Spring Cleaning | Beamer’s Better Builders When nothing less than the best will do! | Creative Web Creations

Spring Cleaning

Well once again spring has come upon us. For those who own a log home, this means it is cleaning and maintenance time.  I know just the sound of that evil word “maintenance” can make some of us cringe, but if you become proactive with the maintenance of your home, it will save you a lot of time and money in the long run. So let’s take a look at what maintenance may consist of.

First, you need to make a simple diagram of the home. Label each side of the diagram to correspond with each wall. Such as north, south, east, and west walls. Count how many courses of logs are on each wall, and simply show that on your diagram by drawing a line.

Now we will need to gather up a few small tools. You will need a roll of masking tape, a spray bottle, hammer, and possibly a thin bladed screwdriver. 

Now we can start the task. The first thing you will need to do is make sure you are looking at a clean surface. Perma-chink Systems Inc. offers a product called Log Wash. Log Wash is a wood cleaner specifically designed for cleaning your log home. Its unique formulation has a pH that is very similar to the pH of most species of wood, so there is no worry of a chemical reaction taking place. Simply mix one cup of Log Wash with one gallon of water and spray it on the home using a pump style garden sprayer. Let it sit on the wood surface for about ten minutes and thoroughly rinse it off with a garden hose or a pressure washer on low pressure setting. (600-800 psi). After the washed surface has had time to dry we can start our inspection process.

Remember the masking tape we mentioned earlier? You are going to use it to test the adhesion of the finish. You will want to pull off about a six inch piece of the tape. Press it firmly on the logs. Now remove the tape. If greater than fifty percent of the tape is covered with stain, then it may be time to consider removing the finish from the home and starting fresh. Repeat this process multiple times across every wall on the home.

Once you have finished testing the adhesion of the finish on your log home, you can do the water absorption test. Use a spray bottle and thoroughly wet the wood in various areas around the whole home. If the wood is turning dark under the finish, that means water is getting through the finish to the wood itself. This means that it is probably time for a maintenance application of clear coat, stain, or stain and clear coat, depending on what type of stain system was used on your home.

While you are in the process of moving around the home checking the adhesion of the stain and doing your water absorption test, you can  use the small hammer to check for signs of wood decay. Simply tap on the logs and listen for a hollow sound. If you happen to come across an area that sounds hollow, gently tap the thin blade screwdriver into the wood. If the screwdriver goes into the wood with little or no effort then you may have some wood decay issues to take care of.

Please remember that many repairs to log homes can be done by yourself, but there are some things that in my opinion must be left to the professional. Major wood decay issues such as log replacement and log re-facing should be done by a profession. The reason is because these things could potentially cause structural issues with the home. Media blasting a finish off of your home is another one that it is best to let a professional do. It is possible to do a severe amount of damage in a very short period of time with a media blaster. When I say a short period of time, I mean a matter of seconds.  When choosing a log home professional, in my opinion if is best to find one that is very familiar with all aspects of construction. DO NOT hire the local painter who stands in the aisle of the paint store looking for business. Log homes require much more attention to detail than a stick-built home with stucco or block walls. Each log on your home has its own unique characteristics. Only a log home professional will have the knowledge and ability to make your log home look like your DREAM HOME.

If you have any questions about log home restoration or info on buying products for your log home, don’t hesitate one moment to contact Danny Beamer of Beamers Better Builders. I have been doing business with him for nearly 5yrs now. He is my number one choice when someone asks me about an experienced log home professional.