Frequently Asked Questions

About Log Home Repair and Maintenance

Should I Power wash Logs

Never power wash your log home! The pressure can damage logs and drive water deep into the wood where it may never dry.

Can I Paint My Log Home

No, do not paint your logs. Paint will not allow the wood to breath properly and could lead to premature damage.

Should I fill In Checks

No, unless they allow wind, water, and insects to enter your log home or cabin. Checks are a natural way for the logs to breathe. If you have filled some, be sure to inspect them often for breaks in the caulk. If water gets behind the caulk, the wood can't dry out fast enough and will cause log rot!.

How Often Must I Do a Maintenance Check

Perform yearly maintenance checks or hire a professional to implement a maintenance program. Check for water leaks, signs of insect infestation and finish failure. The sooner these problems are discovered the less difficult it will be to repair.

What About Paint and Stain?

Good paint and cheap paint look the same when you open the can. But the experts will tell you that where they differ is in the binders, pigments, and additives the manufacturer has used to make them. How long paint lasts, how easy it is to apply, and how well it hides surface imperfections all depend on it's ingredients, even if the ingredients are listed on the label (often they’re not) or on the material safety data sheet, buyers likely won’t understand what they are or what they do. That is where we come in! We know our paints and which one is the best for your application, sit back and enjoy the view, let us worry about the technical stuff.
Stain Is Another Story When choosing a stain for your home it is important to remember that logs and heavy timbers have a completely different dynamic than thinner sidings and trim. Their physics, if for nothing more than size and movement, makes it important for us to choose coating that will adapt to those attributes. At LogDoctors, we use a variety of different types of stains from a number of manufacturers. Experience has shown us that each one of our projects is different, and being able to draw from a variety of stains, instead of just one type, will make for a better end product. No matter what you are told, no one manufacturer can meet every need, with the product line they produce. If stains are to be broken into various types, we should probably start with the most basic of considerations, clean-up. If we start here, of all stains, there are going to be two forms. Those stains that clean up with soap and water, and those stains that clean up with a solvent like mineral spirits. We could have said that those types could be water-borne and oil-based, but some of the newer oil emulsions clean up with soap and water while they are still wet. All the stain systems we use, they are systems because the majority require multiple coats of multiple types of product, are surface film coat stains (water-borne), or shallow penetrating stains (oil based or oil emulsion). LOGDOCTORS WILL NOT WARRANT THE APPLICATION OF DEEP PENETRATING OIL BASED STAINS. These surface and shallow penetrating systems have been on the market now for a couple of decades, and the ones we use have proven track record for longevity and protection for your home. We have a variety of criteria that we use when evaluating your particular property to help educate you in choosing the correct product for your home. We’ll discuss two major factors in this article. The first has a lot to do with what is on the logs already. If you have been using a deep penetrating stain, and only plan you wash your logs, you are held to a fairly short list of oil-based products that will be compatible with what has already been applied. With some deep penetrators, this is even true if you media blast. If you’ve been using a surface film-coat system, your options are much larger. Most shallow penetrating oil and oil emulsions are compatible with the film coat systems, but not the reverse. The film-coat systems can be particular to what they will stick too. Even though we have been doing this for years, we always check with the manufacturer for compatibility issues before applying one stain over another. Secondly, location also factors into the type of stains we choose for homes. We are a lot more likely to choose a film coat system for homes that are more in the open and have good air circulation around them than one that is deep in a holler or draw or one in a very damp environment. Our experience shows that film-coat systems have a longer life span on homes that have adequate air movement around them, where oils will work in both damp and dry environments. There are other factors that go into stain choice, including how the dwelling is to be prepped, color to be used, difficulty of maintenance, etc . . ., but these discussions can be long and drawn out, and are best discussed in person. So please feel free to call us at any time with questions you may have.

  • Are gutters and downspouts installed? If not, install. This is probably the single best investment you can make to help preserve your log home!
  • Are the gutters and downspouts in good shape and clear of debris? Are the downspouts depositing rain-water far enough away from the home?
  • Make sure window sills are sloped for proper drainage of water.
  • Make sure any bushes or plants have a minimum of 18" clearance away from the logs. This will allow access to the home of air circulation and prevent mold and mildew issues from the plants holding moisture against the wood.
  • Make sure tree branches are trimmed back well away from the home. They can introduce the same detrimental issues to the logs as bushes and plants that are too close, and also the abrasion of the tree branches rubbing on the exterior finish can wear off the finish.
  • Is the landscaping around the home set up properly so water drains away from the home? Make sure any sprinkler systems are not set up to spray the logs or railings, etc. of the home.
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    Estimate Overview

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