There are many wood options available when purchasing a sauna. An infrared sauna is a wellness tool that you will want to last a lifetime. The wood it’s made from contributes to the quality and longevity of your investment. Below are characteristics of the various wood types used to build most infrared saunas on the market. This will help guide you towards the right wood choice for you.
Sauna Wood Guide
Basswood is a preferred sauna wood for those who have sensitivities to fragrances and other irritants. It is a hypoallergenic wood that does not emit any fragrances or toxins, and is completely safe for those with allergies. It is very consistent in color containing few knots. Basswood is a durable hardwood that is not likely to warp or bend with temperature changes. This wood is perfect for commercial use. Sunlighten uses certified basswood sourced from the United States. The Green Door uses only Basswood saunas.
Cedar has always been a popular wood choice for both traditional and infrared saunas because of its natural resistance to moisture. Cedar will not expand or contract as much as other woods when temperature fluctuates, meaning that it is less likely to bend and warp with regular (or commercial) use. Western Redwood Cedar is one of the world's most durable woods but can vary in quality. Sunlighten’s cedar is sourced from Vancouver Island where the grain is dense and has the deepest red color of any Western Red Cedar. Our sauna wood is of the highest quality, beautifully aesthetic and is PEFC-certified.
Eucalyptus is a strong, durable wood that historically has been used for cabinetry and floor work for many years. It is a premium wood, similar to teak, which is great for surviving the outdoor elements – if you want to place your sauna outside, this is the best option. It withstands dramatic temperature changes to keep from bending and warping over time. Eucalyptus is a green product, that grows quickly which is why it is cheaper than teak. The wood is consistent in color which makes it easy to stain, holding a beautiful color that can match any room theme. There is no fragrance in our eucalyptus wood.
Cottonwood is a sustainable resource and is mainly sourced in the United States. Sunlighten uses certified cottonwood providing reassurance that the wood is environmentally friendly. Used as an ideal source for woodworking projects, cottonwood is also adaptable to high temperatures, which makes it an ideal structural source for infrared saunas. Cottonwood is extremely smooth and consistent in color.
Hemlock, Spruce and Pine
Hemlock, spruce and pine are inexpensive woods that have been used mostly in framework. These are low cost options for sauna manufactures due to knots in the wood, inconsistent color and thinner wood planks. These woods are more likely to warp and bow in extreme temperature fluctuations, which would occur in an infrared sauna diminishing the longevity of the product. Hemlock, spruce and pine are generally used in low-end saunas.