A home sauna can be a welcome addition to your relaxation regimen. When it comes to construction, one of the easiest ways to do it yourself is by using a sauna kit.
Sauna Kit Options
There are 3 basic varieties of sauna kits. The first very basic kind of kit provides you with the plans and instructions, as well as a materials list. You then purchase the materials on your own, measure and cut the wood, and assemble the sauna. The second kind of kit provides you with all the materials pre-cut. In this case, all you have to do is assemble the kit. The third type of kit ships the entire sauna pre-built. This means all you have to do is install it.
Pre-built units are the most costly, but they come in a variety of standard layouts and designs that are assembled on site. These kits provide all the materials pre-hung, pre-wired and ready to put together. For your convenience, they often require as few as 5 to assemble, and there is no need for tools or do-it-yourself expertise.
The steps for pre-built sauna kit installation include putting the back wall in place, attaching the side walls to the back wall and installing the front section that includes the pre-hung door. You would then install the ceiling panels, the benches and the heater that came with the kit. These types of saunas are easily disassembled as well, making them portable. They often only require a couple hours to assemble (minus the time for site preparation), but often have very high shipping costs due to their size.
Pre-cut sauna kits can be found with either materials and plans or just plans. You are usually able to customize your sauna plan with these kits for an additional fee. Because you are doing a great deal of the work on these, they are generally the least expensive. They normally cost 1/3 less than a prefab kit and take anywhere from 12 to 24 hours to assemble.
Sauna Kit Construction
Before assembling a kit, you will need to build a frame, lay floor joists and install the insulation. Lots of do-it-yourself kits you order will include the wall and ceiling panels, trim and base boards, the heater, a pre-hung door, benches, the threshold and casing, and any accessories. To assemble the sauna, begin by nailing the tongue and groove boards to your studs. Though there is a lot more work involved for this type of kit, it would be the best selection if you have an odd-sized space to put your sauna which will not accommodate a prefab kit.
To build a sauna from plans, you will need a full array of tools, including a hammer, saw, 24-inch level, sanding block, stapler, chisel, nail punch, trimming knife, screwdriver, measuring tape, pliers, circular saw and electric drill.
Kits generally do not include wall studs, insulation, or exterior wall covering, so keep this in mind as you create a supply list before construction.
Before beginning any sauna installation project, be sure to check with your building authority, as you may need a permit to install a sauna both inside your home or outdoors. It may also require you to hire an electrician to do the wiring, and your gas company to hook up a heat source.