Things you need to know about ventilation in a log cabin

Ventilation is often overlooked in log cabins, with it often being deemed unnecessary in many cases. During the long winter months ventilation is practically shut out, meaning that furniture items have the tendency to look uglier than they should no matter how expensive they may be.

The internet offers some useful advice in this area and there is one piece of advice that proves to be really interesting, stating thus: “log cabins breathe” and that “ventilation usually takes place naturally through the cabin’s timber walls.” But are these statements true?

On some level, statements like these have a certain truth about them but this said, there is also a high degree of irrelevance in them, so it is important not to put too much store on the these kind of statements. Basically moisture, pressure and wood are things which are known to be very ‘clever’ but are also known to be quite ‘lazy’ and always want easy options, taking liberties with you and your cabin as well.

Practically speaking, log cabins are very similar to most other types of buildings. They usually come with an enclosed space, allowing moisture and heat to build up over time, especially when the cabins don’t have a moisture-proof membrane within their base. It all happens naturally, in that moisture tends to build up either from the cabin base or from such things as damp tools, damp furniture, damp materials and the like. These types of things usually cause pressure differences in the process.

The Pressure Escape

Pressure difference in a minor form usually occurs in most log cabins no matter what time of the year it is. Normally, the pressure in the interior is much higher compared to the pressure in the outside part of a cabin. This happens because of the presence of moisture or heat.

As mentioned, pressure can be considered ‘lazy’, tending to find easy routes – such as gaps. Such routes usually include corner connections, roof boards and around windows. Because of these realities, it is strongly advised that log cabins should always come with proper ventilation.

Taking the time to scout around your local DIY store can help you come up with materials that you can make use of to create the right and proper ventilation for your cabin. In most cases, vents are usually installed: one vent installed low down and the other one high up. Since pressure is ‘lazy’ it is helpful to provide it with an easy route instead of allowing it to escape through the windows or corner connections, causing terrible damp spots in the process.

Ventilation for log cabins

To ensure health and comfort while living in your cabin, proper interior ventilation is strongly advised. Apart from ridding your cabin of pressure, proper ventilation also helps you get rid of moisture, cooking odours, smoke and other indoor pollutants. The following are different types of ventilation systems which are highly recommended for most types of homes such as log cabins.

Interior ventilation for log cabins

Some of the most common sources of odour are bathrooms, kitchens and laundry rooms. When planning to install a ventilation system then you should have in mind that your cabin needs to have at least three exhaust units: a bathroom exhaust fan, laundry exhaust fans and an exterior venting range hood. With these three exhaust units installed in your cabin, you can be sure that you’ll never have to deal with pressure, moisture, heat and bad odours.

Structural ventilation for log cabins

When moisture and heat are combined they usually work together to roast and rot your log cabin over time. On account to this, proper structural ventilation is highly recommended to cabins with an attic, crawlspace and basement (if they are furnished).

An upward airflow in the cabin’s attic is strongly advised. This allows cool air to flow through the vents, eaves and roof; in many cases, crawlspaces make use of a cross ventilation system. If you think that your vents are not working properly, it is important to check and inspect them straight away. Often, vents that are not working properly prove to be clogged. If this is the case, it is important to clear your vents as soon as possible.

Roof ventilation for log cabins

During the hot summer months, high temperatures and humidity are some of the most common problems. During this time, you may want to install extra vents at the ridge and eaves of your roof. This has to be done by a professional to ensure the proper performance of any additional vents.

The vent and its screen should be painted to prevent them from deteriorating. Also make sure that the screen is thoroughly secured to the vent’s frame. If you have vents that have been badly damaged, then they need to be replaced as well. Screens prevent different kinds of vermin from entering and settling in your cabin’s attic.

Foundation ventilation for log cabins

If your crawlspace is severely damp for most of the time, then this can cause rotting and if mould or mildew is present on your wall, this requires you to have a much better type of ventilation system. Installing foundation ventilation can be very difficult as it requires special tools. When it comes to such kind of work, it is important to call a masonry contractor or a carpenter to do the work for you.

So, as you can see, ventilation is a much needed requirement to ensure health and comfort in most log cabins.