Chinking Checklist for Homeowners and Professionals
Chinking a log home requires patience and an artistic touch. It is typically done by professional chinking contractors but can be accomplished by homeowners. Follow the guidelines below for a successful job.
1. Start with clean, dry and sound wood. The moisture content of your wood should be below 20% and rain should not be in the forecast for at least 7 days prior to your start date.
2. Check with the chinking and stain manufacturers to ensure that your finishing products are compatible with each other. It is always a good idea to use a stain and chinking from the same manufacturer in order to avoid any unnecessary problems down the road.
3. Install some form of backing material before applying the chinking material. This will allow the chinking material to expand and contract like a rubber band. Also, it will save you money in chinking material costs.
4. If the width of your chinking joint is greater than 1'' it is recommended to use a bulk loading gun. If the width of your chinking joint is smaller than 1” it is recommended to use quart size tubes.
5. Do not apply chinking material in direct sunlight. For more information regarding this problem see our “Chinking Blisters” article.
6. Chinking material should be applied between 40-90 degrees.
7. Start by gunning out a 3′ section of chinking material.
8. Work the chinking material into place with a putty knife, trowel or foam brush. Do not gun out too much chinking material because it will skin over rather quickly and become difficult to tool.
9. If the chinking material does skin over, lightly mist it with water. This will help in spreading the material.
10. Make sure to get good adhesion to the top and bottom of the chinking joint. This can be accomplished by using the right amount of pressure with your tooling instrument.
11. Make sure to get the correct depth of material when applying the chinking. A good rule of thumb is a 1/2”.
12. Have fun with your chinking project. The more chinking material that you apply the better you will become at chinking.
For more information about chinking material, chinking application tools or chinking contractor referrals contact Mountain Home Building Products toll free at 800-490-3695.