Siding, parquet, work plan, dry toilets… Find out how to maintain your Tiny House!
A Tiny House is a real wood frame house on wheels. Like all houses, it requires regular maintenance to keep its beauty and to last through the next decades!
In this article, we give you our tips and tricks to ensure your Tiny House durability and comfort, by favoring healthy and environmentally friendly products.
The following topics will be discussed:
- Maintenance of the wood siding of a tinyhouse
- Cleaning a parquet floor
- Dry toilets: operation and maintenance
- Trailer: things to check
Enjoy your reading 🙂 !
How to maintain the siding of your Tiny House?
Wood siding is a very aesthetic and ecological façade cladding that adds a real cachet to your home. The maintenance of your larch or red cedar siding aims to revive the natural and warm color of the wood. It is therefore a purely aesthetic procedure. The durability of the wood is not concerned and will exceed your lifespan!
The natural and rot-proof wood species we use
We only use natural wood species that are FSC and PEFC certified. For your exterior siding, the species used are Larch or Red Cedar. Naturally rot-proof, these wood species are not affected by fungi, termites or other insects.
The Larch is a resinous tree that grows exclusively in the mountains. Accustomed to the cold and harsh climate, it is a species known for its resistance and durability. It is very appreciated for its light brown and veined color. Exposed to the sun but protected from water, the Larch will take on a red hue. Under the combined effect of UV rays and rain, it will turn grey and may even blacken in places. This evolution, only visual and aesthetic, is without danger for the wood.
The red cedar is also a very robust softwood tree. This noble wood, naturally fungicidal, has a reddish-brown color that gives it a clean look. Over time, red cedar will take on a grayish hue, with a nice silver patina. This premium species has a very straight grain, making it very strong. Thanks to its honeycomb network, it attenuates noise and guarantees good acoustic insulation.
When should you maintain your wood siding?
Wood is a natural material. It lives and its color changes with time by displaying grayish hues. If you wish to keep the original warm color of your red cedar or larch siding, maintenance will be necessary to allow the color of the siding to resist to climatic hazards (weather, UV…) and daily aggressions.
We recommend that you perform maintenance as soon as the wood begins to lighten or turn slightly gray. For best results, maintenance or renovation should be performed after wet periods.
How to maintain your siding?
Larch and red cedar are durable woods that age very well. Their color will evolve over time and the vagaries of the climate. Depending on the aesthetic you are looking for, you have several options.
Option 1: Keeping the natural gray tone of a wood siding
If you choose to let your siding go gray, you don’t have to do any maintenance. Rot-proof wood will never rot. It is possible to clean once a year with a low pressure cleaner.
Option 2: Keep the warm tone of wood siding
You can maintain the siding of your Tiny House or wooden house by applying a nourishing product
The purpose of applying a protection for rot-proof wood is purely aesthetic:
- Slowing down the greying process with a water repellent product
- Preserve the wood from UV rays, which cause the wood to age
- Provide an aesthetic finish (matte or glossy finish, color…
Depending on the aesthetic you want, the frequency of maintenance and the technique, several
options are available.
Whether your siding is made of larch or red cedar, the process is the same. For red cedar, we recommend using a product specially designed for this wood species. This will preserve its natural, slightly reddish hue. As soon as your siding begins to tarnish, simply apply a new coat of the product. It is important to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations.
Before performing the first maintenance on your siding, let it age for about a year. After a suitable preparation (stripping, sanding in the direction of the wood grain …), you can apply a saturator, an oil or a stain depending on the desired aesthetic.
What products should be used to maintain wood siding?
Oils and saturators
Composition: the oils are made only with vegetable oils. Saturators are oil-based, but also include other components.
Usage and rendering: Nourish, waterproof and protect the wood while keeping a natural look. Oils and saturators penetrate the wood and are non-film forming, the wood keeps its natural appearance. They are stained or colorless and offer different finishes (matte, glossy, oiled …).
Advantages: Moderate preparation, necessary according to the intensity of the graying: Karcher, degreasing. Oils and saturators are the most ecological solutions.
Disadvantages: Application is more frequent and must be done during a sunny period. Oils: wipe off excess with rags. Be careful, they can be flammable.
Maintenance frequency: approximately every 1 to 2 years, depending on the climate.
Saturator and oil are very similar. The difference is in their composition, oil being the most ecological protection. Linseed oil is one of the good options that will prevent blackening of your siding. Larch is a fat wood that is difficult to impregnate. If you choose to use a saturator, we advise you to use a product based on vegetable oils for exterior wood.
If you choose to apply an oil, wipe off the product between coats. Also, beware of oil-soaked rags that can self-ignite. They must be soaked in water to avoid any risk of fire.
Composition: less ecological, with a binder (acrylic resins, alkyds…) and a solvent (water, white spirit…).
Usage and rendering : Protective layer allowing to preserve the color of the wood more durably. The appearance is less natural than with the saturator because the stain is a film-forming product. It can be tinted or colorless. Several renderings: satin, gloss, matte. You can keep the grain of the wood.
Advantage: Stains allow you to space out maintenance.
Disadvantages: Require sanding to remove old protection before reapplication. Stains can flake over time. Their composition is less environmentally friendly.
Frequency of maintenance: Once maintenance is completed, your siding will be protected for an average of 3 to 6 years.
If you choose to stain, sand your siding to remove the previous stain or make up for any greyed areas and apply two coats of stain in the direction of the wood grain. Drying times are mostly fast and indicated on the product container.
How to maintain the floor of your Tiny House?
The floor of our tiny houses is made of laminated parquet. This material allows for easier maintenance and is perfectly suited for heavy traffic. The varnish applied to the surface prevents dirt and dust from penetrating, making the floor easy to maintain. However, it is important to ensure that this maintenance is well adapted, so as not to damage the protective layer of your laminate floor.
Regular dry cleaning is ideal to limit moisture and contact with water. A microfiber broom will dust your floor perfectly and gently.
When cleaning more thoroughly, avoid cleaning with a lot of water: wring out your mop properly, it should be slightly damp. If the floor is stained, proceed with a sponge or soft cloth. Spray a product specially adapted to laminate flooring and rub gently to remove the stain. Abrasive detergents such as bleach or nail polish remover should be avoided.
To prevent scratches, we recommend that you install a small rug or mat at the entrance of your Tiny. You can also install felt pads under your furniture. We also remind you that a laminate floor should never be sanded.
How to maintain the solid wood worktop of a Tiny?
A solid wood worktop is a good option to bring warmth and elegance to your kitchen. This robust and natural material requires more attention than a laminate worktop. In order to keep its beautiful appearance for a long time, a wooden worktop requires special attention and specific maintenance.
Daily maintenance of a wooden worktop
The solid oak worktop is ready to use, i.e. it is already treated and protected when you receive your Tiny House.
Prolonged contact with water and strong detergents may damage wooden surfaces. It is therefore best to avoid using them. Also, it is preferable to avoid the use of rough sponges and to prefer the use of soft cloths made of natural fabrics.
In order to protect it in the long run, put a little olive or sunflower oil on a soft cloth and pass it on the surface in the direction of the wood grain. We advise you to repeat the operation approximately every 2 months.
To avoid unpleasant surprises, we recommend that you pour your cleaning product onto the soft cloth and apply it to the work surface. When cleaning the surface of the plane, be sure to move in the direction of the fibers. Always wipe the surface after cleaning to remove excess and polish your plan.
Finally, to avoid marks and scratches that would be difficult to remove, do not use a knife or sharp object on your work surface.
Annual maintenance of the solid wood worktop
To keep your worktop looking good, wax or coat it with linseed oil using a clean cloth. You can also opt for a waterproofing product that will act as a real barrier against stains.
We recommend that you perform this operation once or twice a year. This will effectively protect your wooden worktop from aging, various stains and dust.
How to use and clean a dry toilet?
We have written an article entirely dedicated to the operation and maintenance of dry toilets. You can consult it by clicking on this link.
What about the trailer of your tiny house?
The particularity of your wooden house on wheels is that it is built on a trailer. Therefore, it is important to keep in mind that the latter must be properly installed.
The landing legs attached directly to the underside of the trailer allow it to be levelled when installed. However, they are not enough to support the weight of your Tiny on the long term. You must install 4 stanchions to support and distribute the weight of the Tiny evenly.
Candles are easily found in stores specializing in automotive accessories. In order to choose the most suitable stanchions, we inform you that there is about 47cm between the ground and the bottom of the frame of our Tiny Houses.
Before moving your Tiny House, we recommend that you check the tire pressure, even if it does not roll or very little. This will avoid the risk of deformation. On our models, we recommend a tire pressure between 4.1 and 4.5 bar.
Need more information about the maintenance of your Tiny House? Do not hesitate to contact us by leaving a comment!
Discover all our designs