DIY hamam

Recommendation points

A private bath for residents of a private house is a real find, and a real Turkish hamam is almost the ultimate dream. Today we will talk about the key points in the construction of oriental baths, their temperature and climatic conditions, methods of decoration and organization of the internal space..

DIY hamam

What are the key features of the hamam

The eastern bath has a lot of characteristic differences, but if there is a zest among them, it is definitely the all-pervading moist heat that literally fills the bath room. Heating in the hamam penetrates literally from everywhere: from the walls, sun beds, the floor and most objects in the interior. Unfortunately, the correct distribution of heat often requires that some specific changes were initially incorporated into the structure of the building, including the correct layout, which is why it will be possible to equip not every building or room under a hammam..

DIY hamam

Another invariable feature of the hamam can be called, without much thought, the rich, pretentious interior decoration: from materials for decoration to special colorful details of the interior decoration. All this requires significant financial investments, because usually a home hammam is built as compact as possible, but properly organized..

DIY hamamEven in a confined space, you can organize a pleasant holiday with all the necessary attributes of an oriental bath

However, an oriental bath is not only a pretentious interior and climate, but also a traditional set of water and hygiene procedures. Anyone can learn how to properly conduct them, but for this you need to get rid of the hassle of maintaining the right climate. With the use of modern equipment, it is quite possible to avoid the burdens of a stoker and focus on receiving guests. We will focus on these tasks today..

Room layout and wall material

Initially, the hammam is a public bath, the building plan resembles an incandescent lamp in section: a narrow elongated section with a dressing room and a rest room, behind it is a round main hall, from which small steam rooms diverge in all directions. Each of them maintains its own temperature and humidity so that each of the visitors can choose the vaping conditions to their liking.

DIY hamam

Since the preferences of visitors to a home hammam are unlikely to be so diverse, the climate in it can be organized unchanged or devices can be used to fine-tune temperature and humidity. The main task is to ensure the correct temperature zoning: in the hammam it should get warmer as you move away from the entrance. Therefore, the ideal layout is three consecutive rooms:

  1. Entrance vestibule and recreation area. Their size and arrangement is selected according to individual preferences, stylistic reference is also not required here..
  2. Main room with sun loungers for warming up. Here the norm for one visitor is not less than 3.5-4 m2, this is the most spacious room, in addition, it contains everything necessary for taking water procedures.
  3. Steam room. The area norm per person is about 2.5 m2. In principle, there can be two steam rooms, sometimes such a solution is more profitable. The main source of heating for the bath is located exactly in this place..
  4. Technical room with a separate entrance, where the heat and steam source is located.

The hamam can also be equipped with a salt room, plunge or pool, toilet, shower, rooms for aromatherapy or spa treatments that cannot be held in the common room.

DIY hamam

The presence of additional rooms is very attractive, but they cannot be organized with simple hollow partitions. With humidity tending to absolute, even moisture-resistant GKL varieties will not last long. Therefore, the inner walls must be laid out in blocks. Optimal in this respect are special types of porous concrete or warm ceramics. They are resistant to high humidity, and low thermal conductivity will make it easier to organize minor temperature differences in different zones. The thickness of the walls should allow for the concentration of heat in the steam room and the main hall, that is, about 25-30 cm. If the central hall or the steam room is adjacent to the outer walls, they should be properly insulated and protected from steam, in accordance with the internal temperature and humidity.

Turkish bath climate and heating source

Hamam is perhaps the coldest type of bath. Even in the steam room, the temperature rarely exceeds 60–70? С; in the treatment room, the temperature of the human body is maintained or slightly higher. However, simply heating the room to the specified temperatures will not be enough..

The thing is that the main carrier of heat in the hamam is water vapor, respectively, the main heating installation is an open boiling container with water. Ideally, the steam should travel through channels hidden in the walls and floor. Steam transportation is preferably carried out on a centrifugal fan with plastic blades and a casing or on an air pump with an external engine. Unfortunately, such a scheme cannot always be implemented due to the structural features of the building..

DIY hamamWith modern equipment, the “technical stuffing” of the hamam will take up very little space

Among the modern climatic technology, steam generators can be used in the hamam, however, the steam reaches the required density and temperature only when using high-quality special equipment. The main advantage here is the ability to place several steam generating machines instead of laying a network of hidden ventilation ducts..

In the steam room, it is recommended to install a wood-burning stove with a closed heater. Before entering the room, steam must go through a sufficiently long channel to cool and normalize the temperature. The heater itself can be completely lined with heat-insulating blocks: in this case, it can efficiently generate steam with minimal fuel filling, but the bath will return to normal thermal mode without additional heating sources in at least 3-5 hours.

DIY hamam

To speed up the heating of the hamam before use and to avoid abundant condensation of steam during heating, heating elements are laid in the walls, floor and loungers. In a traditional Turkish bath, their role was played by channels through which hot water flows, but such a heating scheme itself is quite difficult to implement. Nevertheless, infrared heating films can be hidden under the tiles, a water coil or an electric cable can be hidden in the floor, and in a modern hammam it is not customary to disdain radiant heating from long-wave ceramic heaters..

Ventilation and special equipment

With a strong desire for the traditional flavor of the hamam, it is quite easy to organize the correct distribution of steam. In such conditions, either plastic or stainless steel should be chosen as the material for ventilation ducts..

If it is not possible to lay the channels hidden in the walls, they may be located in the lower corner along the perimeter of the main hall. In this case, a parapet of aerated concrete blocks is erected along the contour of the room, which is also supplied with heating sources under the finishing layer. In this case, the steam will not have time to condense on the way to the outlets, and there will be enough space in the main hall for sitting or lying down..

DIY hamam

The blower fan should operate at minimum speed, the speed of the air saturated with steam at the outlet should not exceed 1 m / s. When organizing such a mode, a remote engine will only benefit: if desired, you can install a V-belt drive to regulate the flow rate. Conventional duct fans are also often used, although their actual service life is limited to three to five years. In such a case, speed control can be done either with a small frequency converter or by shorting the channel with an adjustable damper. It is also highly desirable to be able to reverse the flow with switching to discharge into the outdoor environment – so drying the bath after use will be the fastest, and it will take less time to maintain sanitary conditions inside.

DIY hamam

One of the characteristic features of the hamam is a more complex sewage system. The ladders do not fit on the floor, and there should be no water under your feet. For this reason, the bath rooms have several drain holes with siphon closures and a branched system of drain channels. Ideally, small streams of water should flow inside the deep seams between the cladding elements, while the surface itself remains practically dry and non-slip.

Interior decoration

From the inside, the hamam is finished with only high-quality materials with a claim for exclusive decorative value. Most natural materials of this class have natural water resistance and the ability to accumulate the optimal amount of heat and emit it in a specific spectrum. Traditionally, the hamam is finished with marble tiles, mosaics and precious woods.

More budget materials include:

  • For walls: smalt for pool decoration, mosaic or small format tiles.
  • For the floor: porcelain stoneware, high-quality Italian tiles, porcelain tiles, as well as terrace or deck boards.

DIY hamam

The most difficult thing in a hammam is to trim the ceiling. Since it is not heated, water will constantly accumulate on the surface. For this reason, the ceiling should preferably be domed. The easiest way to do this is to use a stretch film on a 3D frame: water will collect in drops on an absolutely hydrophobic surface and flow down the walls, partially evaporating. By the time they reach the height at which vacationers can lean against the walls, the drops have time to heat up from them to an acceptable temperature. Another finishing method can be called a rack ceiling with the organization of an inclined hydro-barrier in the cavity above it to drain condensate.

DIY hamam

The decoration of the hamam is greatly simplified by the minimum number of junctions, because all communications in the main room and the steam room are necessarily hidden. However, the absence of violations of the plane and clear geometry of rooms can be achieved only with careful preparation: first, the construction of the base of the walls from blocks and the arrangement of all technical cavities with their contents, then preparatory plastering, installation of the heating system, another layer of plaster, waterproofing and installation of facing materials.

A separate topic for conversation is the device of sun loungers. Ideally, high-quality solid marble should be used here, but this is quite an expensive pleasure. An alternative can be polymer concrete products, which differ not so much in appearance as in heat capacity and thermal conductivity. When self-fabricating slabs of artificial stone, it is quite possible to build film heating elements into them.

Unchanging hammam attributes

In conclusion, we note the main elements of the interior decoration, which must certainly be present in any hamam, even the simplest and most modest. First of all, this is a bowl filled with heated water, the so-called hot house. It serves as a source for water procedures and ablution, the water in it is constantly changing, circulating through the storage water heater.

DIY hamam

The second bowl is called kurna – it is also constantly filled with liquid and does not have a drain; taps with hot and cold water are connected to it. In the kurna, foam is prepared for soapy massage. Both bowls should be either made of solid stone (onyx, marble), or tiled on all visible surfaces with mosaic tiles. The use of artificial stone and polymer concrete products for these purposes is also fully justified..

DIY hamam

In contrast to the loungers, the massage table has a slightly higher height and richer decoration. The treatment table is located in the immediate vicinity of the kurna and, as a rule, does not adjoin the walls. For the peeling procedures, which are always followed at the beginning of the hammam, a special glove made of camel wool is required, and for the soap massage – a bag called “Kopuk Torbashi”.

For each visitor, keep in stock a pair of slippers with wooden or cork soles and one large towel that can be wrapped from shoulders to knees. Traditionally, coffee and sweets are drunk in the hamam, so the presence of a mini-kitchen in the recreation room will come in handy.

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