“How might Your Log Cabin Site Location impact on Design and Maintenance?”
Your log cabin site location is probably not the first thing you think of, but it can actually have a significant influence on your decisions. In the UK in particular with its damper climate, any additional sources of moisture need carefully looking at. With the UK having a lot of coastline in comparison to its land mass, salt water can be damaging to a log cabin if it is not carefully managed. Also in wilder, more exposed parts of the country, the strong prevailing winds can play a part too. So when you are designing and maintaining your log cabin, have some appreciation of how your log cabin site location could affect things. If you're in the UK, remember your log cabin could be designed and manufactured in a country which does not have locations like the UK.
What are the most critical log cabin site location influences?
Proximity to water
If your log cabin is very close to a large body of water, you do need to take certain precautions. Most lakes are unlikely to have much of an impact, but large lakes in remote windy areas, especially locations right by the sea, do most definitely need looking at. Water not dealt with correctly can lead to eventual problems in the logs. If this water also happens to be salt water which is driven inland as spray by the prevailing wind, you must look after your log cabin with the utmost care. Saying this is not designed to put you off having a coastal log cabin site location, but from real experience I know how damaging constant salt water can be to timber!
So how do we minimize any potential hazards that a sea or lake could have? Well, think about where your proposed site is. How close to the water is it and also which direction is the prevailing wind? If you have a large site it may be possible to still have great views, but have your log cabin far enough away that any potential water spray or splash will not affect the logs. If your log cabin is in the direction of the prevailing wind from the water, can this be changed by alternative locations? If you are in a coastal location some kind of screening could also help to keep the salt water spray away from your log cabin.
As previously mentioned the prevailing wind can have an affect on your log cabin site location. Whilst this is normally only a real potential hazard on the coast or by large exposed lakes, very exposed log cabins in rainy areas which are very windswept can be more at risk too. I have been to locations in the highlands of Scotland for example where the rain seems to come sideways for most of the winter and this driving rain is more likely penetrate a defective seal or joint. Now this shouldn’t stop you building a log cabin, but you should be very vigilant in terms of inspecting and maintaining your log cabin. Any other protection which can be implemented in these locations will also be a benefit. Large roof overhangs, sheltered spots, windbreaks from landscaping or vegetation can all be used to great effect.
Trees and other large plants
Where your site is in relation to trees, hedges and other large vegetation can be either a benefit or a potential hazard! They can be good for shielding you from the elements, providing privacy, and generally enhancing the natural environment. On the other hand they should not adversely be able to affect your log cabin, now or in the forseeable future too!
Trees in particular can interfere below ground with the foundations, or grow above ground so much they come into contact with your log cabin. If you are planning a log cabin near to trees, check on the species and how big they are likely to grow, and how far their roots spread. If you are planting trees on the site to establish it nicely, pick your species carefully. Also avoid using plants which like to creep all over walls, as this can cause real difficulties for maintenance and painting. Make sure all trees and hedges close to the cabin are well trimmed back, so that in windy conditions they can not come into contact with your log cabin.
Maintenance is often an area which log cabin owners fail to attach enough importance to. In the UK it is really crucial and don’t forget all about it and become one of those people who finds out the hard way (how failing to maintain your log cabin cause issues in the long term). Where your location is especially wet and windy, please check and maintain your logs regularly. If you have a seaside location you must always pay very careful attention to maintenance. More detailed advice in contained in our
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