Log cabins look beautiful and unique due to the wooden construct and to enhance their looks further, building a wooden garage accentuates the beauty of a log cabin even further.
However, just like the rest of the cabin, wooden garage also requires appropriate maintenance in order to ensure a long life for it.
Wooden garages, even under the worse of conditions can last up to 10 years.
However, if maintained appropriately, their life can be increased by another 10 to 15 years thereby making them last for even 20 to 25 years.
By following few tips, you can ensure long life for your wooden garage:
1. Initial and timely treatment of the wood
Wooden garages can last much longer if they are appropriately treated at the time of their installation and also periodically. For this purpose, use a high quality treatment to ensure that the effects of the treatment last longer.
Get the wood treated while it is being installed.
Additional coating needs to be done on the places that are expected to get wet frequently and also in the parts that have interlocking since they are most prone to wear and tear.
Likewise, the doors of the garage and the places where doors come in contact with the walls of the garage must have additional coats of the treatment material.
It is also important to note that treating the wood is not a onetime activity and must be topped up periodically. Based on the treatment used, the prevailing weather conditions and other factors, the schedule for the treatment can be determined.
Ideally it should be at least once a year and the quality of the treatment used for periodic maintenance and coating activity must also be good.
Treating helps in protecting the wood from insects, moisture and fungal infections. It helps preserve the quality of the wood for longer duration and this results in increasing the life of the wooden garage.
Another critical point is to ensure that the wood is dry at the time of applying the coats or else the treatment will be a futile exercise.
2. Filling up splits
When wood comes directly in contact with the sunlight, splits are likely to occur. These splits, though seem innocuous at the time of the occurrence, can reduce the life of the wooden garage significantly.
Proper treatment is one of the efficient ways to prevent splits from occurring; however even using the best quality treatment paint does not ensure that the splits will not occur.
Therefore, splits are inevitable. However, the splits that appear even after the treatment must be filled up timely by using good quality wood fillers. Use wood fillers at the time of your scheduled treatment.
Once the wood filler dries, the treatmen paintcan be applied on it. This will cover any stainsthat will be left by the wood filler on the surface of the wood.
3. Precautions for countering the deformation of wood
Wood gets deformed over a period of time and therefore necessary care must be taken to ensure that these deformities in the timbre do not affect the functioning or structural cohesion of the wooden garage.
When a wooden garage is constructed, there will be visible spaces between the walls and the roof and spaces between the doors and windows. These spaces allow for the expansion or deformation of the wood and filling them up will obstruct the natural deformation of the wood thereby affecting the entire structural integrity.
Therefore, keep the gaps untouched and do not fill them with wood fillers or any other material.
Also, do not keep the doors and windows either open or close for a long span of time. If the doors and windows are kept open for long, the deformity of the wood will result in them not getting closed properly.
The same applies when they are kept close for long. Opening and closing them frequently will result in maintaining the shape of the wood due to wear and tear.
4. Protection from humidity and mould
A humid interior of the wooden garage will shorten its life. It must be ensured that the interiors remain as dry as possible especially during monsoons. This can be done by ensuring proper ventilation.
Ventilation also ensures that the wood is protected from moulds and other forms of fungal infection that might arise due to high humidity levels.
Despite these precautions, if the moulds still occur, use a good quality exterminator to eliminate them.
Wood is a natural insulator and keeps the internal temperature. However due to the gaps in the beams and column members, the internal temperature can fluctuate and this also affects the life of the timber garage.
To prevent this from happening, fibreglass or polystyrene insulation material can be used in these gaps between the framing members.
However, due care must be taken so that the gaps are not fully closed and there is some space left to account for the expansion or deformation of the wood.
6. Right application of sealants
Sealants prevent water logging and water leakage. Applying sealants is beneficial for preventing the damage caused by water leakage and they also help with insulation.
However, sealants can also affect ventilation. Proper care must be taken while applying sealants in order to ensure appropriate ventilation.
Sealants can be applied on the concrete base of the garage and at the floor barriers. This will prevent the water from entering the garage from the lower levels near the floor.
7. A dry and levelled base
A base that is dry and properly levelled is a prerequisite for constructing a wooden garage. A base that is moist or wet adversely affects the strength of the construction and this results in reducing the life of the structure.
An uneven base may result into water leakages or the water getting collected under the floor resulting in humid interiors and can lead to moulds and other damages to the wood.
Following the above mentioned guidelines are useful in increasing a long life for your wooden garage. To increase their efficiency further, you also need to check the climatic conditions, soil properties and other factors in your region.