Traditional Sauna Frequently Asked Questions

Buying a traditional sauna is a major investment in your health and home. Here are some frequently asked questions we have selected from our years of experience that we think will help you.

1. What differentiates a wet sauna from a dry sauna?

They are interchangeable. Due to the dry heat and lack of humidity, the hot sauna is thought of as a dry sauna when you enter it before any water is sprinkled on the rocks. It becomes a wet sauna the moment steam is produced by pouring water on the rocks creating a humid environment.

2. How should I care for my outdoor sauna’s exterior?

Our outdoor saunas are made for the rigors of outdoors and ok to be in all elements including very cold, windy, humid, and hot climates. If left untreated, the wood will eventually turn a gray/silver color from the sun but this will not affect the function of the sauna in any way. If you want to preserve the sauna’s deep, natural color, you should use a clear UV-inhibited stain on the exterior to protect it from the damaging effects of rain and sunlight. Your neighborhood painter might offer assistance with a suitable product. Don’t ever treat the sauna room's interior.

3. What sort of site preparation is required for my outdoor barrel or cabin sauna?

Although Salus Saunas can be utilized in most settings, it is imperative that the surface upon which the sauna is supported be firm and level (a tiny slope for rain run-off is OK). Wood decks, concrete patios, paver stones, pressed gravel, etc. are examples of appropriate surfaces. Do NOT place your barrel or cabin saunas cradles directly on the grass/ground. Please ask a sales representative for assistance with foundation options if unsure.

4. Which kind of electricity service is necessary?

Traditional sauna heaters require 240 volt and a 30, 40 or 50 amp breaker, and need to be hardwired by a licensed electrician. Infrared saunas required 120 volt with a 15 amp or 20 amp dedicated circuit depending upon the size.

5. What kind of routine maintenance does my sauna require?

From a maintenance perspective, relatively little work is needed. Occasionally cleaning the sauna’s floor or benches with a water and baking soda solution is recommended. If sweat stains get too bad you can lightly use sandpaper to get rid of them. Not often, but every once in a while for a barrel sauna, you may need to tighten or loosen the bands occasionally due to how much the environment causes the wood to shrink or expand.

6. What degree of heat is ideal for a sauna?

It really depends upon your preference. Hotter doesn’t necessarily mean better, some people like it cooler and some people like it extremely hot. It boils down to choice and preference.

7. How hot do your traditional heaters get?

This will depend on the heater model. The Harvia KIP heaters get up to a max temp of 190 degrees. The Virta heaters will get to a max temp of 190 and sometimes closer to 200 in the right environment. The Huum heaters can get all the way up to 220 degrees!