How Much Electricity Does A Sauna Use? Discover the Shocking Truth

Modern wood-burning sauna heater encased in a safety grid, placed in a serene outdoor sauna setting.

Imagine stepping into your sauna at home, expecting it to be a peaceful escape but worrying about the added cost on your electric bill. It’s a common concern among many homeowners.

With years of experience, I’ve delved deep into understanding how much electricity different types of saunas actually consume. From cozy cabins in snowy landscapes to compact units in urban dwellings, I’ve seen it all and crunched the numbers to bring you real insights.

The truth might surprise you—a single session in an infrared sauna uses about as much power as running your dishwasher! This fact alone reshapes how we think about sauna usage and its impact on our monthly expenses.

Let’s explore together what makes saunas tick and how they fit into our energy-conscious world.

Ready for some eye-opening findings? Keep reading!

Key Takeaways

  • Infrared saunas use about as much electricity as a dishwasher for one session, making them an energy-efficient choice.
  • Traditional saunas need 5-7 kWh in the first hour to warm up and then 4-6 kWh for any additional hour. This makes their running cost relatively low compared to other home appliances.
  • The amount of electricity a sauna consumes depends on factors like pre-heating time, how often you use it, its size, and how well it’s maintained.
  • You can reduce your sauna’s electricity use by heating it during off-peak hours, keeping it well insulated, using a timer, and regularly maintaining the heater.
  • Even with daily use, managing the cost of running a sauna is possible by choosing the right type of sauna and being smart about usage and maintenance.

Electricity Consumption of Saunas

Saunas come in many shapes and sizes, each with its unique way of making you sweat. From the cozy warmth of infrared saunas to the steamy embrace of traditional ones, there’s a type out there for everyone looking to relax and detox.

But, ever wonder how much they add to your electric bill?

Infrared Sauna Electricity Cost

Infrared saunas are the cool cousins of traditional steam rooms. They warm your body directly with infrared light, not just the air around you. This means they can run at a lower temperature while still making you sweat buckets.

Imagine using as much power as a dishwasher for one relaxing session – yes, that’s all it takes! These saunas are smart on energy use and kind to your wallet, too.

Kicking off my days in the sauna has been a game changer. It’s like my personal chill zone before the chaos kicks in. Surprisingly, it didn’t hit my wallet like I thought it would. Using it feels more like the cost of a good coffee run. Found out, infrared saunas are pretty sweet on the energy bills.

Brian James, proud owner of a 2-person infrared sauna

A session in an infrared sauna doesn’t burn electricity like other home appliances might do during their operation. With costs staying low, these models have caught the eye of those wanting wellness without worrying about high bills.

Let’s break down the costs of running an infrared sauna, shall we?

Cost of Electricity in the USAverage of $0.17 per kWh(as per latest official data)
Average PowerTypically around 1000W to 2000W for home units
Electricity Used per HourApproximately 1 kWh for a 1000W sauna
Estimated Cost per SessionDepends on sauna’s power rating and session length, but generally low

They’re proving that looking after your health and being mindful of energy consumption can go hand in hand. Plus, they add a touch of modern tech flair to any home spa setup.

Cozy wooden sauna interior with multi-level benches and a white towel, highlighting a traditional electric heater.

Traditional Sauna Electricity Cost

Traditional saunas are like cozy cabins where warmth wraps around you. They get hot with electric heaters, making the air steamy and relaxing.

Last winter, our sauna turned into the hot spot for the family. Was worried the bill would go nuts with us in there all the time. But, with a few smart moves, like heating it up during off-peak hours and keeping it well-insulated, we stayed warm without burning cash. It’s all about smart use and keeping things tight.

It takes about 5-7 kWh of electricity for the first hour to heat up these saunas. If you stay in a bit longer, say another hour, it uses around 4-6 kWh more. So, chilling in a traditional sauna for your “me time” usually needs between 6 and 9 kWh per session.

Got a home sauna that fits 4-6 people? It probably runs on a heater that’s between 6kW and 9kW. Hanging out here won’t break your bank; it costs less than you might think!

A session’s electricity cost is based on what we pay for power. According to the latest data, the average cost of electricity in the US is $0.17 per kW hour. Here’s a recap:

Initial Consumption5–7 kWh in the first hour
Subsequent Consumption4–6 kWh in the next hour
Average Session6 to 9 kWh per use
Power RangeMost accommodate with 6kW-9kW heaters
Cost FactorApproximately $0.17 per kWh
Overall InsightHeating costs less than you’d guess

This means warming up before you unwind isn’t just lovely; it’s pretty affordable, too. Imagine soaking in that warmth, the steam wrapping around you, and the tranquility. All the while, your wallet remains relatively unscathed.

It’s a harmonious balance – the indulgence of a traditional sauna married with practical energy consumption.

Factors Influencing Sauna’s Electricity Consumption

Turning on your sauna feels great, but it also starts a meter running. The power it uses can change based on a few simple things.

1. Pre-heating Time

Pre-heating your sauna can change how much electricity it uses. Think of it like warming up your car on a cold day. The longer you pre-heat, the more energy you use.

But, here’s an interesting twist—getting your sauna to the right temperature before jumping in means you’re using energy smarter, not just more of it.

So, imagine flipping the switch on your sauna and waiting for that perfect warm-up moment. Depending on whether it’s an infrared or traditional sauna, this wait could be short or a bit longer.

For infrared saunas, which are kind of like the microwave of saunas—quick and efficient—the pre-heat time is less, so they munch less electricity compared to their traditional cousins that need more time to get cozy warm.

2. Frequency of Use

Using your sauna more often means it will use more electricity. Simple as that, right?

If you enjoy unwinding in the heat every day, your electricity bill will go up. It’s just like how playing a video game for hours uses more power than turning off the TV.

But there’s an interesting twist! Not everyone uses their sauna daily. Some might only turn it on during weekends or special spa days at home. This occasional use means less electric consumption compared to someone heating their sauna regularly like clockwork every evening.

So, think about how often you plan to bask in that warmth because each session adds a bit to your monthly utility bill.

3. Sauna / Heater Size

Sauna size can really change how much electricity it uses.

Small saunas heat up faster and need less power. A cozy sauna for one or two people might only need a small heater, saving you money on your electric bill.

Big saunas, like those that fit four to six folks, demand more energy to get hot and stay warm. These larger spaces often have heaters between 6kW to 9kW.

Can’t decide on the correct heater size for your sauna? Check out our sauna Heater Calculator which will give you the most accurate heater size for your sauna. It not only takes into account your sauna size but also the insulation type and glass size, if any, making it very accurate.

Keeping your sauna’s size in mind is smart if saving energy matters to you. Not all of us have the same needs or space at home. So, choosing the right-sized sauna can help manage your electric costs better.

Plus, who doesn’t love saving a bit where they can? Whether it’s a solo relax session or a group chill-out spot, picking the best fit makes all the difference in comfort and cost!

Related Article: Choose from the Top Sauna Heaters in 2024

Interior of a sauna with an electric heater and a copper ladle and bucket on wooden benches.

4. Maintenance

Taking care of your sauna makes a big difference in how much energy it uses. It’s like a dance – you lead by keeping everything clean and in good shape, and the sauna follows by working better and using less power.

  • Cleaning is key. Wipe down the inside after use to keep moisture levels low—this helps prevent mold.
  • Check that doors seal tightly, too; even a small gap can let heat escape, making your heater work harder.
  • Regularly inspecting the heater maintains its efficiency. A well-maintained heater doesn’t have to fight through dust or wear to do its job, saving on electricity costs over time.

Think of it as tuning up a car for better gas mileage – upkeep ensures top performance without extra energy spend.

And remember, finding small issues before they become big problems keeps electric bills low and extends your sauna’s life span.

5. Accessories

Sauna accessories can play a big part in your sauna’s electricity use. Items like additional heaters, lights, or entertainment systems add to the power needed. Each extra gadget means more energy.

If your sauna has fancy lights or plays music, it uses more electricity. This adds to the cost of running your sauna.

Smart choices in accessories help keep costs down. Pick energy-saving lights and limit extras if you want to save money on bills.

Next, let’s explore some tips to reduce how much electricity your sauna uses.

Tips to Reduce Sauna’s Electricity Consumption

Looking to enjoy your sauna without the worry of high electricity bills? You’re in luck! With a few smart moves, you can cut down on sauna electricity consumption and save money. Here’s how:

  1. Use off-peak hours. Power companies often charge less for electricity used during off-peak times. Heating your sauna late at night or early in the morning could lower your costs.
  2. Keep it well insulated. Good insulation keeps the heat in, meaning your sauna heats up faster and uses less energy. Check doors and windows for leaks and consider adding extra insulation if needed.
  3. Pre-heat wisely. Instead of heating your sauna from cold each time, try to use it when it’s still warm from the last session, if possible. This method can significantly reduce power usage since maintaining heat uses less energy than heating from scratch.
  4. Mind the size and frequency. Pick a sauna size that fits your needs and try to use it wisely—bigger saunas use more energy, and frequent use adds up on your bill.
  5. Maintain regularly. A well-maintained sauna heater is more efficient, so clean it regularly and check for any parts that need fixing or replacing.
  6. Upgrade to an efficient heater. If you have an older model, think about investing in a newer, more energy-efficient heater which can make a big difference in consumption over time.
  7. Placing the stones correctly. Make sure that the sauna stones are not arranged too tightly. There must be small gaps to allow sufficient air flow otherwise the heater will consume more electricity to get to the required temperature.
  8. Use a timer. Don’t leave the sauna heating longer than necessary; using a timer ensures you only use energy when you plan to enjoy the heat.
  9. Opt for a wood-fired sauna. A wood-burning sauna stove can significantly cut down on electricity usage, offering a more natural heating method. Consider its suitability based on local smoke-free regulations and the consistent availability of wood in your area.


Saunas light up our lives in more ways than one, warming not just our bodies but also bumping up those electricity bills. Who knew? From infrared to traditional types, each has its unique power appetite.

Surprisingly, heating your sauna could cost less than you think—akin to running a dishwasher or powering an electric oven for a meal. Keep in mind the size of your sauna and how often you use it can change things up.

Little tweaks here and there—like improving insulation or choosing off-peak hourscan shave dollars off your bill. So grab that towel, step into the warmth, and relax knowing you’ve got a handle on those energy costs without sweating over them!

FAQs about How Much Electricity Does A Sauna Use

1. How much electricity does a sauna use?

How much electricity a sauna uses depends on the type of sauna you have. An infrared sauna uses less electricity than a traditional one. The amount of power used also changes based on how big the sauna is and how often you use it.

2. Can I make my sauna use less electricity?

To make your sauna use less electricity, start by pre-heating it for shorter periods and only during off-peak hours to save money. Also, keeping up with maintenance helps keep its energy usage down.

3. What makes some saunas more energy-efficient than others?

The key factors that make some saunas more energy-efficient than others are insulation, heater efficiency, and whether you’re using an electric or wood-burning heater—electric heaters tend to be more efficient but check their ratings just in case.

4. How do I track how much power my sauna is using?

To track how much power your sauna is using, keep an eye on your electric bills or install a monitoring system specifically for your home’s overall energy consumption; this way, you’ll see exactly what portion goes into running your sauna.

5. Are there any tips for saving on my electric bill when using a sauna?

Some tips for saving on your electric bill when using a sauna include optimizing usage times, maintaining your unit well, and upgrading to an energy-efficient heater, if possible—it could make quite the difference in reducing those costs over time.

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