Recommended Chinking Application Tools:
• Application bags, caulking gun or bulk loading caulking gun.
• Follow plate for bulk loading gun. Click for the Tapered Follow Plate.
• Tool Pouch.
• Clean, lint-free rags for wiping down log surfaces, for spills, runs and cleanup.
• Trowels and spatulas (close to the width of the finished seam is best).
• Masking tape if desired.
• Sharp knives suitable for trimming backer-rod.
• Cardboard box or table for holding backer-rod while adhesive is applied.
• Spray adhesive (such as 3M™ 77) for installing backer-rod.
• Spray/mist bottle (use water with a few drops of soap as a release agent).
• Isopropyl alcohol – combine with 50% water for ‘release agent’ mixture.
• Masonry margin trowels of appropriate sizes (1/2” to 2” most commonly used).
• Sheets of heavy plastic or canvas to protect job site from spills and inclement weather.
• Closed Backer-Rod in appropriate sizes, or other backing materials such as EPS Foam or Grip Strip.
• Adequate quantity of chinking/caulking.
• Before starting, inspect the installation of backing materials. Where pieces of backer butt up to one
another, make sure that there are no gaps or ledges between pieces.
• If you find gaps, fill them with backing material or cover the span with tape.
• Make sure that the wood surfaces along the seam are clean and free of oils or waxes to insure proper adhesion of the cured chinking.
• Freshly applied sealants should be protected from direct rainfall for a minimum of 24 hours. Either watch the weather or drape a newly sealed wall with plastic film. Be sure to allow some airspace between the wall and the plastic to facilitate drying.
• Avoid applying sealants in direct sunlight or when the temperature is less than 40° F. In cold weather it’s important that the logs be free of frost and dew in order to ensure that the sealant adheres tightly to the wood. Like stain, the best surface temperature range for easiest application and best results is between 50° F and 80° F.
• Apply only as much chinking as you are able to tool smooth in about 15 minutes (less in warm dry weather that causes the chinking to skin over rapidly).
• Start by holding the applicator tip against the back surface of the joint and apply a bead of chinking. If multiple beads will be required to span the entire gap, apply them close together to avoid trapped air during tooling.
• Apply enough chinking to maintain a wet thickness of approximately 3/8 inch.
• The first step in finishing is to wet the trowel only (not the chinking), then spread it out evenly to 3/8 inch thickness, making sure the wet chinking is in good contact with the wood surfaces at both edges of the seam. Good contact is critical for proper adhesion after curing.
NOTE: Be careful to maintain proper thickness in all corners.
• After smoothing to the proper thickness, lightly wet the surface of the chinking and tool to finished smoothness.
• Avoid applying enough water to cause it to run onto the wood surface. Wipe any runs immediately.
• Tip: If you used masking tape at the edges of the chinking, remove it now and smooth out edges with your tool.
• If your preference is for the finished chinking to have a different texture than smooth, you should experiment before application.
When to Apply Perma-Chink:
• Weather: Protect freshly applied Perma-Chink Chinking from rain for at least 24 hours to allow a water resistant
skin to form.
• Apply Perma-Chink log home sealant after staining for the best finished appearance and least total labor to avoid getting stain on the new chinking.
• Best: After application of Lifeline, but before Lifeline Advance clear topcoat (Lifeline Advance should be applied over Perma-Chink log home sealant, making it easier to clean.)
• Second Best: After application of Lifeline stain and Lifeline Advance topcoat.
• Worst: Over a fresh application of oil based stain. Oil based stains must be allowed to dry for 2 months. Then, clean the chinking surface with alcohol to remove dust and oily residues.
Can Perma-Chink be Applied In Hot Temperatures?
• Applications of all Perma-Chink exterior finish removers, cleaners, stains, topcoats and sealants can be a bit of a challenge in extremely hot weather, i.e. over 90° F.
• Sealants such as Perma-Chink are more sensitive to direct sunlight even in cooler temperatures than they are to heat in general. Direct sunlight accelerates the “skinning over” of the sealant trapping the water contained within the product. When this water converts to water vapor and tries to escape from the product it can create bubbles or blisters on the surface of the sealant.
• High ambient temperatures do influence the viscosity of sealants, they become more fluid, but for the most part they can still be successfully applied even when the temperature exceeds 90° F as long as the freshly applied product is protected from direct sunlight.
Why is Backing Material Needed?
• The use of backing material behind a sealant such as Perma-Chink serves two purposes; one, to assure the proper thickness of the sealant so that it can stretch and contract without breaking; and two, to provide a surface that the sealant will not bond to so that it can stretch without tearing away from the wood.
• The dynamics of sealing an exterior joint or crack in wood is the same regardless of the width of the gap or the product being used. If the wood is unseasoned at the time a sealant is applied, the wood will shrink with time and in order to compensate for the shrinkage the sealant must be applied in a manner that will allow it to stretch.
• When a sealant is applied too thick, once it cures it won't be able to stretch enough to compensate for the wood's shrinkage and may rip apart. When applied too thin it becomes too weak to stretch without breaking
• If applied too thick they cannot stretch without tearing and if too thin they will be weak and will tear when pulled apart. In the case of sealants manufactured by Perma-Chink Systems the magic number is an applied wet thickness of 3/8”. This results in a cured sealant with excellent elongation and maximum strength.
• Backing materials serve little purpose other than providing a suitable sealant thickness and surface for the proper application and performance of the sealant.
• Some important features of a good backing material include:
1. It must be inert and not outgas or react with the sealant.
2. The sealant itself should not bond tightly to it.
3. It should not wrinkle or deform when the sealant is applied over it.
4. It needs to be able to withstand temperatures of at least 190º F without warping or distorting.
What Types of Backing Material Should I Use When Applying Perma-Chink?
• Grip Strip. Closed Cell Backer Rod. Polyisocyanurate board (Polyiso or R Max).
• Expanded polystyrene (EPS) beadboard, foil-faced. Chinking applied over the foil covered side.
• Polyurethane foam (Pur Fill, Great Stuff, Styrofoam).
• Water-resistant masking tape or pinstripe tape.
• DO NOT USE: Extruded Polystyrene (causes blisters), Blue Board, Pink Board or other colored board that outgasses to cause blisters. If you are unsure about your backing material, check with Perma-Chink Systems before using it.
• There are a number of products specifically designed for use as backing materials for sealants. For smaller gaps, joints and cracks the most commonly used material is Closed Cell Round Backer Rod. It comes in a range of sizes and is relatively inexpensive.
• Since it is flexible it can be pushed into a crevice without needing to be nailed or stapled. Grip Strip is designed for sealing larger gaps. Similar in composition to backer rod it is shaped like a trapezoid so it can be squeezed in between round logs although it can be used for a variety of situations. Grip Strip provides a flat surface for chinking or sealing.
• For wide chink joints between squared logs it is typically recommend the use of polyisocyanurate board (polyiso or R Max) or expanded polystyrene (EPS) beadboard. However, one side of the beadboard should be covered with a foil to help reflect the heat.
• If plain beadboard is used, there is a risk of the beadboard deforming on sunny areas where wall temperatures can reach over 180 degrees. When using foil covered beadboard the chinking needs to be applied over the foil side.
• In joints that are too narrow to insert even the smallest diameter backer rod, a narrow strip of water-resistant masking tape works quite well. Do not use masking tape that wrinkles because if it gets wet wrinkles may show through the sealant.
• An excellent option is to use pinstripe tape available at most automotive supply stores. The tape is vinyl, so it is waterproof and most sealants will not adhere to it. Pinstripe tape is available in widths down to 1/8”.
Drying & Curing Information:
• Perma-Chink log home sealant develops a skin in a short period of time. Full curing requires it to dry all the way through and may take a number of weeks. Cool temperatures or high humidity extends drying time.
• Protect freshly applied sealants from rain for at least 24 hours to allow a protective skin to form.
• Blisters during curing are common to sealant applications in hot environments. Blisters can be caused by use of improper backing materials or by trapping air inside of the wet chinking during application. Prevent most blisters by making sure to trowel all air out of seams in “multi-bead” applications.
• Avoid application in direct sunlight on south and west walls. If newly applied chinking is exposed to sunlight begins to blister, the effect can be minimized by shading the walls with white tarps for the first 1-2 days. In the first few days, blisters can be closed by puncturing the surface skin of the chinking and carefully pressing the blister surface back against the wet chinking inside.
• Perma Chinks cures completely in 2-8 weeks depending on temperature and humidity.
Clean Up and Storage:
• Clean area and equipment immediately with warm, soapy water before the Perma-Chink dries.
• For removing Perma-Chink that has dried, soften with alcohol and then clean with warm water. Please do not pollute our environment.
• Store Perma-Chink chinking in a clean, dry place and out of direct sunlight.
• Do not allow the material to freeze. Although Perma-Chink is freeze-thaw stable, if the product is accidentally frozen, allow to thaw, mix well and check for suitability of use before applying.
• Periodic cleaning with an appropriate cleaner such as Log Wash will clean off dust and dirt and accentuate the beauty of your home.
• Perma-Chink Systems recommends that log walls be washed down at least twice a year. Small rips and tears may be repaired using a bead of Perma-Chink and a damp short bristled brush to blend it in with the surrounding area. Tears greater than one foot long should be cut out and the chinking replaced.
How To Avoid and Correct Blistering:
• Blisters are a common phenomenon with chinking and caulking products and are caused by a variety of things. Blisters appear as “bubbles” in the chink line and can vary widely in size.
• Do not apply in direct sunlight.
• Protect fresh chinking from direct sunlight for 1-2 days after application with white plastic sheeting or traps tacked over it.
• If a blister begins to develop: Pop the blister and gently push the material back into place. 3 to 5 days later, apply a skim coat of Perma Chink and tool to blend in.
How to Repair Torn Perma-Chink:
• First, use a razor knife to slit the chink or caulk line a bit further to release pressure on the bead. Then, clean the surface by wiping it down.
• Gun new chinking or caulking over the torn area, then smooth (tool) the new product, feathering it out onto the existing bead.
• If no backer rod was applied, you may need to cut out the torn area, install backer rod, and then follow the remaining steps as noted above.
Perma-Chink How-To Guides For Perma-Chink Chinking:
• Drying and Curing Times
• Protecting Uncured Chinking
• Why Use Backing Materials?
• Loading Bulk Guns
• Repairing Perma-Chink
• Chink Paint Vs. Chinking