Intensified Wood Restoration Services
Log Home Restoration
Log Home Restoration
The log home restoration process involves 4 steps to achieve lasting and protective results for your structure both structurally and cosmetically. These 4 steps are:
- Log Home Preparation
- Log Home Preservation
- Log Home Staining
- Log Home Caulking/Chinking
If any of these steps are skipped it could leave your log home at risk for:
- Air Infiltration
- Water Infiltration
- Dust Infiltration
- UV breakdown of wood
- Insects, Rodents
Preparation and preservation are the most important steps. If these two steps are overlooked they can greatly negate the longevity of the stain and sealants.
Log Home Restoration - Environmentally Friendly
Preparation for log home caulking, log home chinking, borate preservatives, and log home stain is the most important part in the log home restoration process. Basically every step relies on the proper preparation of the surface of the log home. Proper preparation starts with an analysis of the location and the environment that surrounds your log home. This includes locating hot-spots, cold-spots, moisture problems, air circulation issues, mold, mildew, decomposition of logs, and failed chinking/caulking/stain around your log home.
Four techniques for finish removal:
- Corn cob blasting, Walnut blasting, soda blasting, and dry ice blasting
- Chemical Stripping
- Pressure Washing
- Hand-Sanding (Ozzying)
Intensified Wood Restoration developed and recommends using the ozzy technique. We use this technique because we know it achieves the best results for your log structure. Why is it better?
- Ozzying leaves the surface of the log smooth to the touch
- Sanding is easier to clean up compared to corn cob blasting and chemical stripping
- Environmentally Friendly
- Sanding allows for easier cleaning of structure over time
- Achieves a uniform (non-blotchy) look when finish is applied without the use of a blast primer.
- Opens wood cells for better absorption of log home stain which helps reduce the cost of log home maintenance in the future
- Please read our disclaimer* on the dangers of media-blasting
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The last step in preparing the surface is to scrub the log home down with a cleaning solution and rinse thoroughly to ensure the surface of the log home is free of any contaminants that could affect the overall results of the log home stain and caulking or chinking.
Tip: When using high pressure water (pressure washing) just remember: If it hurts YOU it damages wood. We recommend to hold the pressure washer wand AT LEAST 4 feet away from the surface of the logs.
Preservation is also a crucial part of the log home restoration process only if there is bare wood showing. Preservatives will not soak through a log home stain and are hard to clean off when they dry. *Borate preservatives, such as PeneTreat and Shell Guard RTU, are the most common type of preservatives used in our industry. Each is different though in their makeup. Penetreat is not a glycol based borate and must be reapplied every 4-5 years regardless if a finish is on the wood or not. Shell Guard RTU is a glycol based preservative that will last a lifetime with one application as long as a finish is kept on the logs. We use Shell Guard RTU due to this fact. We apply any borates to the log home when it is dry as this allows the glycol preservatives to fully penetrate into the the wood. Good applications of preservatives keep mold, mildew, rot, and insects manageable over time.
* Borates are deadly to insects, mold,mildew, and rot and should be handled with care when using them. Please read this article on borate preservatives for more information.
Log Home Sealants (Caulking/Chinking)
Good sealants for log homes are either log chinking or log caulking. This all depends on what type of look you are going for though. Log caulking and chinking are usually applied one of two ways: Professional Grade or Contractor Grade
Professional grade application of a log home sealant is the most beneficial as it applies the use of a backer rod in between the log joints, which ensures that the caulking or chinking of choice only touches at 2 points on the log allowing for expansion/contraction without tearing. Professional grade caulking and chinking also consists of at least a ¼” wall thickness and utilizes proper tooling to ensure 100% adherence to the wood surface.
Contractor grade application of chinking and caulking uses no backer rod and has an inconsistent wall thickness that is usually smeared on. This method leads to a much faster failure of the chinking and caulking which in turn leaves your log home at risk for air, water, and pest/insect infiltration which can lead to rotting logs. If you have log rot please call us for a free estimate of your log home repair.
IWR Co. has log homes under our log home maintenance program that are 18+ years old. Some of these buildings have had minimal to no maintenance needed on the chinking or caulking that we professionally applied. Compared to buildings under our log home maintenance program that use contractor grade chinking and caulking application, which need maintenance annually to keep the chinking/chinking and log home stain performing. Though there are a few buildings that we’ve seen with the contractor grade application that have held up and performed.
Log Home Staining
Staining is the final part in the log home restoration process. Staining is the least technical but without careful consideration the quality and durability of the stain can be greatly affected. Some factors that must be taken into consideration are:
- Constantly back tracking to check for drips on the logs
- Set up a system to ensure there are no lap marks on the logs
- Building must be dry (at least 15% - 25% moisture content)
- What is the surface temperature of wood? Is it hot to the touch?
- What does weather look like? Is it going to rain?
- When is the sun going to be directly on surface?
Some common brands of log home stains are:
- Sikkens Cetol 1, Cetol 23, and Log and Siding
- Sashco Capture and Sashco Cascade
- Perma-Chink Lifeline Ultra 2 andLifeline Advance
- High Sierra Log Stain
- UV Guard Log Finish
- Weatherseal Log Finish
- Transformation Log Stain
- Woodguard Wood Finish
Your log home restoration project is not a small project and can be costly depending on what you need done. With this performance and looks are a must. We have fine tuned our log restoration procedures over the past 20 years which has allowed us to control the up’s and down’s of maintenance on your log home. The only way to make sure that this system works is constant monitoring of the condition of the logs on your home. Intensified Wood Restoration wants to help you maintain your log home so it can be enjoyed for decades by your family, friends, customers, and of course you.