Leaks where the awning channel is attached - Fiberglass RV


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Old 01-04-2015, 07:40 PM   #1
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Leaks where the awning channel is attached

I just painted my Boler, and took off the awning channel. After the channel was reinstalled leaks started to show.
The guy who did the work just screwed the channel back on, and in fact you can see some of the screw ends coming through the inside membrane.
Any suggestions as to the correct way to re-attach the awning channel?
HELP!!!
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Old 01-04-2015, 07:56 PM   #2
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I would take the screws out one at a time so things do not fall down, and if needed replace them with stainless. Seal them with Lexel, it is a non-silicone sealer/adhesive. Also, it seems the length may not be right, now you have an opportunity to make them right. This could be a two person job, one inside, one outside.
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Old 01-04-2015, 08:02 PM   #3
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Installed my rail with 3/16" pop rivets using some Proflex sealer on the rivet and on the rivet head after it was set. You may want to research "peel" type rivets.
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Old 01-04-2015, 08:04 PM   #4
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The original awning rail is connected with aluminum pop rivets, aluminum is used because the rail is also aluminum. Remove the screws and rail, put a small "ring" of butyl tape around each mounting hole on the trailer body and then insert all the pop rivets into the holes, after all rivets are in the holes you go back and actually use the pop rivet gun to set the rivets. By using rivets they should not be seen on the inside. If you use small bolts (machine screws) you will need to cut small holes in the liner to install the nuts.
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Old 01-04-2015, 09:16 PM   #5
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I would remove it and use butyl tape under it and rivets for fastening it as well.
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Old 01-04-2015, 09:44 PM   #6
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I did an experiment with a piece of awning rail and a piece of fiberglass. With the butyl tape under the rail it did not fit tight and could be moved when riveted in place. Without the butyl tape the rail tightened down to the fiberglass and could not be moved. I know it's been both ways, I went with no butyl tape and have no leaks. Up to each individual to decide, I'm not promoting either way.
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Old 01-05-2015, 06:51 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mary and bob View Post
...With the butyl tape under the rail it did not fit tight and could be moved when riveted ...
If you use the full thickness of butyl tape what Bob experienced is very common, the rivets will shear before fully set. That is why I described using a "ring" or butyl around each hole, using this technique the butyl has room to spread out and seal around the hole while at the same time allowing the rivet to fully seat.
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Old 01-05-2015, 11:35 PM   #8
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Leaking on awaning screws

I had the same problem .the screws were working lose . so i toke out the screws, and drilled out the holes, and put that white rv putty under the rail and pop riveted the rail back on, 2 seasons , dry bigfoot. Joy was achieved. Happy trails .
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Old 01-06-2015, 05:47 AM   #9
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Rivets or bolts are better than screws. Screws tend to pull up causing the gel coat to separate from the fiberglass especially on the curves where, at least on my trailer, it is thicker. The rain gutter above my door had to be repaired because it was installed with screws. Raz
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Old 01-06-2015, 01:11 PM   #10
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When using butyl tape to attach anything I do a dry fit of the item up against the trailer first to see where the peaks and valleys of the fiberglass finish are, Then adjust the amount of butyl I put onto the bottom of what every I am attaching accordingly. As others have indicated it does not need to be under the entire piece - just enough around the rivet holes to prevent a leak.
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Old 01-06-2015, 02:36 PM   #11
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When I mounted mine I used a ribbon of butyl tape under the whole flange. I used pan head bolts and large fender washers where they would be hidden inside the cabinets. In areas that would be seen inside I used pop rivets hidden and sitting under the rat fur. I sealed under the bolt head and rivet heads in the top flange with 3/M 4200 marine sealant. I have had no issues in 2 years. I do not travel with my bag awning hung on the outside I put it up at the camp site. I store my trailer outside exposed 24-7 and in the So cal Sun I figure the awning will last much longer this way. With my rear slider window keeping the awning inside when not in use is a no brainier.
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Old 01-06-2015, 07:37 PM   #12
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I used peel rivets as Bob suggested. Got them from McMaster Carr. Butyl under the awning rail and a blob under the plastic washers and snap caps I used as well.

Leave my awning on all the short two month summer we get here in NY and I travel with it on too. I have a slider rear window and have not put awning in during travel but I could if I thought of it.




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Old 01-06-2015, 08:46 PM   #13
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To put credit where it belongs, Wendy learned of the peel pivots and told me about them. I believe she also had the same experience as me with our Shademaker bag awnings of water infiltrating into the bag when the awning is rolled up into the bag. Normally I travel with the bag awning on the rail. After washing and drying the awning last fall we rolled it up and slid it off the rail and stored it in our house basement, with plans to reinstall it on the trailer before heading south for the winter. That plan changed when we bought a used Casita 17 with a Dometic roll out awning that is a whole other problem. Set up and rolled out at this time, the fun will start when we try to get it back in.
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Old 01-09-2015, 08:28 AM   #14
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No need to afford credit to me Bob, but your writing on everything always speaks volumes to your character.

I also rolled up my awning for winter and stored in my basement after treating with Concrobium. Noticed some algae and mildew. Didn't come off though. I'll have to work harder at it this year but have no idea what to use. I may have even tried a bleach cleaner but I may be making that up.


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