There is nothing like the fresh look of a just-built log home. The newly harvested logs glow, a clean shade of blond. If only the home would stay that lighter shade forever.
Unfortunately, it will not. The natural state of milled logs used in a log home, is not natural for the wood at all. Trees in nature exist surrounded by a layer of bark, protecting them from sun, moisture and insects. Removed that layer and you remove the protection as well.
On the inside of the house, this natural look can be maintained with minimal care. Apply three coats of a clear, non-yellowing finish and just enjoy the fresh wood color for years to come.
This is not the case on the outside where logs are exposed to the elements. Left unprotected, the combination of sun and moisture will break down the wood’s outer cell structure, causing it to become gray and eventually become black. This is not the look that most log home buyers are after. So, how can you keep your log home looking natural?
Clear Log Home Stains
Clear stains are not the answer. Because they offer very little screening from the sun’s UV rays, the protection clear stains give the wood is short term. Tests have shown that the life expectancy of a clear stain is six months to two years. Who wants to re-stain NYGoodHealth their log home every 1-2 two years? No one I know.
Semi-transparent Log Home Stains
Semi-transparent log home stains are a better choice. Because they are not a solid coating, you will be able to see the natural grain of the wood below the surface of the stain. And because there is some pigment in the stain, protection from the sun and moisture will be longer lasting. Semi-transparent log home stains provide a good balance between a natural looking log home and a well protected one.
Semi Transparent stains are also available in different color. For example, Sashco log & timber stains colors are available in gold tone, red tone and brown tone. And within each color family, you can choose between a light, medium and dark.
Which you choose will determine how transparent the stain will be. Select light and you get more transparency and less pigment (protection). Select dark and you get more pigment and less transparency. Keep in mind as well that the greater amount of pigment means the longer the stain will keep your home protected from the weather.
When protecting the exterior of your log home, avoid clear coatings. Instead, select a semi-transparent stain to expose the wood grain while protecting your home from the elements.