How Do I Clean & Maintain My Traditional Sauna?

General Guidelines:

  1. Do not paint, varnish or stain the interior portions of your sauna. The wood needs to
    breathe (absorb and slowly release heat and humidity). Also, artificial finishes make the wood surface much hotter, create the possibility of fumes from the wood treatment, and take away some of the “softness” of heat and steam penetrating the wood.
  2. Door handles and floorboards are an exception to Step #1. These two points of the
    sauna can get dirty easily. To make cleaning easier, you can treat the handles and floorboards with a good wood sealant or polyurethane finish.

After Sauna Care:

  1. The simplest method of sauna maintenance is to keep a hand brush in the sauna. The
    last person out dips the brush in the water bucket (plain water), and does a quick scrubbing of the benches, walls, backrests, etc. This 30 to 60 second ritual will keep your sauna looking
    great for years.
  2. After you’re finished using the sauna, and your cleaning process is complete, prop the
    duckboards off the floor. Leave the sauna door open, to air it out completely. The heat
    remaining in the rocks and in the wood should dry the sauna completely, and even can help dry down the shower area, if it is adjacent to the sauna room.
  3. If you get some dirt or sweat stains developing (if Step #3 is missed a few times), again
    use a hand brush but use warm water with a mild detergent in it. To get the benches looking like
    new, you can lightly sand your benches about once per year. It will lighten them more to their original condition. If you should happen to have mold develop anywhere (on duckboards, for example), you can clean with warm water and bleach such as Clorox or Hi-lex.
  4. Depending on how often you use your sauna, occasionally wet-mop with a liquid
    deodorizing cleaner such as Lysol or Pine-Sol.