Introducing Log Gap Caps – Perfect for Sealing Around Doors and Windows

log gap cap foam insert

No more hand cutting foam inserts before caulking around your doors and windows! The Log Gap Cap™ reduces air infiltration where round logs meet window and door trim. Though designed to work with 6″ to 10″ diameter logs, the Log Gap Cap’s uniform shape fits most log profiles. With an easy scissor cut along the flat side, they work in log siding applications. The material is resistant to mold, rot, bacteria, and will not absorb moisture. A perfect companion to Energy Seal applications. Check out step by step instructions on using Log Gap Caps below:

log cap caps log home

 

 

How to Check Your Wood Home for Air Leaks

Reduce your utility bill this Winter by checking for air leaks in your home. A few air leaks can cost you many extra dollars per month. The key is to find and seal these air leaks before the super cold weather sets in.  Check out the 3 ways to successfully locate air leaks below.

Energy.gov  recommends first performing a visual inspection. On the outside of your home, make sure to inspect all areas where two different building materials meet including :

  • All exterior corners
  • Outdoor water faucets
  • Where siding and chimneys meet
  • Areas where the foundation and the bottom of exterior brick or siding meet.

On the inside of your home:

  • Electrical outlets
  • Switch plates
  • Door and window frames
  • Electrical and gas service entrances
  • Baseboards
  • Weather stripping around doors
  • Fireplace dampers
  • Attic hatches
  • Wall- or window-mounted air conditioners.
  • Cable TV and phone lines
  • Where dryer vents pass through walls
  • Vents and fans

Easy Do It Yourself Method

Set aside time to locate air leaks on a cool Fall day, when the outside temperature is at least 20 degrees lower than the temperature in your home.

Items you will need:

  • Small bucket of warm waterEnergy Seal Box Logo
  • A piece of chalk
  • A step stool or ladder depending on the height of your ceilings.
  • Caulking material
  • Backer rod
  • Caulking gun
  • Masking tape
  1. Dip your hand in the water and run your wet hand over the interior walls, making sure to keep your hand about 6-12 inches away from the wall surface.
  2.  You will easily feel the cold air if there are leaks in the walls.
  3. Make sure to use this method around doors and windows, as those are often places where air leaks develop.
  4. Mark these areas where you feel cold air with the chalk.
  5. Once you locate leaks, the best way to close up cracks and crevices is from the outside.  Sealing a leak from the outside will prevent further air infiltration as well as water.
  6. The opening source of the leak outside may be several inches from the spot where it is felt inside the home. Continue to seal the area until the person on the inside no longer detects the air leak. For step by step information on sealing areas on log homes see our Energy Seal application page.
  7. In some areas, it may be necessary to use a flexible backing material, see information on backer rod.

Advanced Do It Yourself Methodblue fan

  1. For a more advanced and detailed way of finding leaks, place a box fan in a window or door blowing outward.
  2. Cover the rest of the opening with plastic sheeting. Doing this will draw cold air into your home through the leaks making them easier to find.
  3. Once you have located and marked your leaks, continue on with the steps listed above.

Hire a Professional

Another option for dealing with the air leaks in your home is hiring a professional to locate and caulk the leaks. If you know you have quite a few drafts and leaks to caulk, this may be the most time-efficient option.

With a little patience, time and diligence you can be on your way to utility savings and a warmer house.

Thanks to Perma-Chink Systems, LLC for providing inspiration and reference for this article.

Additional Source:

http://energy.gov/energysaver/air-sealing-your-home

Tips for Preventing and Treating Cluster Flies

In late Fall and early Winter many homeowners notice large flies gathering in warm windows, in attics and loft spaces. These flies are called Cluster Flies. During Winter, Cluster Flies hibernate indoors where it is warm. You will often find them “clustered” in groups on the warm sides of your home. Jackie Davis from Cottage Life states, “Cluster flies don’t feed, breed, or lay eggs inside, so if you do nothing, they’ll either leave on their own, or die”. Really, they are just a nuisance, with their loud buzzing and the feeling of unease created by having creepy crawlies on your ceiling. Here are a couple ways to keep your home Cluster Fly free this Winter.

Close all cracks and crevices on your home

The first and best defense against Cluster Flies is to keep them from coming into your home. Cluster Flies are attracted to the warmth of a heated space and usually enter homes through small cracks and crevices. Make sure to seal up all these areas around your home including windows, doors, siding, utility pipes, behind chimneys and under fascia with good quality caulking. Make sure to do this well before cool temperatures arrive.

Patch or replace all window and door screens

Torn window and door screens are a easy way for Cluster Flies to enter your home. Patch or replace these before cool temperatures arrive.

Use a fly swatter or vacuum

If Cluster Flies do get into your home, and on warmer days find their way out of hibernation you will notice their sluggish buzzing around your house.  If they become bothersome, the simple use of a fly swatter can remedy the problem.

A vacuum is also an option if they are clustering in accessible windows or ceilings.

Do not use insecticides

FightBugs.com states that timing of insecticide sprays for Cluster Flies is crucial. Too early and the insecticide gets broken down by the sun and does not effect the flies, too late and the flies are already in your house. In addition, insecticides must be sprayed every year. We do not recommend spraying insecticides on the interior or exterior of your house.  The danger to you and your family far outweighs the benefits. We also do not recommend using an insecticide powder to kill flies where they cluster, this will cause the flies to die in your walls which could then attract Carpet Beetles. Carpet Beetles then feed on the dead flies and can wreak havoc on woolens, dry goods and other natural items in your home.

Practicing preventative tactics is really the best way to deal with Cluster Flies, if they can’t get in, they can’t bother you.  It may take several years of regularly sealing cracks to eliminate Cluster Flies, but in the end your work will pay off.

Reference sites:

http://ento.psu.edu/extension/factsheets/cluster-flies

http://www.orkin.com/flies/cluster-flies/

http://cottagelife.com/environment/how-to-get-rid-of-cluster-flies

http://www.fightbugs.com/get-rid-cluster-flies/