Tuesday, 6 August 2013

Sealing and gapping weatherboards on a Queenslander house

Sponsored by Sika Australia

One of the unhappy delights of owning a Queenslander house is the almost continual maintenance that these timber and tin beauties require.

Last year, we removed the asbestos cladding from underneath the Sow’s Ear and replaced it with hardwood weatherboards. It looks so much better than before, with the added benefit of not being asbestos!

Unfortunately, after sealing and painting the weatherboards, the new timber has shrunk over time leaving some ugly gaps between the weatherboards. It’s just one of those things when working with natural materials – timber shrinks and swells depending on how old it is and with the weather. 

Gaps between the timber weatherboards

The unmistakable dark lines of the opened-up gaps look unsightly particularly on our all-white Sow’s Ear exterior!

So it was very fortuitous that the makers of Jason’s favourite sealant, Sika Australia, contacted us about testing their products. I had to laugh as we’ve been using Sika sealant and extolling its virtues for a number of years, ever since our first builder Mr Rooney put us on to it. You can read all about it here and here. Jason’s a convert and there’s nothing more zealot than one of those!

The nice people of Sika kindly sent us a number of Sika Acrylic tubes to helps us seal our gaps. They also sent Jason a new Sika caulking skeleton gun because Jason has never invested in a good quality one after four years of painting and sealing.

Sika Skeleton Sealant Gun

The number of times he’s had to stop what he’s doing mid-gapping stream because of caulking gun malfunction is too many to count… We’ll let you know how long this one lasts, but so far so good.

In the past, we’ve used Sikaflex Pro for filling exterior gaps but apparently the Sika Acrylic is a better and cheaper alternative because it will absorb a little of the paint you use on the outside of the house, giving a more seamless finish and a more consistent colour.

Jason in Sika motion. He even shifted the tube to show off the branding. Classic! I told him to think about sealing the gaps properly and leave the spruiking to me!

Sika Acrylic is easy to caulk and still provides the same level of sealability and is just as waterproof when it is painted, and  suitable for all types of paints including oil based enamels which can be problematic when painting over polyurethanes. The clean-up is also much easier as it is water-based.

No more dark lines

You can use it for sealing low movement joints around brick, concrete, plasterboard, windows, doors, ceramic tiles and filling of cracks prior to painting. It also adheres to most building materials and can be sanded back once it has fully cured.

For Queenslander home owners, it is a great gap filler for VJ (vertical join) walls which are notorious for splitting open during dry weather conditions.  Sika products are available from Bunnings nationally.

Anyway, we can now tick the gapping and sealing the weatherboards job off the list as we prepare the Sow’s Ear for spring. 

Have you been doing any maintenance on your house for the change of season?

p.s Sika has also recently launched a new spray adhesive called Sikabond Sprayfix which I’m dying to try out. I’m currently working out how I can use it for making a new lamp shade and a couple of small art projects that I have planned. So stay tuned. colour. 


  1. Some settling/expansion/contraction is to be expected even in a new construction. My contractor is coming back to make a few repairs of that type to the new modernist nest.

    You're lucky that you got all those products for free. Came in very handy. :)

    1. Oh yes, it came in handy all right and Jason was thrilled I saved him a trip to the hardware!

      But it's one of those things that you forget when you're building or renovating. It may look great when it's finished initially, but after a few months of settling in it needs a little more work. It's good to know you're on top of your modernist nest Dana. xx

  2. Thanks Anita. I've noticed quite a few cracks in our VJ's the past few weeks, especially in my daughter's room. I think it's because she loves her airconditioner so much that the timber has dried out. So can I just run the silka down the join and then give it a touch up paint? Kylie xx

    1. Yep, just run it down the join. Smooth it out with your finger if it's a bit lumpy and just let it cure before you sand or paint it. We're starting to get cracks with the drier weather too. xx

  3. Ha, had to laugh at the timing of this post. We have a box of gapfiller tubes in the Reno cottage waiting for some motivation to start filling the gaps in the veranda floorboards. Always so many gaps to fill!!

    1. Simmone, it was like a dream come true for Sika to contact us and a great excuse to get back into working on the house. Gap filler and Queenslanders are a match made in heaven! xx

  4. Oooh will have to get The Husband on to this! He loves a bit of Sika. I'm in the process of ignoring our poor sad exterior because I can't bear to think of the work! The Husband is pushing for vinyl cladding (which I think is vile), to save on maintenance. These old houses are so much work! Have caught up on all the work you've done since I last read the blog. I'm so envious of how far you have come! Any chance Jason would like an NQ painting holiday? haha.

    - omgpwnies on IG, Phoebe in real life. xx

    1. Thanks Phoebe!! They are a lot of work but worth it when you see the results. Had to laugh about the vinyl cladding...noooo! Don't do it! I'll send Jason up on the first flight out!! Ha ha! Xx


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