*Excerpt from Finnleo Saunas
First things first:
What is infrared?
Infrared “heat” is actually heat-creating invisible light waves.
Infrared saunas produce an invisible light wave that penetrates the body in order to raise the core body temp and, in turn, create sweat. The body produces Infrared waves and receives Infrared waves from many sources, most notably, the sun.
Sometimes reconditioning the sauna wood can be a more economical solution than replacement. It may be the alternative you are looking for to postpone replacement until a more convenient time. Typically your walls hold up for a very long time since nobody is sitting on them but the benching can show its age as time goes by.
If not too far gone, reconditioning the benches is something one should evaluate before completely replacing. Simply pull the benches out of the sauna and gently clean using water & mild dish soap. We also recommend using Sauna Clean which is 100% Biodegradable to ensure benches are bacteria free. Once benching is scrubbed then rinse thoroughly and allow to completely dry. The next step is to lightly sand your bench tops then lightly brush with pure cedar oil. The cedar smell will be strong but should fade after a few days. Give a day or two to let it settle into the wood before using sauna.
1. The fluid, consisting of water with small amounts of urea and salts, that is excreted through the pores of the skin by the sweat glands; sweat.
One of the most important components to any good sauna is the type of sauna rocks used in the heater. Whether you are a purist using a wood burning stove or someone who has embraced the more modern electric heater it is important that you use the proper sauna rocks. Mikkel Aaland points out in the book, “Build Your Own Sauna and Sweat” Copyright 2011 by Mikkel Aaland all rights reserved, every time you heat up a rock it is the equivalent of 1000 years of natural erosion so only the strongest rocks can survive many heat ups required for a sauna heater.
The leading manufacturers recommend periodite sauna rocks which is a quarried rock from Finland, but Certain North American rocks work as well. Basalt is excellent. So is hornblende, found in many parts of North America. No matter which style of heater you use the intent is to allow the rocks to heat the air as much as possible. and by splashing water over them one can incorporate humidity into the sauna climate.
Sauna rock placement is very important to the overall sauna experience as well. It is important to stack your largest rocks tight around the perimeter of the rock chamber. Then smaller rocks would be looser stacked in the middle to allow for air flow. With European Style full contact electric heaters you should stack the smaller rocks between the coils. Then one layer of larger sauna rocks across the rim of the rock chamber that will allow you to splash water over them combine humidity into the sauna.
This illustrates how the choice of sauna rocks and their positioning really are the centerpiece of the entire sauna experience. Rocks are the mechanism that allows one to control their climate which is what makes the Traditional Finnish Sauna so unique compared to other heat therapy methods like steam rooms or infrared saunas.