How to Build A Steam Shower

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As a house owner, you might agree that nothing can be more exciting than bathroom renovations. When it comes to a steam shower installation, it requires an ample amount of time from getting things ready to make it impactful. A lot of things should be in consideration when you want the best steam shower

If you’re being overwhelmed about how to build a steam shower, this article is for you. We’ll educate you on the steps of creating your own steam shower. So, keep your eyes glued till the end of this article. 

How to Build a Steam Shower: Steps to Follow

Step 1: Learn the Basic

Location and size: You might like to pass a relaxing session sitting in your steam shower. So, it should be large enough but not so large that it exceeds the electric capacity planned for heating the area. As the low ceiling is perfect, opt for a 7-8 feet steam shower. 

You are recommended to locate the steam shower away from the outside walls for the best results especially in the winter season. Keep the space size and material into consideration if they affect the required power of your generator.

Skylights and windows: Our recommendation is to avoid windows inside the room. If having windows is a must, find one with the highest R-value, and do not forget to consult with the manufacturer about the size of the generator needed. Don’t use skylights inside the room. Build a roof above the shower if you already have one. Remember- the roof should be below the bathroom ceiling. 

Shower door: Shower door seals off the steam area from the rest of the bath area. If your steam shower contains an outside wall and you leave the door closed, it would be very cold in the cold season. Opt for leaving the door open to get rid of the problem that means leaving enough space for the door to swing-out. 

You can add a transom on the door’s top or install radiant heat instead of leaving the door open. Also, you can prevent mildew and keep your eyes on the temperature in this way.

Generator placement: You can place the steam shower generator up to 25 feet away from the shower but it’s better to be closer. Keep one thing in mind that the generator should be protected from extreme temperatures. A water line and a dedicated power line are required to run a steam generator. Although a drain connection is not mandatory, it increases the lifespan of a generator. 

After learning all these details, you are now ready to start the design and construction process. The intensity of moisture is the core difference between a steam shower and a regular shower so, the design, build quality, and material are also equally important.

Step 2: Design the Unit

Seat: We can’t think of a steam shower without a seat. Right? In the case of a large steam shower, go for a built-in bench. If you have limited space, opt for a folding option. Remember- to allow the benches for water runoff, they should be sloped.

Steam control: Would you like to keep the bather comfortable and safe? Placing the steam outlet far from the seating area and the entrance is recommended. Keep the control for the shower steam room near your seating area as the control senses the room’s temperature.

Ceiling sloping: Ceiling sloping can be an option to get rid of dripping but it’s not an ideal option at all. You might have tiled the ceiling using grout lines but still, the water is dripping at the tile’s edges rather than traveling way down through the slope. Use a minimum of 1 inch of slope per foot to slope the ceiling.

Step 3: Select Materials

Temperature limits: The steam will be 212-degree Fahrenheit hot. Most of the natural stones and tiles will be able to keep pace with the heat where the other materials won’t. Discuss with the manufacturer about the temperature expansion and limits before choosing the materials acrylic or plastic.

Waterproofing: Protecting all surfaces including the ceiling from moisture is a must. Make sure that you have chosen all the waterproof material for your shower panel.

Radiant heat and Insulation: Insulation is not mandatory and a steam bath duration is short. So, the energy interior wall insulating will save is also limited. On the other hand, exterior wall insulation is a must. Also, remember- over insulating can be harmful.

When the winter season comes, radiant heating to the floor and the walls can make the session more comfortable. Need some extra treats? Add some radiant heat to the built-in bench!

Step 4: Install the Door

After making the doors ready, it’s time to jump on the door installation. Do not forget to purchase a transom if you don’t like to leave the door open and let the shower dry.

Step 5: Final touches

Now, you’re all set. Test the steam shower and check if all the electrical connections are working well. Also, check if the water connection to the steam generator is turned on.

Final words

Hopefully, this article has helped you know the basics of constructing a steam shower. If you still feel hesitant about how to start, feel free to consult a professional. Best of luck!


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