How to Clean & Finish Log Siding

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Log siding
Log siding (Image: log cabin background 2 image by Lee O'Dell from Fotolia.com)

Log homes and log-sided homes have a great rustic look, and they are also durable and can provide some extra insulation against the cold. The care and maintenance of log siding is relatively easy, but in order to prevent rot and mildew, maintenance must be performed regularly, consisting primarily of cleaning and then refinishing periodically to keep the elements from affecting the wood.

Things You'll Need

  • Oxygenated wood cleaner
  • Power-washer
  • Wide brush
  • Wood preservative stain
  • Clear acrylic sealant (optional)

Spray the wood cleaner onto the siding with warm water, if possible, for better absorption. Let the cleaner sit on the siding for a time, according to the manufacturer's instructions.

Power wash the cleaner off the siding. Make sure that the washer is rated at least 1,000 psi (pounds per square inch). Wash from a distance of about two feet to prevent damage to the wood fibers.

Allow siding to dry completely--at least a day--before applying finishing products.

Open and mix the stain. When buying stain or other finishes, keep in mind that you'll need about 1 gallon per 300 square feet of wall area.

Apply the stain with a wide brush, making sure to get it in all the chinks and crevices. Two coats are always better than one with weather proofing finishes such as wood preservative stain. Allow to dry completely according to manufacturer's instructions.

Apply the acrylic sealer according to manufacturer's instructions, if you choose to do so. While clear sealer isn't strictly necessary on log siding (and some people don't like the shiny look it gives to the logs), it will extend the life of the finish considerably.

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