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October 10, 2017

How to get your log home ready for winter

Leaves are turning, nights are getting cool, and it’s definitely feeling like fall. It’s a great time to enjoy the changing seasons, and an even better time to get started with winter-proofing your log home. We’ve helped log home owners throughout California repair, restore and get their homes ready for every season for more than 25 years. So we’ve gathered a few ideas here to help you create your own checklist that will save you from frantic, last-minute trips to the home and garden stores when the first storm hits.

If you use your log home as a getaway, and its located high in the mountains, be sure to keep an eye on local weather forecasts and plan to get any maintenance done before the first big snow falls. If you live in your log home full-time, it’s just as important to stay on top of routine upkeep and seasonal checks to make sure your home weathers the winter season without a problem. Many of the ideas we provide here can be done on your own, but if you suspect there is extensive damage or aren’t sure about what you see, give our professionals here at Prolog Restorations a call at 877-477-6564 and we’ll be happy to help.

Living closer to nature means you’re more likely to deal with all the little surprises nature can throw at you. Here are a few ways to make sure you’re ready for whatever Mother Nature has in store:

Inspect your furnace: Install new filters. If you haven’t serviced them in a while, call an HVAC professional to inspect the furnace and clean the ducts. Consider switching out traditional thermostats for programmable ones. Many use Bluetooth technology that allows you to control the temperature remotely using your smart phone.

Check the chimney: Check for cracked mortar or flu pipes, debris such as bird’s nests, and white or green stains that signal mold or mildew. If it hasn’t been cleaned in a while, arrange for a professional to remove ash, debris, and creosote.

Inspect roof, eaves and rain gutters: Clear your roof, rain gutters, and downspouts of debris. Check for leaks and other maintenance and repair issues. When looking at eaves, check for stains, cracks between the roof and walls, and the presence of insects or animals such as bats or mice which can be signs of trouble. If you see anything like this, call a professional for an evaluation.

Visually inspect the outside of your home: Fall cabin maintenance begins with a careful walk around your cabin, checking the overall condition of the logs and assessing any damage which may have occurred over the summer. Cracks and checks in the logs are normal, but if they get too big they can allow moisture and dirt to collect and this will lead to further damage. Check deck, steps and railings for loose boards or connections. Once it starts snowing, the snow pack can cause even more damage. Keep an eye out for log damage, fungus or gaps in logs or trim.

Trim trees and cut back landscaping near cabin: Due to the storms and high winds of this past year, we’ve heart that professional tree-trimmers are booked solid and running behind schedule, so be sure to schedule them NOW to get your trees done before the first snow.

For getaway homes that are going to be used sporadically during the season, be sure to have your plumbing pipes checked for leaks.  Also inspect storm shutters and windows for leaks or gaps that will let in snow or curious critters. Build up your store of firewood or pellet stove stock so it’s ready when you visit.

Be ready for emergencies: Having an emergency kit for the long winter months is always a good idea. Gather a supply of candles, matches and lighters for power shortages. Find the phone numbers for utility companies and display them near your phone or add them to your cell phone contact list. Check fire extinguishers to make sure they are properly charged and ready to go.  Store extra bottled water and non-perishable food supplies (including pet food), blankets and a first-aid kit in a dry and easy-to-access location.

Use this guide for winterizing your home this fall, and be sure to check out our checklists and information for caring for your log home by downloading our Free Book here. And if you find anything suspicious as you check and prep your home for winter, please feel free to call us at 877-477-6564, we’re here to help!