How to Build a Sauna Door

Lead Image
  • 4-12 hours
  • Beginner
  • 40-200
What You'll Need
Safety goggles
1 Inch Thick plywood
Tape measure
Heavy aluminum foil
Wood glue
Cedar wood panels
Tempered glass
Router saw

A sauna door is a crucial element of any steam room. Just as the door to a home is inviting, attractive and most of all functional, a sauna door should welcome you into the space. Because of the heat and humidity inside, your door must be constructed in a manner to withstand these conditions and not be subject to warp. A sauna door can be all wood with an insulated core or built with insulated glass. Building a sauna door is not extremely difficult with the right tools and instruction. Follow these steps to build your own sauna door.

Step 1 - Measure and Cut Plywood

A sauna door is smaller than traditional doors because of the fact that the smaller the door, the more effective the sauna will be when maintaining temperature. Measure the plywood to the dimensions of 24 inches x 72 inches. Once you have marked the dimensions on your plywood, use your saw to skillfully cut the door.

Step 2 - Cut In Glass Space

Although a sauna door can be complete wood, you can also add an opening in your plywood for tempered glass so that you may allow more natural light into your sauna. Cut a section in your door to the dimensions of the size glass you want to have in your door.

Step 3 - Measure and Cut Cedar

Cedar is a high-quality wood that can withstand the pressure of extreme heat. Measure and cut the cedar to the dimensions of your plywood door. Use your router saw to create tongue and groove ends on your cedar. This will enable your door to be solidly constructed and prevent warp.

Step 4 - Apply Insulation

On the side of the door that you will consider facing inside your sauna, you will want to place a heavyweight aluminum foil on the surface and cut to the dimension of the door ensuring you compensate for the glass window space. The shiny side of the aluminum foil should be facing upwards to reflect the heat from the door and back into the sauna. Once you have the foil in place, use the wood glue sparingly on the opposite side and place it against the wood. Allow the glue to dry.

Step 5 - Apply Cedar Panels

Once the insulation is dry, you can now place your cedar panels over the top of the plywood. Using the tongue and groove method, dry-fit the panels on the plywood to check for a perfect fit. Once you have determined the fit, apply wood glue to the groove of the panels and place them on the plywood. Once this is done, secure the panels to the plywood. Repeat the action on the opposite side of the door. Your sauna door is pretty heavy at this point.

Step 6 - Apply Hardware

You are now ready to add hardware to your door. For safety reasons, sauna doors open to the outside and not to the inside. Apply your hinges and handles appropriately.