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Sweat it or Skip it: Pros and Cons of a Home Sauna

Sweat it or Skip it: Pros and Cons of a Home Sauna

Is a home sauna another unnecessary indulgence? The potential benefits of heat therapy have been mind-blowing. But let's take a balanced look at the pros and cons of a home sauna so you can decide whether it aligns with your wellness goals and lifestyle.

Pros of a Home Sauna?

Owning a home sauna provides luxury and wellness. Let's explore the benefits of a sauna and see why it’s worth investing in it.

Health & Wellness

  • Boost your heart health: The heat in a sauna increases your heart rate, mimicking mild cardiovascular activity. This can improve circulation and potentially reduce the risk of heart disease over time.
  • Ease muscle tension and pain: Whether you're a weekend warrior or battling chronic pain conditions like arthritis, saunas can be your relaxation retreat. The heat helps loosen tight muscles, reducing pain and stiffness.
  • Unveil a radiant glow: Regular sauna sessions can make your skin healthier and clearer. The increased blood flow boosts oxygen and nutrient distribution to the skin while sweating helps remove impurities.
  • De-stress and unwind: The warmth activates the release of endorphins, natural mood boosters that combat stress and promote better sleep.

Convenience & Luxury

  • Your personal spa steps away: You can step into a soothing sauna after a long day without traveling or scheduling appointments. In-home saunas offer ultimate convenience and privacy.
  • Tailor your comfort zone: Unlike public saunas, you control the temperature and duration of your sessions in a custom home sauna. Perfect for creating a personalized relaxation ritual.
  • Strengthen social bonds: Invite friends and family for an exclusive sauna experience. Sharing warmth fosters connection and creates lasting memories.

Additional Perks

  • Chromotherapy ambiance: Some saunas offer light therapy, with different colors promoting relaxation or alertness.
  • Long-term Cost Savings: Although the initial expense may seem high, using a sauna regularly can save you money on spa and healthcare expenses in the long term.

Sauna is not a substitute for medicines or health treatments. Always consult your physician before using the sauna, especially if you have a pre-existing condition.

Cons of Home Saunas

While home saunas offer tempting benefits, understanding the disadvantages of a sauna is crucial before spending your hard-earned money.

Health Concerns

  • Not for everyone: Individuals with heart conditions, high blood pressure, or uncontrolled epilepsy should avoid saunas due to the intense heat. Consult your doctor for personalized advice.
  • Dehydration risks: Saunas make you sweat, a natural response to the heat. Staying hydrated before, during, and after sauna sessions is essential to avoid dehydration and potential health risks. Listen to your body and take breaks when needed.
  • Potential for heatstroke: While rare, overheating is a risk in any high-temperature environment. Know your limits, start with shorter sessions, and cool down gradually after use.

Cost & Installation

  • Initial investment: In-home saunas come with a price tag ranging from $2,000 to $10,000+, depending on size, features, and materials. Factor in this initial cost before committing.
  • Installation considerations: While some saunas are DIY-friendly, professional installation adds to the expense. Consider your budget and comfort level with assembly.
  • Running costs: Saunas use electricity to heat up, so factor in ongoing energy costs alongside regular maintenance expenses.

Space & Practicality

  • Space commitment: A home sauna requires dedicated space. Consider its size and placement before purchase, ensuring proper ventilation and comfortable access. Opt for outdoor saunas if you have more space in your yard.
  • Ventilation needs: Depending on your model and home setup, additional ventilation might be required to manage humidity and heat effectively.
  • Regular upkeep: Like any appliance, saunas require cleaning and maintenance. Be prepared to dedicate time to keeping your sauna in good condition.

What To Look for In a Home Sauna

When considering a home sauna, it's essential to understand the key features and types available to make an informed decision. Here's a guide on what to look for in a home sauna:

1. Sauna Type

  • Infrared Sauna: Known for deep tissue penetration and lower temperatures.
  • Traditional Sauna: Utilizes heated rocks or panels to produce dry heat.

2. Size and Space

  • Assess your home's available space to determine the suitable sauna size.
  • Consider whether a built-in or portable option suits your spatial requirements.

3. Heating Element

  • Infrared Sauna: Uses infrared heaters, which emit radiant heat directly absorbed by the body.
  • Traditional Sauna: Heats the air, warming the space.

4. Material Quality

  • Check for durable and heat-resistant materials such as cedar or hemlock.
  • Ensure that the chosen materials withstand extreme conditions.

5. Temperature Control

  • Infrared Sauna: Offers precise temperature control for a milder experience.
  • Traditional Sauna: Typically reaches higher temperatures, providing classic dry heat.

6. Health and Safety Features

  • Look for safety certifications and features like emergency shut-off switches.
  • Ensure proper ventilation to prevent excessive moisture buildup.

7. Installation and Maintenance

  • Consider the ease of installation and whether professional assistance is required.
  • Assess the maintenance requirements, such as cleaning and occasional repairs.

8. Budget Considerations

  • Determine your budget range and explore sauna options that align with your financial plan.
  • Factor in any additional costs, such as installation and ongoing maintenance.

By understanding these aspects, you can select the in-home sauna that best suits your preferences and wellness goals.


Are home saunas hard to maintain? 

The maintenance level depends on the sauna type and your commitment. Regular cleaning and basic upkeep are necessary, but complexity varies.

Do home saunas use a lot of electricity? 

An average home sauna typically uses 9 to 13 kWh of energy in a typical session. The amount of time spent using the sauna have the biggest impact on energy costs. Their energy consumption is like that of a hair dryer or your kitchen’s oven. While usage varies by model and frequency, be mindful of the ongoing electricity costs. Proper insulation reduces heat loss, which further lowers sauna energy use. Read the manual or contact the manufacturer if you have other concerns.  

How long do home saunas last?

High-quality home saunas can last 20-30 years with proper care and regular maintenance. Factors like heater type, materials, and usage frequency can impact lifespan.

Is it OK to sauna every day?

Generally, no. Saunas can be physically demanding, and daily use could lead to dehydration, fatigue, or other health risks. Listen to your body and limit sessions to 2-3 times a week, with rest days in between.


Spending money in a sauna is a personal decision, but investing in your health is necessary. Considering your health, budget, and lifestyle, and weigh the pros and cons of a home sauna. Remember that when you put your wellness first, you get more than you paid for. 

How do you invest in your health? 

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