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We have a log home that is all log siding on the second floor, real logs on the first floor.

We have chinked our logs on the first floor, but was told not to chink the log siding so the house could breathe.

Need some experts' opinions.


thank you



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That recommendation sounds silly.  If the log siding is going on exterior of the wall outside a water prone area (bathroom, hot tub, kitchen), the HVAC should be designed with proper supply and return ducts in these areas to eliminate the moist air.  Mini-splits are becoming the norm these days.  The exterior wall stud framing in these areas needs to be "tight" with vapor barriers, caulked seams, and good insulation so warm damp air doesn't make it to the exterior surface.  

Of course, the easier answer is to build a leaky home and not to chink the log veneer.  

There are breather mats that can go on exterior face of wall sheathing before the the log veneer is attached.  These mats add about 3/8" of thickness to the wall and this small cavity is there to "vent" the siding.  They need a drain hole detail at bottom.  These mats were designed with the EFIS (stucco) systems and are now being used in some log siding applications.  

In short, I wouldn't compromise the look of the log/chink.  There must be a better way to manage vapor drive in your particular design.

Hi Chris:

Thanks for your quick reply.  Right now we heat the house totally with a woodstove,.. and in the summer we keep the windows open as much as possible (live in foot hills of the Appalachians.)

The second floor walls are well insulated..

Thanks about the info on breather mats Wish we had known about them before we put up the siding.

So... would it still be ok to chink the upstairs? 

I would say "chink it".  Use your exhaust fans in the bathrooms, avoid standing water and hopefully your HVAC will kick on air conditioning when indoor humidity gets above 60%.

The one other issue that might require "touch up of chinking" is IF the hewn siding isn't dried.  If it shrinks and pulls the 1/4" chinking too much, you might have some hairline cracks in chinking to touch up in 6 months or so.  Not a big deal, just keep an eye on it.

ok,  I am think we need to chink it also.  We have done periodic caulking when a crack appears,... we watch the logs like a hawk.. they are fine.

We do let the house get warm in the summer though! But with the nights here, it cools down quite nicely.  :-)

Chris, I see you live in Dandridge, Tn,.. we are in Greeneville (Chuckey)!

My mother grew up in Dandridge, just up the street from Carson Newman. (she was born in 1915)

We are neighbors
Small world.

We recommend waiting to chink the tighter, smaller log siding for 6 months to a year because siding is typically more green and or made with less expensive wood so it will move, expand, contract, and sometimes even bow a lot in that first year. You may have to deal with some tearing and breaks in your chinking if you do it right away. Of course not all siding is the same. Any thoughts Chris?

-Kevin, Perma-Chink Systems

Hi Kevin:  thank you for your input.

The house is now four years old,.. we wanted to let it settle really well.. Some cracking, but nothing major, the house is doing great. 

4 years old? Chink the siding. It's already acclimated and done doing what it's going to do. Let me know if you need any help, neighbor!

Ok, thanks Chris for all your time and help.  We will probably chink it. I bet you have a gorgeous log home.

Are you able to share photos.  I am Tom Elliott the owner of Log Home Finishing in Colorado and we often chink siding.  Please provide photos if you can.

855 - 564 - 2428

Hi, thank you for your response.  They are just typical D-log siding.


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