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Installing sauna vents is as easy as 1, 2, 3

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Good ventilation is a key way to separate lame saunas from good saunas. Installing sauna vents is as easy as 1, 2, 3.

Good sauna is about good ventilation.

Let’s look at installing sauna vents to breathe fresh life into your sauna. And if you install sauna vents and your sauna experience doesn’t go up at least 30%, email me for a full refund for the 15 minutes it’ll take you to do this:

1. Purchase a 4″ Hinged-Louvered-Vent-Hood

These are sold at every “big box” and come in different colors. We want the louvers to be locked in the fixed open position. (Dryers have enough “oomph” to kick open the louvers. The passive air flow in our saunas do not).

2. Purchase or borrow a 4″ hole saw

These are expensive. But if you loan or borrow one of these, keep in mind that you only need to use it for 2 minutes, as using this tool is easy and it goes fast. And if the person you loaned it to forgets he has it, he is relegated to the penalty box.

3. Purchase this cedar vent cover/chute

The vent cover shown here is awesome, or make your own. Sauna vent covers are key as that they allow you infinite possibilities in terms of air flow. With sauna venting, everyone has an opinion. Yet, as you listen to the soul of your sauna, if you are quiet and conscious enough, your sauna will tell you when, where, and how much it wants to breathe. This “empiricism in the atomic and nuclear age” is better than trying to digest the myriad of know it alls who will tell you where your vents need to go.

The general rule is – intake down low, and another vent up high, opposite wall. Good ventilation is like knowing how far to hike up a mountain. It is up to us to listen and feel.

Infinite Cedar sauna vent / chute cover slider

Step by step directions for installing sauna vents:

  1. Locate your vent location. I like a vent about ear level when sitting on the upper bench.
  2. Find and mark your studs. Be sure to be clear of studs and safely between joist cavities.
  3. Make sure there’s no wires. Let’s not drill into where there’s any wiring.
  4. Use hole saw to drill through sauna paneling.
  5. Continue drilling into exterior sheathing and paneling until center drill goes through to the outside.
  6. Pull out and go outside to find the hole saw drill hole.
  7. Drill out the outside with hole saw, creating a clear channel from hot room to outside.
  8. Dry fit 4″ Hinged Louvered Vent Hood.
  9. Cut back metal duct length on vent hood so that it is flush to paneling, or recessed 1/8″ ish.
  10. Silicone the back of louvre vent and install from the outside.
  11. Install vent cover chute. Two screws or 3-4 finish nails should do it.

Then take 5 Wim Hof breaths

and welcome to one of the most important, if not the most important attribute to good sauna.

Video of a sauna vent install here (MN Wild hat sold separately… Thanks Darby!) :

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7 thoughts on “Installing sauna vents is as easy as 1, 2, 3”

  1. Those are some easy steps to follow! Although sauna vents are not required for safety reasons, they do make the whole experience more comfortable. It is always advisable to install two vents, a lower vent meant for air intake and an upper vent for exhaust.

  2. so saunas do not have the “oomph” to kick open the louvers… so why did you put one that required air flow to open?

  3. I am installing cement board heat shields behind a wood stove. The shields will be in a corner – one side is an exterior wall and the other shield is on an interior wall dividing the hot room from changing room. Roughly 6 x 8 hot room with three exterior walls – one behind the benches. The wall opposite the benches separates the hot room from changing room. My question is: How can I put my lower vent behind the stove? If I can’t – will putting it approx. 6 inches off the floor about 14-18 inches to the side of the stove work for good ventilation. I would put an outake vent on the opposite wall (also an exterior wall) or behind upper bench? Thanks.

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