Is your log home or place of business prepared for the harsh wind, rain and storms of El Nino? No matter where you live, you’re likely to be affected in some way by the harsh storms and rains predicted for this season. It’s never too late to take steps to ensure your log home is protected and able to gracefully weather the storm. As experts in log home maintenance, repair and restoration, we’ve worked with owners of log structures throughout California, from San Diego to the Lake Tahoe and everywhere in between. So we’ve put together the following checklist to help you prepare your log home for whatever challenges El Nino throws your way.
- Check the roof: Take a walk around your home and inspect the roof from the ground. Look for shingles that appear bent or damaged, or are missing altogether. If sections of the roof appear “wavy” that can be a sign of warping. If you live in a climate that gets lots of snow and ice for the winter, check for ice dams. These are thick ridges of solid ice that build up along the eaves. Dams can tear off gutters, loosen shingles, and cause water to back up and pour into your house.
- Inspect gutters and drainage: Clogged gutter, blocked drains and areas that pool water are all hazards that can cause leaks and water damage to your home. Be sure to clear out dead leaves out of gutters and remove anything clogging runoff drains around your home. When it rains, head out side to check that everything is draining smoothly, in case you missed any blockages deeper in the pipes.
- Be prepared for drainage problems: If rains are particularly heavy and long-lasting, even the best of drains may get backed up. If you notice water pouring down heavily from a particular spot and causing damage or pooling, there are a couple things you can do yourself as a temporary solution. First, use large buckets or garbage cans to catch the water, then dispose of it safely elsewhere. If the ground is waterlogging and buckets just won’t do it, you can dig a small trench from the area and use a PVC pipe to redirect water to a safe area. This isn’t a permanent solution, so when the storms ease up be sure to make an appointment with a log home or landscaping professional to address the situation more permanently.
- Walls inside and out: Check between the logs for cracked or damaged chinking. Check caulking around windows, doors, exhaust pipes and near fireplace. Check logs themselves for knots that are popping out, signs of possible insect presence, rot, water stains, soft and porous wood, mold and mildew. Check logs on the outside of your log home for discoloration, flaking or peeling. See if water beads on the wood to check that it is repelling water and not retaining it.
- Windows: Regularly check weather stripping and caulking around edges of all windows. Watch for signs of draftiness, leaking or water damage.
- Foundation: Check for visible cracks in the foundation. If you see green or white stains, mold or mildew, these can indicate moisture damage and should be addressed.
- Be prepared for power outages: If you are staying in your log home long-term and your area is susceptible to power outages, be sure to stock up on candles, flashlights, batteries and even a generator. If you live in a remote area, stock up on non-perishable foods as well.
El Nino or not, bad weather is sure to strike at some time. Many of the items listed above you can address on your own, but if you find any 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. For more information and tips for log home maintenance year-round, no matter what the weather is like, be sure to check out this Log Home Maintenance article, and download our FREE E-Book.