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Old 05-20-2022, 11:22 AM   #1
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Leaky roof

Hello,
I have a spot that started dripping water the last time I used the camper. It rained 3Ē in 36 hrs, so it wasnít the typical rainstorm. I drove for about an hour in this heavy rain, then set up camper(still raining). No leak until about six hours later, and didnít stop dripping until the rain stopped. Got home and keeping it covered until I know how to fix it.

It was coming in to the right side of the microwave, which is on the passenger side of the camper. The red arrow show where it was dripping thru, most likely because of a screw that holds the molding there. Taking the microwave out, the circled area is the wettest. I got a moisture meter, and the moisture dramatically drops outside of this circle. Even going towards the outside corner. As in picking up no moisture.

The kway the roof looks where the AC unit is, I thought for sure the water was coming in from there because it seems to have a low spot ( trying to show that in the photo). However the meter picks up nothing between the AC and the circled area, so now Iím not sure where the water may be entering.

The corner edge of the roof to the circle there is no moisture either. The roof picture, looks like no sealant has never been applied by the gutter/roof transition. Someone has sprayed a sealant on the panel joint at some time. The trim on that gutter piece is broken, and screws revealed look rusty(tell tale sign), but I wouldnít think the molding was ever suppose to keep water out.

So to start, two main questions here:
1) I want to find out where itís leaking from and fix it.
2) I use the camper for work related trips, and my schedule is such that I need the camper until January. So, can I fix this temporarily and fix it properly starting next year. Iím afraid to apply sealants on it and not get it off later if needed.

Iím tempted to tear open the ceiling spot from inside, for the material seems to be ruined there. But, what about finding matching materials? Opening it up would let it dry out instead of molding. And opening it up from the outside seems like itís way to big of a job for now.

Thoughts????

Thanks, Jim
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Old 05-20-2022, 05:35 PM   #2
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Upon more slow and carefull scanning, there seems to be a small area about 1Ē wide near the corner that reads a bit higher than the rest of the corner edge. Iím suspecting that it may be the roadway to where the water pooled and came thru.

I scanned the rest the camper and to my surprise didnít find other wet areas. Since this one caught me by surprise, I thought for sure there would be others.

- Jim
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Old 05-28-2022, 12:24 PM   #3
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I opened up the ceiling above the microwave area. I figured that I didnít have much to lose there. The ply and paper wasnít structurally sound any more and I could figure out something in the way to repair it since it wouldnít be that visible once microwave is back in place.

There is a wire that goes thru that area, and goes thru the frame in the upper outside corner. Not sure what itís for? But since it goes out there, there is a slight suspect that water may be following that in. The wire may go to the receptical for the microwave, but why would it exit the ceiling area only to come back in for the receptical about a foot away.

I am considering opening up the center ceiling from this area to the other side of the camper, following the wire. My meter is sensing moisture thru this area, which is also along the back of the air conditioner. Not a high reading , but definitely more than the surrounding.

Iím wondering what some options are in replacing the ceiling material if I do this? Certainly others must have run into replacements. Just some Luan ply and paint it? Any old threads on this?
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Old 05-28-2022, 06:49 PM   #4
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In older posts both Dyco 20/20 and Self leveling Dicor have been mentioned for sealing. I have an aluminum roof. Is the Dyco 20/20 still recommended as the first choice, if I can get it?

Also, how should I treat the area ( circled in red) as shown in the photo? Seal the screws with what? Remove all the cosmetic cover moulding? Or just seal the holes where broken? Or is there a new moulding supply somewhere?

Thanks
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Old 05-28-2022, 09:13 PM   #5
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Hi Jim

I am only able to see your pics on my phone right now so Iím somewhat limited but will try and help as I can.

First off, the top of gutter rail to the side of the camper is now recommended to be caulked. Years ago it may not have been the practice, but I can tell you from experience in seeing leaks, that joint caulked helps for long term protection. The newer Sunlines are caulked at that joint.

I would use Dicor non sag/ no leveling lap sealant. It will bond metal to metal and it will more easily come off the day you take the roof apart. Cut the tube tip small, apply a bead and using a soapy wet finger to spread it. The bead has to be large enough to touch the full with of the top of the molding( about 1/8Ē) and touch the metal roof. The caulk will jump over the putty tape seal between the gutter and the roof edge

I have a post on applying dicor but I canít link it right now, Iím semi phone limited. Whatever you use, do not use a silicone based caulk, like normal home silicone. It will not create a lasting bond and be real hard to get off later

You must clean the surfaces to get all dirt and mild off and let it dry before applying

The rusted heads of the gutter screws are common as the camper ages. It is a poor setup as water get trapped behind the vinyl cover and can start rusting of the screw to later wick into the wood. Water down from the top uncaulked roof joint will also start tne screw rusting.

You can remove suspect rusted screws, pump the hole with dicor non sag and put a new a new screw in as a stop gap measure until you get time to deal with the root cause once you find it.

Sunline used no. 8 x 1Ē long screws. I use no 8 x 1 1/2Ē long in the 1 1/2Ē thick walled campers to bit into fresh new wood if it is not rotted out yet.

The wire you found might be the 120 volt ac power to the microwave. It is common the supply wire runs across the ceiling and down the wall to the microwave outlet. And sometimes they run the wire up the wall from down below, it all depends on the floor plan

I canít see the cable in your pics but Sunline used Romex (no 14 awg) cable for 120 volts ac and single stranded wire for 12 volt dc. If the wire is Romex then it is an AC circuit, possibly for the microwave or other AC need. Like the fridge AC outlet outside if it is in that area.

I have been able to buy new Adobe white ceiling board in Elkhart IN at two different RV surplus places. More on this later. When I can get to a PC

If your ceiling board was rot damaged, this leak is not new. It has been ongoing a good long while. It takes time, months to years to rot the wood. Your bad rain and towing may have broke the camelís back and it came through into the living space

Since I canít see your pics well on my phone I canít suggest a leak spot or spots right now. Since you have the ceiling out in the microwave area, look at the outer band board at the top of the wall. This board it at the very end of the rafters and sits on top of the wall. If that 1 1/2Ē tall board is heavy water stained then it means water was in that area. The gutter screws, screw right into that rafter outer band board

A leak down the top of the uncaulked molding, then to a screw, that rusts badly, then wicks into the wood, rots the wood and then into the ceiling area. If you take the screw out, you way find a gooey rust which is a active leak. Dry rust means it was wet but the wood may not be rotted yet. Inspection of the screw threads may lead you new leak sources or confirm it is not the problem

Hope this helps

John

It may come to be you have to take the gutter off, lean off all the old bad putty take, install new butyl sealing tape, new screws and then caulk the top. This is not that hard to do. Then you know you have a positive seal and the screw are all sound. Also. As you remove each screw place it in the roof so later you can see if some are rusted at the threads more then others. That helps tell a story of water getting into the rafter band board. Also take pics of the old putty tape as that can tell is water has leaked in.
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Old 05-29-2022, 07:20 AM   #6
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Thanks John, that gives me places/things to fix right away. I still want to get around the AC to see if that’s in need of repair too.

The area above the microwave was very soft. I thought a benefit to opening it up would be to get it drying out. It was not that nasty with mold. Just starting would be my guess. I reach in and feel the insulation towards center of camper(and the AC unit) and it don’t seem wet. There is evidence that it has been. The meter still reads wetter there, but don’t feel it. It must be reading the core of the wood, not the surface that can be felt. My experience with luan is if it gets saturated, it immediately flakes apart. So I’m guessing this leak came on fast and furious. We had the camper covered until used when this happened. Perhaps that plays into how fast the leak showed up and limited damage before noticing. But some of the ceiling paper has separated from the luan. Not that it’s a big deal, but might be hard to fix unless I replace the luan. That may be in the future but not immmediate.

I’ll be taking some more pictures to show problem areas when it’s uncovered again.
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Old 05-29-2022, 01:34 PM   #7
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Got up on the roof to start inspecting the AC. How the heck can it be caulked/sealed??? What am I missing to get to it?

The photo shows the front of the unit. There are suspect areas that I would re-seal, but there is no way to get to it. And this is on the front. Each side is so far deep you canít even see the seal. I see a way to take the AC unit off with four bolts, but that looks like a world of trouble.

Iíve tried searching for a thread for sealing an AC, but to no avail.
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Old 05-30-2022, 09:35 AM   #8
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Hi Jim,

Your pic ( I can’t see it real good on my phone) looks like someone tried to use spray foam on it in attempts to maybe try and seal it.

The roof AC units are not caulked, they use a thick 1” tall gaskets that gets compressed to about 1/2” to create the roof seal. Over time they can get hard or over compressed if they are not the right ones.

In regards to your roof leak, try and post some pics of the main roof in general so we can see the whole roof in relation to the microwave area. And then hone in on theses areas with closer pics

The roof seams. The roof is seamed about every appropriate 17”-24”.across the roof left to right. The seams over time can leak

Any roof penetrations, like tank vents, crank up roof vents or fridge vents, antenna’s ?

And then the AC in relation to the microwave. Try and circle in red on the roof where the microwave unit is below

Also, is your roof flat or does it have an arched roof, meaning the center is higher then the outside walls so there is pitch to the roof for water run off. Years ago, Sunline had flat roofs then they changed to arched roofs. I’m not sure what model year the change came about and if only the rubber roofs had the arch

If your roof is flat, and the roof sagged some, then the AC roof gasket could be suspect for leaking if ponding water collects in that area. Or is just leaking even if no ponding.

I have pics of the AC gaskets and how to change them. I also caution in not using actual Dometic roof gaskets as some of the cheaper aftermarket ones compress too much and leak over time.

Come Tuesday night I will have better access to my PC with pics and links. But yes the 4 bolts inside hold the roof unit to the camper. Are any of those 4 bolts loose? I have seen them back off before.

Changing the ac gasket is not overly hard, and easer with the ac unit off the roof. It will take longer to scrape the old gasket iff then to put the new on. There is a process to removing the old. Time consuming but not hard. Make sure you have a new gasket on hand before removing the ac or keep the camper covered with a board over the hole so the tarp will not sag and pond water if it rains

Hope this helps

John
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Old 05-31-2022, 11:38 AM   #9
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The camper is Ď93 T-1740. I forgot to include that info early on. Good to have it listed for future searches.

Looking at the roof from the front, the ketchup bottle is in the location of where it was dripping. The roof is arched, but to me it seems as if there are two definite high spots running the length of the camper. You canít really see it good in these photos. These two high spots divide the roof into thirds. It doesnít seem to be a ďniceĒ arch. Like the roofing is laid over two headers and then pulled down to the edge of the camper. This may, or may not be, important.

F2B5EF54-355B-4685-B6C8-AE163EE8B58E.jpg

47E10D96-EB14-4046-BB98-93202F0D7645.jpg

D150B522-D446-4A15-8D34-C2AA32BFA91B.jpg

The next photos below are looking at the roof from the back of the camper. I want to point out how the AC unit is tipped towards the ketchup bottle. More on this later.

376A5C66-269A-4498-9847-7C900E8CFA24.jpg

718B7401-27B7-4B24-B2E4-8F8EAE162B2B.jpg

1980CE0F-3034-43CA-B461-C3FECABCFBDA.jpg
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Old 05-31-2022, 12:04 PM   #10
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Now for the side view. Notice the bottle is right on the seam. The seam has had a sealer applied at some time. By the way, the front and rear roof panels are 48Ē between seams, and the middle panel is 41Ē between seams.

1AD404CC-F785-4510-9323-0F446BBE6A71.jpg

[ATTACH]8767[/[ATTACH]

93665271-E32F-4373-90C8-3930745E989D.jpg

Below are pictures of the same area, but showing a low spot in the roof. Aprox 3/4Ē lower. Donít know why it would be so low here, possibly from a framing collapse? But if from rot, there should be a horrible amount of interior damage showing, but there isnít.

D1A636A1-3527-4726-80BB-FA50205E6722.jpg

0FC1B5ED-3F6E-4ACC-9837-215DBD6E5D8E.jpg

30ECA087-CBAE-4F32-90B3-6755FDFB4CD3.jpg
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Old 05-31-2022, 12:30 PM   #11
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Now to the interior. Looking back to the rear of the camper. The aluminum bar ( second photo) to the left is where the water was dripping, the camper was set up so it had a very slight lower front end.

5DFFCF79-8728-4E47-9EB8-6E9A384248D1.jpg

8B29ABA2-93F8-4E0E-956E-2464C9B3706B.jpg

Below is looking up into the AC and the seal. Someone had put a sealant with the foam seal. It definitely has oozed out from the compression. Canít see it real good in the photos, but in person you can tell it.

327EF66A-079E-4353-A204-AD84761397D2.jpg

E2232020-F3FF-4556-9227-FEC5237A9033.jpg
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Old 05-31-2022, 12:58 PM   #12
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Next is the microwave area, pointing to the spot where water was dripping from. A drop of water about every 15 seconds.

ACA4294D-E7CD-4EE5-8AAD-EC930505CB25.jpg

Then going up and inside the hole in the ceiling:
Looking towards the outside corner edge.

9736B94C-896E-4CF7-8FEC-E7992BCE2358.jpg


Then turning to the right and looking back to the rear.

A560A1F3-108A-4B36-9ED5-B226C5F62FB6.jpg

And then turning to the right again and looking back towards center , or towards the AC. The photo is turned sideways, sorry!

1CA5AE91-5E9F-4F43-A008-51B9B6B1FDB8.jpg


Those above interior photos do not look that bad to me. I thought there would be a lot more mold in there. Suspiciously little. Possibly the top of the luan is darker, but the insulation is still good. I was surprised.
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Old 05-31-2022, 01:29 PM   #13
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I checked the moisture with the meter today. To my surprise it all has dried up. Opening the ceiling up and taking the cover of the roof has let it really dry up, I guess. The only spot left showing moisture is in the photo below. This was the driest area when this happened. It was wet from the meter all the way to the microwave area. Above the microwave was 100%. From there it slowly decreased in a line to where the meter is now. It was around 30% at that meter about a week ago. The two red dots in the photo below are areas I noticed when I bought the camper. Softer areas but never felt wet, even during using the camper last year.

208B98F7-FA2D-46D8-8D58-D6A4D04F7A6E.jpg


The photo below shows red dots where new soft areas have formed. They were reading around 50% before. The red ďXĒ is where I could poke my finger thru the luan, where it was 100%. It was about 60% at one tiny area over at the outside edge.


E28344DB-3C84-4357-BED2-C1454F51DFBF.jpg


So after all this, where do you all think the leak is coming from?? I have limited amount of time till I need to use the camper again. After reading lots of posts here, I now know there is ALOT of attention this camper needs immediately, just in sealing, not to mention other things I never realized.
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Old 05-31-2022, 07:44 PM   #14
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Hi Jim,

First off, you get and A+ for the pics. And the ketchup bottle was a brilliant idea!

I now have access to may main PC and I can copy your pics, blow them up, and see closer detail in them.

I'm trying to be helpful and I am understanding of your need to use the camper soon. I will give some "opinions" on what I can see from doing other Sunline restoration campers that have been heavily water damaged.

I sense you nay want to do a short term patch and later come back and take the camper apart to do a complete repair? Is this correct? I'm going on this assumption with some suggestions.

This is what I see in your pics. Here I blew these two pics up.





I want to point out one thing in case you did not know. Your roof is "not" a direct walk on roof. The metal is pulled over the rafters, there is no support between the rafters to support ones weight, the metal will sag and can get bent down creating ponding. To service this type of roof, you place small manageable size pieces of plywood, 3/8" to 1/2" thick work, over the rafters to spread your weight out. I used 3/8" plywood, 24 x 48" size or 30" by 48" size. big enough to spread out the weight, small enough to man handle. Since yours is a metal roof, using a piece of cardboard, or a trap to help on abrasion between the roof and plywood is not a bad thing. It is a mandate on the newer rubber roofs.

Now to your pics, In the first two pics, the 1 1/2" tall grey/blackish board you see on top of the wall, is what I call the roof outer band board. Sunline made the camper in sections, and since yours is an arched roof of some degree, the entire ceiling is one subassembly. The ceiling board is glued and stapled to the rafters and the outer band board. The entire subassembly rests on top of the walls.

This is a new camper, and I'm not sure if your camper has solid rafters or truss made like the newer ones. They changes practices along the way and I'm not sure what year they changed.

This is a new ceiling subassembly I'm making to replace a damaged section. You can see the outer band board.


Here is the new ceiling board glued, stapled to the rafters and outer band board with the openings cut out.


This is a test fix of the rafter/band board setup on top of the walls with no ceiling board.


Here is the old section coming off


The walls with the ceiling sub-assembly off.


Your camper has been leaking a good long time when the prior owner had it. There is evidence in many areas. The grey/blackish water stained outer band board took a lot of time to get that way. It may not be heavily rotted, but it took on water a long time ago.

This picture shows the cracked vinyl ceiling board.
And there is these, I just linked your as you posted.


The water has delaminated the luan glue over time and finally made it to the vinyl covering. This is why leaks are not seen soon as they start. The vinyl ceiling paper and the vinyl wall paper along with the vinyl welt bead at all the joints, seals the water from getting into the living space pretty well. Only after a long time does the vinyl crack and fail as there is no luan left behind it.

This pic of your tells a story too.


Water has been leaking in around the AC unit at some time in the past and may still be. Sunline puts 1/2" x ~ 4" wide, OSB board around the AC roof hole for added support to compress the AC gasket and to raise the AC higher then the main roof. I can see the swelling and delam of the OSB. And then there is the foam caulk. Look at the 1/4" long silver screws, the caulk line on the threads has moved down. At some point in time, the prior owner over compressed the gasket trying to stop a leak. The caulk broke free from the gasket and walked down with the screw as it was tightened.

And then we have this, you honed in on this too.




It appears the metal is bent down and maybe the OSB support board might be rotted. I suspect, (guess actually) this downward dip allows the ponding of water when it rains and runs towards the AC gasket rather then shedding off the roof towards the sides.

Pending which way the camper is tipped, this ponding water ponding water problem can be worse flooding the AC gasket.

On a normal good AC mounting setup, the AC unit is on the high spot on the roof. All water sheds from it in all directions. This is why Sunline adds the 1/2" thick OSB board also, to raise the AC unit higher then the roof line to force water away from the AC gasket. Normally, the gasket does not have water touch it.

And you have this suspect seam with the "something" that may have been spray painted over the seam by the splatter non the AC bottom tub.

This gutter rail pic also shows painted seam. It also shows like you said, there is no caulk between the gutter and the roof metal. This may be an old practice as the newer campers have them caulked. There is also not many screws in this older gutter rail. Meaning a good thing, there are less holes, but the bad thing, there is less compression of the putty tape and no caulk on top.


The long term way to fix what you, is to lift the roof, maybe in sections or maybe a total removal and repair the water damage and or bent down metal. You can take the gutter rails off and look in and see how far the damage goes.

But this is long term and odds are high, some level of water made it's way into the walls. If it has dried out, you might live with that for a while if you seal up the siding penetrations with Proflex RV or Dicor non sag. More on this later.

I will comment on some short term patches in the next reply. But the above points to where leaks can be occurring.
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Old 05-31-2022, 08:55 PM   #15
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Hi Jim,

Here are some thoughts for short term patches that can be removed in the future if you want to lift up the roof and address the damage and repair the wood.

The gutter rails to the roof. Yes, I would clean them well, get all dirt and mold from the joint and caulk that seam with Dicor Non sag caulk. I would do the full length, both sides of the camper. See the note below on the seams to caulk after the seams repair. This caulk is made for roof seams and flexing and it comes up with a heat gun/scrapper and mineral spirts the day you want to remove it.

This post will show how to apply and smooth out the Dirco non sag/non leveling. The post shows it on the siding, but you do the same process on the gutter rails for applying and smoothing it out.
https://www.sunlineclub.com/forums/f...tml#post137746

I get mine most times here at RV Upgrades, but other RV places have it. Local RV dealers also have this, it is common roof sealant.
https://www.rvupgradestore.com/Dicor...-p/38-9019.htm

Next is your roof seams and more so the AC unit issue.

Metal roofs can wick water a long way until the water drops off of an falls down. The leak may not be directly above the leak opening. The roof seams on older metal roof campers have leaked as they get older and yours is older at 29 years. It started leaking some time before that.

This is the ideal patch/fix for the AC unit. Lift the AC unit off the roof. This post is one of the ways I get the AC off the roof. The 4 long bolts in your pics is all that holds it to the roof. The gasket may be stuck to the roof and all the foam caulk the prior owner used, may be stuck even more. Lifting up, has in the past broke the seal loose from the roof. But this is without all the caulk you have. You may have to use a scraper inside and or out to break through the caulk.

Scroll down until the AC shows up

https://www.sunlineclub.com/forums/f...tml#post137475

Basically, with plywood boards on the roof, two people lift it off the location and move it to the side. Then with a high up pick up truck bed or 2 ladders and a plank, get the AC down off the roof down onto the truck bed or ladder planks. Then move it off then move it to the ground.

Once the AC unit is off you can lift up the metal around the 14 x 14" opening. It might be stapled or just lying on the roof. Pull staples as needed. Lift the metal up and look at the OSB board and see if you can tell what that low spot is. Repair the bad wood in that spot so when you mount the AC with a new gasket, the AC will be the high spot on the roof. For sure you have to clean all the old caulk they put on the roof off.

If the metal is bent down, you may have to slide in from the AC opening a thin piece of plywood over the rafters in that area to lift the metal back up. And secure the plywood. More on this if it actually comes to be. I have done this on the Sunline rubber roofs, just not the metal roofs.

If you are going to pull the AC, let me know and I will explain how to get the old gasket off the bottom of the AC tub and how to install the new gasket and where to buy one.

On the roof seams, what I am going to recommend will seal the seams. It is rated for metal and rubber and other roof applications for long term repairs. This can be a long term seal or a short life seal if wanted. A heat gun and a scraper will get most it up off the roof. Mineral sprits and scrubbing will get most of the rest. The sealant can be stuck in the metal dimples. This should not be a problem if you ever need to take it off. But there is also a reality, that metal seam is not going to come apart very easy short of heavy damaging trying to get it apart. So while you can lift the roof
and all seams intact in one large piece off the camper, getting those seams apart may just not happen. So sealing the seams this time may stay permanently.

The product I'm recommending is Eternabond roof seal tape. It comes in 4" wide and 6" wide or wider but I do not think you need any wider. You have to clean the roof well and try and get any loose parts of the old seam coating off. No loose parts of the old coating to be left. Use Eternabond tape wide enough or multiple layers of narrower to make it wide enough, overlapping them so you are bonded to virgin roof a good 2" over the top of the old coating that is left.

Here is here I buy mine. I use the White, I get 50 ft rolls but they sell 20 ft rolls. I suggest you do all the seams right to the edge of the gutter before you caulk the gutter. The Dicor will bond to the top of the Eternabond.

4" wide x 50ft
https://www.bestmaterials.com/detail.aspx?ID=11341

4" x 20 ft
https://www.bestmaterials.com/detail.aspx?ID=20902

6" x 50 ft.
https://www.bestmaterials.com/detail.aspx?ID=11342

6" x 20 ft
https://www.bestmaterials.com/detail.aspx?ID=22257

I also used Big Rock Supply, Best Materials and Big Rock go back and forth on who is cheaper with the freight also.
https://www.bigrocksupply.com/store/...%20roof%20seal

The exposed edges of the gray Eternabond sealant does have dirt stick to it over time. To help the dirt stick from happening, just apply a small smeared over bead of Dicor over that exposed side sealant all along the tape.

If you have a local commercial roof supply place in town, they may carry it too.

I caution "not" to buy Eternabond from Amazon. It will get damaged when they ship it the way they do and it can be old stock. I found using a commercial roof supply house who knows the how sticky the product is will ship it correctly.

This post has a lot of pics of applying Eternabond. I used it on the seams of rubber roofs, but the pics may help you on how to apply. https://www.sunlineclub.com/forums/f...ics-11610.html

If there is any question on bonding, like over that old sealant they used, they sell Eternaprime. It is primer that will make it bond to bad surfaces that are not loose . They sell is in a spray can or a quart can. I use the quart as it is less of a mess and I use a chip brush to apply. https://www.bestmaterials.com/Search...ds=eternaprime

There are other coatings cheaper out there. Your choice on using them, I have not tested them on bad seams. I know the Eternabond will work as long as you get the roof clean, no dirt, no dust on it and it must be 100% pressed, rolled to make complete contact.

Hope this helps, and let me know if you are going to lift the AC unit, I will get you more info on the gasket.

John
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Old 06-01-2022, 11:24 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnB View Post

On the roof seams, what I am going to recommend will seal the seams. It is rated for metal and rubber and other roof applications for long term repairs. This can be a long term seal or a short life seal if wanted. A heat gun and a scraper will get most it up off the roof. Mineral sprits and scrubbing will get most of the rest. The sealant can be stuck in the metal dimples. This should not be a problem if you ever need to take it off. But there is also a reality, that metal seam is not going to come apart very easy short of heavy damaging trying to get it apart. So while you can lift the roof
and all seams intact in one large piece off the camper, getting those seams apart may just not happen. So sealing the seams this time may stay permanently.

John
Iím a little confused on the above paragraph. Are you saying that the roof seams may be sealed for good before I do anything just because itís the age? Or it might get sealed for good because of using eternabond?

Thanks
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Old 06-01-2022, 01:09 PM   #17
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Hi Jim,

On this question,

Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnB View Post

On the roof seams, what I am going to recommend will seal the seams. It is rated for metal and rubber and other roof applications for long term repairs. This can be a long term seal or a short life seal if wanted. A heat gun and a scraper will get most it up off the roof. Mineral sprits and scrubbing will get most of the rest. The sealant can be stuck in the metal dimples. This should not be a problem if you ever need to take it off. But there is also a reality, that metal seam is not going to come apart very easy short of heavy damaging trying to get it apart. So while you can lift the roof
and all seams intact in one large piece off the camper, getting those seams apart may just not happen. So sealing the seams this time may stay permanently.

John
Quote:
Originally Posted by JimS View Post
I’m a little confused on the above paragraph. Are you saying that the roof seams may be sealed for good before I do anything just because it’s the age? Or it might get sealed for good because of using eternabond?

Thanks
Sorry if I was confusing. Good question as looking back at it, one can come out with a different meaning. I'll explain a little better.

In your first post you asked these two main questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimS View Post
So to start, two main questions here:
1) I want to find out where it’s leaking from and fix it.
2) I use the camper for work related trips, and my schedule is such that I need the camper until January. So, can I fix this temporarily and fix it properly starting next year. I’m afraid to apply sealants on it and not get it off later if needed.
When I talked about the ability to get what I would recommend off, was going along the lines of your no. 2 question, what do you use and can you get it off if you have to later.

I have also been thinking about this today, some more on your situation. First off, the Eternabond is, can be considered, a permeant solution for the seams. Especially if you use their primer over the areas that the prior owner used some other form of sealant, and you cannot get it all off, but can get any loose material off. The Eternaprime helps insure those old coating areas will still have a good bond.

So, yes the Eternabond route can be a long term solution. What you do now, does not have to be redone later. BUT, if you ever needed to, you can remove the Eternabond I would say to 90% if you ever had to get it up. The only reason I say 90% is the metal is dimpled and getting that last 10% out of every dimple is a big deal. BUT it would not be an issue for new Enterabond to go over those dimples as it bonds very well to itself. I have been able to get up 100% of it on smooth metal or rubber roofing, just those dimples could be an issue for the last 10%.

Then there is the reality, the way those metal roof seams are made, they do not come apart very well at all. And it is doubtful if you can even salvage the roofing trying to get them apart. They are a double metal seam that originally had a sealant in the seam. The double seam creates a very good high strength mechanical joint. Just the sealant over enough years, does deteriorate. The point being, I doubt you can take the seams apart even if you wanted to to try and salvage the roof to use over. I myself have never tried to take them apart, but I know two good Sunline owners who I have talked with who did metal roof jobs and the seams are not coming apart. I quizzed them on how they where made and found the double seal setup. Knowing double seams from my work background, they are made to be a one time only seam. Point: What ever work you do for repairs in the future, taking the roof seams apart and trying to reuse them, most likely will not happen. Thus using Eternabond now, can be a lasting repair for a good many years. The product is rated at a 15 year warranty. I have used it an I'm going on 12 years and it is still going strong but I did 303 UV treat the TPO backing of the Roof seal product.

If we have a club member who has been able to take the seams apart and reuse them, please let us know how you did this and any pics of the process would be great.

Here are new thoughts I came up with today given your situation.

The suspect seam with the ketchup bottle has issues. The prior owner used some kind of very thin "something" that may not have held up well AND may never have gone under the roof AC unit or under the AC gasket. It is possible, the seam that is under the AC unit is leaking. And if water ponds in the ketchup bottle area, that untreated seam has standing water on it. The water can wick through the seam under the AC unit, under the AC gasket and into the camper attic. While this may not be the smoking gun of the leak, it can be one of several.

Ideally, the roof AC unit is lifted off, clean up the mess on the roof, both from the ponding water and any wood issues, then use the Eternabond over the seam all the way to the inside of the camper. This means, the seam is sealed under the new AC unit gasket.

I want to give you another Eternabond option. The Roof Seal I linked has a TPO top liner to it. This is what I have used on white EPDM, TPO roofs, all one piece smooth aluminum roof ( a Coachmen camper, not Sunline) as the TPO Roof Seal liner is a not a problem, nor is it on metal roofs. But, here is an option, they make aluminum top liner material in place of the TPO liner. They call it EternaBond AlumiBond, See here. It does cost a few dollars more then the white TPO liner, but not much and it eliminates any UV issues if there are any. The micro sealant is the same, just the top liner is different.

See here,
https://www.bestmaterials.com/Search...ategoryID=1024

I do not know if they offer it in 20 ft rolls though if that is an issue. I have some of the 2" of this EternaBond AlumiBond in the barn I bought for aluminum siding repairs. I did not think of this option last night. Both the Roof Seal and the AlumiBond will do a good job and can be permanent.

Now I know you are up against time right now. The roof AC area repair could be a 2 day weekend job by itself, long days and maybe shorter pending what the wood damage is or is not. This time line means you have all the materials on hand in advance including the AC gasket. I still feel you are going to have to deal with that AC unit sooner rather then later to have higher confidence you fond the last leak.

But, short of time, this might be a stop gap measure. Clean and install the Eternabond up to as far under the AC unit as you can and go all the way to the gutter rail. Caulk the gutter rail too. Do all the roof seams.

Then at a short time in the future, lift up the AC unit and deal with that area by itself. You might have to peel up 6" back on the Eternabond as you could not get a great cleaning under the AC unit, but no big deal, just take up that 6" and then install new with a 1" overlap on length, and run it all the way to the inside when the AC unit is off the roof.

The above approach splits this into a 2 part roof repair. The realty is, you may have slowed down the leaks, but not stopped them. You have not wasted any time as all the seams and gutter rails need them done any way. You may find, the last issue is the AC area leaking but you at least know what is not leaking then.

If you have a good week now before your work trip, assuming you can get all the materials, you may be able to do all of it. Being this is your first time through this, it may take a little longer for the learning curve. Cleaning and prepping the roof seams and gutter rails will take time. Pumping the caulk and putting down Ebond does not that much time, but it has to be prepped right.

Hope this helps and good luck. Let us know how you make out.

John

PS. I'll type more on what to do very long term in the next reply.
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Old 06-01-2022, 01:47 PM   #18
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Hi Jim,

For a long term repair when you have time, there is the water stained wood in the attic and the ceiling board to deal with. If you want to keep the camper, and correct the attic damage, this could be what you are needing to do.

This is not a fast repair, but is doable in time and possibly in stages. The way the roof seams are made, they do not come apart. And the roof is seamed to the front and rear siding top sections. If you are going to reuse the metal roof, then this would be one approach. I'm sure there are others.

Determine if the whole roof metal needs to come off or only half of it. The moisture meter may help guide you on this and pending where the ceiling board needs to be replaced.

Going on the assumption you only have to open half the roof, this means:

The front or back wall corner moldings need to be removed all together. I said front or back not knowing which end would stay in place as the damage is on the other end. The corner moldings seal the roof corners to the side walls corner.

The need is to get the back or front wall siding off up to the last sheet that is seamed to the roof. The siding is installed from the top down, so you have to start at the bottom and work your way up the wall to remove it the top sheet seamed to the roof. When you get to the last siding sheet that is seamed to the siding, then you will take the gutter rails off and any roof penetrations' from the roof in the area you are going to lift. This includes the Roof AC unit that you did an earlier repair on and the Dicro caulking you installed.

Once the gutter rails are off or peeled back, you may have to, most likely will have to, flattened some the 1" overhang of the roof metal that goes down the side wall. This allows the roof metal to be rolled up and not damage the 90 degree bend in the metal as you flattened it out.

Then in a large diameter, (2 to 3 ft dia) roll back the roof to expose the work area. Correct the rafter, outer band board and ceiling board, insulation damage.

If the damage goes along the whole roof, then the other front or rear wall siding has to come off and you take the entire roof metal off. This also allows to address and wall water damage of the front or rear walls. Hoping the water damage did not go down the side walls.

Yes, the above is a lot of work, it is doable and has been done before by other members on the metal roofs. I have done several on the rubber roofs.

There is also an option, if you decide to take the metal roof off and not use it. Then an option is to cut the metal roof where a joint can be made to the front and rear siding. This leaves the front and rear wall siding in place, the corners still have to comes off, but not all the siding.

Then you fix the ceiling damage, install new roof decking, and a new EPDM, TPO or PVC roof membrane and all new roof mounted vents etc. We have had members do this too. It all depends if you want to reuse the metal roof or not.

What I listed above is the restore method. It addresses all the bad wood in the attic to be epoxy sealed or replaced. You may find, there is wall water damage too, be prepared for some, it would be a small miracle there was none.

If you find your short term repairs stopped the roof leak, you may elect to leave the rest in the attic and realize, you are not going to keep the camper a long time. Then do an inside repair of the ceiling board the best you can. Seal up the siding openings and get as many years as you can or want to before dry rot becomes a problem as the wet wood was never treated.

The work hours to fix a camper with water damage is sort of mind boggling. They are a true labor of love. You have to want to do this and enjoy the challenge ahead of you. Yes, some of us like dealing with wet wood....

If you select the restore option, this post below can help on how to save walls or ceiling rafter then tearing them out from the inside.

https://www.sunlineclub.com/forums/f...tml#post155103

Lots to think about. Whatever direction you decide to go, please post back what you will do or decided not to do. This helps others in the future with the same situation. Some look a the pictures and say, no way can I do that . Others look at and take it on with a challenge.

Hope this helps

John
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Old 06-01-2022, 02:55 PM   #19
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Wow, that is a lot to digest. It will take actually doing it to fully understand it, and the need to ask more when needed. But a very good overview. Thank you.

Yeah, Iím scratching my head on the AC. Whether to do it now or wait. No doubt I want to do it, just a matter of when. I was thinking it would be good to do that before any edge sealing. That way I wouldnít damage my new sealing job going over it to work on the AC. One of my fears is I open up a bees nest, finding out there is way more damage to fix than Iíd have time for. Then Iíd have to put it back together wrong, and possibly in a worse way than before.

I also donít have a building to work in. I was thinking about putting one up for a camper a few years ago but then all this building supply, short labor force, etc hit.

One thing accomplished in the last day. My first experience with using Dicor!!! Removed the seal around a plate ( think itís for a TV mount) and put new sealant down. You can see how far the old caulk went. I donít think I needed to put that much down. And yes I now see what you mean by the dimples! Why would a company think thatís a good idea. To shed water you want smooth.

Wish the pictures werenít so fuzzy.

18607963-3438-4A7F-99AF-1DB7051FDE37.jpg

Then experimented with a short run on the edge. It was turning out great until I got forgetful and placed my hand on itÖ.yikes, what a mess that became. Looking at it now, I see a few spots that arenít right. I need to practice. I feel I will be getting plenty of practice!

FF85072D-9B9E-491C-903B-BF6C22833D3A.jpg

And while these two photos are here, the roof looks like it was, or is, white. When cleaning the areas, it comes off. Is it a good idea to paint it when all done?
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Old 06-01-2022, 05:54 PM   #20
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Hi Jim,

Your bees nest (hornets and yellow jackets...) I'm sure there will be some waiting for you. Yeh, these water damage issues do tend to keep growing into something more then one ever thought. It's the nature of the beast. Every once in a while, you do luck out though, so there is hope!

I see your first Dicor adventure. Very good! I did not mention in case you did not know, Dicor also comes in self leveling along with non leveling. The self leveling works real well on horizontal flat surfaces as it slowly flows out making a bad caulk application looks not so bad. But it will run down hill big time if gravity will allow it to. The self leveling works well on all the roof tank vents, crank up roof vents, fridge vents etc. And you can push it/smooth it, a little with the soapy wet finger also.

The non sag, non leveling can be used vertical or horizonal. It does not self level, it sort of stays put where you put it, but with light taping and soapy wet finger allows you to move it slightly where you want it and even it out.

And, since you already found out, darn, I bumped into wet Dicor and made a mess... you are now one of the caulk club members! It's gonna happen sooner or later, so that initiation is now over. Trust me, I will happen again if you do enough of this caulking deal.

See this post on the gutter rails with goo pics, I didn't find this earlier, I know I made it, it shows what shrinkage of Dicor can do, it breaks free from the molding or roof if it is not thick enough or touching the surfaces enough. And it shows how I do the gutter rail. You have to touch the entire top of the gutter rail edge (a 1/8") and onto the roof too. Then when it cures, and shrinks a little overtime, it does not separate from the molding etc.

This is a rubber roof with the gutter rail, while rubber, the same issue with water behind the vinyl screw cover strip and rusting of the screws still happens. https://www.sunlineclub.com/forums/f...tml#post156747

If and when the AC area repair comes to be, we are here to help.

John
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