Bath with your own hands. Part 1

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Have you decided to build a bathhouse with your own hands, but don’t know where to start? In this article, you will read about all the underwater reefs that lie in wait for an inexperienced master who decided to build a steam room on his own. And also get practical advice on basic construction work.

Bath with your own hands. Part 1

And why do we need a dacha if there is no bathhouse on it? It will also cure a cold and simply raise your vitality, and how to bathe properly is generally a whole philosophy. Today, inexpensive wooden and frame baths are especially popular, and many, in pursuit of economy, even equip a steam room in a trailer. But is it right? After all, the bath is also the pride of the owner, a place where he is not averse to inviting friends – to treat them with a good steam. So you want it or not, but the steam room must correspond to the status of the owner. And if all the buildings in the courtyard are stone, then the wooden trailer will simply not look against the general background. Although the reasons for the construction of a stone bath may be more prosaic. For example, a shortage of quality sawn timber. Yes, yes, in some regions of Russia this happens..

What you need to think about before developing project documentation

Special purpose

So, after we have already decided on the material of the steam room, and the project has not yet been chosen, it is necessary to ask some more questions, the first of which: the purpose of the bath.

Namely, before choosing or developing a project, you just need to decide: why do you actually need a bath, how many people will steam in it, how often, will it be a pure bath or will its premises be operated in some other way? At first glance, simple questions will help you determine the size of the steam room, its layout, wall thickness and many other very important details.

Choosing a place for a bath

The second, no less important question will be the choice of a place for this very bath. It is good if initially, when planning the site for this structure, its own space was allocated, since most dreams about your pair are broken into the banal phrase: “There is no place.” If you think that you will find it, it will not be superfluous to check.

According to SNiP 30–02–97, the minimum distance between two stone buildings with a roof with a wooden rafter system protected by a low-combustible roofing material should be at least 8 m. By the way, this moment can be another important argument in favor of choosing a stone bath. Since, according to the above document, the distance from the house to a wooden or frame bath should be, depending on the design features of buildings, from 10 to 15 m.

Bath with your own hands. Part 1 1 – to the house at least 8 m; 2 – at least 2.5 m before the fence; 3 – from the chimney to the crown of the tree at least 15 m

But that’s not all. The distance from the bathhouse to the fence should not be less than 2.5 m, although it is better to play it safe and leave all 3 m.It is easier with the trees on your site, you can at least cut them down, and if not, then from your chimney to the crown the distance of the nearest tree should be at least 15 m. And if we consider that a neighbor has the right to plant a tree on his site just 3-4 m from the fence, then a place for a steam room will have to be pretty much looked for, especially on an already partially built-up area.

Important: When planning a site, provide a place for a bath in advance, otherwise serious problems may arise with its choice.

Project selection

In principle, there should be no problems with the choice of a project today. The Internet is literally inundated with their diversity. In addition, you can make it for yourself, in accordance with your tastes and imagination. It should only be remembered that for each person operating the steam room, you need to lay 1 m2 area in the steam room itself and at least 1.5 m2 in the dressing room.

When developing a project, one more difficult issue will have to be solved, this is the choice of the foundation. The most logical thing to do when building a capital structure is to choose the same major strip foundation. But desire is a desire, and your choice will be based on the results of geodetic studies of the soil of your site. And do not rush to order them in the laboratory. If you have already built a house, then you should already have this very data somewhere..

And yet in 90 cases out of 100, after collecting all the information, they will advise you on the tape. A heavy and expensive grillage will eat all the benefits of arranging a pile foundation for a stone building.

Important: Do not believe those who will give you advice by eye, they say, it is enough for a bath of a shallow foundation or a tape 50–70 cm deep. The answer to this very difficult question can only be given by an accurate engineering calculation.

Site marking and earthworks

When the documentation is finished, and the place for the construction has been selected, you can proceed to the implementation of the project itself. The first step is to make the markings for earthworks. You will have to dig trenches for the foundation itself, for water supply and sewerage. You need to think about such things in advance – after the building is built, it will be much more difficult to bring water and sewage to it..


Before the marking itself, you need to clean and level the marked area. Next, determine the location of at least one wall. The entire contour of our foundation will subsequently be built from it. To do this, we hammer in two pegs at a distance slightly exceeding (30-50 cm on each side) the length of the wall and pull the lacing between them. This will be the boundary of the outer wall of the foundation. Further, using the “Pythagorean triangle” (a triangle with sides 3: 4: 5 – rectangular) we build two segments perpendicular to the base of the wall. And again, the pegs are hammered 30–50 cm beyond the border of the future trench. In the same way, we close the contour of a straight line showing the border of the back wall. The intersections of the lacing will coincide with the outer corners of our foundation. We check the correctness of the formed contour with diagonals. In a rectangle, they will be equal and when they intersect, they will be divided in half. In a similar way, the internal contour of the foundation is marked, as well as trenches for water supply and sewerage. By the way, when marking, it is better to use pegs with a height not less than the planned height of the base, this will save you from additional labor costs.

Bath with your own hands. Part 1


When all the trenches have been dug, they begin to arrange the water supply and sewerage system. For the manufacture of the latter, PVC pipes with a diameter of 40-50 mm are quite suitable. Both the sewer riser itself and the communication with the drainage pit are made of them. The depth of installation of the drainage system depends on your region, more precisely, on the depth of soil freezing (according to clause 4.8 of SNiP 2.04.03-85, the tray for a sewer pipe with a diameter of up to 500 mm should be located no higher than 300 mm from the maximum depth of soil freezing, but not smaller than 700 mm to the upper pipe points). The slope is selected as standard for this diameter, 30 mm per linear meter. This is done as follows: along the marked area under the trench with an interval of 1.5–2 meters, wooden pegs or cuttings of reinforcement with a height of 70–120 mm are hammered, a “0” is bounced on them with the help of a water level, and then the slope itself is modeled by lacing. Now, when doing earthwork, it is easy to control the depth of the sewer trench by simply measuring the distances to the twine fixed on the pegs.

1 – 1 m; 2 – slope 30 mm

By the way, the depth of the trench should be fifteen centimeters deeper than the planned depth of the sewer pipe, this is done specifically for the sand cushion. The pipe never rests directly on solid ground. The bottom of the trench is covered with sand, the latter is leveled under the required slope. Next, a pipe is mounted, which is again filled with ten centimeters with a sandy pillow. All this is compacted and only then the trench is filled with solid, previously selected soil.

Water supply

The situation with water supply is more complicated. In the water pipes, the water column will stand constantly. And for an irregularly heated room, this state of affairs is fraught with at least the formation of ice plugs, and even damage to the water supply system itself. The situation will be saved by a self-regulating heating cable laid under the pipe insulation. Since only the area from the freezing depth to the tap will have to be heated, such a system should not ruin you especially. But if you think that it is still unjustifiably expensive, then you can not bring water to the bathhouse at all, using brought water. Anyway, it will be easiest to heat it on the heater itself, and you can fill the shower tank directly from the bucket.

If necessary, the installation of a water supply system is carried out by analogy with the installation of a sewage system, except that there is no need to withstand the slope.

Foundation making


After the trenches for the foundation have been dug, and the water and sewer pipes have been filled up, you can start making the formwork for the foundation. To do this, using a water level or a laser plane builder, we expose all lacing stretched on pegs (those that outlined the boundaries of the trenches) in the same level with the height of the future base. It is focusing on this lacing, and the walls of the formwork are mounted.

It is best to use edged board as a building material, and not OSB, which is popular today. Firstly, the board is stiffer and the resulting wall of the basement is much smoother than the one cast in the formwork made of sheet material. And, secondly, after dismantling the boards it will be possible to use it for other purposes, while the OSB cut into pieces will most likely have to be thrown away.

Bath with your own hands. Part 1

Important: Many people neglect accuracy, exposing the foundation formwork, they say, the basement will still be revetted. But the more accurately you do the work now, the less effort you will have to put in later..

The formwork structure is made rigid enough to prevent its destruction or deformation under the pressure of the poured concrete.


In most cases, the detailed design will specify the reinforcement required for the foundation. For the convenience of performing work, the reinforcing frame can be tied on the ground and, ready-made, lowered into the trench. But it must be made strictly according to the working project, and not just the way it has to. Correct reinforcement is the basis of the entire foundation, and therefore the entire building, and you should not neglect the instructions of the working project.

Bath with your own hands. Part 1

You can easily assemble the metal frame itself, consisting of reinforcement, and independently (for this you only need a grinder, wire, pliers with pliers and a welding machine), while only an accurate engineering calculation will help to calculate the correct location of the reinforcement in the concrete foundation.

Important: The reinforcement laid in the foundation at random, without preliminary calculation, will not be able to give the manufactured reinforced concrete structure the required design capacity, which means that the structure itself erected on such a foundation will be at risk.

Sand pillow

Before lowering the reinforced frame into the trench and starting to fill it all with concrete, it is necessary to make a sand cushion under the foundation. For such a light structure as a bath, a sand layer of 100 mm will be enough.

You need to fill the sand in layers, gradually moistening it and tamping it. A properly made sand cushion acts as a kind of shock absorber between the building and the ground. Its role is especially important in the case of the manufacture of a shallow strip foundation, as it helps to combat such an unpleasant phenomenon as soil swelling.


For the concreting itself, ready-mix concrete of the M-200 brand is quite suitable. It can be ordered or made in a concrete mixer yourself. It is made in proportions: one volume of M-400 cement, two volumes of sand and five volumes of crushed stone of the 35th fraction. Buy or knead yourself, it’s up to the developer to decide based on the prices for ready-made concrete and its components in his region.

Bath with your own hands. Part 1

The thicker the concrete obtained, the higher the quality of the products made from it, but also the more difficult it is to work with it. Although, if you have a vibrating hose available, it will greatly facilitate any concrete work.

Unfortunately, it is not possible to determine at home the amount of water required to make the desired density of the solution, since the sand may initially have different humidity. So you have to work based on personal experience..

It is necessary to pour concrete into the formwork to the edges (the formwork was initially set at the level and required height), compacting it during the pouring process and carefully leveling the resulting upper edge.

Bath with your own hands. Part 1

After 5-7 days, the formwork can be removed. Concrete that has reached 70% of its strength is not easily destroyed. But it is still recommended to carry out subsequent construction work somewhere in a month. While the foundation is standing, do not forget to moisten it daily, concrete loves moisture.

In the next part, we will tell you exactly how to cook a wall cake for your bath. How to make the roof correctly, and what material to insulate the paired room. And while the foundation stands, you can rest a little.

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Comments: 1
  1. Isla

    Could you please clarify what you mean by “bath with your own hands”? Are you referring to manually washing oneself in a bathtub instead of using a shower or other means? I’m curious to know why this specific method is being suggested.

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