Logs along decks are susceptible to rot. On this particular log home, water had been allowed to splash off the deck onto the lower logs for years. We often see rotten logs here because the logs get too much exposure to moisture. Replacing rotten logs along a deck is work we do regularly.
The first indicator to the owner of this milled-log home near Spooner, WI was that the logs stared turning black. He was rightly concerned that there was an issue that needed attention. That’s when he called us. We came in and inspected the home and gave him a price to repair the logs. This was in the fall of 2015 . We returned to do the work the following spring.
Another issue with decks and log homes or cabins has to do with flashing. Decks attached to log walls must be properly flashed to prevent issues with water damage, i.e. ROT!. It’s not always apparent that flashing is an issue. It takes someone who knows what to look for to recognize this issue and then resolve it.
We had to replace the rotten portion of the logs along this deck. The rot had not extended too far into the log so we were able to replace the rot using half-logs. This technique leaves the interior of the log wall in tact. That is a real concern when a log home owner sees that they have rot. “Will this repair affect the inside or our cabin?” The answer usually is NO.
Once the rot was cut out of the log, we treated the wood with a concentrated borate treatment to protect it from future rot. We then used dried cedar logs as our replacement logs. These are naturally rot-resistant and the fact that they are fully dried means they will not shrink after installation.
We typically recommend that whenever possible, gutters be installed on roofs that shed water onto decks. This goes a long way in preventing future problems. Gutters would have saved this customer lots of headaches and money.
Bottom line – protect your logs from over-exposure to excess moisture. Keep them clean and use a quality log home stain. Fill up-facing checks or cracks in logs.
If you have questions or concerns about your log home, give us a call at 715-373-5744. We can help!
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