Are garden log cabins watertight is a question we got asked all the time here at Timberdise Garden Buildings.
The concise simple answer to your question is a resounding yes!
Why would they not be?
Well, let’s take a look at some of the likely complications with a log cabin which would make the log cabin not watertight and fairly honestly not fit for purpose.The main thing to appear at quickly is the roof, that’s where you would imagine the main issue would start (this is not always the scenario but that’s where we will start today). The main issue with the roof would be to have the felt or shingling to not be set up correctly. This is fairly easily done if this is something you have never done before and why it should always be carried out by a professional particularly if you are spending a lot of your hard earned money on a log cabin.
• Make sure that the overlaps are overliing in the proper way. You should always start felting at the bottom of the structure and felt upwards. By doing this you guarantee that the felt overlaps on top of the piece of felt that is further down the roof. This will guarantee there is a natural run off of the water, if you start felting at the top of the roof and you put the overlap from the bottom pieces over the top of the felt higher up when the rain operates off it will work beneath the felt and consequently lead to a leakage. This is just exactly the same when doing shingles, make sure you place from bottom upwards.
• Make sure the overlaps of the felt/shingles are fairly generous. You don’t want them to be just barely overliing because this could lead to rain to get between the felt sheets and this will lead to a leakage
• Make sure you use sufficient felt nails. Ideally you want to be spacing the felt nails around 6 inches apart from each other. Always do this on both sides of the felt and dependent on the quality of the felt you are using possibly put another row of attach in the middle,possibly two rows but again this depends on the quality of the felt. Failure to put enough felt attach in there could result in the felt blowing off during a bad storm which would then leave your structure subjected to leaks.
• It is additionally essential that when you reach the overhang of the structure with the felt you pin the felt to side of the roof but DO NOT tuck the felt beneath the overhang of the roof as this limits the natural run off of the water. This can lead to premature rotting of the structure and in some cases lead to the roof to water leak around the top corners of the structure as water could build up.
• Make sure you use the right size fixings. If the roofing system boards on your structure are let’s say 10mm, you don’t want felt nails of 16mm. Doing this would lead to the felt nails to come completely through the roof. This would not appear cosmetically appealing and would additionally be a real possibility of a leakage in the structure. They way felt is now designed,there should be a watertight seal around the nail but throughout the seasons with wear and tear this may fail resulting in a leakage.
• The most commonly neglected area on a log cabin structure is the felt or shingles on the roof. This is typically because we can’t see it most of the time and it’s a lot more difficult to get up there and have a look,but this is just exactly what you should do and I would encourage at least once a year or if you notice a leakage. Because log cabins are not built as high as the typical house and the felt and shingles aren’t fairly as tough and resilient as a normal house tile they require a little more focus. They are subjected to more elements on a daily basis because they are lower, this can result in a number of things from falling debris from trees, or another example would be a kids’s toys getting thrown up there which would all lead to harm to the felt/shingles. Not to mention lots of bird droppings can rot the felt if it is in an area where natural rain can not permeate it to create a natural run off and cleaning system (for example if your log cabin sits under a tree).
Timberdise Garden Buildings place all of our log cabins, we do this because we know you are investing a lot of money into a log cabin and you want it to be around for a long period of time. So the best way we can guarantee this takes place is to take care of the installation and make sure it is set up correctly. We’ve been out to repair log cabins in the past built by non-skilled people and if the structure is not put together correctly then number one it won’t be safe but additionally it could lead to a failure in the structure to be watertight.
A prime example of this would be that the logs haven’t been built correctly on the walls. This would then lead to the log cabin to differ from the design as it was intended to be. At this point when the roof was set up there might be voids between the roof and the wall. Spaces could additionally appear on the walls of the log cabins themselves and in some situations if the initial build of the log cabin was so bad you would have no choice but to take down the log cabin and reconstruct it.
This is why timberdise garden log cabins place all of our log cabins so you don’t have this to worry about. As you can imagine if there is a void in the wall or a void between the roof and the wall this would leave the log cabin open and it would most definitely water leak which is what we want to avoid at all costs.
I additionally want to bring focus to the floor covering a second. Having your log cabin set up on a proper ground base is a must. That could be a Timberdise ground base,cement base or a paved area. As long as they’re flat, level and solid you should be ok. Be mindful of where you put the log cabin,don’t put it at any place that is at risk of flooding as just like the house that you live in. If the water level rises and there is no getaway for it then the log cabin will flood,that is regardless of how thick and tight your logs are.
Lastly let’s talk about sealants around the windows and doors. Make sure after you have treated your log cabin you fit the relevant sealants around the doors and the windows. The cabins don’t come with these fitted as standard, this is so you can treat the log cabin first and then apply the sealants afterwards. By not fitting the doors and windows with sealants then there’s a chance rain could permeate the inside of the log cabin, which again is easily fixed by applying sealants.
Also, at times particularly during the winter months, condensation can materialize inside a cabin. This is typical due to the cabins not having any insulation fitted, it is not a leakage and can be fairly typical. We suggest at Timberdise to get a dehumidifier if you have electric access in there and leave it running during the cooler months. This will help take moisture content out of the air and further increase the life of your log cabin.
If you stick to all the above guidelines you should have a leakage free log cabin for the duration of its life which can offer endless fulfillment and relaxation. Remember prevention is far better than the treatment.