The carbon saunas have more coverage but do not penetrate the body as much. Currently carbon panels are over 90% efficient where the rods and ceramic plates lose most of their far infrared when they get very hot. But the thing I don't like about most of the carbon saunas is the clicking on an off. Many of the carbon saunas are only on 50% of the time and 50% off.
The carbon panels stay cooler. They also heat up gradually unlike the rods or plates that go to extreme temperatures to heat up the sauna. Some of the latest sauna have combinations of rods and carbon in actually the same heater, not separated. I'm cool with this as long as they aren't using rods because they have inferior carbon heaters that won't heat up the sauna. The way I tell if the carbon/rod combo heater is efficient is to listen for the clicking to see if the carbon heaters is less than 90% efficient. A good carbon heater is on 90% or more of the session. A 30 minute session with a heater on half the time and off half the time is kind of like getting a 15 minute sessionas far as far infrared is concerned. The room will be heated but in the absence of the invisible far infrared rays.
FIR vs Low spectrum FIR
100% Far infrared does not heat the air. The saunas with more medium and near infrared are what heat the air. Some saunas have more or less of this. If you want to get more of the purer upper end of the spectrum, and sweat less water out but toxins, then this is something to consider when picking out just the right sauna. The far infrared will warm only objects but never the air. This is why in the winter the air can be cold but you can still feel the rays from the sun. Many people prefer the saunas with more of the near and medium infrared as their bodies are so hydophillic. Many people have inflammation and swelling in their body and prefer this. For those doing back to back sessions who need more heat to get the sweat starting again, will usually prefer the saunas.
Most people go in their sauna after 15 minutes after it heated up. The surface of the wood might be warm but if you turn the heat off, it doesn't stay hot nearly as long as if you let it preheat for 45 minutes to an hour.
The ceramic heaters are what I use if I am preheating the sauna and then going to turn the heat to 105 after my core was raised 3 degrees. When ceramic heaters are on high they emit very little far infrared and mostly just heat.
The carbon when turned up high has more far infrared but not as intense but the fluence is there. The carbon heaters have a lower surface temperature so naturally they will give off more far infrared but not as deep.
The ceramic type can be very pulling. Most of the people that I have followed up with that bought the Heavenly Heat, High Tech, or the Therasauna say they got headaches or rashes from the sauna. I don't get this from the carbons unless its a combo where I get a few of these detox complaints.
The sweat if actually using the sauna right should have a smell to it like urea and lactic acid. Also smells from heavy metals have their own distinct smell.
I alway check my surface temperature on my skin. If it goes up 10 degrees then my core temperature is just about 3 degrees higher. I ALWAYS lower the heat to 105 once my skin reaches 10 degrees higher than when I started my session.
Note: the best way I have found to use a Ceramic sauna as the far infrared is not so good at high temps but super penetrating at 105 degrees, I stay in as long as I can or till my body core is 3 degrees higher. The far infrared from a ceramic at this point is so much stronger than a carbon. That pure 9.4 micron isolate and getting those rays for about 45 minutes not stop is what sets this type of sauna apart.
If you want me to pick out a sauna based on your answers, take my sauna quiz here.
The biggest decision is to decide on carbon panels or ceramic. (or you can get a sauna that has both) depending on the type of fluence you might want. Some people prefer super high fluence and others want to do a slow sweat, kinda like the sweat you would get if gardening for the entire day on a nice day out with tons of far infrared but the sun is not baking you.
My sauna quiz questions are designed to help you pick out the sauna based on the answers you choose. My goal is to pick out a sauna I think you would like best as if you had the chance to try each and every sauna before you bought. There is no hidden agenda built into the questions. It is only based on the answers you select.
I am in contact with many of the sauna manufactures in the USA and Canada and will recommend a sauna brand and also tell you why I recommended that one based on your answers. Feel free to take the quiz twice if 2 or more people will be using it. I will contact you back personally and give you the results from your quiz.
How many times a week do you deliberately try to sweat?
Is your sweat odorless?
Do you wear deodorant to suppress sweat?
Do you sweat when their is no heat?
Do you have chronic pain that restricts you in any way?
Do you get bitten a lot from mosquitos in the summer heat?
Are you going in the sauna sedentary or after exercising?
Do you have a lot of fat under your skin?
What color is your urine?
Where do you sweat the most during working out?
Do you sweat heavily during normal exercise?
Sweat times- Do you get long dampening before you sweat or do you just start sweating?
How is the air circulation in your house?
Is the sauna the only thing you are using?
How long or short do you want your sessions?
What is the main reason you want an infrared sauna?
What type of sauna are you comparing?
Do you have concerns over EMF output?
Have you ever been in an infrared sauna?
How long have you been trying to compare saunas?
Do you have interest in SWAT Saunas (Sauna With Oxygen Therapy?
Which type of price range do you need to stay in?
Are you a health professional?
I usually will respond to your email within 45 minutes during my break. I will review your answers and email you back. I will try to call people back if requested or if I need more information than the quiz to recommend the right sauna.
When do you need a sauna?
If you are someone trying to sell me something, do not contact me.
If you are sincerely looking for help choosing an infrared sauna and there is a question you have that I have not answered on my website, please ask me below and I will try to answer it. I will call you if my answer requires me calling you, I will.
I can only help you pick out a sauna based on the answers you choose. It is not my job to recommend a sauna just because its the one I use or that I like it.
What else should I know about you in order to give you the most accurate recommendation
Get discounts for taking the quiz before you call. Please call after 15 minutes after you take the quiz. Please refer to my rules of my site on my home page before you call and I will offer my standard discounted pricing. I will not discount saunas for those that do not follow my rules. My discounts that I have the privilege to offer are only available for those that take my quiz first and call 15 minutes afterwards.