Electric sauna stove: pros and cons

Increasingly, in country houses, townhouses and even apartments, they began to think about their own sauna. In Finland, the sauna is a national symbol and an integral part of culture, so every second home is equipped with a room with an electric stove..

A wood-burning stove cannot be installed in an apartment, because it needs a chimney. Therefore, in apartments, stoves with a separate hood are extremely rarely installed, moreover, unlike electric stoves, it is unsafe.

Peculiarities

The main difference between a sauna and a hammam or bath is that the sauna produces dry steam. The quality of the stove will affect the quality of the air, and therefore the quality of rest in general. Also, unlike a bath, the temperature in the sauna is higher and the humidity is lower. The electric stoves invented by the Finns are very environmentally friendly, made from high quality materials, and their designs are so diverse that they will satisfy everyone. Natural stones used for the stove do not harm health and do not emit toxic substances.

Do not confuse an electric sauna oven with an infrared sauna.

The special feature of the electric sauna heater is its functional use. Such a sauna is suitable for almost all premises (apartments, country houses, townhouses, water parks, swimming pools, it can simply serve as a separate independent room). You can also list the following number of its advantages:

  • fast heating of the room: the time interval from switching on to use is less than 15 minutes;
  • quick shutdown if necessary;
  • the electric oven maintains the same temperature until it is forced off;
  • easy to install: no need for special preparation of the sub floor;

  • easy cleaning: only wet cleaning is necessary to keep the oven clean;
  • does not require additional consumables such as firewood;
  • lack of smoke and carbon dioxide emission;
  • due to its small dimensions and weight, the oven is easy to transport and install;
  • has a high level of safety of use;
  • has the ability to remotely or autonomously control.

An electric oven consists of the following parts:

  • Frame. Thanks to a special casing with built-in partitions, the air can circulate inside the unit.
  • Stones. They are laid between partitions with specially left gaps for air convection. The size of the stones contributes to the faster heating of the air.
  • Electric heating element. Heating elements have different power. Their choice is based on calculations of the volume of the room: the larger the room, the more power of the heating element is needed. Heating elements come in the form of tubes or tape. It is important that the shells are made of metal. Heating elements are very fragile and brittle, even stones that are too heavy and densely packed can damage these tubes.
  • Thermal insulation is metal plates, installed one after another.

Thanks to electrical energy, heating elements (tubular electric heaters) heat the stones located on top of the structure. The stones give off heat to the room, thereby heating the air. Water is poured onto the stones, this is how steam is obtained. This procedure is safe, because when it gets on hot stones, the water instantly evaporates without getting on the electric heaters..

To use an electric sauna, the room must be as thermally insulated as possible.. As a result of such actions, clean and dry steam is obtained, which is beneficial for health. Without the supply of electricity, stones will quickly cool down, because they cannot maintain heat, in the same way as, for example, bricks do. It is believed that the average service life of a heating element is 6-8 years, with careful operation it is over 10 years.

It is impossible to say with absolute certainty that an electric sauna stove has only advantages. An electric oven consumes a huge amount of electricity, which will hit your pocketbook, unlike a traditional wood-fired oven. If all the advantages overlap the only disadvantage for you in the huge consumption of electricity, then the electric heater is exactly your option..

One more nuance – an electric sauna does not give that very real smell of a bath and firewood. Yes, many heaters have special bowls for fragrance, but this is more modern technology and fashion trend than an attempt to recreate something similar to a familiar scent..

Criterias of choice

The choice of stove depends on many factors, for example, such as the size of the room, the planned number of people to visit, the purpose of use (home or public). The main criteria for choosing a furnace:

  • Steam room volume. The power and dimensions of the unit will depend on it..
  • Control. Whether it will be remote control or panel control. With remote control, the remote control must have on, off and temperature control buttons.
  • Heating element type. Heating elements are the most popular and reliable, but the market also presents tape heaters or combined options.
  • Design.
  • Quality certificates. If you don’t have them, look for another model. In addition to the quality certificate, the furnace must have documents for compliance with fire safety standards..

Views

The market presents many options for sauna stoves. To make them easier to understand, tables are presented below, thanks to which you can easily navigate in the views, and also choose what is right for you..

According to the type of placement, there are two types of stoves, each of them has a certain number of pros and cons. The choice depends on the attractiveness of the model, on the desired functionality, and the size of the room. The main thing is for you to be comfortable in the sauna:

  • wall – reduce the risk of burns, are used in small rooms.
  • floor – for spacious rooms.

For floor-standing ovens, fences, such as a wooden box, are often used. This prevents burns when accidentally touching a hot stove..

The variety of shapes also allows designers to experiment. For example, a corner electric furnace looks very stylish and also takes up little space. A spherical oven can be placed away from the wall – in the center, thereby emphasizing the large space of the room, freedom of movement, set up benches in a circle and receive large companies. By form:

  • cylindrical
  • rectangular
  • square
  • spherical
  • corner

The volume of the room plays an important role in the selection of the furnace power.. So, with a room volume of less than 15 m3, the power should be 1 kW per 1 cubic meter. If the room is more than 15 cubic meters, then 0.75 kV should fall on 1 cubic meter. For example, if your steam room is 24 cubic meters (this is 3 by 4 meters and 2 meters in height), referring to the formula, we see that this value is greater than the calculated 15 m3, then we need a boiler that generates a power of 18 kW. Based on the table below, we will need a 380 volt oven. 220 volts is suitable for a single mini-sauna.

These calculations are correct only with complete thermal insulation, so check its level and take into account the errors. If you doubt the thermal insulation of elements such as windows and doors, then add 1.2 cubic meters to the volume of the room for each square meter of non-insulated surface.

Remember that tape elements heat 15 times more volume than tubular.

By power:

  • 220 V – heats up to 7 VKV
  • 380 V – over 7 kV

Also, for the correct selection of power, it is necessary to pay attention to the type of system..

By system type:

  • embedded
  • remote
  • combined

The type of heater also depends on your preference. Try to choose large and large stones. By heater type:

  • open – quick heat release
  • closed – long heat retention

There shouldn’t be any difficulties with the choice of material – be guided by your preferences or go straight to the choice of specific models and brands. Real Finnish induction ovens. By material:

  • steel – durable
  • aluminum – lightweight, cool down quickly
  • cast iron – heavy, keep warm for a long time

Whether you need steam is also up to you. If desired, the steam generator can be purchased separately.

Blueprints

The drawing is a very important component of the unit. Only due to its correct composition, the stove will comply with all norms and requirements. It is thanks to the drawing that you can design a mini-oven yourself, taking into account all the nuances.

The drawing also provides for the calculation of power and other electrical subtleties.. Drawings will help you assemble the oven with your own hands.. As mentioned above, only a frame is needed, which can be made of steel, thermal insulation, a heating element and stones.

First you need to make a drawing. One of the possible options is presented above. The drawing should clearly indicate the dimensions and area of ​​the future furnace, the power, which you will calculate using the formula. Then calculate the number of heating elements. A mini-steam room is a sauna that can accommodate one or two people at a time. It is a newfangled phenomenon to install such mini-saunas in apartments. If you are not afraid of the high consumption of electricity, you can build such a steam room even with your own hands.. The main thing is to remember about thermal insulation..

The assembly of the furnace is the fixation of the heating elements on the frame with the help of jumpers. The base is a steel sheet 3 mm thick. Already the rest of the parts are attached to the base using bolts and welding. A cage for stones is attached to the top of the frame. It is necessary to lay stones as tightly and accurately as possible..

A protective casing is made of steel sheet. You can lay out a brick base for the oven.

To connect, it is necessary to connect serial and parallel connections of heating elements. It is also necessary to have a thermostat, with the help of which the heating of the stones will be controlled. In this case, it is recommended to use rotary or drum switches. The control itself needs to be positioned so that it is in an easy-to-use place. You can install it in the steam room so that you can independently set a comfortable temperature without leaving it.

Finally, check the functionality of the oven, the safety and comfort of its use..

Installation

The scope of delivery usually includes:

  • electric heater;
  • passport and operating instructions;
  • packaging.

The control panel for the electric sauna PU – EVTsc – I1 and the stones for filling the electric sauna heater are usually not included in the delivery set. If you have correctly calculated the power and volume of the room, you can proceed with the installation.

Make sure the room is completely insulated and there is adequate clearance to walls and ceilings. Be sure to check the ventilation. Work order:

  1. Install refractory sheets on the walls around the oven.
  2. Place the furnace frame on the prepared foundation, secure with foundation bolts.
  3. If the control panel is remote, install it in an adjacent room. The panel body should be located away from heat flow and ventilation at a height higher than 1 meter from the top of the electric furnace. Do not bend the cable.
  4. The electric sauna heater is connected to the mains permanently. Power wires must be heat-resistant and have a stronger polychloroprene sheath (type 66 in accordance with GOST 245-1). The wire must withstand a temperature of at least 160 degrees.
  5. When connecting for the first time, as well as when switching on again after a long break, check the insulation resistance of the heating elements, which should be at least 0.5 Ohm.

Only one heater is always installed in the steam room, two are prohibited.. Take this into account when choosing the optimal power of the device. Even if the entire sauna is made of wood, more protective protection should be installed behind the heater to help prevent the walls from overheating and catching fire. The corner should be firmly insulated with mineral wool and covered with aluminum foil. Together with mineral wool, the most common lining can be used..

Stones intended for an electric furnace must withstand large temperature fluctuations, not emit an odor, be large enough and not crumble. Stones of such rocks as basalt, diabase, gabbroid diabase and peridotite are suitable for use in saunas, their fraction should be 4-8 cm. Before laying them, they must be washed and wiped dry. Place the stones on the cage so that air can circulate freely between them. The stones must completely hide the heating elements.

There should also be a gap around the perimeter of the substrate for air circulation. When using the unit, stones are slowly deformed, so it is necessary to change their places at least once every six months, and with frequent use even more often.

There is nothing difficult to install the electric heater with your own hands. All that is required is instructions for a specific model, tools and materials such as a hammer drill, fasteners for the control panel, ties, boxes in which wires and electrical basics will be hidden. Without knowledge about resistance, voltage and other intricacies of electrical engineering, it is better to turn to professionals.

In terms of cost, such an installation is inexpensive, and in terms of quality it is not inferior to the installation from the manufacturer. In addition, many firms have long had representative offices in Russia, so their team will perform high-quality installation using all European technologies..

Connection diagram

The wiring diagram mainly depends on the type of panel. The control unit, if it is remote, must be located in an adjacent room. He, unlike the unit itself, does not tolerate humidity and high temperatures. In the electrical panel for the console, it is necessary to highlight a circuit breaker, it is also recommended to include a residual current device and reset device in the circuit.

To connect the power supply to the oven, a specific wire is used, which has heat-resistant rubber insulation. After laying, the cable is insulated with a grounded metal element. Temperature sensors must be installed in the places provided for in the instructions for the unit: above the stove, above the shelves and above the doors from the steam room. For sensors use heat-resistant cables included in the kit. It is forbidden to build up and twist them.

The instructions for each specific model should indicate where the temperature sensors should be located..

Manufacturers

Choosing a manufacturer is another important point in choosing an electric furnace. The market provides a wide choice, but, as you know, most often buyers trust European models. Considering the fact that the sauna is a Finnish attribute, it is the brands from Finland that cause the greatest approval among our compatriots..

Harvia

Finnish company founded in 1950. It is the absolute leader in the manufacture of sauna stoves and fireplaces. Produces quality equipment from high quality materials. The stoves of this company have various modifications for both mini-steam rooms and public saunas. Harvia electric heaters are easy to use, compact and have a unique and original design.

The advantage of this company is that the production is located not only in Finland, but also in Estonia, China and Russia.. The work is carried out using Finnish technologies, and production on the territory of the Russian Federation allows us to save on transportation of the product. The flawless design and stylish approach to colors and shapes leaves only the best impressions of these products. Depending on the design, prices for electric type sauna stoves range from 5,000 to 60,000 rubles. Wall-mounted – within 6,000 rubles, family heater – 15,000-30,000, and for commercial purposes – from 40,000 rubles.

Model Harvia Club Combi K-11 GS differs in automated operation: the oven, according to a given program, autonomously heats the room to a given temperature. The oven is equipped with aroma containers. Its cost is about 48,500 rubles.

Harvia Topclass CombiKV 60 SE – wall oven with automatic temperature control. Has the ability to work in several modes, has a built-in steam generator, aromatizes the room. Has a durable stainless steel body. Cost – 30,500 rubles.

Tylo

A Finnish manufacturer that delights sauna users with innovative designs. Tylo units have flexible settings, easily change settings from dry steam to wet steam and vice versa with a built-in unique feature.

Tulikivi

A Finnish brand that will primarily interest ecology enthusiasts. The range includes expensive models of stoves with granite, marble, talc magnesite, natural ceramics.

Sawo

Another Finnish garant. All ovens are lined with talcum chloride. Thanks to this coating made of natural heat storage material, the stoves save energy. Having warmed up in an hour, the stove does not give off heat and gives the effect of a Russian bath. The price of a device with a capacity of 3-8 kW is from 10,000 to 50,000 rubles.

A fairly popular model is “Sawo Cumulus SML-60 NB” – it is made of stainless steel, inside the body the walls are sheathed with galvanized material. Equipped with a control panel and containers for fragrances. Unit cost – 11 250 rubles.

“Sawo Tower TH3-60 NB” differs in the location of the heating element, which is able to heat stones from bottom to top, and also, despite the diminutiveness, by a large volume of stones. The power is 6 kW. The stove costs 17,500 rubles.

Helo

The oldest company in the kiln segment. Factories are located in Germany and Finland. The range of the company includes electric stoves for saunas, control panels, wood-burning stoves for baths, steam generators for baths, infrared and other equipment for saunas and baths.

Having examined the “Exclusive” series, you will definitely find something that you will not want to refuse, for example, ovens “Helo Taika” or “Helo Saga Electro”. The cost of an electric stove with a capacity of 6 kW – up to 3,000 rubles, 8 kW – 30,000-40,000 rubles, and for volumetric saunas with 10.5 kW – 60,000-80,000 rubles.

Reviews for the products of each manufacturer are contradictory. Most often this is due to the wrong choice of the model or errors in calculations. So, purchasing an expensive model for a small room, but using it in a large one, you can remain dissatisfied, because there simply will not be the necessary heating of the room. Some businessmen, trying to save money, do not rely on the volume of the premises and the simultaneous presence of people in it, purchasing stoves for private, not for commercial use. All this can negatively affect the rest, as well as leave a negative opinion about the manufacturer..

Of course, if you are not chasing quality and brands, you can make your own oven. True, homemade stoves are still inferior to factory ones in terms of durability, safety and creative design. The choice mainly depends on the purpose: if you just need a steam room, then you can get by with the standard model. For lovers of exclusive solutions, the market presents a wide variety of options. But when choosing an exclusive, it is worth remembering that the price for it will be very high, and practicality, compared to the usual model, will be only a few percent higher..

Advice

  • Remember – anything connected with electricity is dangerous.
  • Grounding is necessary anyway.
  • All materials must be of high quality and suitable for work in wet areas.
  • The air in the steam room should not be overheated, it should be no more than 100 degrees. Such hot air will not only dry out the respiratory tract and skin, but will also contribute to the occurrence of pyrolysis of the tree (products toxic to humans will be released into the air).
  • Do not add essential oils to hot stone water. For this, special flavors are used, the oil of which does not fade, but evaporates. So that the steam begins to emit healing aromas, it is enough to place a container with boiling water in the back of the steam room and add essential oils to it.

  • Do not dry fabric products over the electric heater (even if the unit is turned off). This could cause a fire..
  • At least once every six months, stones must be sorted out, washed, and damaged ones removed. Remember that electric heaters need special stones that can withstand high temperatures. When using other stones, the efficiency of the stove may be lower..
  • For the bath, you need to purchase only whole, undamaged stones. To test them for strength, you need to use a hammer or hit stone on stone. In addition, in the process of picking stones, they can be heated and immediately thrown into the ice-cold water. The stones are sold both in packages and by weight. Price – from 8 to 300 rubles per kilogram.
  • The stones are loaded into the oven neatly and evenly. Large stones are placed in the lower part of the furnace container, then medium stones are placed on them, and the smallest ones are placed on the very top.

  • If we are talking about mini-electric furnaces, it is better to use small stones (with a diameter of 50 mm to 75 mm) for them, since the stone cage is small and can withstand a small weight.
  • Despite the price of the product, it is better to choose reliable and trusted manufacturers. They take responsibility for the compliance of the unit with all GOSTs, passing all checks. Manufacturer’s warranty is another important condition.
  • As with the design of the rest of the rooms, the design of the sauna needs to be approached wisely. It is necessary to take into account the location of the steam room, washing room, rest room, carefully approach the choice of the location for the installation of the control panel.

Successful examples

Below are examples of a good location of the stove in small rooms, large spacious rooms..

  • Mini saunas.

  • Modern design.

  • Exclusive models.

        • Commercial options.

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