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Last year it was box elder bugs and flies. This year, no box elders but still have flies. We are able to control the flies using a product called "Hot Shot" strips but this year offered up a new bug to the mix. Stink bugs! The have invaded us, sounding like wasps when they buzz you, smell to high heaven when you crush them. Have any of you had to deal with these darn things. Can't even figure how they are getting in but know that they will find ways this time of year!

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Ah, stink bugs. They are fun!

Points of entry are going to be all those little spots that can sometimes be hard to pinpoint. Corners are especially susceptible, but anywhere there's an opening in between logs is an opportunity for bugs to get in. They love the warm air once the cold air starts.

A couple things you can look for: 1) any gaps 1/4" wide or larger...they should be caulked. 2) foliage that the bugs like...if the foliage is near your home, trim it back.

If it's really bad, you might consider having an energy audit of your home done. There are contractors who do blower door tests. These tests basically pressurize your home with air that is either warmer or colder than the air outside. They then use infrared cameras and take thermal images of your home, which can help pinpoint the exact entry way for bugs, air, water, etc. If you're interested in having this done, let me know and I'll get you the names of some contractors who do that kind of thing. Your local energy supplier may do something like that, as well. Contact them to see if they have that service for free or a reduced cost, or if there are any incentives on your energy bill if you have one done.

Hope that helps!  

-- Charis w/ Sashco - www.sashco.com - cbabcock@sashco.com

Hi Dan!  You can try a product called NBS-30 to spray on your log home.  You can also use it as an additive to your exterior finish.  It repels most insects as the main ingredient is citronella - an organic insect repellent.  I use it on my log home to keep the carpenter bees, spiders, lady bugs, etc. away.  Works good for me!  Here is the link for more information

http://www.chemtch.com/NBS-30/243/0

Hope this helps!

My mother in law has the same problem.  Her home was built in 1995.  It took a year and half to complete the home.  Bad weather that year.  One thing I am speculating, but I was thinking, since the home was open, possibly, flies, and stink bugs, may have laid eggs in the insulation.  Every year, all these bugs come out, but it lessens every year.  So if your home had a long construction timeline, this is possibly what could of happened.  Now in my home, our home was built in 6 months (good weather), we had flies for a couple years, but other than that, we have had no problems. Hope this helps

We, too, used NBS-30 as an additive in our stain to help control carpenter bees and lady bug activity.  We still see them occasionally, but have not had as big an issue as we did before using it. 

Dan-

We have seen such infestations in the past and have usually solved the problem by performing 2 processes. 

1.  chinking the exterior of the log home, paying special attention to the bottom sill log, corner gaps way down low, soffit to log line, and around purlins and ridge that sometimes get overlooked by less experienced chinkers or homeowners. Pull the trim on windows to be sure they are properly sealed, or seal in the trim (eliminates bug and bat hangouts).

2.  Your belly ban could be harboring a lot of bugs, sometimes we see no water barrier behind the foundation trim, sometimes it's worth the effort to pull one off and see if the builder used proper flashing, wrap, ect when it was built.  Also, look along the sill plate, especially where the base log sits on the sill plate and also the space between the sill plate and the concrete foundation wall.  Sometimes the foundation wall top and/or the base log isn't perfectly level and a gap could be created there.  You should seal all these areas and install proper flashing when re installing the outer rim trim.

We always come across log homes that do not have the proper flashing installed, it seems to be a common mistake some builders make, we have seen very costly damage done to sub floors, rim joists, logs, and foundations due to faulty building techniques in that area.

Double check the vapor barrier in your basement crawl space, if applicable, moisture conditions bring bugs so be sure you have a properly installed and sealed vapor barrier between the earth and your floor.

Also be aware of bug infestations in your bark, plants, and foliage around the base of your log home.   Every log home owner should have a professional bug control guy come around a few times a year and treat the soil around your log home, it's worth every penny. 

Beware of standing water pooling under your deck, porch, or around your foundation as these can be breeding grounds for many insects/bugs.

Keep close inspection on all your venting around the foundation, under your eaves, and any intrusions through the walls (pipes, ect) be sure to repair/seal any breaches as quickly as possible.

We know that some homes are "chinkless" but it is our opinion that every log home should be chinked, caulked, and protected from insect and rodent infiltration.

Lastly, you can put additives into your stain, most stains are compatible with many different brands, our company prefers bug juice  from Walla Walla Environmental, and we prefer Lovitt's brand of stains, wood cleaners, ect for log homes.

www.woodspecialist.com to view our experience

www.lovittscoatings.com to purchase Lovitt's products and the Bug Juice

Hope that helps you out and have a great day!

Mike McClaren, Supervisor

MM Wood Restoration & Protection

PS-You should use a small shop-vac with no filter to suck up the stink bugs, then dump them out in the woods (or somewhere far from your house, maybe you have a neighbor to get even with, lol), it's how our crews quickly clean up live and dead bugs prior to treatments.

Thanks to all of you for your suggestions. Sorry to say that we just had the cabin re-stained and sealed before this problem became such an issue so the additive suggestions can't be utilized at this point. Luckily, we found a product at Lowes on clearance that may have taken care of the problem. Fingers crossed! The product is an organic insect control concentrate that is mixed with water. We doubled the recommended strength and used a garden sprayer to apply the solution along the foundation, around all windows and vents, every openings we could find. It has been almost a week and we have not seen one single stink bug or lady bug! We are going to apply a second coat this week just in case. We did do a test spot on the logs to be sure there would be no stain issues. Best part was the product was on a drastic clearance; regularly $11.97 a pint, on sale for $1.69! Product is Green Light brand Bioganic Organic Insect Control, made by Eco Smart Technologies. Looks like it is made up of Thyme, Clove, and Sesame oils so it smells good. The instructions indicate that the solution has some neurological effect that confuses the insects. I don't know all the scientific data but if it continues to work, I'm happy. Special thanks to Mike Whalen for all your information. I have forwarded your info to my neighbors in case they have a problem with my disposal methods! Again, thanks to all. This is a great site for help.

Thanks Dan...please keep us all posted on how well its working......great deal.

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