Are garden timber cabins waterproof is a question we got asked all the time here at premium log cabins.
The short simple answer to your query is an unqualified yes!
Why would they not be?
Well,let’s take a look at some of the potential issues with a log cabin which would make the timber cabin not waterproof and fairly frankly not fit for purpose.The main thing to look at instantly is the roof,that’s where you would envision the main issue would start (this is not always the case 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 placed properly. This is fairly easily done if this is something you have never done before and why it should always be tackled by a professional most especially if you are spending a lot of your hard earned money on a log cabin.
• Make sure that the overlaps are overliing in the correct way. You should always start felting at the bottom of the building and felt upwards. By doing this you ensure that the felt overlaps on top of the piece of felt that is further down the roof. This will ensure there is a natural run off of the water,if you start felting at the top of the roof 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 therefor create a leak. This is exactly the same when doing shingles,make sure you set up 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 create rainwater to get between the felt sheets and this will create a leak
• 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 building exposed to leaks.
• It is in addition crucial that when you reach the overhang of the building with the felt you tack the felt to side of the roof but DO NOT tuck the felt under the overhang of the roof as this limits the natural run off of the water. This can create early rotting of the building and in some situations create the roof to water leak around the top corners of the building as water could build up.
• Make sure you use the right size fixings. If the roofing boards on your building are let’s say 10mm,you don’t want felt nails of 16mm. Doing this would create the felt nails to come completely through the roof. This would not look cosmetically appealing and would in addition be a real option of a leak in the building. 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 frequently neglected area on a log cabin building is the felt or shingles on the roof. 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 exactly what you should do and I would encourage 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 resilient as a typical house tile they require a little more attention. They are exposed to more elements on a daily basis because they are lower,this can result in a number of things from falling debris from plants,or another example would be a kids’s toys getting thrown up there which would all create damage 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 example if your timber cabin sits under a tree).
premium log cabins set up all of our timber 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 ensure this happens is to take care of the installation and make sure it is placed properly. We’ve been out to repair timber cabins in the past built by non-skilled people and if the building is not put together properly then number one it won’t be safe but in addition it could create a failure in the building to be waterproof.
A prime example of this would be that the logs haven’t been assembled properly on the walls. This would then create the timber cabin to differ from the design as it was intended to be. At this point when the roof was placed there might be voids between the roof and the wall. Voids 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 rebuild it.
This is why premium log cabins set up all of our timber cabins so you don’t have this to worry about. As you can envision if there is a gap in the wall or a gap 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 in addition want to bring attention to the floor covering a second. Having your timber cabin placed 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 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 timber 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 rainwater could penetrate the inside of the log cabin,which again is easily fixed by applying sealants.
Additionally,occasionally most especially during the winter months,condensation can arise inside a log cabin. This is normal due to the cabins not having any insulation fitted,it is not a leak and can be fairly normal. We encourage at Timberdise to get a dehumidifier if you have electrical access in there and leave it operating during the cooler 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 tips you should have a leak free log cabin for the duration of its life-span which can provide unlimited pleasure and relaxation.Remember prevention is far better than the cure.