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INFRARED CABINS VS. TRADITIONAL SAUNAS

Spectrum Infrared Cabin Sauna

What is an infrared cabin?

An infrared cabin can look similar to a traditional sauna, but instead of a wood-burning or electric heater, an infrared uses extra-wide carbon fiber heating panels to produce radiant heat. Unlike a traditional sauna that warms the entire room and heats the body from the outside in, an infrared raises the core body temperature producing a deep, detoxifying sweat at the cellular level.

What is a traditional sauna?

A traditional sauna, according to traditional Finnish standards, involves a heater and stones. A traditional sauna experience can be wet or dry. If the sauna stones remain dry throughout a sauna session, then it is a dry sauna, but if you ladle a small amount of water onto the heated stones, creating a burst of steam, then it is a wet sauna experience. (By these standards, an infrared is not a sauna, rather a therapy room.)

Indoor sauna

Let’s talk about similarities and shared benefits

What do these two sauna experiences have in common?

  • They are both wooden-like or paneled structures, similar to a small room or cabin.
  • Heat! They will make you sweat.
  • Calorie burn.
  • They boost circulation and the immune system. 
  • They both assist in relaxation and stress reduction, helping to relieve tension, aches, and pains
  • Neither room will cause a substantial increase in your household electric bill. Exact running cost depends on a variety of factors including sauna size and your location. We liken the energy use to that of a dishwasher or dryer.

The more consistent the sauna routine, the better the benefits (although, even a single sauna session has a considerable amount of health benefits).

Read more on similarities

 What are the differences?

Lindea heater  Harvia Sauna Heater Sauna heater panel Spectrum Infrared Sauna Heater

The main difference? The way the sauna rooms are heated. As was noted before, infrared heat comes from infrared light (radiant heat, like the sun), and traditional heat comes from an electric or a wood-burning heater with stones that allow for löyly (the steam that rises from the sauna heater).  

Other differences include:

Temperature range

  • An infrared heats up to about 120 degrees to 150 degrees.
  • A traditional sauna temperature ranges from 150 degrees to 195 degrees.

Heat-up time

  • An infrared cabin can be used immediately after turning on the heater, taking about 10-20 minutes to heat up fully.
  • A traditional sauna takes about 60 minutes to fully heat up.

Social experience

  • Infrareds tend to be smaller in size and more compact than traditional saunas. This is helpful for those who want to add a sauna to a smaller space. (Plus, you can plug your infrared sauna into a standard home electrical outlet).
  • A traditional sauna experience can be very social because of the size of the sauna. At Almost Heaven Saunas we have units that range from 1-8 people. (Check out the Shenandoah barrel sauna; you can literally have a party in there!).
Newport 4-person Indoor Sauna

Which one is right for you?

Now that you know the facts, the rest is up to you! Here are five helpful questions to ask yourself: Do I want an indoor or outdoor sauna? What is my budget? Is high heat beneficial to my physical needs? What are my home electrical capabilities? What kind of space do I have available for a sauna room?

As was stated before, both options have the benefits of heat bathing. Whichever you decide, infrared or traditional, you’ve made the right choice!

Still can’t decide? Well, you’re in luck! We sell hybrids! The Newport and the Hampton saunas use infrared heating panels as one heat source option and a traditional electric heater as the other. What could be better than that! 

If you still have questions, feel free to send us a message or call us at 888.355.3050. We’d be happy to help!

For more on Infrared Saunas:

Why Infrared? 

Infrared Indoor Series Comparison

Healthy Lifestyle from Mayo Clinic