The first question often asked is what’s the difference between a summerhouse and a log cabin? The main difference is size, a log cabin tends to be a lot bigger. This article will focus on summerhouses and the different styles available. Our article here on log cabins (coming soon!) does the same, and also looks at some great uses for your log cabin.
You can see from this extract below just a few of the different styles and size options available for summerhouses – click on any link or picture for more details, which will open in a new tab:
One of the first considerations is how much space have you got to position your summerhouse and what preparation work you need to do.
A solid, level foundation is necessary for the installation of any good quality garden building. Depending on your soil type and its consistency this should be removed to a depth of approx 15 cm (6ins). The next stage is to fill in this space with a coarse sand or gravel, compact it, then lay concrete slabs or a concrete base. You may also want to consider Pro Base kits, which come in a variety of sizes. It is important to ensure that your base, whatever its construction, is level and above the surrounding ground level to avoid water collecting. This will prevent any unnecessary problems related to the building settling into the ground (i.e. windows and doors jamming) and assist with the long term durability and appeal of your garden building.
It is also generally recommended that you make your base a little larger than the stated dimensions of the building (approx. 15cm) and allow a margin for error and to avoid having the whole weight of a cabin on the very edge of your base. Finally apply a layer of gravel around your garden building, as this permits water to soak away more readily and prevents splash back onto the walls.
In some cases there may be local authority, drainage and other considerations that relate to base preparation. We do not advise on any of these matters and you must ensure that any base preparation that you undertake complies with any and all legislation and regulations. Any information provided on this site and any links is advisory only, it is not exhaustive and some or all of it may not apply in certain situations. Click here to check out our links to installation guides, and a link to advice regarding planning permission.
It is important to protect your garden building against the effects of wood boring insects (and other insects), sun, water and u.v. light. This should be done with the application of a good quality wood preservative as soon as possible, again after about 3 – 6 months, and then annually thereafter.
IMPORTANT TO CHECK:
Many, although not all, Summer Houses and Log Cabins are delivered with Pressure Treated Base Beams (Please check the supplier’s product page – if it doesn’t say that it is included it is probably excluded!). This means that with these buildings, the parts that are in direct contact with the ground have been treated with a long term treatment. The recommended treatment used is Wolmanit Timber Treatments, which is a specialist treatment which can be done in the main by specialists in dipping wood, so best to have it included in the first place!
Assembly services are generally available on summerhouses and in some instances included in the selling price, so be sure to check when placing your order.