Best Practices for Using and Ventilating Your Steam Shower
Curious about best practices for using and ventilating your steam shower? It's a question MrSteam customers ask us regularly. The answer has two parts: keeping steam contained during your shower, and properly venting the steam shower afterward.
Let's explore the ins and outs of steam in more detail.
Keeping steam in
It isn't a steam shower if you can't keep the steam inside the shower. How else to lose yourself in the relaxing, warm mist of steam? Follow these tips for keeping steam inside your shower:
1. Properly size your home steam generator
Steam retention starts with having a steam generator properly sized to fill your shower.
Factors such as building materials, ceiling height and volume all need to be considered when sizing a steam generator. If the steam shower generator is too small, it will yield only cool mist, rather than relaxing heat. Too large, and it will waste energy. Goldilocks said it best, and we’ll paraphrase: Get a steam generator that is sized "just right.”
Also ensure that no heating, venting or air conditioning devices are installed inside the steam room.
>> Learn all about sizing a home steam generator
2. Insulate, insulate, insulate
Once you have a properly-sized steam bath generator, it's important to contain that warm, luxurious steam in your shower by sealing shower windows and doors. Although shower doors need not be air-tight (a little bit of air will help you see the steam form), they should be water-tight.
Install waterproof glass panels with a thick bead of silicone caulk on shower curbs and side rails, as well as between any joints where the frames meet the walls.
3. Install double-paned exterior windows
If you have an exterior window in your steam shower, ensure that it doesn’t allow any of that steamy vapor to escape outdoors or penetrate the window itself.
For maximum protection, install an outdoor window composed of double-paned (and increasingly triple glazing/pane) glass to limit heat transfer into and outside of your bathroom.
Ventilation (Letting steam out)
After your steam journey ends, it’s important to properly vent the room to remove the moisture. It can also help prevent mildew and defog your bathroom mirror so you don’t have to wait to shave or put makeup on.
Here are a few tips for venting a steam shower:
1. Use an exhaust fan:
In a regular bathroom, an exhaust fan helps vent stale air outside the home.
This same principle applies to a steam shower bathroom—in fact, a standard bathroom exhaust fan will do the trick. Installed outside the steam shower enclosure, an exhaust fan will safely remove moist warm air from the room.
Reminder: No heating, venting or air conditioning devices should be installed inside the steam room!
2. Include louvers:
Louvers are angled shutters that can let air in and out of an enclosure when opened. Including louvers in your steam room will help some of the steam vent out into the bathroom’s exhaust fan.
Another option is to install a window transom, which is a horizontal window that sits above a door, often hinged to allow air movement and encourage ventilation in a steam shower.
3. Cool things down:
Turning on the cold water in your shower for 15-30 seconds is a great trick for ventilating a steam shower. The rush of cold into the room will help condense and dissipate the remaining steam in the enclosure before opening the door.
Correctly managing the intake and ventilation of steam in your shower will help you to fully enjoy the health and wellness benefits of steam.
Let us know if you have other questions about steam!