With the continued growth in popularity of log homes, we talk to a lot of new owners who are still looking for tips regarding the best ways to care for their unique and stylish homes. Now that gardens are giving their final offerings and other summer exterior projects are winding down, now is the perfect time inspect log homes and give them the proper care and attention they require. That being said, there are many signs of rot and damage that can be spotted early in order to avoid costly consequences.
No Splash Zone
One notable cause of log rot is brought on from water splashing onto lower logs. Though contrary to popular belief, it’s not just lakeside homes that are at risk of this type of damage. Decks, outside furniture and accessories actually put the logs at risk by deflecting rainwater on to the logs, causing them to get wet. Also, these objects reflect UV onto the logs causing the exterior finish to break down faster. The lower logs are the most affected by these conditions. Unfortunately they are also the most expensive to replace.
Improperly installed or broken gutters also pose a threat of water splashing on logs. Gutters are generally the best and most economical way to deflect moisture. However, broken or otherwise inefficient gutters allow the water to collect in one or two areas, causing the logs to rot.
The presence of insects often indicates that there may be rotten wood somewhere nearby. While they don’t actually cause the rot, they are pesky all the same. Getting rid of the rot and moisture problems will leave the insects with no food source and cause them to move along. It’s also ideal for keeping the logs in the best condition possible.
Permanchink and Sikkens both offer clear coat finishes that keep logs from soaking up moisture and also protect the logs from UV light. Most of the newer log home finishes seal water while letting the logs breathe. Consult a professional regarding the specific product selection, because the wrong stains can easily be over-applied or get built up over a dirty or mildew covered surface. Both of these conditions cause logs to rot, making the selection process very important.