Sauna's provide one of the most relaxing experiences as you sit and relax in the high heat. Outdoor saunas add even more to that. Imagine strolling down a forest path, the only sounds you hear are birds and perhaps a babbling brook. Rounding a corner you come across a rustic outdoor sauna building. This setting provides for the ultimate in relaxation. With the invention of infrared saunas, outdoor saunas are becoming more and more popular. You no longer have to wait long periods of time to heat the sauna with wood or gas. They can also be smaller, thus taking up less space. Even people in cities are getting into their own personal outdoor saunas, by putting an infrared sauna in their backyards. One thing to note if you're considering your own outdoor sauna is that many infrared saunas are designed to be used indoors only. Make sure you check with the manufacturer to find out if the sauna you purchase can be used outdoors.
Building an Outdoor Sauna
If you're building a rustic outdoor sauna you should know you are taking on a pretty impressive task. In most cases rustic saunas are heated by a wood stove. This means that you will need to purchase the stove, and make sure that the space is the appropriate size, and that all venting is taken care of. There's nothing worse than trying to enjoy a relaxing sauna and being forced out into the cold by smoke from the fire. Make sure that all the smoke goes out the chimney as an outdoor sauna full of smoke is not a pleasant experience. Even if you are experimenting when you first build the sauna to find the best design for keeping smoke going up the chimney, you may find if you get smoke in the sauna that it will retain the smell and odor for quite a long time. A slight odor of wood smoke may not be bad, but you don't want your outdoor sauna to smell like a burned down building.
Outdoor Sauna Designs
If you search the internet their are hundreds of outdoor sauna designs to choose from. One of the most popular outdoor sauna designs is the barrel sauna. It gets it's name from its distinctive barrel shape. When choosing a design make sure that it works with the type of wood you are using to build the sauna. Most outdoor saunas are made from white or red cedar as the wood provides a very nice and natural smell. It is also important to choose kiln dried wood for your sauna if you want it to handle the extremes in temperature without any warping or cracking.
Once you've got a design in mind you'll have to choose a heat source for your sauna. Many different heat sources are available. Traditionally saunas used wood for heat, but we now have gas, oil, and infrared heating systems which often are faster to warm up and get to optimal bathing temperatures. Infrared saunas have the added benefit of not needing to heat up to nearly the same temperature as the other sources as the infrared waves don't heat the air as much as they heat your body.
Outdoor Sauna Kits
There are many sauna kits available on the market today, and a number of them actually allow for outdoor installations. Most outdoor sauna kits are more expensive than their indoor only counterparts as they must be designed to handle all types of weather conditions. This leads to a sturdier construction in most cases and more weatherproofing than an indoor sauna would require. Sauna kits come in a large variety of designs and with a number of different heating sources. It is best to do your research and determine which outdoor sauna kit is best for your particular situation and application.
Outdoor saunas provide the most relaxing and natural sauna therapy.
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