Infrared Sauna Installation

While an infrared sauna installation is pretty easy, it’s nice to know in advance what to expect. Below you'll find:

• What to ask before you buy
• Common shipping practices for far infrared saunas
• What assembly involves

Before you buy an infrared sauna

Before I bought my fir sauna , installation and assembly were top concerns. Was the sauna installation going to be something that I could do alone? Or did I need to budget for an installer or ask some friends for help?

I was torn between buying from a local dealer who would deliver and take responsibility for my home sauna installation, and making an even more affordable infrared sauna purchase on-line. I chose to buy a sauna online. I narrowed down the selection of on-line sellers and elected to buy from a well-established seller who had a 2-person far infrared sauna room that would serve my needs well.

Here are some of the questions that I had before my purchase, how they were answered, and how it all worked out.

Planning for delivery and your sauna installation—what to ask before you buy

How is the sauna packed and shipped and what is included in the cost of shipping? How do I get the sauna inside my house (how heavy will the parts be)? (For an example of weights, see specifications for 2 person sauna , and 4 persona sauna - coming soon). Can I assemble it alone? What tools will I need for my home sauna installation? How do I assemble the sauna? How soon after it’s installed can I use the new sauna in my home?

Common shipping practices for an infrared home dry sauna

How is the sauna packed and shipped?

Your far infrared sauna will arrive disassembled in as few as 2 boxes, depending on the size, model, and accessories you purchase. Expect the shipping weight to be over two hundred pounds! Most manufacturers place the boxes on a pallet. Many will even use plywood and strapping to create a protective crate around the box. The components are securely wrapped and packed.

What is included in the cost of shipping?

Some infrared sauna sellers offer free shipping — a wonderful deal. Be aware, though, that the responsibility of the freight company ends when they bring your boxed and palletized sauna to the rear of the truck in front of your house. You are responsible for getting the freight off the truck!

(My friend didn't know this when they bought their saunas. It was winter when the truck arrived, and the truck couldn't make it up the driveway. The drive ended up dumping the boxes containing the sauna parts onto the snow on the side of the driveway.

What happened next was that she had to drag each box, one-by-one up a several hundred foot driveway. This is why it's better to know in advance what to expect...)

Getting your personal infrared sauna off the truck

You do have a few options for getting the sauna off the truck, so plan in advance. This is something many folks don't account for when they think of sauna installation (see story above!).

You can request a truck that has a lift gate. A lift gate is an electric or hydraulically operated platform that lowers the freight from the truck bed to the ground. You can have a friend help you off load the boxes. You can also try to offer the driver some money to help you get the package to the ground, but this is risky.

You may elect to break down the pallet on the truck and either handle the boxes one at a time or unload the contents of the boxes. Note that the trucking company is not obligated to wait while you unpack the boxes and can charge you a fee for taking too much time to unload. Worse, you could damage the sauna panels by dropping a box.

A wooden sauna room is pretty heavy

Not having anyone available to help me get my sauna in my home, I paid to have the lift gate service.

If you’re going to do the fir sauna installation yourself or with a friend, plan on carrying the panels and pieces inside one at a time.

After the delivery truck left I was left with a pallet in front of my home. Luckily it was a clear day. I carefully opened the boxes and carried the parts in one at a time. The panels are relatively lightweight but awkwardly large in size. Be extremely careful if any of the panels are or contain glass.

Before bringing the panels inside I gently brushed them off to remove any sawdust from the factory. Once inside I placed all the panels and parts near the already cleared out area that the sauna was going to stand in. Then — and I recommend you do this too — even though I was very anxious to get started, I actually read the instruction manual!

Can you assemble your home sauna alone?

Maybe. Keep in mind that the infrared sauna, in addition to being a tool to help you relax and heal, among many, many other benefits should be viewed as an expensive piece of furniture. Even if you put it in the basement, garage, pool house, or outdoors (see upcoming page on outdoor saunas), at least two of its faces will be seen. You do not want to scratch, mar, or damage any of the surfaces during your sauna installation.

If you feel that you can safely stand up, balance, and connect the walls together — great. But remember that at the end you’ll still need to be able to safely lift the ceiling panel over your head and place it on the wall assembly.

I did the install and assembly alone — it just required a little creativity. Of course, I didn’t have a four person or 6-person infrared sauna, which would have been another story. Don’t be shy to get help. While the panels may not seem heavy, they will damage easily if dropped. Protect your investment!

How do you assemble your personal portable infrared sauna?

The assembly is very simple. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions step by step.

Here’s the overview: first you’ll put the base on a level part of the floor near an electrical outlet, then you’ll install the walls. Next comes the ceiling, then the connection of all the electrical fittings. For the last step of your sauna installation, you’ll place the bench top into the far infrared sauna room and attach any sauna accessories you’ve purchased. The walls rest directly on the floor panel. Depending on the manufacturer there might be a channel or a molding that the walls sit in or against. The ends of the joining wall panels have complementary tongue and groove joints, This makes alignment easy, absolute, and reduces heat loss when your sauna is in operation.

The wall panels are held together by several factory installed latches known as draw latches. A draw latch is a piece of hardware that pulls two surfaces together and holds them together securely. They make attaching the walls together very easy.

The ceiling panel rests on top of the wall assembly. Most ceiling panels have a piece of trim that extends below the panel and slips over the walls to give a professional and clean look.

Will you need tools for your fir sauna installation?

Some infrared saunas don’t require tools to install. It’s still nice to have the appropriate screw driver on hand to make sure all the screws of the draw latches and door hinges are tight.

In order to properly install my fir sauna the only tools that I needed were a #2 Philips head screw driver and a pair of pliers. The pliers were necessary to hold one nut that secured the cd player to a metal bracket. A screw gun was not necessary but would have saved me a few minutes driving in the several screws that secured the sauna accessories I ordered—these were cup holders, a magazine rack, and a towel holder.

Hooking up the electrical connections for the infrared sauna heaters

The electric connections for the infrared sauna heaters and sauna accessories vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. The typical electrical connections used are terminal block with spade terminals, quick-disconnect terminals, snap-plug terminals, and plug & connector. But not to worry — none of these are difficult to connect and the instruction diagrams will show you what to do.

Make sure all of the connections are secure. The bench sits inside the sauna room on top of factory mounted wall cleats and a front panel. And finally you may have additional sauna accessories that need to be assembled and secured.

Upon completing the sauna installation and assembly I vacuumed the inside and outside of the cabinet with the vacuum brush attachment to remove any saw dust that might not have been removed at the factory. Using a mixture of vinegar and water I cleaned the glass.

When can you use your new fir sauna?

Immediately after the sauna installation and clean up, the fir sauna is ready to be plugged in and used. Taking a sauna is easy and requires minimal preparation.

By the time you’ve cleaned up all the packaging materials, the sauna will be preheated. Gather all the towels, liquids, and sauna supplies that are recommended and relax in your new far infrared sauna room. And…check out the sauna benefits page to see how using the sauna will prevent you from being sore in the morning!

Keep this in mind: If you purchase a far infrared sauna that is constructed of a naturally aromatic wood you may want to consider leaving the sauna door open when it’s not in use and periodically opening the windows in the room. Over time the odor does fade. A strong scent is more likely with a cedar sauna or a hemlock sauna. Poplar saunas have very little if any scent (my friend's poplar sauna didn't have any).

Should you buy a sauna you have to install yourself?

If after reading this you may decide that a sauna installation is not for you, don’t worry. You can always buy from a local infrared sauna dealer who offers installations, buy from an online fir sauna dealer that offers a delivery and installation package, solicit the help of a couple of handy friends, or hire a handy man. Move on from sauna installation to benefits of the infrared sauna.