Bringing Clarity to Clear Coat Maintenance
By Charis Babcock from Sashco, Inc.
Maintenance with a clear top coat over an elastomeric log stain is pretty great.
· Easiest application – apply even with a garden sprayer
· No lap marks – two layers of clear is . . . . still clear
· Protects the underlying stain from discoloration
· Maintenance coats won’t darken the home over time
· Won’t discolor your chinking
Everyone knows that a $30 oil change two or three times a year beats a $2,000 mechanic’s bill. Routine maintenance and re-application of your clear coat is no different. Taking a weekend or two every couple of years to apply a fresh clear coat will be the difference between keeping your stain in tip top shape or paying $20,000 for a complete redo. (Eek!)
So, what exactly does a clear coat do? (In this case, Sashco’s Cascade® clear coat)
· First, UV filters in Cascade® protect the underlying Capture® Log Stain from discoloration. While slight discoloration isn’t entirely avoidable in a semi-transparent stain, keeping up on Cascade® maintenance will slow down the discoloration process.
· Second, Cascade® contains the majority of the water repellency of the two-part Capture® and Cascade® system. Keeping up on Cascade® maintenance means a home that is protected from rain and snow.
So, how do you know it’s time for another clear coat? It all starts with an inspection.
Check your logs twice a year: once in the spring for any winter damage, and once in the fall for any summer damage. In particular, look for the following:
· Loss of sheen: Cascade® has a satin sheen to it. It will erode away more quickly in the highly exposed areas. Take a look at your logs in the sun. It will be easy to tell where it’s worn off. Clean the surface, and apply more.
· Loss of moisture shedding: Take a hose or spray bottle to the walls. If water is still sheeting off, you’re in good shape. If not, time for a maintenance coat.
· Discoloration of Capture®: If you notice significant fading or darkening of the Capture® Log Stain, it’s likely the Cascade® has been gone for a while. You may need to do a re-coat of both products.
The good news: you don’t need to re-coat the whole house every time. Apply more Cascade® where needed, when needed. It’s likely the north side or any side protected by a porch can go several years without a re-coat, while that south wall that’s fully exposed may need re-application on those lower courses every two years. Your home is unique, so maintenance schedules will be, too. In the end, it should only take you one weekend a year to do the work. Once it’s done, sit back, pat yourself on the back, enjoy an iced tea, and get on with life.