It is important to keep your beautiful log home looking its best with proper upkeep and log home maintenance. Here are some tips to help you better sleep at night knowing you have protected your home from Mother Nature.
Your roof is the main defense against Mother Nature.
Any flaws or failures will become apparent on the roof first, and the more complicated the roof system is (multiple roof planes, hips, valleys, dormers, chimneys) the more chance there is for water to penetrate.
Generous roof overhangs or eaves will help keep water off the log walls.
Keep an eye on any exposed timbers (especially the ends) on the underside of your eaves that may be flush or protrude past it. Exposure to sun, wind and rain may lead to decay so it is important to inspect these exposed logs regularly.
Watch out for ice dams in northern winter climates.
Ice dams may form on the roof and cause substantial damage so make sure your attic is insulated properly to prevent warm air buildup and improve ventilation so warm air can escape quickly. A telltale sign is when the peak of the roof is empty but the eaves are covered with snow and icicles.
Make sure you have gutters and downspouts to direct runoff away from your home.
Homes without gutters are prone to a backsplash of water and the growth of organic material on log homes (which give insects the ability to flourish and cause decay).
Keep an eye on decks, sidewalks and driveways that may lead to back splash on logs from rain or sprinkler systems.
Make sure to keep these areas well maintained to avoid mold and mildew penetrating your logs.
Check windows and doors for water damage or air drafts.
Make sure to check flashing around windows to prevent water stains on logs or any air drafts around windows and doors that may indicate air or water is infiltrating your home. Proper caulking made specifically for log homes will solve this problem.
Make sure your stain or finish properly repels moisture.
You can test the effectiveness of your stain or finish by spraying your logs to see if water beads form and run off logs properly. Also make sure stains, sealants and caulk are scientifically formulated to work together to properly maintain your logs.
To avoid sun burn and peeling, reapply stains or finishes on a regular basis to protect logs.
Semi-transparent stains can protect logs for three to five years, but shorter if there is a lot of sun exposure. If you use a clear finish you may want to reapply your finish every year to protect your home from ultraviolet rays.
Caulking is a very effective way to keep your home sealed from the elements.
Make sure to seal horizontal and corner joints every few years, and to pay close attention to corner sections of your home. Exposure to the water and air is the main concern, and again one solution is to caulk and reseal both the inside and outside of your logs. The caulk you choose should be compatible with other finishing products you are using.
Regular application of wood preservatives and routine inspections will go a long way to keeping the bugs out.
Proactive caulking will also keep insects from penetrating your home and gaining future entry. Termites, powder post beetles, old house borers and flathead borers are common threats.
Gastineau Log Homes has been advising and guiding log home owners and builders on proper log home maintenance since 1977! We are proud to provide log home maintenance services to anyone who has a log or wood home. Contact us today and let’s keep your dream home beautiful!