The 1-person traditional sauna is a fantastic choice for those who want a more organic, natural experience. They are perfect for people who like the fragrance of burning wood and the sound of water splashing.
People have been using traditional saunas for cleansing, relaxation, and weight loss for hundreds of years. The only difference today is that people are now getting traditional saunas installed in their houses instead of going to spas.
Suppose you are someone who is considering adding a 1-person traditional sauna to your home. In that case, you need to understand some specifics about it first! Below is a complete guide covering all the important aspects of choosing the best traditional sauna for your home.
What is a Traditional Sauna?
A traditional Finnish sauna is a wooden structure or room that can be custom built. Unlike other saunas, a traditional sauna uses heated stones and water in a hot and humid atmosphere. Usually, traditional saunas can fit several people. However, this can also be custom built to any size, including a 1 person’s traditional sauna.
How Does It work?
As the name indicates, a traditional sauna uses conventional methods to create a hot and humid environment. While in the old times, rocks were heated by fire, the modern traditional saunas used steamers to heat the rocks.
Once the sauna rocks/stones are heated, water is poured over them, which results in steam and humidity. You can keep the atmosphere dry or humid according to your preference; however, usually, the humidity level of traditional saunas is kept between 5% to 15%.
Usually, people prefer to sit inside a traditional sauna for up to 30 minutes. The average skin temperature after using a sauna is around 40° Celsius or 104° Fahrenheit. Heavy sweating happens in tandem with an increase in skin temperature.
You can either take a cold shower or ‘plunge’ in cold water to cool down. As the body tries to stay cool, the heart rate increases. Moreover, muscle function stimulates the immune system while endorphins are also released. During a brief visit to a sauna, it is not unusual to shed around a pint of sweat, so you can either sit longer than 30 minutes or repeat the process couple of times.
Natural and Organic: A traditional sauna uses dry heat or steam to induce detoxifying precipitation. There are no infrared rays or heat involved. It raises the body temperature to the extent that it starts to cool down on its own.
Custom Built: The best thing about the traditional sauna is that they can be customized according to personal preferences. Whether you want a 1-person traditional sauna or for multiple persons, wooden conventional Finnish saunas can be built in any size and dimensions.
Aromatherapy: Traditional saunas can also be used for aromatherapy during sauna sessions. The birch whisks or wood-burning sauna heaters naturally produce a soothing aroma. Moreover, you can also add additional fragrances or natural oils to the water.
Controlled Atmosphere: One of the best features of a traditional sauna is that the bather can control the humidity level and the temperature of the sauna. The water you pour on the sauna stones controls the humidity level.
Expensive: Despite the numerous health benefits, one of the major drawbacks of a traditional sauna is the hefty amount. The purchase price, installation, and operation costs of a traditional sauna can take a toll on your finances. And if you opt for a custom-built 1 person traditional sauna, it comes at even a higher price.
Consumes More Energy: Traditional saunas are not energy efficient. In comparison to other sauna types, traditional Finnish saunas consume more energy.
Takes Longer to Heat: It usually takes up to 30 minutes for a conventional sauna to fully heat up and work its magic.
Susceptible to Mold and Fungus: Finnish conventional saunas require high maintenance. Due to the damp and moist environment and wooden structure, traditional saunas are more susceptible to molds and fungus. They require regular cleaning and maintenance.
Dehydration: While it’s not just limited to traditional saunas, dehydration is one of the drawbacks of saunas.
Not Beneficial for Everyone: Although traditional saunas sound tempting, it doesn’t work for everyone. For some people, dry heat or steam is insufficient to extract all the toxins. Therefore it is recommended to consult your doctor before choosing a home sauna.
Differences between Traditional & Contemporary Sauna
A traditional sauna differs from other contemporary saunas in many ways. Whether you need a traditional sauna or not, you should first know the differences between the two types.
When it comes to traditional Finnish homes, saunas are built using wood. Contemporary saunas, such as infrared ones, can be built with wood or plastic.
Steam or Dry heat is typically used in traditional Finnish saunas. Other contemporary saunas, like infrared saunas, use advanced infrared heaters.
Moisture & Humidity Levels
The relative humidity in 1 person’s traditional sauna is frequently between 10% and 20%. In contrast, other saunas have higher moisture levels. For instance, Turkish-style saunas have higher humidity levels.
A conventional Finnish sauna can take up to 30 to 40 minutes to heat up fully. This is the ideal time for the rocks inside the sauna to heat up to the ideal temperature to create gentle heat and soft steam.
The contemporary sauna takes less time to heat up. For instance, the average heating time for an infrared sauna is between 10 to 15 minutes.
When it comes to traditional saunas, the average air temperature is around 70 to 80 degrees is required to induce sweat. The temperature in traditional saunas can go as high as 110 degrees.
On the other hand, the air temperature in contemporary saunas to induce a higher level of detoxifying perspiration is between 46 to 57 degrees.
Criteria for Choosing a Traditional Sauna
In contrast to using a 1 person’s traditional sauna, buying it can be daunting. There are many things to consider. You must be mindful of everything from cost to installation to size and dimensions. Otherwise, you will end up wasting your money!
Quality of the Timber
The first thing is the quality of timber used to manufacture 1 person’s traditional sauna. The most durable timbers used for Finnish sauna are hemlock or red cedar. Another thing that plays a key role in the quality is the construction. When looking for a traditional sauna, look for kiln-dried, air-dried, or fine-grain wood construction, as they are the most durable.
When deciding to get a traditional sauna, consider the space factor must. Decide whether you want an indoor or outdoor sauna. Once you have made up your mind, the next thing is to check whether you have ample space for the sauna installation or not. Depending on indoor or outdoor, some spaces work best for sauna installation.
For indoor sauna installation, the best spaces may include:
- Storage closet
- Small bathroom
- Upstairs area
For outdoor sauna installation, the ideal space may be:
- Pre-existing building
- Garden area
A 1 person’s traditional sauna requires a heat source to operate. It can either be operated using a wood-burning stove or an electric heater. Both heat sources are energy efficient and perform best.
Insulation and Ventilation
Usually, pre-built saunas don’t require any ventilation or insulation. However, suppose you are using a small bathroom, pre-existing building, or building the traditional sauna from scratch. In that case, you need to be mindful of ventilation and insulation.
For a sauna to work perfectly, ensure its floor, ceiling, and walls are insulated. Don’t use fiberglass for insulation; go for recycled cotton or jeans. Install the vents and use foil paper vapors for heat retention.
A chimney kit is important, especially if you use an electric heater to operate the traditional sauna. The chimney prevents smoke accumulation as well as vents out all the gasses. You can either install the chimney kit through the sidewall or roof. A double wall chimney system, preferably metal, is the safest option. Don’t forget about the pitched ceiling support. For the chimney, choose from sheet metal and silicon roofing, combined with cement and plumb bob.
Depending upon the space available, you must always consider the design of the sauna. Usually, the Finnish Sauns come in a room or cabin-like design.
Cost and Installation
A critical decision-making factor for a traditional home sauna is its cost and installation prices. The cost of a traditional sauna can vary depending upon
- Sauna type
- Sauna model and make
- Sauna size
- Sauna option selection
- Sauna placement
- Sauna accessories
While your sauna dealer and the installer will determine the actual cost of the traditional sauna, generally, traditional saunas range from $6,000 to $11,000+. The price can vary depending on the payment method and the size & dimensions of the sauna. This price is exclusive of any installation or maintenance charges.
An average sauna kit installation costs $300 to $1,500 in labor. Moreover, using a traditional sauna with 6kW heater 3 times a week will cost $4 to $6 per month (operational cost). However, if you use a 2.1kW heater, the operational cost would be $2 per month.
The Dimensions of a 1 Person Traditional Sauna
A traditional sauna can be custom-built into various sizes and dimensions. For a 1 person traditional sauna, the ideal size and dimensions are 1250 x 730 x 1950mm (L x D x H). You can also opt for a 2-person traditional sauna with measurements of 4 by 4 feet or 48 by 48 inches and 6 feet or 72 inches high.
Frequently Asked Questions
How much does a one-person sauna cost?
A traditional sauna can range from $3000 to $10000. The cost can vary depending upon the sauna size, dimensions, model, make, material, construction, and labor. The installation of 1 person traditional sauna can cost from $300 to $2500 alone.
What is the smallest size sauna?
Saunas can be built as small as the size of a cabin. However, it is recommended not to make it too small. A good size for a 1 bather sauna is 3′ x 3′. For 2 to 3 persons, a size of 4′ x 6′ to 5′ x 7′ can work.
Do saunas use a lot of electricity?
Roughly a 1000W sauna requires around 1kWh of power. It means that saunas usually don’t utilize much electricity. Operational costs for traditional saunas can cost $2 to $4 per month. And that’s when you use the electrical heater.
Can you have a traditional sauna indoors?
Traditional saunas are generally designed for indoor installation. If your sauna is properly insulated and ventilated, it can be installed indoors.
Can I put a sauna on the carpet?
Yes. Traditional saunas can be installed on the floor, cement, carpet, tiles, or any surface.
What are the 3 Best Available Traditional Saunas on the Market?
Almost Heaven Logan 1-Person Indoor Sauna
The Almost Heaven Logan 1-person traditional sauna is designed for tight spaces and provides the best spa experience. It uses a 4.5KW Harvia KIP Electric Heater that can be upgraded to a 6kW. Manufactured with premium lumber, the Logan 1-person indoor sauna is available in rustic cedar and white fir.
- Perfect size for indoor spaces
- Easy to assemble and install
- Heats up to 185+ and comes with a wall thermometer
- Not super spacious
- Cost around $4000
- Require to assemble
- Very little legroom.
Traditional Sauna 1 Person – D1020
Designed to fit 1-person, the D1020 is an affordable yet effective indoor sauna. With 1250 x 730 x 1950mm (L x D x H), the D1020 sauna features a 2.5kw compact sauna heater with built-in digital controls. The best thing about D1020 is that it can be upgraded and customized according to your needs.
- Cheaper than competitors.
- Spacious enough to fit one person comfortably.
- It can be customized and upgraded.
- Features a 2.5kw heater.
- Optional accessories available
- Requires professional installation
2 Person Traditional Sauna – HL200SN Baldwin
Another great 1-bather indoor sauna option is the 2-Person Traditional Sauna – HL200SN Baldwin. From construction to design, everything about this sauna is incredible. The measurements of the cabin are 59″ x 47″ x 75″. It comes with 3.0kW hariva heaters with 220V/20AMPs power. The sauna can fit 1-2 people and is manufactured with Natural Canadian Hemlock Wood.
- Comes with a ventilation system
- Features Tempered Glass
- Wide bench seating with plenty of legroom
- Ergonomic Backrest
- Not ideal for compact or tight spaces.
With the increasing demand for saunas, many traditional saunas are available on the market. Usually, it is difficult to find a pre-built 1-person traditional sauna. Most people get it custom built. Among all the various options in the market, the best 1-person traditional sauna is Traditional Sauna 1 Person – D1020. Not only is it built for a single bather, but you can also upgrade or customize it completely. D1020 allows you to select everything according to your preference, from door to lightning. Not to mention, the price of the D1020 traditional sauna is such a steal! Whether you buy a sauna from our recommended list or some other product, check all the criteria, safety standards, and warranty period.
Hi People! My name is Monica Khemsurov, and I am the founder of SaunaSavant. I am Finnish, a professional swimmer, and a lifelong sauna & spa enthusiast. In this blog, I will share my insights, suggestions, and recommendations on everything related to saunas and indoor living. Please let me know (through the contact box) if you have any feedback. Cheers!