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Timeless Wood Care

  • 5 Steps to Repairing your Log Home

    As a log home owner, you probably already know that your home will require just a bit more maintenance than a traditional home. Most professionals recommend log homeowners inspect and perform general repairs every two years, and that's a pretty good rule to live by. And while you know you need to perform these inspections and make the necessary repairs, it can be tough to know where to start.

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  • Owning a Log Home: When It's Time to Call a Professional

    When you own a log home or cabin, it’s a source of pride to be able to maintain and touch up your house all by yourself. You know how to re-stain it, fix the chinking, and protect it from the elements, but are there instances when you should consider talking to a professional? We’ve put together a list of times it might save you a lot of hassle and money to simply just call an expert:

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  • 4 Steps to Safely Restoring Your Cabin or Log Home

    There are countless benefits to restoring a historic cabin or log home, but most people generally do it for two reasons: to save money, or for the sake of sentimentality. Maybe it was your great-grandparents home, or maybe you’re just starting a family and want to restore a log home because it will be cheaper than buying new. Regardless of the reason, restoring an old home can be a big undertaking, but the benefits definitely outweigh the costs. A log home is one that is built to last you for decades. Since you’ve decided to restore that old log home, here are a few tips to remember in the process:

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  • Savvy Insurance Considerations for Log Home Owners

    The fact of the matter is that your log home is much different from the standard, conventional stick-built homes. While this means a natural rustic feel and a dream home for many, there are some special considerations that go along with log home ownership.

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  • 4 Most Popular Roofing Materials for Log Homes

    Choosing a roof for your log home can be one of the most difficult choices of your construction process. Log homes require different maintenance than the typical house, and they’re stylistically much different. Sometimes the hardest part is even knowing what your options are. So, we’ve put together a list of the top four most popular roofing materials for log houses and explained their different attributes for you.

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  • 8 Things to Add to Your Log Home Spring Cleaning Checklist

    Spring is finally here! Though it may not seem like this winter has been all that bad, it’s time to get ready for warmer weather, and that includes spring cleaning. Since your log home takes winter a little differently than other homes, here are a few things to keep in mind when you go about your annual spring inspection and cleaning routine:

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  • INTERIOR LOG HOME CHECKS

    1. Watch for mold or mildew damage to log walls in high-moisture areas such as bathrooms and laundry rooms.

    2. Vertical posts with settling jacks installed at floor level are often used in log homes to shoulder the weight of the second floor or roof system. Talk to your builder to find out the rate these jacks should be lowered.

    3. watch for settlement issues wherever the log walls attach. This can include interior partition walls, floors, cabinets, shower enclosures, stairs, chimneys, porches and garages.

    This content was provided by Perma-Chink Systems, Inc.

  • CHECKING YOUR LOG HOME ROOF SYSTEMS

    1. Inspect flashing in the valleys of the roof, around the chimney and enclosing plumbing vents to ensure a tight seal against water. Use roof tar to seal any edges that have lifted up.

    2. Visit your attic and inspect the under side of your roof system for water stains, as well as matted or mildewed insulation. If you have a cathedral ceiling, look for water stains on the drywall or on the tongue-and-groove paneling.

    3. If you have exposed timbers on the underside of your eaves that extend flush with the overhand or protrude past it, the ends of these logs are susceptible to rot. Treat with Shell-Guard then sand and seal with Log End Seal.

    4. Did you see ice buildup (ice dams) on your roof last winter? Prevent warm-air build-up in your attic during winter months by increasing the amount of insulation (less heat will enter your attic). Or improve ventilation so warm air escapes quickly.

    This content was provided by Perma-Chink Systems, Inc.

  • TROUBLESHOOTING COMMON ISSUES

    1. Is mold/mildew growing on your logs? First determine whether it is on top of the stain or underneath by dabbing it with a swab soaked in chlorine bleach. If it is on top of your finish, it can be washed off the walls using Log Wash. If it is underneath, you must remover the finish in order to remove the fungal stain.

    2. Decay-causing fungi occur in wood with moisture contents in excess of 30 percent (the wood-fiber saturation point). Since moisture must be present to give fungi a chance to grow, a good, water-repelling, breathable finish applied to the surface of the logs will combat this.

    3. If rot does take root in your logs, drill holes into the affected log, inject Shell-guard on each side of the problem area and then caulk the holes. The borate dissolves and begins to diffuse throughout the wood, killing the fungi on contact.

    This content was provided by Perma-Chink Systems, Inc.

  • FINISHING AND SEALING NEW LOG HOMES

    1. Remove mill glaze, road grime and other foreign substances from the logs. You can do this by using a log wash solution (Wood ReNew), sanding, power washing or corn-blasting, depending on the condition of your logs.

    2. If you elect to wash your logs with a cleaning solution, always remember to apply cleaners from the bottom of the walls upward, then rinse from the top down. Always make sure to thoroughly rinse cleaning solution off the walls. Follow manufacturer’s directions when using cleaners.

    3. After waiting for the logs to dry, apply a borate preservative (Shell-Guard or Armor Guard) and allow to dry. Next apply your interior and exterior stains. You may want to apply your exterior clear-coats after chinking, to improve appearance and make cleaning easier. The final step is to apply external sealants and chinking if your house requires it.

    4. All log homes will need some amount of sealing – regardless of the log profile or construction style – in between log courses, at corners and around windows and doors. the sealant or chinking you use must be compatible with whatever stain you apply to your log home. If you are not sure, call the manufacturer.

    5. To test your finish or stain, use a spray bottle to mist the logs with water. If the water beads up and runs off like a freshly waxed car, then it’s doing it’s job. If logs soak up water, then you’ll need another application of finish.

    6. How soon you will need to re-apply stains to your log home depends on many variables. Severity of weather exposure, care during preparation and stain application, the quality of the stain used and amount of pigments in the stain are the primary factors. You should expect 4-7 years or more when using LIFELINE stains, especially if the house is sheltered from the sun.

    7. Graying wood (especially on the topside of round logs) is caused by UV damage to the wood substrate. To fix this, you must remove the stain to get at the wood underneath, by stripping or sanding. Treatment with Wood ReNew, OxCon or sanding removes this damage. This UV damage can be significantly delayed and reduced by use of UV-Boost in the first coat of LIFELINE finish on the logs.

    8. If your finish loses its adhesion, it can start to peel, blister or crack. To avoid this peeling, only use one coat of stain to finish on logs that have more than 20 percent moisture content. Use a moisture meter to determine this. Once your log falls below 19 percent moisture content, you should apply multiple coats as per manufacturer recommendations.

    9. Can you feel drafts at corners? Use Energy Seal or Perma-Chink to seal horizontal and corner joinery wherever needed. Seal upward facing checks larger than 1/8″ wide with Check Mate. These can trap and hold water and should be weather-tight.

    10. Check flashing around the windows to ensure that all water is being channeled out and down the exterior walls. Water stains on the logs or drafts around the windows or doors indicate that air and water is infiltrating your home. The right sealant is the solution for this problem.

    11. If blisters appear in chinking that has been applied in direct sun, puncture them with a knife tip and flatten them out against the uncured chinking.

    This content was provided by Perma-Chink Systems, Inc.

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