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Spark up the Debate: Electric or Wood Burning Sauna Heaters?

The debate between electric and wood burning sauna heaters has been ongoing for years, with passionate supporters on both sides. While both options have their own unique benefits, choosing the right sauna heater for your needs can be a daunting task. Whether you are a sauna enthusiast or a first timer looking to invest in a sauna for garden, understanding the differences between these two types of heaters is crucial. In this blog post, we will dive into the heated discussion and explore the pros and cons of each option to help you make an informed decision for your sauna experience. So, let's spark up the debate: electric or wood burning sauna heaters?

Blog: Spark up the Debate: Electric or Wood Burning Sauna Heaters?
Blog: Spark up the Debate: Electric or Wood Burning Sauna Heaters?

The Heat is On: Understanding Saunas

Saunas have been a staple of relaxation and rejuvenation for centuries, offering a blissful escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. The steam, heat, and ambiance of a sauna can help melt away stress, detoxify the body, and promote a sense of well-being. But before you can fully immerse yourself in the world of saunas, it's important to understand the basics.

A sauna is a small, enclosed space designed to produce heat and steam. The heat is typically generated by a sauna heater, which can be either electric or wood burning. The sauna experience is all about achieving a desired temperature and humidity level, allowing you to enjoy the benefits of sweating and relaxation.

Wood burning saunas are a traditional choice, offering a rustic and authentic sauna experience. These saunas are typically heated by burning wood logs in a specially designed stove. The heat generated from the burning wood is then transferred to the sauna room, creating a warm and inviting atmosphere. Wood burning saunas have a unique aroma and ambiance that many sauna enthusiasts find appealing.

On the other hand, electric saunas have gained popularity in recent years due to their convenience and ease of use. These saunas are powered by electric heaters, which are typically built into the sauna room. Electric saunas can be easily controlled with the push of a button, allowing you to adjust the temperature and duration of your sauna session with ease.

When it comes to choosing between a wood burning sauna heater and an electric sauna heater, there are several factors to consider. Wood burning saunas offer a traditional and authentic experience, but they require more maintenance and effort. You'll need to regularly chop and store wood, as well as clean out the ashes from the stove. Electric saunas, on the other hand, require minimal maintenance and provide consistent heat and steam with little effort on your part.

Another important consideration is the type of sauna you prefer. There are different styles of saunas available, such as barrel saunas and cube saunas, each with its own unique features and benefits. Some sauna enthusiasts prefer the classic design of a barrel sauna, whilst others may prefer the sleek and modern look of a cube sauna. It's important to choose a sauna that suits your personal preferences and fits seamlessly into your space.

Ultimately, the decision between an electric sauna heater and a wood burning sauna heater boils down to personal preference, lifestyle, and practicality. Consider factors such as the ease of use, maintenance requirements, and desired sauna experience. Whichever option you choose, investing in a sauna for your home or garden can bring years of relaxation and well-being. So, whether you opt for the crackling flames of a wood fire or the convenience of an electric heater, the heat is on to find the sauna that suits you best.

Feel the Burn: The Pros and Cons of Wood Burning Saunas

Wood-burning saunas offer a unique and authentic sauna experience that many sauna enthusiasts find appealing. The crackling sound of the fire, the aroma of burning wood, and the cosy atmosphere all contribute to a truly immersive sauna session. However, before investing in a wood-burning sauna heater for your garden sauna, it's important to consider the pros and cons of this option.

The Pros and cons of wood burning sauna stoves – Harvia and HUUM
The Pros and cons of wood burning sauna stoves – Harvia and HUUM

One of the major advantages of a wood-burning sauna heater is the natural and rustic feel it provides. The experience of heating your sauna with a wood fire adds a level of authenticity and tradition to your sauna sessions. The aroma of burning wood creates a relaxing and soothing environment, enhancing your overall sauna experience. In addition, the crackling sound of the fire can be incredibly soothing, helping you to unwind and melt away stress.

Wood-burning saunas also offer a cost-effective heating option. While there is an initial investment in purchasing and installing a wood-burning sauna heater, the ongoing cost of wood fuel is generally lower than the cost of electricity for an electric sauna heater. This can be particularly beneficial if you have access to a source of free or inexpensive wood, such as fallen branches or scrap wood.

Another advantage of wood-burning saunas is their versatility. With a wood-burning sauna heater, you have the freedom to choose the type of wood you use to heat your sauna. Different types of wood can create different scents and aromas, allowing you to customise your sauna experience. Additionally, you can control the intensity of the heat by adjusting the amount of wood you add to the fire. This level of control allows you to create a sauna environment that is tailored to your personal preferences.

However, there are also some drawbacks to consider when it comes to wood-burning saunas. One of the main concerns is the maintenance and effort required. With a wood-fired sauna heater, you will need to regularly chop and store wood to ensure a steady supply of fuel. You will also need to clean out the ashes from the stove to maintain proper functionality. This ongoing maintenance can be time-consuming and may not be ideal for those who are looking for a low-maintenance sauna option.

Another drawback is the potential for smoke and air pollution. While a properly installed and maintained wood-burning sauna heater should not produce excessive smoke, there is still a risk of emissions. This can be a concern if you live in an area with strict air quality regulations or if you have respiratory sensitivities.

Electric Dreams: The Benefits and Drawbacks of Electric Saunas

When it comes to sauna heaters, electric options have gained popularity in recent years for several reasons. Electric saunas offer a convenient and user-friendly experience, making them an attractive choice for sauna enthusiasts. In this section, we will explore the benefits and drawbacks of electric saunas, helping you determine if this type of sauna heater is right for you.

The Pros and cons of electric sauna stoves – Harvia & HUUM
The Pros and cons of electric sauna stoves – Harvia & HUUM

One of the biggest advantages of electric saunas is their ease of use. With just the push of a button, you can control the temperature and duration of your sauna session. This level of control allows you to customise your sauna experience to suit your preferences. Whether you prefer a lower heat for a longer session or a higher heat for a quick sweat, an electric sauna heater can accommodate your needs with minimal effort.

In addition to being easy to use, electric saunas require minimal maintenance. Unlike wood burning saunas, which require regular chopping and storing of wood, electric saunas eliminate the need for fuel preparation. This can be particularly appealing for those seeking a low-maintenance sauna option. With an electric sauna, you can spend less time on upkeep and more time enjoying the sauna experience.

Another benefit of electric saunas is their efficiency. Electric heaters can quickly and consistently heat up the sauna room, allowing you to start your sweat session in no time. They also provide even heat distribution, ensuring that every corner of the sauna reaches the desired temperature. This means you can enjoy a more consistent and comfortable sauna experience.

Electric saunas are also a suitable option for those who don't have access to a garden or outdoor space. Unlike wood-fired sauna heaters, which are typically installed in garden saunas, electric heaters can be easily incorporated into indoor saunas. This flexibility allows you to enjoy the benefits of a sauna regardless of your living situation.

However, electric saunas do come with a few drawbacks. One of the main concerns is their reliance on electricity. While this may not be an issue for most, those living in areas with frequent power outages or unreliable electricity may find electric saunas less practical. Additionally, using electricity to heat your sauna can result in higher energy costs, especially if you plan on using the sauna frequently. It's important to consider your budget and energy consumption when deciding between electric and wood burning sauna heaters.

Another potential drawback of electric saunas is the lack of a traditional and rustic feel. Some sauna enthusiasts appreciate the authenticity and ambiance that a wood-burning sauna heater provides. The crackling sound of the fire and the aroma of burning wood contribute to a unique sauna experience that electric saunas may not be able to replicate. If you are someone who values tradition and enjoys the sensory experience of a wood-fired sauna heater, an electric sauna may not be the best fit for you.

Your Ideal Sweat Session: Choosing the Sauna That Suits You Best

Now that we have explored the pros and cons of both wood burning and electric saunas, it's time to discuss how to choose the sauna that suits you best. When it comes to creating your ideal sweat session, there are a few factors to consider. Let's dive in and help you make an informed decision.

First and foremost, think about your lifestyle and preferences. Are you someone who values tradition and enjoys the authentic feel of a wood-burning sauna? Or do you prioritise convenience and ease of use, making an electric sauna more appealing to you? Consider what matters most to you when it comes to your sauna experience.

Next, think about your space and budget. Do you have access to a garden or outdoor area where you can install a wood-burning sauna? Or are you limited to an indoor space, making an electric sauna the more practical choice? Additionally, consider the cost of installation, maintenance, and fuel for a wood-burning sauna versus the energy costs for an electric sauna. It's important to choose a sauna that fits seamlessly into your space and budget.

Another important consideration is the type of heat you prefer. Some people enjoy the gentle and soothing heat of a wood-burning sauna, while others prefer the quick and consistent heat provided by an electric sauna. Think about what type of heat suits you best and enhances your sauna experience.

It's also worth considering your long-term commitment to sauna ownership. Are you someone who enjoys regular sauna sessions and is willing to put in the time and effort to maintain a wood-burning sauna? Or are you looking for a low-maintenance option that requires minimal upkeep? Understanding your commitment level can help guide your decision.

Additionally, don't forget to take into account any potential restrictions or concerns. If you live in an area with strict air quality regulations, an electric sauna may be a safer and more environmentally friendly choice. If you have respiratory sensitivities, you may want to consider the potential for smoke and emissions with a wood-burning sauna.

Ultimately, choosing the sauna that suits you best is a personal decision that depends on your preferences, lifestyle, and practicality. Both wood burning and electric saunas have their own unique benefits and drawbacks. It's important to weigh these factors and make an informed choice that will enhance your sauna experience and provide years of relaxation and well-being.


Traditional Baltic-Scandinavian Garden Saunas - Handcrafted in Scotland by BaltoScandia

With a rise in consumer preference toward health and wellness, outdoor saunas are becoming increasingly popular. Beyond enjoyment and relaxation, saunas have been found to provide myriad health benefits such as improving heart health, reducing stress, fighting illness, burning calories, flushing toxins, and relieving sore muscles.

Bring the ultimate relaxation into your garden with one of our beautiful Outdoor Garden Sauna Barrel designed and built in Scotland by BaltoScandia where they pride ourselves on quality at exceptional prices and aftercare service.

Built for the Scottish Elements: Our range of Premium BaltoScandia outdoor barrel saunas are specially crafted from Nordic Thermowood which radiates warmth and gives them with a natural and authentic feel to make them truly inviting to step into and relax.

Made from High-quality Nordic Thermowood: Thermo-processed wood is darker than natural wood, more weatherproof and more resistant to rot. Its insulation qualities are better, it suffers from less moisture deformation and is more stable. The equilibrium moisture is up to 50% less than natural wood, which makes thermo-processed wood a better option for use in outdoor sauna barrels.

The size of a sauna varies from 1.6 meters to 5 meters. Besides a steam room, barrel sauna can also include a changing room and a small terrace with seats. It can be heated by a wood-burning stove or an electric heater. It can be equipped with a panoramic window made of heat-resistant glass, lighting and other options and accessories that can be found in our catalogue. The selected model can be delivered and assembled on site or as construction kit.

For more information, please visit and register your details for latest promotions: or visit UK award winning Scottish showroom: Thornhome House, Yieldshields, Carluke, South Lanarkshire, ML8 4QD -

New 2024 Traditional Baltic-Scandinavian Sauna Brochure by BaltoScandia.

Selection of over 34 handcrafted saunas

Download a copy of our new 2024 sauna brochure packed with a huge selection of premium designed, handcrafted garden saunas.


About Penguin Spas Premium Outdoor Living

Here at Penguin Spa Premium Outdoor Living, we are passionate about delivering the best quality hot tubs, best in energy efficiency, great value for money, and unbeatable customer service. Our friendly team is here to help you choose the right hot tub for your needs and your budget.

Penguin Spas Zero Carbon Neutral Scottish hot tub & swim spa showroom
Award Winning Penguin Spas Premium Outdoor Living Showroom - Scotland

Penguin Spas: UK Pool and Spa Winners

Penguin Spas: Birmingham Commonwealth Games

Penguin Spas: UK’s most accredited hot tub and swim spa company

Our Scottish outdoor living showroom is an oasis of calm, showcasing a large selection of multiple award-winning energy efficient hot tubs and accessories we have to offer. Based in Yieldshields, near Carluke – right in the central belt of Scotland – we are within easy reach of the M74 & M8 motorway network and less than 35-minute drive to the city of Edinburgh and Glasgow.

Since 2012, Penguin Spas Outdoor Living have been devoted at creating and supplying energy efficient hot tubs and spa along with elaborate products which are all designed to help improve people’s health, wellbeing, wellness, and happiness.

All our premium products are carefully designed and manufactured, and we strive to constantly improve ourselves and the products we deliver. We embrace new technologies and understand the importance of delivering reliable and durable products which help to improve our customers lives.

Do you want to know more about our range of multiple award-winning, energy efficient hot tubs available here in Scotland?

Here at Penguin Spas, we are proud to be the only official Scottish dealer of award-winning, energy efficiency gold standard hot tubs and swim spas from UK designed Sunbeach Spas, world’s premier spa brand Oasis Spas and our new unique range of Eco Spas with air source heat pumps that have been tested in Scotland which can save you on average 61% in energy costs.

All three brands (Sunbeach Spas, Eco Spas and the Oasis Spas) have a complete insulation energy saving system that reduces energy consumption to save you money. You can have peace of mind that your hot tub or swim spa will be hot and ready for you, without costly energy bills.

Sunbeach Spas available from Penguin Spas Scottish Showroom

Sunbeach Spas are leading the hot tub and swim spa industry with energy efficient SmartSpa™ R10 insulation and cutting-edge technology. The multiple award-winning Sunbeach Spas are all designed here in the UK and are manufactured with the newest industry features which the company consistently pushes the industry forward with innovative designs and features.

Eco Spas available from Penguin Spas Scottish Showroom

Eco Spas are committed at improving the wellbeing of people and the health of our planet. Eco Spas is proud to be at the forefront of energy efficiency and in design and technology. Each of our hot tubs have been carefully designed here in the UK in compliance with current safety guidance written by the Health and Safety Executive (HSG282) which provides constant efficiency and immediate use while ensuring utmost hygiene and guaranteeing the easiest maintenance possible.

Oasis Spas available from Penguin Spas Scottish Showroom

Oasis Spas are built by one of the world’s largest international hot tub and swim spa manufacturers who distribute products in 40 countries around the world. Oasis Spas are built to last with premium components and the thickest shells on the market. The Power Saver Technology with SmartSpa Plus™ R18 insulation will save you thousands over the life of your hot tub or swim spa and the Easy-Care Technology makes maintenance simple.


Handcrafted BaltoScandia Wood Fired Hot Tubs

Peaceful, natural relaxation can be yours every day with a wood-fired hot tub. Wood fired bathing in a hot tub creates the most elemental and authentic outdoor bathing experience. If you’ve ever soaked in water heated only by wood, you’ll know it's much richer than just the bathing: it's the splitting and stacking of firewood, the methodical stirring and preparation of the water, the sound of the crackling fire, the anticipation of the heat.

Traditional Wood Fired Hot Tubs

Choose the very best from our range of traditional Scandinavian wood fired hot tubs that have been designed to be simple and timeless with an elemental everlasting design.

Fiberglass Wood Fired Hot Tubs

Choose from our exclusive premium collection of BaltoScandia eco-friendly handcrafted luxury fiberglass wood fired hot tubs with Scandinavian Thermowood cladding.

Stainless Steel Wood Fired Hot Tubs

View our beautifully UK designed stainless steel wood fired hot tubs. Our range of Stainless-steel hot tubs are eco-friendly in the environment and green by their nature

Plunge Ice Cold Tubs

Cold water and ice therapy with our plunge tub. After enjoying the hot tub or sauna, many bathers will quickly cool themselves down by getting into a cold plunge pool or ice bath.

Read our Blogs on Wood Fired Hot Tubs & Ice Tubs

There are a number of great health benefits to soaking in a wood fired hot tub in all sessions, such as stress relief, muscle relaxation, improve sleep, pain relief, calorie burn and much, much more - our team of hot tub experts have put together informative blogs all relating to wood fired hot tubs and cold tubs for you to read and enjoy.


Handcrafted BaltoScandia Garden Saunas

Our new and exclusive range of Electric and wood fired BaltoScandia outdoor saunas are specially crafted from Nordic Thermowood which radiates warmth and gives them a natural and authentic feel to make them truly inviting to step into and relax. We have the most popular outdoor garden sauna styles and shapes for you to offer. Starting from traditional barrel saunas, sauna cubes, sauna cabins to many variations of modern saunas.

Traditional Scandinavian Sauna Barrels

BaltoScandia produces more than 9 models of outdoor saunas barrels with different shapes and sizes. Each model has a unique inside layout for the most efficient space usage.

Nordic Garden Sauna Cubes

Embrace the Nordic wellness culture with our luxury range of outdoor saunas cubes that encapsulate pure, clean, modern design, powered by dedication and craftmanship.

Sauna Cabins made from thick spruce logs

Our sauna cabins provide a haven of tranquillity and place to unwind. This sauna cabin is constructed of solid, thick spruce log sections that are profiled for a precise fit.

Oval Saunas

The oval sauna models have been carefully designed with the sauna barrel in mind by increasing the inner volume to allow a steam room and a wellbeing chill zone for you to relax.

Custom Built Scandinavian Saunas

We can offer a complete custom-built sauna service giving you the bespoke garden sauna you're looking for! Call us today to tell us the type of sauna you want along with any specifications you may have.

Sauna Accessories

BaltoScandia sauna accessories for any sauna; buckets, ladles, oils, sand timers, thermometers, headrests, birch brooms and much more. Make your sauna sleek & stylish with our range of accessories.


As our company has grown so has our passion to create amazing outdoor spaces

Whatever style garden you have, large or small, you want it to be a place that you can relax in, and escape to. As well as the obvious perks of getting more fresh air and sunlight, there are lots of other benefits of an ideal outdoor living spaces.

Creating an outdoor living space will provide an additional space in your home to relax and unwind. Expand the space that you already have available to you. A casual living space in the garden is also the perfect place to entertain guests, to provide seating, and mingling space to enjoy evening drinks or a BBQ. Create a functional and enjoyable area for you and your family to use in the garden, whatever the weather.

BBQ Huts / Grill Cabins

Explore our exclusive range of BaltoScandia Grill Cabins & BBQ Huts available to view at our Penguin Spas Outdoor Living Showroom in South Lanarkshire, Scotland. Our Scandinavian BBQ Huts are built in the traditional Lappish style of Northern Finland and offer the year-round dining culture that the Scandinavians have.

Garden Rooms and Home Offices

BaltoScandia garden room can be built to serve any purpose with some of the most popular uses being garden offices, garden gyms and bar/cinema rooms. With our bespoke garden rooms option, you can tailor your luxury garden room for any purpose imaginable, with multipurpose functionality and designs.

Glamping Pods - Comfortable Outdoor Living

Our range of BaltoScandia Glamping Pods are a great choice for tourists and holiday makers who want to relax after an adventure. Because of the feeling of a home’s atmosphere in outdoor setting, with the unique characteristics of each design.

Need further information? Contact Us...

Address: Thornhome House, Yieldshields, Carluke, South Lanarkshire, Scotland, ML8 4QD

Telephone: 0800 112 3886 or 01555 729 607