How Climate Affects Building a Log Siding Home

5 min read

If you have never planned for or built a new home, you may not be aware of how climatic conditions can affect its design and construction. In this case, we want to explore how climate affects building a log siding home. The factors to consider include:

  • Humidity or lack of it
  • Rainfall amount and frequency
  • Sunlight exposure and intensity
  • Temperature range year-round
  • Wind velocity and direction

Each of these elements of nature is present to at least some degree in every state. Your home is subject to their positive and negative effects year-round. Because of this, log siding home design and construction methods vary from one area to another to meet the challenges. The following factors may not be listed in the order of importance for your locality.

Humidity in Climate and Home Construction

Humidity plays a part in choosing building materials and designing log homes. Areas that have high levels tend to experience more condensation, wood damage, and water erosion. Wood, stains, screws, nails, and roofing need to be more water-resistant.

High internal and external humidity levels can also affect the structural integrity of log siding and full log homes. It is best to regulate internal moisture with dehumidifiers or air conditioning. Humidity also affects the performance of your log home, such as:

  • Possibly generating mold and mildew
  • Staining wood and metal
  • Creating slip and fall hazards
  • Damaging equipment
  • Creating poor insulation performance

How Climate Affects Building a Log Siding Home

Rainfall Is a Consideration

If your home’s location gets a lot of rainfall, you should extend the roof overhang to keep water away from the exterior walls and log trims. This is especially important if part or the entire roof has no gutters. This factor must be included in the initial construction and not as an after thought. 

Gable and hip roofs are the best designs for rainy areas as opposed to flat or shed roofs. Gable and hip roofs disperse the water over a wider area to reduce muddy spots in the yard. Creating a waterproof roof is critical to its life span as well as preventing repairing leaks. 

Sunlight in Climate and Home Construction   

Your log home will typically get the most sun exposure on the south and southwest sides. Professionally sealing, staining, caulking, or chinking the siding and wood joints is critical in these areas, and they may need more maintenance than the other sides.   

Designing a home to face a certain way is important to either capture a lot of winter light or block hot summer weather. Choose the best-insulated windows that also block harmful UV rays and use blinds, shades, or curtains to help control the temperature. The number and size of the windows must also be considered in regulating internal comfort. Check with your contractor for the best window-to-wall ratio in your area.


Temperature Factors Into the Equation

Temperature directly affects the best time of the year to start building a new log home. In southern climates, you can start earlier or later than in cold climates. Too many people who live in northern states wait too late in the year to begin construction and problems arise. Sometimes this cannot be helped because contractors are not available to schedule the construction at the best times.

The temperature range also brings other factors into consideration, including:

  • Thickness of the wall framing
  • Amount and type of insulation used
  • Thickness and profile of the log siding
  • Number and type of windows used
  • Construction of the foundation

Allow enough planning time so you can start construction under the most favorable times and conditions for your area.

Wind in Climate and Home Construction

Wind is our final factor to consider in designing, locating, and building your log siding home. You and your contractor must make these kinds of decisions:

  • The types of windows and doors to use if you live in a windy area that can blow up a lot of damaging dust and sand
  • Consider the average wind speed and prevailing direction to withstand the peak of wind forces
  • How well you should seal and stain the exterior of your house if high winds that blow a lot of rainfall are present.
  • Use a roof design and roofing materials that will withstand high winds
  • Some areas receive a lot of blowing snow that stacks up around the house

These ideas about climate and weather should give you more direction for designing, locating, and building your log home. Do some more research and consult with your builder for the best results.


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