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    Western Log Home Supply Archive Page
    Sunday, November 30, 2008

    During construction the logs can become stained from rain hitting the logs and leaving water spots as well as having black stains develop from water hitting the spikes or lag screws used in construction and leaving unsightly black stains on the logs and other wood. This can be easily removed by using several methods:

    Oxalic Acid

    For black nail stains you can use oxalic acid and water. A cup of oxalic acid in a gallon of warm water is the best mixture for normal stains. If you have a few stains, just rub the solution on with a soft rag and presto..they are gone. If you have a lot of stains or want to brighten up the logs prior to staining the house, you can use a hand, pump sprayer for the job. This solution is poison so keep away from any living thing. Also use eye protection and a face mask to filter out any of the chemicals. This chemical can be obtained at most home centers and goes by the name of "wood bleach".

    Bleach and Water

    Another way to brighten up and clean up logs or deck prior to finishing is to use a mixture of half house hold bleach and half water. This can be sprayed on with a hand held pump sprayer and worked in with a brush on tough spots. Never ever try to make your own super stain remover and mix oxalic acid (wood bleach) and house hold bleach together. This will give off a tremendous volume of noxious fumes that can be damaging to your lungs.

    Sodium Percarbonate (CPR)

    CPR is used to clean and brighten uncoated wood that is dirty, faded or gray from UV exposure. Mix CPR to the brightening solution strength for use on new construction just prior to staining to remove dirt and grime from logs during the building process and to break down mill glaze. Mixed at the log cleaning solution strength—use for periodic cleaning of stained logs to extend the life of your stain. It can be applied eaisly by using a garden sprayer.

    Phosphoric Acid

    Phosphoric Acid is a liquid concentrate for cleaning log and wood surfaces. It commonly goes by the nameLog Wash. It can be used as maintenance cleaner or to prepare the surface of wood for a new coat of stain or topcoat.

    The exterior surfaces of a log home are a settling ground for dust, pollen and other airborne contaminants that dull the surface and encourage mold growth. A light cleaning once or twice a year will keep a home looking beautiful and helps prolong the life of the exterior wood finish.

    For preparing the surface of bare or finished wood or for a new coat of stain or topcoat, Log Wash removes dirt, grime, pollen and surface mold and mildew without harming the wood or the finish. As opposed to bleach solutions, Log Wash does not upset the natural pH balance of the wood, thus preventing wood fiber damage and iron tannate stains. It can be applied easily by using a garden sprayer. 

    To learn more about log home and wood cleaners please visit our website at www.westernloghomesupply.com  or give us a call at (719) 547-2135

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    by: Western Log Home Supply
    Monday, November 24, 2008

    The rotten log dilema

    Wood only rots between a moisture content of 30 to 60%. Thus if you find a log that is rotten, it is due to the wood/log getting too wet. Generally this results from a few basic causes of water reaching the logs in fairly large amounts. Many times I have talked with people over the telephone and told them their problem without them telling me much about their home.

    There are many reasons or wood to rot:

    • The roof is the umbrella that protects the home from the elements. Thus minimal overhangs results in rain drenching the logs.
    • The lack of rain gutters and down spouts allows the water to run off of the roof and be blown onto the logs by the wind. In many cases rain running off of the roof will hit the open deck and splash water against the logs.
    • Finally bushes planted too close to the home can also divert rain water against the logs and this will leave the logs damp for some time as the bushes keep the sun from hitting the logs and drying them.

    Repairing Rotten Logs:

    If you have logs which are rotting (generally the lower courses of logs), then you must repair or replace them and then be prepared to take care of the root cause of water saturating the logs.

    • If the logs have some surface rot, you can chisel out the rotten part of the log down to good solid wood. 
    • Then drench the problem area with a wood preservative such as Penetreat. This wood preservative would be the water soluble type which is a borate compound. 
    • Then use wood epoxy to cover the area in need of repair.

    Replacing Rotten Logs: 

    • First obtain a suitable replacement from a supplier that handles the same log type as found in you home. www.WesternLogHomesuppy.com can manufacture replacement logs for your home.  Just give us a call and we would be happy to talk with you.
    • Then cut out the offending log using a saber saw with a blade made for cutting metal. This will cut through the spikes or log screws holding the logs together. You will then need to remove the rotten logs using a chain saw and wrecking bar. If the log is badly rotten then this job should not be hard to do.
    • If the logs are tongue and groove type then the new logs will have to have the tongue removed on top of the new log so that it can slipped into the space left by the old log. It can be attached to the solid logs of the home with the use of plated deck screws. 
    • The final touch is to use a good grade of chinking to seal the joints between the new logs and the existing logs in the log home.
    • Now apply a wood preservative to the affected area (preferably the whole home) and then refinish the home.

    As was mentioned earlier, now take care of the problem that resulted in the logs getting wet in the first place!

    For more information about replacing rotten logs, chinking material, stain or log cabin kits contact Clyde at Westernloghomesupply.com toll free at 719-547-2135.

    Westernloghomesupply.com is a distributor of log home chinking, cabin caulking, log stains, wood finishes, knotty pine log cabin siding, replacement house logs & complete log home kits.

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    by: Western Log Home Supply
    Friday, November 21, 2008
    Welcome to the Log Blog!

    by: Western Log Home Supply