Are garden timber cabins waterproofed is a question we got asked all the time here at Timberdise Garden Buildings.
The brief simple answer to your query is a resounding yes!
Why would they not be?
Well, let’s take a look at some of the potential issues with a timber cabin which would make the timber cabin not waterproofed and fairly honestly not fit for purpose.The main thing to seem at immediately is the roof structure, that’s where you would envision the main issue would commence (this is not always the case but that’s where we will commence today). The main issue with the roof structure would be to have the felt or roof shingles to not be set up appropriately. This is fairly easily done if this is something you have never done before and why it should always be tackled by a qualified professional particularly if you are investing a lot of your hard earned money on a timber cabin.
• Make certain that the overlies are overliing in the correct way. You should always commence felting at the bottom of the structure and felt upwards. By doing this you ensure that the felt overlies on top of the piece of felt that is further down the roof structure. This will ensure there is a natural run off of the water, if you commence felting at the top of the roof structure and you put the overlie from the bottom pieces over the top of the felt higher up when the rain works off it will run under the felt and consequently trigger a leak. This is just exactly the same when doing shingles, make certain you install from bottom upwards.
• Make certain the overlies of the felt/shingles are fairly generous. You don’t want them to be just barely overliing because this could trigger rainwater to get between the felt sheets and this will trigger a leak
• Make certain you use ample 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 tack in the middle,possibly two rows but again this depends on the quality of the felt. Failure to put enough felt tack in there could result in the felt blowing off during a bad storm which would then leave your structure subjected to water leaks.
• It is in addition essential that when you reach the overhang of the structure with the felt you nail the felt to side of the roof structure but DO NOT tuck the felt under the overhang of the roof structure as this limits the natural run off of the water. This can trigger premature rotting of the structure and in some situations trigger the roof structure to leakage around the top corners of the structure as water could build up.
• Make certain you use the correct size fixings. If the roofing boards on your structure are let’s say 10mm, you don’t want felt nails of 16mm. Doing this would trigger the felt nails to come completely through the roof structure. This would not seem cosmetically pleasing and would in addition be a real option of a leak 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 leak.
• The most generally forgotten area on a timber cabin structure is the felt or shingles on the roof structure. This is normally 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 suggest at least once a year or if you notice a leak. Because timber cabins are not built as high as the normal house and the felt and shingles aren’t fairly as tough and sturdy as a typical 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 instance would be a kids’s toys getting thrown up there which would all trigger harm to the felt/shingles. Not to mention lots of bird excrement can rot the felt if it is in an area where natural rainwater can not penetrate it to create a natural run off and cleaning system (for instance if your timber cabin sits under a tree).
Timberdise Garden Buildings install all of our timber cabins, we do this because we know you are investing a lot of money into a timber cabin and you want it to be around for a long period of time. So the best way we can ensure this happens is to take care of the installation and make certain it is set up appropriately. We’ve been out to repair timber cabins in the past built by non-skilled people and if the structure is not put together appropriately then number one it won’t be safe but in addition it could trigger a failure in the structure to be waterproofed.
A prime instance of this would be that the timbers haven’t been constructed appropriately on the walls. This would then trigger the timber cabin to differ from the design as it was intended to be. At this point when the roof structure was set up there might be spaces between the roof structure and the wall. Spaces could in addition appear on the walls of the timber cabins themselves and in some situations if the initial build of the timber cabin was so bad you would have no choice but to take down the timber cabin and reconstruct it.
This is why timberdise garden log cabins install all of our timber cabins so you don’t have this to worry about. As you can envision if there is a void in the wall or a void between the roof structure and the wall this would leave the log cabin open and it would most definitely leakage which is what we want to avoid at all costs.
I in addition want to bring focus to the floor covering a second. Having your timber cabin set up on a proper ground base is a must. That could be a Timberdise ground base,concrete 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 anyplace 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 timber cabin will flood,that is regardless of how thick and tight your timbers are.
Lastly let’s talk about sealants around the windows and doors. Make certain after you have treated your log cabin you fit the relevant sealants around the doors and the windows. The log 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 rainwater could penetrate the inside of the log cabin, which again is easily fixed by applying sealants.
In addition, sometimes particularly during the winter months, condensation can arise inside a log cabin. This is normal due to the log cabins not having any insulation fitted, it is not a leak and can be fairly normal. We advise at Timberdise to get a dehumidifier if you have electrical access in there and leave it operating during the colder months. This will help take dampness out of the air and further increase the life-span of your log cabin.
If you comply with all the above recommendations you should have a leak free log cabin for the duration of its life-span which can offer indefinite enjoyment and relaxation. Bear in mind prevention is far better than the treatment.