*Disclaimer: The written article is based on a summary of existing literature on the topic of infrared saunas. The article is for educational purposes and the information provided below cannot be taken as a promise to help with acute health problems or diseases.
The claims in the article are backed by 5 scientific references. All references are numbered. You can access the text of the reference by clicking on the number.
Every piece of furniture needs the occasional cleaning - infrared saunas aren’t any different. The good news is that infrared saunas are tremendously easy to clean. In this guide, I’ll explain the ins and outs of that cleaning process to you.
There’s a good way and less good way to clean your infrared sauna though. If you bought a Clearlight Sauna™ you probably did so to improve your overall health by helping you relax, increasing your heat tolerance, and allowing your body to detoxify.
For that reason, I’m going to focus on using primarily natural cleaning products in this blog post. You'll learn why using a random all-purpose cleaner product from your local supermarket won’t give you the optimal results for your health and the longevity and looks of your sauna.
I'll break the optimal cleaning process down into three simple principles:
Principle 1: Prevention Is Key In Cleaning Infrared Saunas
During your sauna sessions - especially with our True Wave II™ Technology, your core body temperature will increase to a maximum extent. Sweating, which differs in its extent from person to person, will be the immediate result of increasing your body’s core temperature.
Using a towel regularly during your sauna sessions will prevent most of the sweat from leaking or falling onto the wood of the sauna.
Our sauna models have their heaters strategically placed around your body and behind your lower legs. Your extremities and core will therefore maximally be targeted by the infrared light. However, the area where your buttocks are located doesn’t receive any infrared light because that’s where you’re seated.
Simply placing a towel under your buttocks during your sauna sessions and using another towel to remove sweat from your body parts once in a while is thus recommended. This strategy allows you to capture at least 80% of sweat before it will come in contact with any of the sauna parts.
After your session, also make sure to remove any perspiration from the wood of the seats and backrests for an even better effect.
So, just like an ounce of prevention is the key to maintaining good health, the same is true for keeping your sauna clean. But there’s more to the story though:
Principle 2: How To Clean A Sauna Matters For Health
The skin is a “breathing organism”. By “breathing organism” I mean that you shouldn’t conceive of the skin as an impenetrable barrier, but instead, should consider it as an organ that interacts with its environment.
What you put on your skin, therefore, affects your health. Many cosmetics and cleaning products contain toxins such as phthalates, heavy metals, parabens, and many other compounds that you’d rather not place on your skin (1; 2; 3; 4; 5).
It’s, therefore, best to use cleaning products that don’t add to the toxic load of your body.
Fortunately, the compounds that are great for natural cleaning are very easy to come by. For instance, a combination of white vinegar and water will do wonders keeping your sauna windows clean. 10% hydrogen peroxide may also be added.
For the wooden seats, backrest, and the wood outside the sauna, mixing a natural non-toxic soap with water is a perfect choice.
The same is true for the heaters, which will accumulate some dirt over time. Make sure to only clean the heaters once your sauna has cooled down sufficiently to avoid burns.
Put the cleaning products in a bucket and use natural fibre cloth such as cotton to then clean every area of your sauna. The sauna floor can be cleaned that way as well.
The water and vinegar combination can be used on te wood as well, but only if you rinse the cleaned areas with water.
Also, simply using your vacuum cleaner every single week will also improve the cleanliness of your sauna. The reason you don’t need to vacuum clean your infrared sauna multiple times a week is that it’s an enclosed environment that has minimal interaction with dust from the outside world.
How often you perform a deeper cleaning of your infrared sauna depends on how frequently you use it. If you use your infrared sauna multiple times a week then a weekly deep cleaning session is recommended. If you only use your sauna once per week though, good preventive care allows you to give the sauna a deep cleaning every month.
Next up, if you want to disinfect your sauna then I recommend using a spray bottle that combines 50% water and 50% alcohol. I don’t recommend any ammonia-based products - although these products clean very well, breathing in the substances is less than ideal from a health perspective.
Alcohol actually evaporates very quickly, so it won’t stick around on the surface over time. The best way to use alcohol is to get a very pure product, without any added ingredients.
Lastly, outdoor saunas need a bit more care: it’s smart to clean the outside of an infrared sauna with a high-pressure water spray every quarter. And, fortunately, you’ll get an Outdoor Sauna™ cover with any order to protect it against all elements so that the product stays beautiful for decades to come.
This Cedartec® shell is specifically designed for our Clearlight Outdoor Sauna™ only. So if you’ve got a sauna from another company, I highly recommend getting a cover to increase the durability of the product.
Also, our outdoor saunas come with 8mm-thick tempered glass that can be cleaned in the same way as I’ve just described for our indoor sauna models.
Lastly, there’s one more principle to think about for making the product appear as good as new for decades:
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Principle 3: Infrared Sauna Cleaning Long-Term By Sanding Stains
Despite very good care, many people might still get some perspiration stains on their sauna over time.
The seating area and potential backrests are most commonly affected by stains because gravity moves the sweat downward when you’re using an infrared sauna.
The solution here is to use a very fine sanding on the wood if stains do nonetheless develop. You’ll only need to use very low levels of pressure to remove stains and keep your sauna looking pristine.
It's simple but this principle can make your sauna shiny for decades to come.
And, with that being said, let's conclude:
Conclusion: Cleaning Can Be Simple Yet Highly Effective
As you can see, you don’t need to hire a professional to clean your sauna. Instead, you need a few very simple cleaning products and techniques to make the sauna appear as good as new for decades to come.
One of the most important things to keep in mind is that your sauna cleaning routine not only affects the appearance of your sauna but also your health. I hope realise that any cleaning product you use inside of a sauna also affects your overall health making you pick more sustainable options - I’ve given you the choice to do so with this blog post.