DIY Float Tank: Plans to Build Your Own Sensory Deprivation Chamber

Building a sensory deprivation tank is possible by using the DIY float tank plans that were are about to share with you here. You just need the skills and the materials and you are good to make your own float tank.

Do you want to have a float tank at home? Are you interested to build your own sensory deprivation chamber?

Most of the float tanks for sale are very expensive. So, if you want to enjoy the benefits of a floating therapy, the best choice for you is to visit a float tank center. But doing so regularly will cost you more in the long run, which makes owning one a more practical choice.

If you want to float more often and invite your family and friends to experience the same, the best option is to have your own float tank at home. If you can’t afford to buy, don’t worry, I’ll help you build one.

Things to Consider When Building a Sensory Deprivation Tank

I understand that you are eager to make your own sensory deprivation tank, but before getting into action, you need to know the different factors that you need to consider. Every isolation float tank includes the following and the one you are building should have it too.

Let’s get started with our checklist.


Some sensory deprivation chamber includes colorful walls that are delivered by light sources inside the tank. If you want to save, you can opt to have no lights inside. It’s the easiest and cheapest way to go.

Here are your different options when it comes to lighting your isolation float tank.

  • No light emitting devices inside
  • Have a few LED lights
  • Have full-blown star sky imitation with hundreds of LED lights.


Adding sound is a challenging part making DIY float tank because sound travels across the materials. Most float tank spas have audio to help clients relax or inform them when their session is up.

But if you are making a sensory deprivation tank at home, you do not necessarily need an audio. But you need to make your float tank soundproof. There is no simple way to remove noise completely.

Good news! There is a systematic way to remedy this problem.

  • Remove or shut down all the noise sources during your float
  • Add sound insulation to the tank and to the room
  • Use earplugs

It’s best to consider the location when you make your own float tank. It is recommended that you place your personal float tank in your basement or anywhere in your home where it’s quiet. If you wish to add insulation you can do so, but this will cost you more.

Water Chemistry

You have to maintain the water quality of your home float tank to ensure that it’s clean and safe. If you want a convenient maintenance, you can add running filters. The more advanced water cleaning solutions you want, the more it will cost you.

The good thing is that there are a lot of good and affordable filters in the market. You can use the swimming pool, marine fish tank and regular water filters for your water tank float.

After filtering the water, you have to kill the bacteria and viruses that live there. To do this, you will have to use some additional water treatment options.

Most common options:

  • Chlorine
  • Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2)
  • UV Lights
  • Ozone

If you don’t use multiple cleaning solutions a number of bacteria, virus or other living things will start multiplying in the water. It’s also a good idea to monitor your water ph level. It should be somewhere between 6.5 to 7.5.


To have a great time inside the sensory deprivation chamber the water should remain warm during your float therapy session. The recommended temperature is between 34C to 35C.

The temperature can be adjusted as most prefer the water to be a little warmer when the temperature outside gets a little colder. Measuring the water temperature can be challenging as a lot of the tools available do not give the exact temperature. So, take your time to find an accurate water temperature.

Anyway, there are a number of ways to heat up the water in the tank. Among your options are:

  • Waterbed heaters
  • Pool heaters
  • Fish tank heaters
  • Regular water heaters.

Most of the time DIY floaters use waterbed heaters because they are cheap, silent and have a built-in thermostat. But if your tank is too airtight you will suffocate, so it’s recommended that you add air circulation. You can also pre-heat the air if you want, but this is not mandatory.

Before deciding what to use, you should consider how often and how long you float. If you don’t float for multiple hours, you won’t need to heat the water during your floating session as the water cools pretty slowly.

Most professional tanks have constant temperature monitoring and heating while you float. They also heat the air that is coming in.


Float therapy works due to magnesium sulfate heptahydrate also known as Epsom salt.  People use both medical grade and industrial grade salt. It is recommended that you only use medical grade Epsom salt than industrial grade salt because the latter can have nasty impurities and byproducts so it’s slightly risky.

I’ve heard that you can also use regular table salt to float. It remains unclear if Epsom salt is mandatory. Nevertheless, regular salt does the trick and is a very cheap alternative.

It is recommended that you use a salinity meter to measure how much salt you have in the water. The specific gravity of your water and salt mix should be somewhere 1.25 to 1.285.


While floating, water vapor will start to condense on the top of your tank and it may drip on your face. If it does, it will be distracting, especially if you are trying to meditate.

You can solve this by heating the top of your tank or having a sloped roof design. The second option is cheaper and easier to do.


There will be electricity involved in building your own float tank. Thus, you have to be very careful when doing this. You need to ground all your equipment. It is recommended that use a GDCI (Ground-Fault Circuit Interrupter).

While floating we suggest that you turn off or unplug all of your electrical equipment for security reasons. Aside from ensuring your safety, doing so can also reduce noise.

Now that you already know the things that you need to consider, it’s time to determine the different materials needed.


According to The Deep Self’s DIY float tank, you will need the following:

  • 2 – 360-gallon containment tanks
  • Hydrometer
  • 7 pieces of plywood
  • 2-inch thick styrofoam
  • pump/filter system
  • 2 inflexible rods


How to Build a Sensory Deprivation Tank

  1. The base of your tank is a tarp and some 2x4s and 2-inch thick styrofoam.
  2. Put down one containment tank.
  3. Place 2 aquarium heaters in the back of the tank (towards the part where you plan for your feet to be).
  4. Place the pondmaster pump/filter just in front of those heaters.
  5. Put the second containment tank on top of the first.
  6. Drill holes in both tanks and slide a cinch through the holes to make your hinged door.
  7. Fill the tank. Start with just a few inches of water enough to cover the heaters. Let this get up to 94 deg F.  Use an external thermometer and add more water until you reach 250 gallons.
  8. Add salt slowly. One bag at a time.

That’s it! You can now enjoy sensory deprivation meditation at home.


Building a sensory deprivation tank is possible but don’t expect it to be so cheap. You will still need to shed thousands of dollars for the materials. Also, depending on your choice of equipment or supply and the features you want to include in your sensory deprivation chamber you may save or spend more.

DIY float tanks work. In fact, a number of individuals already did it. We hope that this article will be helpful for you if you want to build your own sensory deprivation tank.

If you want to know more about float tank or float therapy, feel free to check our homepage.