Around this time of year, Indiana residents are enjoying final trips to the lake and other weekend getaways before schools, colleges and work commence. For log home owners this is also an important time to take stock of the condition of their home. There are certain issues that are important to spot early as they are detrimental to the logs, potentially having costly consequences. The list below touches on a few signs that future rot that can arise.
1. Collateral Damage
Water splashing onto lower logs is the most notable cause of log rot. Unfortunately, decks and accessories surrounding the home actually logs at risk. They deflect water on to the logs, causing them to continually get wet. Additionally they reflect UV light onto the logs causing the finish to break down faster than it naturally would over time. These issues usually affect the lower logs, which are the most expensive to replace.
2. Broken Gutters
Gutters serve as the best line of defense against water splashing onto the logs. Overall they are a relatively cost-efficient way to control moisture, but with one major caveat: They must be doing their job. Improperly installed or broken gutters concentrate water in one or two areas, accelerating the rotting process.
3. Never Stop Finishing
Log home stains and maintenance clear coats, both of which Sikkens and Permanchink offer, keep logs from soaking up moisture and protect the logs from UV light. Modern log home finishes seal water and also allow for the logs to breathe. Many times when the wrong stains are over-applied or get built up over a dirty or mildew covered surface it causes logs to rot, making this modern feature very important.
4. Logs too Low
Logs that are far too low ground (or actually in the ground) inherently rot easier. Sometimes it is impossible to change where a log sits. The best bet is to concentrate on landscaping, re-grading or adding gutters can get water away from these already fragile logs. Also remember to keep the low logs dry and well-treated.
5. Roof design flaws
Design flaws are always going to exist. It’s simply a fact. Although this problem may be encountered more frequently on older log homes, roof imperfections are gateways to bigger problems. Even minor flaws are spots where water can become concentrated and cause rot. The solution is to find a new method of drainage such as a gutter or modifying converging rooflines.
6. Problems with insects
Insects do not cause the rot, but they are sometimes a good indicator of rotten wood somewhere. After getting rid of rot and moisture problems, these bugs will have no food source and many times will leave. Controlling moisture is a big preventative measure when it comes to this problem. We also recommend getting on a rountine pest control system using a local pest control company.