Home Care and Maintenance
Everything You Need to Know to Buy,
Maintain, and Enjoy Your Log Home
by Jim Olsen Davis
Lyons Press, 2004
recently, most log homes were either self-built or constructed by
contractors affiliated with a local sawmill. Consequently, most were
vacation homes built in or near a forest; only a few were built for
has changed in the last 20 years and the log home industry has matured
considerably. The advent of new caulks and sealants coupled with
improved designs and components has made the log home a more practical
and affordable residence almost anywhere in the country.
book explains how and why log homes
are worth considering for year-round residence. It describes the
of various types of wood and how they respond to changes in temperature
and humidity, and it details a maintenance plan that will help log home
owners avoid costly repairs.
"I have been
involved in just about every facet of log home manufacturing,
buildings, and restoring," notes the author, Jim Olsen Davis.
"Consequently, what really upsets me is driving past a log home that
has fallen into disrepair. The reason for this is simple: neglect.
Neglect comes from misunderstanding or being misled or just plain
to the Book
such neglect, Davis aims to arm readers of this book with a working
knowledge of some of the common problems found in log homes and how to
avoid or fix them.
State Building at the Columbian Exposition in Chicago, 1893
type of soil is not
a big issue, but it is an indicator of how well the site drains after a
rainstorm or in the spring as the snow melts. You want to make sure the
soil is graded away from your house. The steeper the better,but you do
not want pockets (or puddles) of moisture restaing agaist your
That can lead to cracks in the foundation walls and water seepage,
in turn can lead to insect infestations and foundation failure.
against your log walls does not allow for adequate airflow, which is
when the logs get wet. Your logs need to dry out after they get wet or
they become an invitation to fungi and insects. Cut the vegetation back
to the height of the foundation wall and 2 feet from the wall. I don't
advocate getting rid of it altogether, because some vegetation lessens
splash back on log walls from a rainstorm.
start somewhere outside the house. Look for signs and areas where
lie in wait. You may spot tunnels of mud leading up the foundation wall
or mounds in the soil. If you find these signs, consider treating the
with a fungicide or insecticide injection. You will definitely fund
in woodpiles leaning against the house. Destroy the tunnels and mounds
and move the woodpil at least 15 to 20 feet away from the house..."