A Guide to Summer House Maintenance
As it’s been a particularly hot year, your summer house is likely getting quite a lot of use these days. That’s precisely what they are for, after all. However, you need to be aware that all wooden buildings need to be maintained and as summer draws to a close, it’s the perfect time to start thinking about what needs to be done.
You should aim to have the majority of the maintenance wrapped up before winter, so you can relax, knowing the summer house is ready to go.
Regularly Treat the Wood
Whenever it rains or gets wet for a while, you’ll find that the wood often absorbs the liquid. It can easily cause things like mildew and mould to get into the summer house, which you definitely want to avoid. To prevent the problem, start early.
As soon as the summer house is delivered and installed, you can use a treatment on it. This may be some sort of timber treatment or you could use wood oils. The idea here is to protect the wood well, early on, so it will last as long as possible.
Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s directions to get the treatment evenly applied so it will be the most beneficial. Of course, the wood should be pressure treated to give you as much time as possible without the water entering. The sooner and the more regularly the treatment is applied, the better it will do.
The moisture repellent should be used at least once a year. However, some areas that are more exposed may need a little extra. Areas such as fascia boards and overhangs tend to be more exposed to the weather and will be more likely to absorb moisture from the air. If you can keep these well covered, the summer house should last for decades.
Check and Repair the Roof
Over time, the roof of your summer house will experience wear and tear. This is a normal part of the life of a roof. However, you should also inspect it at least once a year to ensure there’s no damage that needs to be repaired.
However, if you have a storm in your area, be sure to check that falling branches and debris haven’t caused any damage to the roof structure. This is when most of the big damage happens, so it’s important to look at the roof and make any repairs necessary.
Watch for damaged wood or for excess leaves and sticks on the roof. You should keep it as clear as you can to avoid any further damage. Depending on the type of roofing you have on the summer house, you may need to replace tears or splits in the roofing felt, or you may have to replace shingles. Either way, it’s essential you keep your summer house in good condition.
A damaged roof may result in water getting inside and that can cause all sorts of problems. Mould, mildew, and condensation can all build up inside the building and without proper repairs, the entire building could end up ruined. That’s why you must stay on top of repairs.
If you’re not interested or able to do the repairs yourself, you should be able to hire someone to handle it all for you.
Fill In Cracks and Holes
It’s a good idea to look over the building that was brand new in the beginning, but likely not new now. Over the first winter, you’ll find that there’s a lot of expansion in the wood. However, it does close again and this is a very natural part of working with wood.
However, you’ll want to fill in any resulting holes or cracks with putty or wood filler. This is done by first sanding the area around the hole or contraction line. Next, wipe it clean and use a putty knife to apply the wood filler to the holes. Spread it thoroughly into the crack or hole and then use the same knife to scrape away any excess. You want to leave it all as flush as possible so you don’t have a lot of excess wood filler.
Next, you should let it dry for the recommended amount of time, usually overnight. This will allow the putty to harden up and you can begin to sand it flat.
Take your time, working through the grits until you have thoroughly sanded the area. From here, you can paint it or simply see how it looks with only the wood putty filling it.
Regularly Air Out the Summer House
As the temperatures begin to change, you may notice there is more and more condensation in the summer house. While it has served its purpose as a place to enjoy during the summer, there are some reasons to open up the building and let it air out, as well.
First, by opening up the space, you allow the condensation to dry out and dissipate. It’s also a good idea to get that fresh air in there as you want to prevent odours and mould from building up. Getting some good airflow through the space will automatically dry it out more often and you can prevent some serious damage to the building.
Keep in mind that during the winter, it’s still a good idea to air the space out at least once a week. When summer comes around again, you’ll have a much better experience when you open the doors for the warmer months. Instead of being greeted by musty, stuffy odours, you’ll find fresh air and dry spaces.