One of the key bits of information for keeping hardwood floors shiny is knowing what type of finish has been applied to the wood. Was your hardwood sealed with a polyurethane or polyacrylic urethane finish, or was it finished with a paste wax? If you don't know, here's a test to help you make the best cleaning choices:

  • In a spot with normal foot traffic, place a drop of water on the floor. If the water is quickly absorbed or causes spotting on the finish, this indicates the hardwood has not been sealed and should never be cleaned with water. But if the bead of water just sits on the surface without being absorbed, it means the floor hardwood has been sealed.

  • To test for a paste wax finish, grab some fine steel wool and rub it lightly over the floor in a corner. If the has been waxed, there will be a gray, waxy film left on the steel wool.


When it comes to log and timber homes, grays and browns are the biggest color trends this year. Gray has been the hot shade for the past several years.

True to its "neutral" title, gray really goes with almost any color. The key to a great match lies in coordinating the tones. Gray doesn't have to appear in your palette as color of the wall—it can also be found in a fireplace exterior, flooring, or on countertops. When you add gray to any room, be sure to consider any other gray that might already be in there.

Honest Abe Interior

How Energy Efficient Is Your Home?

Each year millions of homeowners across this country make decisions regarding preparation of their homes for the upcoming winter season. How each owner prepares their home will be influenced by which factors they consider important. For example, energy cost, energy efficiency, infrastructure, weather forecasts and location are all important factors to consider. The cost of energy from all sources has gone up considerably this past year. As a result, the price of energy delivered to residential customers this coming winter 2021-2022 is projected to be up approximately 15% for natural gas, 50% for heating oil and 3% to 10% for electricity according to the Energy Information Administration (EIA). These unusually large price increases can put real financial strain on most homeowners.  

Start Saving on Your Heating Bills Now!

Energy Seal Log Home Sealant

Energy Seal is a textured acrylic polymer sealant that provides a long-lasting and resilient seal for any style of log home. Since logs constantly twist, turn, swell, expand and shrink, gaps may appear between logs or between the logs and window and door frames or other areas of the home.  These gaps retain moisture and allow the seepage of air and water into the home. Energy Seal eliminates these gaps by forming an air and water tight barrier over them. 

If you own a wooden structure with exposed wood siding, logs or a wooden deck, chances are high you have encountered Carpenter Bees. These rather large insects are found in abundance on every continent minus Antarctica. They are close in appearance and size to a Bumblebee with the exception that they do not have hair on their abdomen, and only the female Carpenter Bee stings when provoked.

How Carpenter Bees Breed

They are solitary insects and do not live in colonies like traditional honeybees. Instead, the female carpenter bee will drill a hole in dead wood that is approximately one-half inch wide at a rate of one inch every five to six days. She will use her large mandibles in combination with vibrating her body to create a drilling like action.

In this process they do not consume the wood, they are simply excavating the wood to create a home for their future brood. The male Carpenter Bees will hover near the vicinity of the nest to help keep guard.

Over the years we have discovered many things about cleaning wood. First thing we learned is "common" cleaners like chlorine bleach should never be used to clean your wood. We have also discovered that a number of wood and deck cleaners available at paint and hardware stores, home improvement centers, and Do-It-Yourself outlets contain components that can interfere with the proper performance of water-based finish systems.

Since a true wood cleaner was hard to come by, we developed Log Wash to be the ultimate log home cleaner. Log Wash is the ONLY cleaning product we recommend for use with our finishes. We have tested our cleaning products with our finish systems and have confidence that when properly used and applied, their use will result in the best possible appearance and performance of a Lifeline™ finish.

Log Wash is one of only a handful of cleaning products on the market that has a slightly acidic pH similar to that of wood. Much of our technical literature refer to pH as it relates to its impact on bare wood and finished surfaces. PH is a measure of alkalinity and acidity on a scale of 1 to 14, where 7 represents neutrality and numbers below 7 indicate acidic solutions. On the pH scale, each unit of change represents a tenfold change in acidity or alkalinity. Following is a representation of the pH scale with the pH of some common substances.

In the 1800s, building techniques were quite different than today’s standards. Homes have withstood the test of time, but despite the best efforts of the craftsmen centuries before and homeowners since, some homes reflect a troubled past.

Log homes that survived decades of storms, floods, and fire deserve to be restored, if nothing more than to be a historical reminder of the frontier life.

With that in mind, let us take you through a restoration of this 140-year-old home using today’s best wood restoration products.

Log Homes not only have the unique characteristic of logs and big timbers being design features, but most have handrails, decks or porches, and fencing to complete the homestead. Our friends over at Home Improvement and Repairs covered caring for outdoor wood, highlighting Deck Defense in a fence-staining project.

The exposed outdoor wood around log homes can face the most severe abuse. Decks are walked on and have furniture dragged across the surface, not to mention food and drink spills. Depending on location, decks and handrails have days or months of rain and snow exposure. A great fence stands strong against wind, being a racetrack for squirrels and chipmunks, and provides a backstop for soccer balls and baseballs. 

Color is a marvelous tool when it comes to finishing your log home, especially when picking the best log home finish for your home.

Log & Timber Home Living recently covered a luxury Montana home that was transformed solely by changing the colors of the home. The transformation is incredible, and it is hard to believe it is the same log home. These pictures are a sample of the before and after shots of the home, illustrating the change in color and decor.

Before After

Choosing the right colors can give your log and timber home a warm, traditional feel that brings about feelings of the frontier, surrounded by nature. Or, choosing the right colors can create a modern, welcoming log and timber home that mixes the classic log home with today’s design influence.

By Jared Turner

We often get asked this very question. To help answer this we must look to our experience both past and present. For 40 years now Perma-Chink Systems® has been working to develop products that meet both the demands of Nature and our Customers. The result of this experience has been a wide range of products that help solve specific needs. Our wood finishes can be split into four main categories: exterior film forming, exterior penetrating, interior film forming and specialty. Let us take a closer look at these products and discover what makes each one unique.

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Project Spotlight

  • Do you have an old stain that doesn't really show the warmth and beauty your home deserves? Ready to restore it to its natural look? It's easy to start by stripping old finishes using StripIt or S-100. Check Out This Video...

    Project Spotlight