Please help. Sourcing out leaks after rainstorm - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 06-07-2012, 11:15 PM   #15
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Name: Tracy
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it's a start ...

Well, luckily I was able to leave the trailer open today to air out and dry while I was at work and my Melamine only sustained minimal damage as I had already applied two or three strong coats that had a good opportunity to dry for several hours before the dreaded rainstorm. Tonight I was able to lightly sand the damaged spots and repaint a couple of extra coats.
While it looked as if we were going to have a dry evening, about an hour ago the clouds started rolling in so in an effort to prevent further damage, I taped a garbage bag over the interior of my roof vent as I was unable to climb up there tonight to cover it from the outside. I figure at least this way I will know if water is leaking in through this vent as it will pool into the garbage bag and I can check it in the morning before leaving for work.
I will attempt to try all of your wonderful suggestions over the weekend and hopefully identify the leaky bits . Thank you all once again....it is a work in progress. TGIF!!!!
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Old 06-09-2012, 11:52 AM   #16
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This forum on leaks is so timely, my husband is removing rear window as we speak. I get the fun job of researching this problem. We are new owners of a 76 Trillium from Alberta and the forementioned weather has caused a few problems. Thanks for the ideas on problem solving for leaks, ..... Off to look for butyl tape.
Lynne
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Old 06-09-2012, 01:02 PM   #17
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.........Off to look for butyl tape.
Lynne
Be aware that there are two similar looking products - putty tape and butyl tape. They look almost identical, but butyl stretches into an infinitely thin string like chewing gum while putty breaks fairly easily. Get the butyl.
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Old 06-09-2012, 10:29 PM   #18
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Soooo a quick update ... there is a storm advisory for this weekend with an expectation of up to 100 mm of rain!!! The other day I taped plastic over the inside of my roof vent as a light rain was expected and because I couldn't make it on the roof I figured at least I could see if any water pooled in the plastic .... and voila, it was dry! However, I had also covered my bunks with plastic and noticed there was a small pool of water on the bunk which led me back to the replaced side slide windows. I reexamined the outer sealings and could see the butyl tape with a clear seal all around the exterior. They both appear to be quite sealed and secure. However the interior around the side windows was not finished. I decided to purchase some vinyl weatherstripping type seal that resembles wood trim to install around both side windows. I also purchased some window putty strips and pushed them all around the edges today. When I did that, I noticed moisture around the bottom edge of one window so I think that is my leak area. I left the putty in place for tonight and will see when the heavy rains start tomorrow what I am faced with....dry or sorry about your luck, try again??? I will keep you posted. Thanks once again for all the troubleshooting tips. They have been incredibly helpful!
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Old 06-10-2012, 06:53 AM   #19
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Tracy, You may want to check and see if the weep holes in the outside window track are plugged. (that is if you have them) Sometimes people will think their windows are leaking when really all they have to do is clean out the weep holes. And if your window is leaking, I would take it out and put it back in the right way with butyl tape. They you will have piece of mind that its done right.
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Old 06-10-2012, 11:22 AM   #20
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Heavy downpour and gusting winds throughout the night and this morning.....just checked the status of my putty job .... still leaking .
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Old 06-10-2012, 11:53 AM   #21
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Heavy downpour and gusting winds throughout the night and this morning.....just checked the status of my putty job .... still leaking .
Don't worry, over time you will track down and fix all the leaks. When there are multiple leaks - and there often are - it can be discouraging. Break it down into bite size chunks and fix one area at a time.
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Old 06-10-2012, 12:27 PM   #22
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Well, one good note .. the weather is providing a natural troubleshooting environment! In between storm systems I have mopped up the latest dribble ... poked an awl into the weep holes (Thank you, Tim) and bolstered the putty along the bottom edge as this is likely the entry point if not the origin as the bottom aluminum edge is wet and small beads of water had formed. I believe, as Tim has stated, it may have been due to clogged weep holes as the awl did find some resistance when I poked it in especially on the leaky window. Fingers crossed for round 2!
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Old 06-10-2012, 01:36 PM   #23
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The window is back in with new wood around frame, screws and butyl tape. We have had rain for the past 12 hours and the unit is dry.
Thanks for the info.
Lynne
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Old 06-13-2012, 06:56 PM   #24
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Unfortunately, I was not so lucky....I waited two days for it to rain again so I could assess whether my fixes have worked and alas, there is still leaking. I have determined it is coming from the bottom of one window and also a small amount from the roof vent...I would cry but that would just add to the moisture!! lol I will need to scrap the caulking away from the roof vent and remove it, butyl tape it and see where I am at. The window I am not sure about as they have been sealed using the butyl tape and then a clear caulking (likely silicone) around the edges. There is only one leaking. I hesitate to pull it apart at this point. I did buy some butyl caulking and think I might try caulking around the interior frame to see what happens first. Soooo disappointing!!
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Old 06-13-2012, 08:45 PM   #25
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I'm not sure how your using the butyl tape so I figure it's worth posting this link, half way down the page are pictures of butyl tape applied to a part and after install with the tape squeezing out, waiting to be trimmed off.
http://www.fiberglassrv.com/forums/f56/refurbishing-my-77-scamp-51268-3.html

Butyl tape really only works if it's put between two surfaces that are then tightened together.


Don't think you will get much luck from caulking or trying to seal windows from the inside. Generally it works much better to "shed" water than to try and create a water proof seal which is what you would be attempting from the inside.


I think you are on the right track to remove and re-tape the roof vent, could be that the vent leak is letting some water run down behind the inside covering and when it hits the window frame it has a way out from behind.


Will echo what someone said earlier, wonder why the extra caulk on window if they did not have a leak? You could bucket test just the window on a dry day to be sure removal was required.


Any chance you could post picture(s) of your window?
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Old 06-14-2012, 12:57 AM   #26
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I agree that as you know the vent is leaking it is very possible the water is coming in via that and running down the side towards the window and working its way along the window edge to the bottom..... pull the vent and reinstall with butyl tape only - put the caulking gun down ;-) and see what happens.
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Old 06-14-2012, 06:46 AM   #27
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I agree that as you know the vent is leaking it is very possible the water is coming in via that and running down the side towards the window and working its way along the window edge to the bottom..... pull the vent and reinstall with butyl tape only - put the caulking gun down ;-) and see what happens.
I agree with Carol and pull the vent. I have done this a few times and its worth the little extra effort to do the job right the first time. If the weep holes and after pulling the vent don't stop the window from leaking then you will most likely have to pull the window also. Just make sure you clean everything good before putting it all back together.
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Old 06-14-2012, 02:35 PM   #28
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Thank you, everyone! I am going to climb up on the roof this weekend and pull the vent and tape ... is it a job I can do easily myself?? The other window opposite the roof vent side is also leaking which I didn't notice at first therefore the vent may not be my only source however I will pull it and butyl tape it first ... and I will definitely put the caulking gun down . I have examined the outside of the windows again and they have been installed using butyl tape and appear to be done properly. I will post pics. Thank you so much for all your input. I am truly grateful....a little disheartened but grateful!! I have contacted a couple of RV places and they are booking into July which is too late for me but I hesitate to pull the windows myself unless I have no other option .
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