Depending on the characteristics you’re looking at, an infrared sauna can be quite expensive. Is it possible at all to buy such a piece on a budget? The answer is a reassuring yes. Cheap infrared saunas do exist but you have to be careful. When looking for a bargain, it’s possible to end up with an inferior product that will break down after a few uses.
What does it take to buy a nice and cheap infrared sauna that will last you a very long time? You’ll have to do research and compare products side by side. The more information you have about an infrared sauna, the easier it would be to make a decision.
Understanding the Infrared Technology
The first thing to examine when looking at saunas is why you should go for an infrared one. Infrared saunas cost a lot less to operate, so if decreasing expenditure is your thing, this is the product to go for.
In addition, infrared saunas happen to be more beneficial. They operate at lower temperatures than traditional saunas while still delivering the same results. Thus, even people that can’t go in a traditional steam sauna due to health conditions can enjoy the infrared one.
Infrared saunas fall under two categories – near and far infrared. Near infrared saunas are the ones that produce short wavelengths of infrared light. These machines are less common. They produce less heat that can penetrate the deeper layers of the skin and they can also be used to target a certain part of the body.
Far infrared saunas (FIR) produce longer wavelengths of infrared light. It uses a bit more energy but the sauna is more powerful and it can produce overall health benefits. Choosing one variety or the other will depend on the results you want to get from the treatment and the amount of money you’re prepared to spend on operating the sauna.
Types of Heaters
You already have an idea about the differences between infrared saunas. It’s now time to take a look at the heating panels. The material that they’re made of will determine the temperature inside the heater. It’s also important to point out that each heating panel comes with its specific shelf life. By choosing the right one, you can make sure that the sauna will operate smoothly without requiring a replacement.
The most common types of infrared sauna heaters include:
- Ceramic panels: ceramic panels are inexpensive and they operate at higher temperatures than the other varieties. A ceramic heater can heat up the sauna quickly but it’s relatively fragile. The high temperature at which it operates also makes it less likely for the infrared light produced to penetrate the deeper layers of the skin.
- Carbon fiber heaters: operate at a lower temperature and they can ensure the even distribution of heat throughout the sauna. Carbon fiber heaters are much more long-lived than the ceramic ones because the material that they’re made of is flexible and a lot less fragile.
Most Important Costs to Consider
The price of the sauna will be determined by the number of people that it’s designed for and the available extras. A typical infrared sauna for one or two people falls in the price range from 1,000 to 2,000 dollars. Saunas for six people cost more than 6,000 dollars. Choosing the right size is the first way to decrease the cost and still enjoy quality.
Accessories are also made available by manufacturers and these increase the price of the infrared sauna. A sauna that has a sound system will typically cost anywhere between 500 and 1,000 dollars more than the one that doesn’t. Aromatherapy dispensers add approximately 200 dollars to the cost, colored light panels are at about 300 dollars and custom sauna interiors falls in the price range from 500 to 2,000 dollars.
If you want to get a cheap infrared sauna, you can give up on those extras. You’ll still get a high quality sauna and it will still come at a reasonable price.
As already mentioned, the cost of operating the sauna is as important as its original price (and maybe even more so). In the long run, you may end up with a machine that’s costing you a lot of money. A two-person infrared sauna should have energy requirements of about 1,600W, which translates to 19.2 cents per hour of operation. For a four-person sauna, the figure is 2,200W or 26.4 cents per hour of information. Use these numbers as reference and ask questions before buying the sauna. Anything that exceeds the averages mentioned here will be way too expensive to operate regularly.