A clean sauna is the best way to ensure a healthy and enjoyable experience for everyone who uses it. With a little care, keeping your sauna looking and feeling fresh is easy.
After each use, brushing frequently touched surfaces with water is important. It also helps to have towels handy to prevent excess sweat from staining the wood.
Clean the Interior
Keeping your sauna clean and safe for use is a simple task that can help prevent the growth of germs, mildew, and bacteria. With a little maintenance, your sauna can look good and function well for years.
After each sauna session, keep a bucket of water in the room, and have the last person dip a wooden brush in plain water and give the benches, backrests, walls, and other surfaces a quick brushing. This will remove excess dirt, and it only takes a few minutes.
Alternatively, you can wipe the surfaces with a natural cleaner made of equal parts white vinegar and water to sanitize surfaces without adding harmful chemicals to the air in your sauna. Avoid cleaning with any household chemicals while the sauna is in operation, as the hot temperatures and inhalation of these chemicals can cause health issues for you and your sauna guests.
Check the Heating Stones
Although the stones of your sauna heater are sturdy, they will eventually start to erode. This happens due to constant exposure to high temperatures and repeated water immersion. As a general rule, the stones should be changed when they start to break up or lose their original color. Depending on the stone type and frequency of use, this could be as little as once per year or even more often.
The wooden surfaces of your sauna room may also need to be sanded occasionally. This is a great way to remove stronger stains and give the surface a new and more appealing look. Before you sand, make sure the interior is covered with plastic to prevent the sanding dust from getting everywhere.
Once you finish, vacuum the surface to remove the sanding dust. Afterward, you can treat the wood with a wood preservative. This will help protect your sauna for years to come.
Vacuum the Floor
During your weekly cleaning, you should vacuum or sweep the floor of your sauna. This helps eliminate dirt or dust tracked into the sauna while using it.
Use a mild soap or cleaner specially designed for saunas for the most effective and economical sanitation. A good example is linseed oil potassium soap, a natural product that works well to sanitize surfaces.
Generally speaking, it’s best not to paint or stain the interior walls of a sauna because wood needs to be able to “breathe” and absorb and slowly release heat and humidity. Any artificial finish will make the surface of the wood much hotter, create possible fumes, and take away from the soft feeling of steam and heat penetrating the wood.
However, treating your sauna’s door handles and floorboards with a paraffin wood treatment is perfectly safe. This tested and safe solution also allows excess moisture to soak into the wood fibers.
Clean the Vents
You would want to avoid entering a swimming pool or hot tub with dirty feet, so sauna users should bathe before entering. This way, any oils that have built up on the skin will not be tracked into the wood of the benches and walls. Facilities should post clear cleaning instructions near the entrance of custom saunas to remind guests and staff of this simple etiquette.
Regularly wipe the wooden surfaces of a sauna with a clean cloth. Make sure to scrub under the benches, where sweat and dirt collect. If you prefer not to use commercial cleaners, a homemade mixture of organic cider vinegar and water is a gentle yet effective sanitizer.
You may need to gently sand wood surfaces if the dirt or discoloration is resistant to soap and water. Avoid using a pressure washer, as it may permanently damage the top surface of the wood.