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23- Concevoir sa maison de bois rond pour minimiser l'entretien 1200 x 630

DESIGNING YOUR LOG HOME TO MINIMIZE UPKEEP

If you, like us, love the enveloping, soothing atmosphere that wood brings, and you’re planning to begin construction on a Scandinavian log home, the following content will definitely be useful to you. It could mean the difference between falling in love with your next home or falling into an endless cycle of upkeep! Never underestimate the importance of adapting the design to the materials that will be used, as this will help to minimize the time you’ll spend maintaining your log home!

SO, HERE ARE A FEW STEPS TO HELP IN THE DESIGN PROCESS:

  1. Find your inspiration:

    Flip through magazines and websites (log homes for sale, designs, plans) and gather your favourites in one easy to find place. Take note of what you like and what comes up most often. While you’re at it, take a look at some of our builds

  2. Draw sketches of a log home:

    Base them off of photos of what you like, if you’re feeling confident… No need to be a master artist… make drafts, drawings on grid paper to help you with the dimensions. Or, photocopy photos of the homes you like and cut out your favorite elements to create a collage!

You could also consult our architecture team specializing in luxurious log wood homes and ask them to show you some examples of plans and projects we have carried out to inspire you. Some existing plan models we built might please you, and would meet your needs without too many modifications.

 

  1. Create a list of your must-haves

    Putting our needs, our dreams, our wishes on paper is incredibly liberating, and not just for construction projects! By taking the time to ask yourself what would be important to you in your future home, you will have the opportunity to sort out the wishes and the essentials. By rereading this list with hindsight, you will be able to adjust, and you will be able to better identify the type of wooden house that suits you. You may even come to the conclusion that you like a traditional timber frame house a little more than logs!

Have the person you share the project with do the same exercise if you are not alone. This will lead to some very interesting discussions, that’s for sure. If you can agree on the most important points for everyone, before meeting with your designer or technologist, you will save a lot of time.

  1. Choose your lot

Your choice of lot will greatly influence the conception of your log home. The design will have to be done with the land’s topography in mind. For example, to maximize solar power, playing around with the topography, the structure’s orientation in relation to a focal point like a lake or a mountain, etc…

Take the time to read and review the detailed content that we offer you on our website. You will learn more on how to avoid headaches by following the right steps for your log home (or timber frame) construction project!  If you need additional advice, we have taken the time to offer you other tips on how to build a log house without losing your mind.

 

Here are some extra things to keep in mind during the conception stage:

  1. Protecting your log home from the elements is essential!

Exposure to the sun’s rays and to rain are two elements which will affect your log home over time if not properly protected. You may opt for the repeated application of protectants (against rain or UV rays), but given the time and financial investments required to perform this upkeep, we recommend that you opt for smart design elements that will reduce the frequency of these treatments, all while maximizing the lifespan of your home.

To make that happen, we design all of our log houses with an overhang (also known as a ledge) of at least 4 feet around. No logs should be exposed to rain. In addition to being practical, this architectural element adds a warm, inviting touch to the home.

Next, we’ll make sure to build high foundations, covered in stones. The visual effect is striking, but what’s most important is the distance created between the ground and the wood–a distance which will protect against moisture and the premature ageing of your home.

Finally, if you’re the upstairs balcony type, know that this addition requires a bit of love… but above all, a sheet or a membrane to prevent water from coming into contact with the wood. If not done, the logs left exposed to moisture (on the exterior) will be affected over time. 

  1. Joint planning is very important!

In building our Scandinavian log homes, we don’t use any screws or nails. It’s the way the logs interlock that keeps the structure solid. This technique has the strength to withstand major floods and earthquakes…

In order to ensure even load bearing and a sturdy, durable structure, the maximum length between the corners of each log must be respected. In working with our architecture technologist, you will learn a lot about the use of these structures in the creation of interior walls or exterior corners. 

Among the constraints related to the joints, know that there is a minimum distance to be kept between a corner and the opening of a door or window, and that there is a minimum wall length required between two openings. These points are very important at a structural level. It’s all about knowing how to use them to create a home that is not only strong, but welcoming.

  1. Wood is a living material!

Following the construction of a log home, there will be shrinkage in the diameter of the logs, causing the structure to descend (by about 3 inches). We design and build the structure with this movement and its effects in mind, allowing us to ensure the structure remains sealed with no further work required. The elements we consider in this process include the doors and windows, the interior walls, columns and fireplaces. 

It will also be necessary to take into account the management of this aspect once your house is built. Indeed, your humidity management will have a significant impact on the health of your wood because it will be affected if the air is too dry, or too humid.  Log homes and moisture management go hand in hand!

 

Our team has the expertise necessary to construct and finish these elements, and we carry out this work according to the rules of the art so that we can guarantee your home will stand the test of time. Calling in the experts is essential, you won’t regret it.

Remember that all stages of planning are important to make your life easier later. Your home will benefit from the care you give it; you will minimize potential problems, and protect your investment. A well-maintained home will cost much less in major and emergency repairs. If you need advice on taking good care of your chalet or luxury log home, it’s here

ABOUT HARKINS

Harkins specializes in the construction of log and post and beam (timberframe) homes.  Our family business offers you personalized experience, based on 30 years of expertise in the domain.  Harkins is a reference in the log home industry and also in timber structures.  Our homes can be delivered and installed anywhere in Canada and overseas.

Contact us for projects:

 

Contact us on our website or call us toll free at 1 (877) 688-3571