Can Saunas Go Outside?
Studies have shown that the regular use of a sauna has many health benefits. This can range from easily recognizable improvements such as relieving sore muscles, promotion of sleep and cleansing of the skin to more unnoticeable benefits such as improved cardiovascular performance, lowered risk of Alzheimer’s disease and reduced incidences of colds and the flu. Those looking to benefit from sauna use in their own home often bemoan the complications of setting one up in their basement or spare room. But can saunas go outside? With certain factors accounted for it’s absolutely possible. In this article, we’ll go over the various factors that should be considered.
The first thing you’ll want to check is if the sauna manufacturer believes their saunas are made for outdoor use. Some warranties will specify that outdoor storage of the sauna will void the warranty. Not only will this leave you unprotected if there are any sauna problems that need to be fixed, but the manufacturer may not have actually built the sauna for outdoor use in the first place. There are many saunas that are specifically built for outdoor use. Make it easy on yourself by choosing one that is.
Most saunas that are built for indoor use have a flat top roof. This makes it easier to install as most rooms inside a house are created with right angles. However, if you’re planning to place your sauna outdoors, you’ll want a roof that prevents the pooling of water or the accumulation of snow. Therefore, most outdoor saunas will have a peaked or rounded roof to allow for precipitation runoff. If your outdoor sauna has a flat roof you might want to consider some sort of protective cover. Without one, you could end up with a warped or moldy roof.
Don’t assume you’ll be plugging your sauna into just any old electrical outlet. It may be possible, as there are plug-and-play infrared saunas, but it’s more than likely you’ll need to plug into something a little more complicated. Even still, you’ll need a dedicated outlet for the infrared sauna if you’re not going to blow breakers on a regular basis. Traditional saunas, on the other hand, typically need access to (or the creation of) a dedicated 220-240 volt, 30-60 amp breaker and GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupter.)
Heating in Cold Weather
When it comes to infrared saunas that run at a much lower temperature than traditional saunas, if not properly accounted for, you may find that you can’t get the temperature up high enough to be comfortable when it’s extremely cold outside. You might also find the same problem with saunas that allow heat to escape through glass doors. If you plan on installing your sauna outdoors, ensure that it’ll be able to generate enough heat to keep you comfortable during your coldest weather.
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