Can LED Lights Be Used In A Sauna? Enhance Your Sauna Experience!

Saunas are well-known for being a place of meditation and relaxation. When entering a sauna, you expect a calm and safe place to get hot and sweaty! This is why it’s so important to choose the right kind of lighting for your sauna.

Lighting can enhance your sauna experience, but it can also take away from it too. Saunas need dim, relaxed lighting. 

The lights you choose will also need to be able to withstand high heat and humidity. Otherwise, you risk damaging the lights (and potentially hurting yourself) in the process.

If you’re looking at lighting options, you’ll have come across using LEDs. However, you may be wondering if these lights are safe to use in a sauna and if there are better alternatives! That’s why this article will cover:

  • The drawbacks of using LED lights in a sauna
  • Other lighting options for saunas
  • How you can safely use LED lights in your sauna.

Let’s take a look!

Can LED Lights Be Used In A Sauna?

Yes, you can use LED lights in a sauna. However, the exposure to high heat will damage the lights over time. 

This means you’ll have to replace them frequently, which isn’t very cost-efficient! It might be better to consider an alternative or find LED lights designed for saunas.

Potential damage from high temperatures 

You’ll need to consider whether the LEDs you choose can withstand high temperatures. A traditional sauna reaches temperatures between 170 to 210°F, so you’ll need to find lights that work well under these conditions.

Unfortunately, the lifespan of LEDs decreases in temperatures over 140°F. The lights will degrade over time, meaning you’ll have to replace them more frequently.  

Compatibility with infrared saunas

However, if you’re looking to light up an infrared sauna, an LED light might be a good option. Infrared saunas typically don’t get much warmer than 140°F, which is within the safe zone for LED light bulbs. 

LED lights are more applicable because the infrared lights point at the occupants, not the lighting. This means your lights won’t degrade as fast!

Lighting Options for Saunas and Steam Rooms

Now that we’ve discussed some issues related to LED lights, let’s look at some other lighting options you can consider:

Bulkhead Lights

On the more solid side of lights, you may consider using bulkhead lights. Bulkhead lights have a rigid structure consisting of cagey metal surrounding a central bulb. This makes them a very durable kind of light.

The thick glass used in these lights also makes it harder for steam and heat to get in and deteriorate the electronics. 

The only downside is that bulkhead lights tend to be bright. However, this could be a bonus if you’re looking for a well-lit sauna!

Fiber Optic Lights 

Another good lighting option is fiber optic lights. These lights are generally heat resistant, which makes them perfect for saunas. 

The lights comprise a core and cladding, with a system that transmits light from an outside source to a separate location. It’s completely airtight, meaning it can withstand the high heat of saunas and steam rooms. 

Fiber optic lights are long-lasting, which makes them cost-effective for you! They’re also highly customizable – you can create whatever mood you like!


If you’re looking for accent lighting, a spotlight could be the answer. These lamps will project a beam of light into a certain place and are easily adjustable. 

Spotlights are also fairly heat-resistant, which makes them a good option for saunas.

Recessed Downlight 

Recessed downlights are mounted into the ceiling, casting their light downwards. They’re a good option if you’re looking to light up the ceiling of your sauna.

You can typically buy recessed downlights made for saunas. These will be heat and moisture-resistant, making them a safe option for traditional saunas.

LED Light Strips 

Before you try LED light strips, you’ll need to think carefully just as you would for any other LED light bulb. A light strip is more bulbs all lined up together, meaning they’re still just as susceptible to heat.

The good news is that some LED light strips are designed especially for saunas! These strips will be waterproof, meaning they won’t get damaged by steam and moisture. 

Try installing them close to the ground where it’s slightly cooler – this will help them last longer.

Considerations for LED Lights in Saunas

If you’ve decided to use LED lights in your sauna, you’ll need to take a few things into account.

Can humidity damage LEDs? 

While hot temperatures will decrease the lifespan of LED light bulbs, humidity will cause more lifelong damage if moisture gets into the wiring and circuits. 

This makes it dangerous if you need to fix something at any point. Having LEDs in steam rooms is therefore a bad idea! A good safeguard is making sure you choose waterproof bulbs.

Dimmer lighting options 

LED lights are very bright, so they might not be the best option for a sauna if you want an inviting and cozy vibe. 

However, a simple solution is to simply install a dimmer alongside your lights. That way, you can adjust the brightness and create mood lighting!

Candlelight as an alternative 

Another alternative for lighting your sauna is using candles. Candles cast a soft glow around the sauna, creating a warm, inviting atmosphere. 

You can even buy candles that are explicitly for use in a sauna. They’re designed with essential oils and other pleasant aromas to enhance your sauna experience. However, make sure to never leave candles unattended or near flammable materials.


When it comes to building a sauna, it’s important to consider all of your options. 

LED lights may sound like a good option, but you’ll need to weigh up the risk factors before you jump right into using them! 

At the same time, it may be a good idea to consider some of the other options I’ve suggested in this article.

John Bayly

John Bayly

John has dedicated his career to the lighting industry. Starting out as an interior designer with a specialism in lighting, he went on to found his own commercial lighting business. He now shares his expertise and passion for all things lighting with readers of