a week, your annual electricity costs will be around €200.

This is a considerable cost factor because the sauna heater needs a lot of energy to heat up to 90 degrees or more. It takes an average of 20 minutes to do this. In contrast, the light consumes very little electricity. Then there is the length of use, i.e. do you go to the sauna every day or only once a week.

Place of use

As we have already learned, you should set up your sauna where the conditions are right and there is enough space. The basement is very suitable, especially if you have several rooms. You need a shower room or enough space for a shower and a relaxation room.

If there is not enough space in your home, you can consider placing the sauna in the garden. This will add visual value to your garden and at the same time you will have the advantage that you do not need any additional rooms. You can set up relaxation loungers and a garden shower and enjoy your sauna session.

Material

A sauna is always made of wood. However, you cannot use just any wood, but must seek advice before buying or inform yourself online about which wood is robust.

It must be weather-resistant, as the wood becomes damp when you use it in the sauna. To prevent it from becoming rotten or decayed, make sure you choose the right type of wood. For more information, see "What to look for when buying a home sauna"

Use

As a rule, it makes sense to go to the sauna once a week. The frequency should depend on how regularly you use it. As a beginner, your sauna sessions should not be too frequent or too long. If you go to the sauna once a week, you should sauna three times for fifteen minutes. Your body needs to get used to the warm and humid climate.

If you want to relax every day, you should only take one sauna session. To strengthen your immune system in the long term, it is recommended that you go to the sauna regularly. You can find more health benefits under "How does the home sauna affect your health?

Image source: Kleymenov/ 123rf.com

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