JEFFERSON LOG HOMES

VANCOUVER ISLAND • BRITISH COLUMBIA • CANADA

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Frequently Asked Questions

“Log homes are one of the most attractive, energy efficient and comfortable home choices available. A well built and maintained log home can last hundreds of years.”.......John Jefferson, builder

What are the advantages in the construction of a custom log house compared to a custom frame house?

Structural Simplicity

The shell of a log house is the structure. The placement of interior walls or making changes to the interior design, even at a later date, is not hampered by the necessity to consider load-bearing walls. The outside log shell bears all the weight.

Energy Efficiency

Log homes offer considerable savings in heating and cooling costs. Due to the large thermal mass of a log house, the building retains heat for long periods. Fluctuations in temperature are slow. You will notice that the house is warmer in winter and cooler in summer when it is hot outside

Strength

The strength of a log house increases with time and age. With the hand-hewn dovetail style of construction the weight of the structure settles in and the building becomes tighter and stronger over time.

“Any tremors or seismic movement will tend to make the locking joint of a dovetail stronger. If there is any damage to the structure, it will be minimal.” ...John Jefferson, builder

What are the benefits of owning a log house when it comes to up-keep and maintenance?

Low Maintenance

In a log home the structure is not hidden behind drywall, insulation or exterior cladding. If a problem does develop it can be seen and dealt with quickly and easily.

Eco-Friendly

All of our finishing and log preservation is done with Perma-ChinkTM materials. This company's revolutionary products have forever changed the way log home owners think about sealing their homes. Perma-ChinkTM  has been in business since 1981 and we have total confidence in the quality of their products and the company's commitment to top-notch customer service.

Perma-Chink™ provides a durable material that stretches and flexes to accommodate log movements while maintaining a tight seal for the life of the house. Perma-Chink™ finishes, sealants, restoration products and preservatives are designed to work together to cover all phases of home beautification, protection and maintenance.

All the products and building materials we use in the construction of our log homes are natural and therefore environmentally friendly. Perma-Chink™ products are “environmentally clean”. There is no toxic “off gas” in any of the products we use.

Adapts to Movement

Movement is not a problem for the chinking between the logs or the fittings holding the doors and windows because this movement is anticipated. The products we use for chinking and preserving the logs are flexible and form an elastic, breathable seal that expands and contracts with the natural movement of the building. Windows and doors are installed with what is called a key. Keys are mechanisms that fix the windows and doors in place so the logs can shrink naturally and unhindered. As the house settles, everything adjusts as a unit.

Once the Shell is complete, how do you run wiring and plumbing?

The spaces between logs are ideal for installing wiring and plumbing. This is done before insulating and chinking the house. If there is any problem with the wiring or the owner wants to make changes in the future, the chinking can be easily removed and replaced with no expensive damage or mess.

What if I want to increase the size of my log house in the future?

Adding more floor area

An additional living space can be completed without disturbing the original building; when it is ready, it is just a matter of re-routing any existing wiring and cutting a passage through to the new addition. Board and batten halls also look nice used to join sections of a house. Additions can even be constructed “off-site” then re-assembled on the home property.

Adding a second floor

Adding a second floor is also relatively easy. The roof is detached and raised; more courses of dovetailed logs are added to achieve the desired height and the roof is re-attached.

Would a log house be more dangerous in case of fire?

It is not likely you will lose your house to a fire. Log houses do not tend to burn rapidly or become engulfed with flames. If there is a fire, the logs burn slowly and most often will extinguish after burning into the wood about an inch. This slow burning fire gives more time for anyone inside to get out of the building and more time for firefighters to arrive in time to save the building in remoter areas.

Log homes that have suffered from fire damage are restored to their former beauty by blasting off the burnt wood, rebuilding interior walls, chinking and refinishing the original log shell.

Are log houses harder to keep clean inside?

With this type of construction the walls are flat - not dust collectors if they are properly finished and preserved. This is one of the reasons we prefer and recommend the hand-hewn dovetail style of log house.

We use a product made by Perma-ChinkTM called “Lifeline Interior Finish” that provides a breathable yet tough film finish that is easily washed, cleaned and dusted. Also this product reduces the absorption of normal household odours into the wood. It is non-flammable and virtually odourless. It will not yellow and lets the natural look and beauty of all types of wood show through. We use this finish on all new and existing log homes.

Can I work with you on the building my own log home?

We actually encourage clients to be involved with the construction if it interests them to do so. Some stages of the construction process are easily learned so it is a pleasure to have the extra hands.

How long does it take to build a log home?

A Shell can be assembled in 2-3 weeks. To Lock-Up stage it can take 2-3 months. A finished log house can take 6 months to a year. Construction time depends on the size of the building and the location of site.

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