Water getting in? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-22-2011, 03:28 PM   #1
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Name: Judy
Trailer: 2001 Scamp
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Water getting in?

Well, here I am 3 days into my new camper and I have discovered some moisture. The trailer has that (tell-tale?) is it just old? is there moisture in here? smell. I have been keeping my eyes out for the water and today have found it. Let me preface this by saying, this poor trailer came down from Oregon on Sunday in a huge(!!!!) rain/wind storm on Sunday. That being said there is "the smell".
So, I found that the carpet under the 2 front compartments is definetely a little wet. The wall covering where it meets the floor is also damp about 3 or 4 inches up at those spots. I was thinking maybe the front window was leaking but the wall underneath isn't wet. Nor is the wall on the way down wet. And the cushions aren't wet. I have also unzipped the cushions and non have mildew. After taking a look around outside and underneath it looks like it might be the black seal(?) piece that runs around the bottom of the whole trailer. It looks a little bent and well, old, in some places.
I left the camper open all day yesterday. Windows wide and door open. It was sunny and windy so I was hoping it would air out. No moisture on interior windows this morning. Blah, blah blah. Any advise?
Thanks in advance!
Judy
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Old 03-22-2011, 03:32 PM   #2
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One more thing..the middle front compartment is dry. I notice that it is contructed differently than the side ones. Seems to lean more toward water coming up rather than down?
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Old 03-22-2011, 05:03 PM   #3
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water can travel up with the 50 to 60MPH freeway wind blast. IF you are unable to find the area. I see an rv place in petaluma that can do a leak test. They pressurize the inside and spray soapy water all around the exterior and look for bubbles. Others will chime in here with better tips.
http://www.rvleaks.com/locations.htm
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Old 03-22-2011, 05:30 PM   #4
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I would start be checking the small drain weep holes in the front window frame. A lot of times they gunk up with leaves and debris and water runs inside. Even though the wall is not wet, it could have been water that came in while the railer was in tow through the storm. Gravity and time will show a dry wall where the floor may be still damp. It quite possably could have been coming up from the bottom, but more cases than not its a window leak.
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Old 03-22-2011, 05:37 PM   #5
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Judy, Congrats on your new trailer. Sorry your finding an issue so soon. But wanted to pipe in and say, Ken is on target! Water leaks can travel. It's not necessarily where you find the water that is the source of the leak.

It could be coming up, but more than likely it's coming down (gravity)........ The place Ken suggested sounds great if reasonable. Let us know what you find out.
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Old 03-22-2011, 05:53 PM   #6
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Check where the gas line and where the trailer light wires come in, that could let water in at highway speeds.
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Old 03-22-2011, 07:06 PM   #7
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Judy:
This is an issue I have been in the process of learning about for the past 11 years, and I have a few conclusions.

Mark mentions something I have dealt with just recently. If you have Hehr sliders, open up the sliding part all the way. You will see a kind of track the window slides in at the bottom which has one or more cutouts in the bottom. This track can be pried up easily and cleaned on top and down underneath. If you remove a significant amount of gunk you can assume that the vent system is clogged up. I'd recommend some of the green plastic coated wire which in my case is marketed as "Garden Training Wire." Stick it into the vents and make sure the path is clear. You should be able to see it in the bottom of the track if you wiggle it around some, even with the perforated track in place.

If you have a slider window in front there is another issue I can offer an opinion about regarding what to do if you get leaks being forced in while on the road. Let me know.
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Old 03-22-2011, 08:03 PM   #8
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Thanks for all of your thoughts on this issue. My 10 year old son is on Spring Break this week so I am trying not to spend ALL of my time on the trailer. The moisture hasn't completely dampened (ha ha) my spirit about the trailer. The front window does not open. Its solid plexiglass. The wall covering (fur, as my husband calls it) might make it tough to really tell if the wall is wet. You sort of have to get behind it to feel the moisture. The flooring is also I believe original carpet. I am thinking of tearing it out and putting in vinyl. That would let me know if there is water on the floor also. What do folks do with water issues? Do you start taking down the wall covering? Too bad, it's starting to rain out again and is suppose to rain all week on and off. The "smell" is what is making me think this isn't a new issue. The trailer seems to be in really nice shape. The side windows work wonderfully and seem secure. The rear opening (slide) window has alot of gunk in it that will have to be cleaned out. Thanks for the advise on that. I am afraid it might take some time to chase this water issue down. Open to all thoughts. Thanks.
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Old 03-22-2011, 08:12 PM   #9
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Check to see if there is a gap in the window gasket. Even a 1/8 gap is enough for the window to seep water. Especially if you're crusin' through a driving rain. Windshield caulk can be used to seal that gap. The black "seal" that runs around the entire bottom of the Scamp isn't a seal at all and it's strictly decorative as it covers the raw edges. You could take it completely off and leave the holes where the rivets are and it wouldn't cause a leak in the trailer. I also agree with Greg. Check the front lower areas of the body where the wiring and gas lines go through. Especially the electrical from the tug pigtail.

Let us know how it goes.
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Old 03-22-2011, 08:36 PM   #10
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All right, I still have some daylight here. Going to go take another look see underneath!
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Old 03-22-2011, 09:00 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Shaffer View Post
I would start be checking the small drain weep holes in the front window frame. A lot of times they gunk up with leaves and debris and water runs inside. Even though the wall is not wet, it could have been water that came in while the railer was in tow through the storm. Gravity and time will show a dry wall where the floor may be still damp. It quite possably could have been coming up from the bottom, but more cases than not its a window leak.
Would the drain/weep hole issue be only if the window was one that opens?
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Old 03-22-2011, 09:01 PM   #12
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Yes, only windows that open. There are no weep holes in the solid front plexiglass window. That's why I mentioned the gap in the gasket where it joins together.
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Old 03-22-2011, 09:07 PM   #13
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Name: Judy
Trailer: 2001 Scamp
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Per Walthinsen View Post
Judy:
This is an issue I have been in the process of learning about for the past 11 years, and I have a few conclusions.

Mark mentions something I have dealt with just recently. If you have Hehr sliders, open up the sliding part all the way. You will see a kind of track the window slides in at the bottom which has one or more cutouts in the bottom. This track can be pried up easily and cleaned on top and down underneath. If you remove a significant amount of gunk you can assume that the vent system is clogged up. I'd recommend some of the green plastic coated wire which in my case is marketed as "Garden Training Wire." Stick it into the vents and make sure the path is clear. You should be able to see it in the bottom of the track if you wiggle it around some, even with the perforated track in place.


on the road. Let me know.


Hi Per,

The front window does not open. I am thinking that this window may be the culprit non-the less. I will use your advise for the rear window as I think it is clogged up with gunk. The side windows are the Hehr and are in really nice shape. I will look and clean in case they are gunked up as well. Thank you!!

If you have a slider window in front there is another issue I can offer an opinion about regarding what to do if you get leaks being forced in while
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Old 03-22-2011, 09:18 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Greg H View Post
Check where the gas line and where the trailer light wires come in, that could let water in at highway speeds.

Hi Greg,

Checked those areas and they seem good. There isn't any caulk or anything on either entrance to the trailer but they seem tight. No rust or anything.
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