Water leak in 98 16 ft LD Casita - Fiberglass RV


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Old 12-27-2018, 01:40 PM   #1
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Name: outdoorman
Trailer: Casita
Georgia
Posts: 50
Water leak in 98 16 ft LD Casita

my trailer 's floor is completely wet after recent rains. I mean, not an area of the entire floor is dry; only walls and ceiling are dry. Over the past few years I've owned the trailer, the floor would be damp from time to time esp in the center aisle between the frig and the kitchen sink/stove. the floor has always been 'springy' at that location. Lately,I've notice the spingyness seems to have spread in size. Does this sound like water damage or rot to the wooden floor. I'm hoping this is not the ruin/end of my Casita. Does this sound like an expensive repair? It does not sound like something your average owner can repair to me.
My first thought is to dry out the trailer completely; perhaps rent a industrial dehumidifier/dryer and put in the trailer for a day or so.
Unfortunately, rain is in the forecast in a couple of days.
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Old 12-27-2018, 02:25 PM   #2
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Name: bill
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19; 1977 Trillium 1300
North Carolina
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Yes, it sounds like rot.

Owners replace floors in FG trailers all the time. But it is a major undertaking. I can't imagine paying someone to do it. Cost would be quite high. Ignore soft areas at your peril. Will only get worse. Need to find water source. When is the last time windows were resealed? Doesn't sound like plumbing as you are getting leaks when it is sitting. Refrigerator vents are a second source. Roof vents, hood vent are also possibles. If floor is rotted up front, getting to the plywood under the bathroom is a big job.

Lots of threads out there on the web on rotten Casita floor and repair. Casita has changed their floor design multiple times since 1998. The trailer is designed like a bathtub. Any water that leaks in cannot get out. So its like putting a piece of OSB in a bathtub filled with water.

Got to get the trailer under cover. Do you have room to put up one of those Harbor Freight carports? Drying it out but leaving it outside with its current leaks is not going to work in GA. And you are going to need to get it under cover during the repair process. You are talking removing riveted cabinets, replacing floor in sections.

If your forecast is anything like ours this weekend (in the mtns) they are talking 3 inches of rain!

"over the past few years" + stored outside = serious.
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Old 12-27-2018, 03:03 PM   #3
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Name: outdoorman
Trailer: Casita
Georgia
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I'm towing it home from the outside lot it was stored at. I can put it in my drive way and wrap a tarp on it for the weekend to keep out more water from the roof.
Looking at it over lunch, I noticed that many of the rivet caps I replaced a couple of years ago have rotted away and expose the rivets.
Also the rivets on the aluminum body band have gotten bad too.
Also the rubber window 'seals' that can be replaced are old and in poor shape.
So these are areas I can address right away.

Do you have to have skills of a wood craftsman or carpenter to replace the floor?
I would do anything if I thought I could do it but not get in over my head.
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Old 12-27-2018, 03:08 PM   #4
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Name: outdoorman
Trailer: Casita
Georgia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thrifty bill View Post
Yes, it sounds like rot.

Owners replace floors in FG trailers all the time. But it is a major undertaking. I can't imagine paying someone to do it. Cost would be quite high. Ignore soft areas at your peril. Will only get worse. Need to find water source. When is the last time windows were resealed? Doesn't sound like plumbing as you are getting leaks when it is sitting. Refrigerator vents are a second source. Roof vents, hood vent are also possibles. If floor is rotted up front, getting to the plywood under the bathroom is a big job.

Lots of threads out there on the web on rotten Casita floor and repair. Casita has changed their floor design multiple times since 1998. The trailer is designed like a bathtub. Any water that leaks in cannot get out. So its like putting a piece of OSB in a bathtub filled with water.

Got to get the trailer under cover. Do you have room to put up one of those Harbor Freight carports? Drying it out but leaving it outside with its current leaks is not going to work in GA. And you are going to need to get it under cover during the repair process. You are talking removing riveted cabinets, replacing floor in sections.

If your forecast is anything like ours this weekend (in the mtns) they are talking 3 inches of rain!

"over the past few years" + stored outside = serious.
What approach to find where the leak is?
Since the floor is wet all over the trailer but the walls are dry does this suggest something?

Is there a way of detecting condition of the floors are without removing the carpet?
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Old 12-27-2018, 03:17 PM   #5
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Name: outdoorman
Trailer: Casita
Georgia
Posts: 50
One other thing just thought of:
I have been leaving the roof-mounted fantastic fan open so air can circulate in the trailer and prevent moisture trapped inside in humid Georgia.
Hadn't thought of rain being blown in that way because it is covered with a plastic shell piece but can this be a cause?
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Old 12-27-2018, 05:08 PM   #6
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Name: bill
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19; 1977 Trillium 1300
North Carolina
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Without careful and thorough inspection, its hard to tell if the problem is minor or serious.

I doubt the leak is the vent.

Because of the wall covering, water travels to the floor regardless of where it leaks through the shell. Google Casita leaks and Casita floor rot to see more.
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Old 12-28-2018, 11:22 AM   #7
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Name: Tom
Trailer: Sprinter 'til I buy
Denver, CO
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You may be able to isolate the leak(s) with a garden hoze nozzle, and a step ladder. Maybe start with windows, - easier. But rivets are a good guess. Having a second person watching inside would help a lot.
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Old 12-28-2018, 12:02 PM   #8
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Name: R.T.
Trailer: Casita 17'
Georgia
Posts: 124
The outside door on the 16's, which has a curved door, have a tendency to warp and leak. On the one we had you could see light around it at the bottom. The Scamp's also have that problem.

On the Casita travel trailer forum there is a fresh thread about spongy floors with some solutions also.
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Old 01-02-2019, 12:02 PM   #9
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Name: Vic
Trailer: Casita
Florida
Posts: 1
Hi from Sarasota, FL.

Concerning your wet floor, I have a ‘95 Casita that I bought without a freshwater storage tank. When I replaced my flooring, I realized that my subfloor was very damaged. The subfloor in mine was a particle board or strand board of sorts. I think the fresh water tank leaked and soaked the whole floor and a previous owner just removed the tank. If you have a window leak, the carpet on your wall would would be wet. Or, if you take showers in your camper, the floor drain may be defective and leaking.
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Old 01-02-2019, 01:06 PM   #10
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Name: Julian
Trailer: 1998 Casita 16 Spirit
Nevada
Posts: 4
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Have you heard of Clear Penetrating Epoxy Sealant (CPES)? It was developed for repair to wood ribs, etc. on fiberglass boats (https://www.jamestowndistributors.co...SAAEgKgqPD_BwE). Before going crazy and replacing the floor, if the damage is localized or in hard to reach areas, like under the bathroom, this may be an acceptable solution. It is expensive and the wood must be totally dry, but when mixed the CPES has the consistency of water, will soak into the punky rotten wood and when dry is hard enough to hold a #10 wood screw. I've been using it on trailers and rot around windows in my home for years and it really works.
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