It is not a secret – when the cold season comes, we spend much less time surrounded by the nature. Therefore, log cabins in the garden plots are visited less often. However, the specialists of the wooden houses emphasize that closing the door of the summer house until the next season – is a big mistake.
According to them, to assure the wooden house will stay in perfect condition for many years, it is necessary to take care of it regularly. During the winter as well.
How the maintenance and preparation for the winter of such a cabin should look like? The specialists of Maestro Cabins agreed to share their experience and advice concerning the topic.
Insulate the water pipes
There are many cases in practice when the severe cold during the winter affects not only the outside of the house but also the pipes in the walls and the ground, which eventually get frozen or explode.
This usually happens when the temperature of log cabins for sale reaches + 5 °C or when the house pipes are laid at a very shallow depth. For this reason, the insulation of water pipes is one of the first works that specialists recommend when preparing log cabins for the winter.
It is true that to avoid the problems associated with pipes, good thermal insulation of water supply pipes can be considered during the construction. However, a good layer of thermal insulation does not necessarily guarantee that you will be completely safe from all the damages.
Therefore, together with the insulation of pipes, one more solution for protecting water supply pipes is considered. Special cables are being used for protecting water pipes from frost. Given the extremely low energy consumption of such pipe heating, the cost of installing the system is well offset by its benefits.
According to the team of Maestro Cabins, the use of such a cable is very simple, because it does not require special knowledge, and the temperature in the pipes is regulated automatically.
Adjust the windows of the cottage
In the past, the proper adjustment of windows for the winter was carried out in practically every home: all the possible gaps were checked in the windows and the connections between the glass and the frame were sealed with silicone.
However, with the times of plastic windows, the owners of log cabins quickly forgot about the preparation for winter.
According to professionals specializing in the production of quality wooden houses, the preparatory work should not be abandoned. The team of Maestro Cabin states that even the newest plastic windows have to be prepared for the cold season.
Firstly, wooden houses with not properly adjusted windows have much higher heat losses. Secondly, moisture and mold often begin to accumulate inside non-prepared cabins as well, which can lead to health problems in the long run.
For this reason, it is worth paying enough attention to the adjustment of plastic windows before the winter: adjust the sash properly, ensure that the window gasket is well pressed to the window frame.
According to experts, during the winter it is also possible to check whether the plastic windows in your wooden house have been installed properly. The easiest way is to swipe your hand near the sash to the frame and check for the slightest wind.
If you are still unsure after performing this test, you can insert a sheet of paper between the sash and the frame and try pulling it out after closing the window. The size of the gap will be measurable depending on how easily you pulled out a sheet of paper.
Adjusting high-quality windows for the winter usually does not require a lot of effort. However, if the windows were not installed very properly, adjusting works could take a long time at the beginning of each season.
Clean downpipes and gutters
Downpipes and gutters are probably the main part of the house, usually directly related to winter problems. Clogged downpipes and water penetrating through the house’s structures are the main reason why winter preparations should be made after the first autumn leaves have fallen.
Specialists emphasize that problems often occur during the winter without removing the snow from the roof of the log cabins in time. In this case, precipitation accumulates in gutters and other roof cavities until it eventually damages the roof structures, causing considerable financial loss.
Moisture penetrates the interior and structures of the house, creating ideal conditions for mold and bacteria, which become especially difficult to get rid of later, even after the damage has been repaired.
It is also worth mentioning that log cabins for sale are often affected by the trees growing next to them, which can affect the condition of the house in winter not only by clogging the water gutters with leaves.
When heavy rainfall accumulates on the tree branches, older tree branches can break and fall, damaging both the electrical installation and the structure of the house itself.
In these cases, it is necessary to address not only the problem of a damaged roof but also to ensure that no other parts of the house that are important for its quality functioning and the safety of the residents have been damaged.
Check the condition of the roof
The roof is the main part of the house, protecting it from rain, snow, wind, and other things. Although it is necessary to keep it under constant maintenance, it is especially important to keep it in excellent condition when winter approaches.
After all, this is a time when even the slightest cracks, affected by low temperatures and higher rainfall, can become serious problems with significant losses. According to experts, the roof of which is not cared for regularly is much more likely to be problematic.
If you do not notice bloated parts, cracks, mold, or other types of damage on the roof of the house in time, the consequences will reach you inside the house sooner or later.
Another roof-related phenomenon that has a direct impact on the condition of the roof is the accumulation of landslides, which usually occur in heavy rainfall.
According to experts, if the precipitation accumulated on the roof is not removed before the thaw, it can damage the edge of the roof as well as tear down the gutters or even the downpipes.
The most effective solution to this problem is regular cleaning of the snow that has accumulated on the roof, which directly prevents the formation of any ice on the roof.
However, if it is difficult to find extra time for this work, it is not necessary to come to terms with the current problem.
Thanks to new technologies, heat-dissipating cables that prevent the formation of ice can now be installed in the lower part of the roof, thus completely solving the problem of landslides.
The last but not the least problem is the ice clogs in the gutters, which are usually formed by the sun heating the roof intensively and thawing the snow on it.
As the snow flows through the gutters, due to the rapidly changing, low temperature, it freezes in them, thus forming ice plugs and later causing major problems.
Check the condition of the electrical installation
In practice, we often hear unpleasant stories when poorly installed electricity causes a short circuit that often ends with fire.
The probability of this disaster during the cold season increases significantly at low temperatures, the insulation of the wire breaks, and a significant increase in humidity indoors causes sparks and short circuits.
The danger is even greater if the electrical installation is not renewed for a long time.
To protect your log cabins from the dangers of short circuits, it is advisable to turn off the electricity when you decide to close the holiday season.
It is also worth removing all flammable materials from the premises, which, if the premises catch fire, would help it to spread.
Only regular maintenance of wires and installed electrical appliances can ensure that wooden houses are protected from fire hazards.
Arrange the environment of the log cabin
According to the manufacturers of log cabins for sale, theft is one of the main damages faced by the owners of wooden houses during the winter.
If you do not find enough time to visit the holiday home regularly during the cold season, remote monitoring cameras that respond to any movement could become a very convenient solution at the moment.
However, if you don’t plan to invest extra in the security of your vacation home, you may want to consider other ways to help protect your property.
It is a well-known fact that log cabins catch the eye of thieves much less frequently when the surrounding environment is tidied up and regularly maintained throughout the year.
In this case, the impression that a visit by the owners of the house can be expected at any time is created. It significantly reduces the attractiveness of the object for thieves looking for light prey.
Another, no less commonly used method is an agreement with neighbors. The specialists of the Maestro Cabins recommend you to ask them to your summer house when neighbors are nearby. In this way, wooden houses seem to be used all year round, so thieves are not seen as easy prey.
While the order in the garden yard is primarily seen as a way to ensure safety from thieves, it is equally important to take care of the condition of the more sensitive garden plants.
It, as well as the tools left in the garden, can be affected not only by rainfall but also by harsh weather. For this reason, it is recommended to cover extremely sensitive plants before moving out of the summer house for winter as well as move all the garden equipment to a dry and safe place.
Log cabins: how to ensure their maintenance during the winter?
Although wooden houses are rarely visited during the cold season, the specialists of Maestro Cabins state that regular maintenance is the main way to maintain the excellent condition of the house for many years.
Even if you do not spend your free time in the summer house during the winter, it is recommended to visit it regularly: turn on an electric heater that will prevent the pipes from freezing and remove snow from the roof, which can damage both the condition of the house and landslides.
Although small changes may seem insignificant at first glance, in the long run, they lead to major problems that can lead to more serious financial losses. Therefore, it is recommended to take care of the weak parts of the log cabins as soon as you notice the first shortcomings.
Regularly inspect the wiring and electrical appliances in the house, and assess the condition of the house’s structures, windows, and doors. Also, things that can become especially important, such as the accumulation of moisture in the premises due to the colder air, which eventually turns into a mold, or even create excellent conditions for other bacteria to spread.
It is not only extremely difficult to eradicate, it eventually poses a serious threat to the health of more sensitive people and causes a variety of respiratory illnesses.
As mentioned earlier, regularly visited log cabins for sale also become much less attractive to thieves, so regular maintenance will increase the overall safety of the wooden house.
If you don’t have the opportunity to visit your summer house pretty often yourself, ask your neighbors to do it. Even the occasional light in the log cabin’s windows indicates that it is not forgotten during the winter.