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Cedar is often recommended for saunas, and has many advantages over other woods such as, aspen and spruce

Features of using cedar wood for your sauna

  • It's a beautiful, low-maintenance wood which resists mold and insects don't like it. We use Western Red Cedar. After heating your sauna, cedar emits a subtle scent of the forest. And even better, cedar saunas resist staining, discoloration and odor absorption. Cedar is a light-weight wood and remains comfortable to the touch at high temperatures, and resists splintering, too.
  • Cedar is the softest and thus the coolest of all woods for the sauna.
  • Cedar warms up quickly but not too hot to the touch.
  • Cedar contains some natural resins, oils and tannins that give it antimicrobial qualities. These also act as a natural mildicide and helps keep the whole sauna in a more hygienic condition.
  • You may read about the phenols that cedar gives off. These are basically molecules that you smell from the wood. They are non-toxic and most people enjoy the sweet smell of the cedar. Cedar is a very low density wood. This provides high insulative properties. Also cedar rates the highest on the stability range which keeps the wood from warping or cracking with the continuous heating and cooling and getting wet and drying out in the hot sauna environment. Cedar is also a beautiful wood with unique character and color in the grain structure.

For these reasons cedar is the most popular wood used in sauna rooms. Aspen and Poplar do not have these qualities and it is often hard to find in a high quality tongue and groove in these wood species. Most commercial sauna rooms are cedar, and if you have enjoyed these you are not one of the few who have a reaction to the cedar.

Aspen and Poplar are sometimes used in sauna rooms for people who have extreme chemical sensitivity or a known allergy to cedar. Less than 1% of people have any allergy to cedar and for those who do, prolonged direct contact can result in small red bumps on the skin which fade away quickly. A towel between the bather and the wood prevents this.

Regarding Cedar Wood Treatments

Also note that we sell an all natural water based sealer that forms a thin breathable layer of glass (silicon quartz based emulsion) over the wood which create a layer of protection between the bather and the wood. Not to mention it keeps the wood looking pristine for years.

We also provide an exterior oil based sealer that we have used for over two decades with great success on our outdoor sauna rooms. Se this link.