Snoozy foam core is wet - Fiberglass RV


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 08-06-2019, 01:34 PM   #1
Member
 
Name: Douglas
Trailer: Lil Snoozy
MD
Posts: 98
Registry
Snoozy foam core is wet

I discovered water inside the walls of our Lil Snoozy.

We are converting the jackknife sofa to a foam-cushion sofa with removable plywood floor so we can more easily get to storage under the sofa area. As part of that process I was adding screws in the wooden strip that goes along the back of the sofa platform. I predrilled the holes with a 1/8" bit before installing the additional screws. When I drilled one of the holes through the fiberglass and into the foam core, water started dripping out. :-((

I drilled additional holes through the wooden strip and below it. A total of three of the holes dripped water. The first one dripped the most, saturating the wooden strip around it and a paper towel. The second hole dripped enough to saturate a paper towel and the third was only a little water. All the other holes are dry and the dust coming out of the holes was dry. On the attached photo the three numbered circles show the first three holes. All the other black dots on the wall are drill holes plus the ones in the wooden strip.

I have a plan and some questions. Any ideas or suggestions are welcome.

1. The source. I don't know where the water is coming from. It could be coming from the belt line joint where I believe the raw ends of the foam core fiberglass are covered with a trim piece, which is caulked on the top side only. It could also be coming from the window above the sofa area. I am pretty sure that Lil Snoozy did not seal the cut edges of the window opening with epoxy before installing the window. Any water getting into the foam core there would have to pass the belt line joint, which I think is unlikely.
Questions - Does anybody know if the raw joints under the trim piece of the belt line are sealed? Are the cut edges of the window opening sealed? What does the belt line joint look like under the trim piece?

2. Extent of water infiltration. I think the amount of water in the core is minimal and I have drained a lot of it out based on all the dry test holes. I plan to use a water detector to see if I can roughly map the extent of water in the core. After reading about the limitations of water detectors used by marine surveyors to check out used boats, I am under no illusions to its usefulness, but will try it anyway. I will also use the percussion method with a brass hammer.

3. The fix.
a. I will recaulk the trim piece covering the belt line joint. It was done the night before we picked up the trailer and there are places where it looks a little sparse, including right where I found the water.
Question - Does anybody know what kind of caulk Richard used in 2017?

b. If my water detecting shows only a limited area, I will leave the drain holes and test holes open and put water-detecting paper under them. I will check them periodically to see if I fixed the problem.

c. If the area seems larger, I will pull out the water tank and drill more test/drainage holes until I have the wet area mapped out. Then add paper and monitor as before.

d. I am tempted to pull out the window and see if there is water damage to the core. If so, I will seal the raw edge of the core with epoxy and reinstall the window using butyl tape.

I have seen no evidence of any water anywhere else in the trailer despite numerous screw holes that attach the cabinetry etc., but maybe the screws mostly seal the holes so no water drips out. I have drilled other holes into the foam from the inside and have seen no water.
Attached Thumbnails
Dripping holes 1 crop.jpg  
__________________

Air Doug is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-2019, 05:20 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
charlsara's Avatar
 
Name: Charlie
Trailer: 2014 Lil Snoozy
North Carolina
Posts: 585
Registry
I have never heard of this happening. The form core in ours seems to solid to have water soak into it. I wonder if the fiberglass and core layers are separated at that location ,letting the water get in. You may be right that it is leaking in from the belly band. I think the window would be unlikely as it would have the leak through the belly band area.
__________________

charlsara is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-2019, 05:24 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
charlsara's Avatar
 
Name: Charlie
Trailer: 2014 Lil Snoozy
North Carolina
Posts: 585
Registry
Another thought. Is it possible that water was spilled or condensation got behind that wood strip and entered around those mounting screws.
charlsara is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-2019, 05:26 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
charlsara's Avatar
 
Name: Charlie
Trailer: 2014 Lil Snoozy
North Carolina
Posts: 585
Registry
You could leave the holes uncovered and spray water on the belly band strip to test.
charlsara is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-2019, 05:30 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
charlsara's Avatar
 
Name: Charlie
Trailer: 2014 Lil Snoozy
North Carolina
Posts: 585
Registry
Richard used silicon. Not a good idea. Nothing, not even more silicon will stick to it very well.
charlsara is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-2019, 05:39 PM   #6
Member
 
Name: Douglas
Trailer: Lil Snoozy
MD
Posts: 98
Registry
Charlie, the screws seem to seal the holes pretty tightly but that is worth thinking about. I don't see any evidence of water on the wood strip other than what wicked into it when I drilled into the core and the water came out. We have had only slight condensation on any of our trips.

I agree that a window leak would have to make it past the bonded seam between the trailer halves. I still would like to hear from someone who actually saw the seam before the trim strip was installed so I had a better idea of whether water could pass it.

I did take a small ball peen hammer to that whole area and there are a few isolated spots that seem to thud rather than crack. But there is no evidence of widespread delamination or water saturation. My water detector comes in a week.

We have had a heavy thunderstorm for the last hour with some driving rain. I went out to look at the weep holes and there doesn't seem to be any additional water. But I will check again later.
Air Doug is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2019, 08:12 AM   #7
Senior Member
 
charlsara's Avatar
 
Name: Charlie
Trailer: 2014 Lil Snoozy
North Carolina
Posts: 585
Registry
I wonder if a little water could have got into the mold when the core was being installed. That would be the only possibility other than some separation or a tiny hole all the way through the hull. I believe you are taking the right course of action. If no more comes out you could pump in some thin epoxy or just ignore it. I would be interested to know what you find. I did see one hull as it was being assembled. The body turns 90 degrees to form a lip on the top and bottom. They glassed over the inside and notched the lip for the SS bolts that attach the cabinets. I didnít see how they sealed the lip or if they simply attached the belly band with silicon.
charlsara is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2019, 10:14 AM   #8
Junior Member
 
dbensen's Avatar
 
Name: Doug
Trailer: Lil Snoozy
Maryland
Posts: 14
Where in relation to the window are the holes. I'm wondering if the window needs to be resealed. Just a thought.
dbensen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2019, 11:36 AM   #9
Senior Member
 
charlsara's Avatar
 
Name: Charlie
Trailer: 2014 Lil Snoozy
North Carolina
Posts: 585
Registry
Snoozy foam core is wet

I am not sure where the bolts are but they would only be where the cabinets rise above the belt line. I had two of the small windows in the bed area out when I installed the headliner. They seal against the body with a rubber gasket. There was no sealant. If the larger windows are the same and they seem to be, pulling a window should be simple. Just take out the screws around the inside frame and it can be pushed out.
charlsara is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2019, 04:13 PM   #10
Member
 
Name: Douglas
Trailer: Lil Snoozy
MD
Posts: 98
Registry
Charlie, the way you describe the lip is how I thought they were built. Richard told me that the halves are glued together with a bond that will never come apart and the trim piece is only cosmetic. Unfortunately, the raw ends should have been sealed before the trim piece was installed. Reading foam core boat literature, it is clear that through-holes need to be sealed and bolts bedded.

I think the water drip in hole 3 increased after yesterday evening's deluge. We have another coming this afternoon so I will check again. UPDATE: Had a long, hard storm and new water is weeping from hole 3.

Doug, the water I found is under the rear (left in the picture) half of the window. I may have to remove and check the window as you suggest.

So, the two main suspects for water entry are from 1) water getting under the trim piece through bad caulk and entering the un-sealed ends of the lower hull at the joint, or 2) water getting into the core at the window and traveling down, then out the top hull and into the bottom hull at the joint.

I suspect that I will be pulling the trim piece off of the hull joint and looking for evidence of water.

Right now I am going to wait until I get the water detector. Plus, I may seal off the window with plastic and tape and see if water still comes in after the next big thunderstorm.
Air Doug is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2019, 06:37 PM   #11
Senior Member
 
charlsara's Avatar
 
Name: Charlie
Trailer: 2014 Lil Snoozy
North Carolina
Posts: 585
Registry
I think your on the right track. Taping the window is a good idea. Hopefully if you have to pull the trim. You can get it off without damage.
charlsara is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2019, 06:47 PM   #12
Senior Member
 
Mike Magee's Avatar
 
Name: Michael
Trailer: Li'l Hauley
Oklahoma
Posts: 5,788
Seal the window and test with a garden hose... make your own rainstorm!

I get water intrusion from my door, but no idea if there is water in my core like you are finding.
__________________
In the '60s, people took LSD to make the world seem weird.
Now the world is weird, and people take Prozac to make it seem normal.
Mike Magee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2019, 05:42 PM   #13
Member
 
Name: Douglas
Trailer: Lil Snoozy
MD
Posts: 98
Registry
I got the moisture meter today. It indicates full wet for about a foot laterally under the #2 and #3 drain holes I drilled, basically directly under the last foot of the overlying window. The fender is in the way so I can't tell yet how far down the water goes. I will have to pull the wheel. Above the drain holes I drilled there is some water but fairly low on the moisture scale. Above the belt-line seam the meter reads full wet under the last 6 inches of the window.

So it looks like the water is coming in from the window. I will pull the window, seal the foam core of the window opening with epoxy, and re-install the window. I haven't decided whether or not to use the old gasket, try to find a new one, or use butyl tape.

I did a brief survey of the rest of the trailer and found two small areas of moisture under the other big windows. So far it looks like I won't have to pull the trim piece off of the belt line and seal the raw edges.

I used a Ryobi E49MM01 Pinless Digital Moisture Meter.
Air Doug is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2019, 07:04 PM   #14
Senior Member
 
charlsara's Avatar
 
Name: Charlie
Trailer: 2014 Lil Snoozy
North Carolina
Posts: 585
Registry
I am glad you found it. Two observations; There must be some delamination of the glass /core for the water to enter. And the way the windows are constructed, you must have a leak around the gasket. Amazing that it is getting past the belt line.
__________________

charlsara is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 2 (0 members and 2 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Boler door...rotten to the core ;) Gippeto Problem Solving | Owners Helping Owners 2 07-20-2018 08:46 AM
screws stripping in old foam core Stephe Hi, I am.... 5 09-15-2016 10:32 AM
My Nida-Core Project Night Sailor Modifications, Alterations and Updates 15 06-01-2015 02:26 PM

» Upcoming Events
No events scheduled in
the next 465 days.
» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:27 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions Inc.