Winter Home Maintenance for a Timber House

Hamill Creek   |   Nov 26, 2019

Thinking you might be in the market for a log cabin or timber-framed home soon but don’t know how much maintenance is required? Find out more about these rustic and authentic homes before you commit. 

What does a Timber Frame maintenance entail?

Preparing your wood-framed home is vital to its longevity and preventing costly repairs down the road. Luckily it’s probably not as high-maintenance as you may think. Re-coating the interior of your timber-framed house with linseed, Tung or other natural oils is best done in the fall before bad weather arrives. 

To do this, it’s important that all the surfaces you intend on oiling are completely free of dirt, dust and grime. Next, find out what the manufacturer your wood says about oiling it and stick to that, at least at first. Use a roller pad to apply the oil evenly. The oil may carry a strong smell so be sure to properly ventilate your home by opening doors and windows. If you feel like linseed oil attract too many bugs, as some believe they do, you can use a light coat of beeswax polish for a light glow.   

Another step that will protect your home is going around with a caulking gun and check places like where the timber and the foundation meet, where pipes and wires enter your home, and around windows and doors. The heat of summer often causes cracks in the wood and finding these cracks and sealing them helps save on heating costs in the winter. Winter home maintenance on your timber home is easier than you think.  

How do you maintain a log home exterior?

A little effort goes a long way when it comes to log cabin maintenance especially when it comes to getting for winter. Proper drainage is very important for log cabins. Melted snow needs to be diverted away from the foundation to avoid rot and damage. Walk around your home making sure that the area around its foundation has a nice healthy downslope. If there isn’t one, you will need to make one with top soil for proper winter home maintenance.

After you clear your gutters, use mesh screens to cover your them and downspouts to prevent leaves and debris. This will allow rain water to filter through, preventing it from backing up under the eaves and producing leaks inside.

The sun, although nobody thinks about it, is still capable of causing damage during the winter. Using pigmented stains to combat cracking and discoloring on the logs. Fall is one of the best times (the other being spring) to check for upward-facing cracks, which can collect rainwater and damage logs. Inspect the interior and exterior for separation in the sealant as this can lead to moisture and cold air entering the cabin. 

Another part of log cabin maintenance eliminate bugs and their nests by using pesticides or borates on wood that isn’t stained or treated. Bugs aren’t themselves the danger. The holes they can bore into wood, however, are as they can hold moisture, which leads to rot. If you find them, fill these holes with sealant. 

How often does a Timber Frame home need to be sealed?

Chinking should be applied once a year in the fall where it’s needed. Chinking should last for over two decades given that it’s applied correctly but as often is the case, parts of cabin will need to be re-sealed. When caulking large cracks or splits insert the tip of the gun at the widest point in the crack and fill in from there. That way to entire crack will be sealed, protecting your home from moisture, insect nests and the cold. 

Timber frame maintenance is easy when you know what to look for and what to do if you find something off. Log cabins and timber-framed homes are pleasing to look at and can make anyone who visits feel like they’re off in the woods. Maintenance should not keep anyone who wants one of these wonderful homes from getting one. 

Timber frame maintenance help is just a click or call away

At Hamill Creek, the last thing we want to see is a beautiful log cabin succumb to the elements whether it’s one of ours or not. That is why we strive to provide solid, helpful information to all log cabin and timber-framed homeowners. If you are interested in potentially owning one of these lovely houses one day, don’t let the maintenance they required deter you. For more information, check out our website here.

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