Rain leaks - Fiberglass RV


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Old 02-12-2018, 06:02 PM   #1
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Name: Billy Sharpstick
Trailer: Burro - '99 wide body 14
Florida
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Rain leaks

I am sad. After caulking up windows, I am still getting rain in the Burro. Some is coming in at the bottom of the windows, but a lot is showing up in the lower cabinets. It must be leaking down into the walls somehow. Anyone else ever see this?
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Old 02-12-2018, 06:27 PM   #2
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Name: Alan
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Have you cleaned out the weep holes ( if your Burro has them)
I used on my scamp a piece of weed eater string
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Old 02-12-2018, 06:29 PM   #3
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Name: Gerry
Trailer: Boler 13 ft / 31 ft Holiday Rambler
Maine
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We have lived with 20+ years of leaks with our 79 Boler but I have found the Dycor 20/20 Seam Seal on all places that could be a potential leak has just about stopped all leaks. Our Jelious window frame was also showing its age with some cracks in the bottom corners of the aluminum frame so I cut some aluminum tape to fit tight into the corners and all along the bottom and I can now check that puddle that always appeared on the counter as fixed. Next was the rear window... I had the gasket replaced, had it to 3 different dealers with no good results and was told that because the rear window was Plexiglass and not glass the vibration would always take any sealent out so I put clear Awning tape from on the plexiglass down over the frame and that took care of the last of the water getting in. It took 23 years but I can now say I got all leaks fixed.
Last year I replaced my awning rail with a newer one in a different location on the roof and after using the Dycor on all old and new rivet holes there were zero leaks all summer.
Dycor is expensive but it works.... on another camper I had standing water around a roof vent and after drying and applying there were no leaks in over 2 years.
Yea
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Old 02-12-2018, 08:14 PM   #4
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Name: Gordon
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Scamp (basically the same thing) purchased in Sept 2015 and multiple rain leaks.. only in the last few months do I think they are all fixed. Its a fact of life owning a camper (any camper), and the leaks can be a PIA to find and fix.

The same people who tell you that fiberglass campers don't leak (at least as they are actually built) also sell swamp land in Florida as waterfront prime real estate.
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Old 02-12-2018, 08:20 PM   #5
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Well, mine is nine years old and hasn't leaked yet, even living in the Pacific Wet, under a cedar tree.
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Old 02-12-2018, 08:42 PM   #6
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Name: bob
Trailer: Was A-Liner now 13f Scamp
Missouri
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leaks

the only leak I have with our 13f scamper is the folding side window. water accumalatas there and wont drain as there is no weep hole. as soon as I get over my back spasms I am going to work on it!

bob
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Old 02-12-2018, 09:03 PM   #7
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Our 79 boler 17' had a few leaks. The screws into the bellyband at the table and rear seat backer were both leaking. Looked like they were leaking for years. filled the holes with JB weld and epoxied plywood blocks onto the fiberglass to hole the table hardware screws and rear seat backer screws.
Removing and resealing all the windows one at a time and everything else that could be a potential leak.
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Old 02-13-2018, 04:02 AM   #8
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Name: Dave
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sharpstick View Post
I am sad. After caulking up windows, I am still getting rain in the Burro. Some is coming in at the bottom of the windows, but a lot is showing up in the lower cabinets. It must be leaking down into the walls somehow. Anyone else ever see this?
When you say caulking...does that mean a bead run around the outside frame edge or are you using "caulking" as the name for butyl tape after pulling the windows and reseating them? No matter where a leak is coming from it will end up in the lower cabinets/floor and one small leak can produce a big puddle with no where to exit. How are the rubber glass seals for shrinking or any roof top items for a good seal?
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Old 02-13-2018, 06:38 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glenn Baglo View Post
Well, mine is nine years old and hasn't leaked yet, even living in the Pacific Wet, under a cedar tree.
Neither has my current trailer, but my previous trailer (Scamp 19) had two major leaks in less than two years.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gordon2 View Post
The same people who tell you that fiberglass campers don't leak (at least as they are actually built) also sell swamp land in Florida as waterfront prime real estate.
Gee, I’ve lived in Florida since 1985 and have never had anyone try to sell me swamp land. Nor do I know anyone else who has. Not sure how much remains, however, as the COE has screwed up much of the environment here “draining swamp land” and “rerouting” rivers. Then again, nobody has tried to sell me the Brooklyn Bridge or the news stand in Grand Central Station either. On the other hand, the manufacturer of one of my previous trailers did try to sell me on the fact that the vent fan couldn’t possibly leak because “they put butyl tape under every one of them.” Funny, but when I repaired it, I didn’t see any butyl tape. Guess they got a batch of butyl tape that “evaporates.”
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Old 02-13-2018, 07:07 AM   #10
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Name: Gordon
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There are leaks and then there are LEAKS. I suspect that few people are as thorough as I have been when checking for leaks. Some were obvious, like the completely soaked throw run that I found on the floor after a rain. Others were more difficult to detect and sometimes its hard to tell if its condensation or a small leak. A complete check requires reaching along the floor edge at the shell / wall for as far as one can stretch in every nook and cranny, maybe with a paper towel to see if any water is soaked up. These small leaks might well dry up before it they are detected, and might not be found until mold or wood rot gets extensive. With the covered walls, water from a roof leak has to travel all the way to the floor before it gets to a place where it can be seen or felt, and again, might dry up before its seen. So I think there are likely more small leaks in campers then people know about. There certainly are many cases of neglect in which major damage occurs but is not obvious at first glance.
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Old 02-13-2018, 07:10 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Borrego Dave View Post
When you say caulking...does that mean a bead run around the outside frame edge or are you using "caulking" as the name for butyl tape after pulling the windows and reseating them? No matter where a leak is coming from it will end up in the lower cabinets/floor and one small leak can produce a big puddle with no where to exit. How are the rubber glass seals for shrinking or any roof top items for a good seal?
Agree. Once windows start leaking, unless it is from something simple like plugged weep holes, caulking the perimeter will generally not stop it more than temporarily. The fix is to pull the window, clean off all old sealants, and reinstall with fresh butyl tape. Non-silicone caulk around the perimeter is for appearance if desired, but the butyl does the sealing.

Your can search YouTube using "reseal RV window" for tutorials. It's not hard, but it usually takes two people.

To verify the leak is really coming from the window and not, say, a roof vent, take a garden hose on a dry day and apply water to the side of the trailer you think has a problem. Start at the bottom and work your way up until moisture appears inside.
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Old 02-13-2018, 07:57 AM   #12
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Name: Billy Sharpstick
Trailer: Burro - '99 wide body 14
Florida
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Borrego Dave View Post
When you say caulking...does that mean a bead run around the outside frame edge or are you using "caulking" as the name for butyl tape after pulling the windows and reseating them? No matter where a leak is coming from it will end up in the lower cabinets/floor and one small leak can produce a big puddle with no where to exit. How are the rubber glass seals for shrinking or any roof top items for a good seal?
Butyl tape on the roof vent fan and the one window I replaced. Silicone on the front and one side window around the edges. Rubber window seals are old and stiff.
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