Step 2: Preservatives, often called borates

The second step in the restoration process is the application of preservatives, or borates. There are two choices when it comes to preservatives—the first is pure borate, which is a chemical that we mix with water to spray onto the logs. It is toxic to many kinds of insects and fungi, but it is harmless to humans and pets. It has about the same level of toxicity to humans as table salt does. This is a product that can only be applied to bare wood, so it is necessary to have the surface media blasted or chemically stripped prior to application. It will only achieve its purpose if it is applied to bare wood.

The second choice is a glycol-borate, which actually soaks deep into the log, killing all fungus and most insects that it comes in contact with. This is a more expensive and intensive treatment, but will work for life if the exterior finish of the logs is maintained.

After the stripping and rinsing process, we apply the borate by spray. To our knowledge, this the most potentially effective way to prevent log rot and some insect issues. It is, however, not a guarantee or a magical solution. All the borate in the world won’t overcome poor construction of poor sealants. It is simply one more level of defense that we use in the life-long battle to preserve your log home.