The winter months are upon us and nothing says cozy like a Virginia Log Home. Just walking into a log home can conjure up feelings of an Alpine holiday vacation. When the temperatures drop outside how do you keep your beautiful log home warm and cozy? Continue reading to discover the best ways to keep your Virginia log home warm and ways to make the interior feel cozier no matter what the temperature is outside.
How your log home is constructed will make a difference in how best to keep it feeling toasty warm in colder weather. First your log home must be built with seasoned logs which is a process of drying out the logs for at least 6 months in a protected environment. Traditionally built log homes cannot be insulated unless you add framing and sheetrock to the inside which will hide the logs and create a modern looking interior. If this is the look you are going for – perfect – then you will not need to read any further, you can simply add traditional wall insulation. However if you dream of a traditional log home with the logs exposed on the interior walls then you will need some information on how to keep your log home as warm as possible. The first thing to know is that the logs are your insulation. Although logs are not rated as high as traditionally constructed homes for insulation rating, log homes have the benefit of Heat Battery Effect (especially darker colors). This means that during the day the logs in your home are absorbing the heat from the sun. In the evening this heat is released back into the air including the air inside your home and helps keep your interior warm after dark. Whether building a new log home or purchasing a log home that is already built, you will need to take steps to prevent air leakage. To do this you must take a look at all of your walls, windows and doors. If you can observe gaps in the walls then you will need to fill the gaps with some form of chinking (filler between logs). Should you observe gaps around windows and doors then you will want to seal these gaps with caulk or a foam sealant. Adding weather stripping after you seal gaps around your doors and windows will help keep out drafts and will go a long way to keeping your log home warm and cozy.
Although cathedral ceilings are gorgeous and create a sense of space, they are not the best option if you want your log home to be energy efficient. Energy efficiency will help to keep your home warm and dry. When building or buying a log home think about your ceiling height. The best ceiling to create the warm cozy log cabin feel that you are going for is a tongue and groove flat ceiling which retains heat in a way that cathedral ceilings cannot. When deciding on insulation and heating options keep your floors and ceilings at the front of your mind. 70% of all heat escapes through the roof and floor of your log home so be certain to insulate your floors and ceilings. Adding radiant floor heating is another option – although the initial cost is dramatic it will also help keep your feet warm and eliminate cold spots throughout the home. Windows also need to be considered when you are trying to create a warm and cozy cabin feel. Whether you choose floor to ceiling windows that allow you to take in the amazing views or you decide on more traditionally sized, be certain that the windows installed are double or triple glazed to help keep the cold air out of your home in the winter.
Along with these smart building options there are decorating options that can also assist in creating the warm cozy log cabin feel that you are seeking. Instead of bright overhead lights, use lamps strategically placed throughout your home to create pools of warm light. Bring in plenty of texture. Use throw blankets in a variety of textures such as wool and bulky knit or crocheted cotton and throw pillows made of linens and faux fur. Add area rugs to create a feeling of warmth under foot. Warm colors and wood tones automatically create a sense of warmth, but don’t be afraid to add pops of color that can easily be changed out to alter the look and feel of your home. If you can, add a fireplace or a wood stove to create literal and figurative warmth to your home. Most of all, have fun.
The building and heating suggestions above are about keeping your home actually warm, however creating a feeling of warmth has more to do with you. Have some fun and find décor ideas that you feel create a warm, homey and inviting atmosphere in your Virginia log home all winter long.