Growing up in Finland, I didn’t think twice about pouring water on my sauna stove. We had an outdoor wood fired sauna stove and an electric sauna stove in our sauna. And yes, having two or sometimes even three saunas is quite common in Finland, and for many sauna users. While our indoor sauna was electric, many of our friends had wood fired saunas inside. That all depends on your setup.
The first time I realized that many people are not actually aware of the fact that, yes, you can pour water on an electric sauna heater, was at a Lifetime Fitness in the United States. As I sat in the sauna, wondering if it was normal to barely break a sweat, I noticed a sign on the wall that read: “Absolutely NO water on sauna stove”.
So, can I pour water on an electric sauna heater?
Yes. You can pour water on an electric sauna heater. It’s critical that you have your sauna stove professionally installed by a licensed electrician who follows manufacturer guidelines, however. Saunas are designed to produce high heat, high humidity.
Yet, for some reason, folks in the United States and other areas of the world not native to saunas, think that you cannot pour water on a sauna stove. You absolutely can, do not let anyone tell you differently.
With that being said, that’s not legal advice. The next time you go to your local gym, where you’re not allowed to put water on the stove to increase the heat and humidity, don’t reference this article when you get caught sneaking it on. There are some saunas, like infrared saunas, that are not designed to have water poured on them.
Be careful, know what you’re talking about, do your research and you’ll be just fine! You can 100% put water on most sauna heaters / stoves, but they must be built for it and properly installed. And, yes, most electric sauna heaters are built to take water.