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Old 01-09-2010, 03:24 PM   #1
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Rubber Roof Deteriorating??

This past summer I noticed a white powdery substance on my driveway around my trailer. I then came to the realization that it was from the rubber roof. I have never treated the roof, nor have I had any issues with it. I climbed up on a ladder and found that the roof was chalky and when I rubbed it, something would come off of it (kind of like when you rub dry glue and it balls up). Has anyone ever seen this before? Is my roof deteriorating or disintegrating? Is there anything I do short of replacing it?
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Old 01-09-2010, 06:02 PM   #2
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I'm not familiar with the trailer rubber roofs but I assume they're the same as my motorhome that is now 13 years old. It is always parked in the sun and I also get that white residue all around the motorhome. The rubber roof oxidizes and the oxidation washes off with the rain.

Since my rig is 13 years old it seems this is just part of the process. I do check my rubber roof every year for cracks around the seams and edges and apply appropriate rubber roof caulking whenever I find or suspect a break. (You can not use traditional caulking on these roofs.)

This year I plan to paint my rubber roof with rubber roof special paint. In your case you should have many more years of oxidation without concern, though I would yearly check for breaks around cutouts in the roof and at the edges.
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Old 01-10-2010, 09:08 AM   #3
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I found only one crack in the caulk around one of the blackwater tank roof vents. Other than that, it seems okay. There are a lot of cleaner/conditoner products on the market for rubber roofs, but I've never used any. Maybe I should...
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Old 01-10-2010, 09:37 AM   #4
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Definitely only use cleaners designed for rubber roofs. Improper cleaners can damage the roof. Cleaning the roof removes the oxidation but does nothing to prolong the life as far as I can tell.

Definitely seal any cracks as soon as you find them with an apporpiate rubber roof caulk.
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Old 01-10-2010, 08:04 PM   #5
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Hi JPS

How often do you wash your roof? What you are describing sorta sound like dirt and oxide off the roof. When I wash mine, the water does run white streaks down the side of the camper. I use Tide laundry detergent. It cuts the dirt at least and I keep after it. I wash the roof about every 2 Ĺ to 3 months. In the winter it might go 3 Ĺ pushing 4 months.

I also use 303 UV protectent on it and any of the plastic up there. This helps slow down the oxiding that is normal and helps slow down the dirt sticking. It for sure extends the life of the plastic from becoming brittle.

The caulk, YES every time your up there look at it all over. So mine gets that caulk check on the same washing intervals. When any split or hair line crack starts that is the time to deal with it. In the beginning stages they are like splits to an air bubble below some times. I dig down into the split, make sure I get into total good Dicor and then caulk more Dicor over it. You need to keep a few tubes around so when you need it, you got it.

It the TT is stored out side it seems to advance those fine slits quicker. I have 2, 2004 units. One lives inside the other out. The T2499 inside is like new on the roof. I have only had to dress 1 maybe 2, fine slits. The T310 Lives outside. I have had to do several including one rear corner that as I dug I wanted to make sure I got that area perfect.

Good luck and hope this helps.

John
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Old 01-11-2010, 05:11 PM   #6
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I wash the sides of the trailer 2-3 times a year, but never the roof. Our trailer's going on 5 years old and this is the first time I'm seeing this powder. It's covered from November to April.
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