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How To Fix A Leaky Trailer Roof

How To Repair A Leaky Mobile Home Roof

Leaky RV Roof Repair – Quick and easy instructions

Mobile home roofs tend to leak because of changes in temperature and harsh weather conditions. You will know your mobile home has a leak if you see ugly stains on your ceiling. It is important to repair the leaky roof before fixing the stains caused by the leak in your home.

Many times it is difficult to identify where the roof leak is located because the hole may be a tiny space between the flashing and the roof. You will need to check your entire roof thoroughly and use the necessary materials to repair the leak.

Rv Roof Leaks: Serious Damage Can Occur

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If theres one thing most RVers understand, its that RV roof leaks are not only possible but very common. RV roofs are prone to leaking. There are a number of reasons for this, the most common of which applies to every single RV on the road IF the roof of the RV has ANY holes, which most do.

Seams, air conditioners, fans, vents, antennas, solar panels, etc. are mounted to RV roofs with components and/or cords running through the roof and into the RV. RV roof leaks are common, insidious, and can cause serious damage if left unattended .

In todays post, well discuss the easiest, most reliable ways to PREVENT RV roof leaks , and how to address them if youre beyond the prevention stage.

Lets begin by looking at the main reasons why RV roofs leak in the first place.

Prepare Your Rv Roof For Repair Or Replacement

The first step to any RV roof job is to clean the existing roof or repair area well. In order for the adhesive or catalyst material to bond with the roof material, all traces of oil, grease, grime, oxidation and silicone sealants must be removed.

If its just a small repair, feel free to use a rag and a solvent to scrub the area clean.

For larger repairs and full roof resealing jobs or replacements, it might be more effective to first power-wash, then scrub where necessary until the roof is completely clean.

With EPDM roofing, you will need to cut away any residual silicone caulking and remove any surface wax with a removing agent designed for this purpose.

Once the roof is dry after cleaning, you will likely need to apply an EPDM primer.

Even if you did a fantastic job cleaning the roof, its likely to still be dirty or stained in some areas, so using a EPDM primer will prepare the surface for a better bond between the roof and the tape.

Also Check: Does A New Roof Increase Your Home Value

What Causes A Leaky Roof On A Pop Up Camper

Pop up campers come in all shapes and sizes. Some have canvas roofs and are more prone to leaks, but others are solidly built and should never leak. Regardless of the type of roof or pop up camper you have, theyre all prone to the occasional roof leak. Your roof is especially vulnerable if part of it is made of canvas and you have a slight rip or tear in the fabric.

Leaky roofs happen for various reasons, but theyre most common with older campers with old seals. Most manufacturers recommend checking their seals every three months or as needed, but most people neglect to do this. With proper maintenance and service, you can avoid most roof leaks. If, however, you bought a used camper with an existing leak or have neglected to check your seals, this article will explore a few ways to remediate your leaky roof.

Does Camper Insurance Cover Leaks

When Water Leaks from the RV Slide Ceiling

Full coverage camper insurance will cover leaks.

However, they usually will not cover leaks if youve caused them. Meaning, if you leave a skylight open and water damage occurs you may not be covered.

If you tend to be forgetful, you may want to buy a skylight that automatically closes when exposed to water.

You can read more here about what a typical RV insurance cover.

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Clean Your Rv Roof Regularly

As part of your RV maintenance schedule, you should clean the roof of your camper.

Dirt and debris can damage the sealant on your RV roof over time, and make it more prone to developing leaks and causing water damage.

Therefore, a regular washing is important to maintaining the integrity of the seals and waterproofing of the campers roof.

A good rule of thumb is to wash the roof when youre deep-cleaning after each camping trip.

To wash your RV roof properly, choose your detergent based on the type of roof you have.

If your RVs roof is aluminum or fiberglass, you can use the same mild detergent you use to wash the rest of the RV.

If your campers roof is TPO or EPDM, you might need a rubber-safe RV roof cleanser. Either way, rinse well after sudsing!

How To Fix A Soft Spot

If you find evidence of leaking in your RV before a soft spot develops, the leak can generally be patched or resealed. Depending on the type of roofing, there are proprietary products available that you can use for the repair.

If your RV has already developed a soft spot, it means that wood rot is already present. The roof must be opened, and any damage to the ceiling, trusses, or sheathing must be fixed.

Lets look at each step needed to fix the problem.

  • Working in the inside of the RV, remove any fittings, ventilation points, or other items from the area you will repair. You may have to also work on top of the roof to loosen any clamps, seals, wiring, or roof trim. Check that your RV manufacturer allows this. If there is any doubt, place a plywood sheet on the roof, making sure it covers a large enough area and spans several trusses. Only stand on this sheet.
  • Its a good idea to photograph each part you will remove this will help you remember how to reinstall it after the repair is completed.
  • To soften the roof coating around the object to be removed, you can apply a heat gun.
  • Scrape away any excess coating and remove it.
  • Now is the time to remove whatever material has been used to cover the roof.
  • Remove the sheathing plywood which rests between the roof covering and the trusses.
  • The plywood is generally attached to the trusses and walls.
  • Do not damage the trusses when removing the sheathing.
  • Remove any insulation materials.
  • Remove the damaged trusses.
  • Recommended Reading: Where To Buy Hydrostop Roofing

    Three Designs For Mobile Home Roofing

    Mobile and manufactured home roofs have been built with thee basic shapes through the years.

    • Mobile homes built before June 1976 typically have flat or bowed roofs, usually covered with sheet metal or asphalt coating.
    • Mobile homes manufactured after 1976 generally have more pitched, or peaked, roofs. They are often covered with traditional asphalt shingles or metal roofing panels, much like traditional frame-built homes. Structurally, the roofs are formed with standard trusses fabricated with a fairly shallow pitch.
    • Double-wide roofs use half trusses that become a single standard truss once the home is assembled. These roofs are also generally covered with standard roofing materials.

    What Can Be Used To Repair Rv Roof Leak

    How to repair your RV or trailer roof on a budget and make it last

    If you wonder what can be used to repair an RV roof leak, then this is the section for you. What you use to repair your RV roof leak depends on the location of the leak and the material the leak is seeping through. Roof leak fixes are not one-size-fits-all, and you should carefully research your leak specifically. Lets take a look at some of the basics!

    Some of the best RV roof leak repair materials available are roof leak repair tape and paint. Recaulking joints and seams with waterproof silicone will be an essential part of regular rv roof maintenance, but caulk or silicone isnt always a good roof leak repair option.

    RV roof leak repair tape can be an absolute lifesaver when it comes to keeping the inside of your RV dry. Eternabond tape is the most common type of roof leak repair tape and one of the best.

    Eternabond is easy to install and comes in wide pieces, making it useful for small holes or cracks. However, be careful when implementing this tape as it is incredibly sticky and will be nearly impossible to remove once it is pressed down. Before applying any type of RV roof leak repair tape, ensure that the application surface is clean and dry to allow for the best sticking results.

    Also Check: What’s The Average Cost To Replace A Roof

    How To Replace Your Rv Or Motorhome Roof

    A DIY RV roof replacement is certainly possible, and will help you save lots of money since you will only need to buy the materials.

    The following are all of the steps to follow when replacing your RVs roof:

  • Remove any fixtures, such as vents, antennas, or air conditioning units. Remove the awning as well.
  • Use a high-quality stainless steel putty knife to scrape away the old sealant around the removed fixtures.
  • Remove the existing roof membrane. For RVs rubber roofs such as TPO or EPDM, you will need to peel back the roofing material until you can see the plywood structure beneath. Aluminum roofs require you to unscrew the old panels to remove them, and you will need a dye grinder to remove the fiberglass matting that covers these types of roofs.
  • Check the plywood beneath the roof membrane for damage. If you notice areas where the wood is rotted or bowing, it has water damage and should be replaced. Clean the rest of the plywood with mineral spirits to treat it to prevent mold and mildew from growing.
  • Install seam tape in places where the plywood meets and along the edge of the campers roof where it meets the side of your camper. This will help maintain a good seal and reinforce any weak areas.
  • After your roof is replaced, the final step is to reinstall your RVs roof fixtures and seal them with caulking to prevent any leaks in the new roof.
  • Four Types Of Flex Seal And How To Use Them On An Rv Roof

    Flex Seal comes in three forms: Flex Seal Liquid, Flex Seal Spray, and Flex Seal Shot. Flex Seal Liquid and Spray both come in black, white and clear. Flex Shot comes in white and clear. The great thing is that you can use Flex Seal with many all RV roof materials.

    Flex Seal Liquid

    Flex Seal Liquid is liquid rubber in a can and, it will stop leaks fast. Flex Seal will protect your RVs roof surface from corrosion. It also will not melt, peel, or crack because of harsh weather conditions. Being a thick liquid, Flex Seal is incredibly versatile and can be rolled, dipped, brushed, or poured on surfaces. When it cures, you will have a waterproof layer of sturdy, flexible rubber.

    Flex Seal Spray

    Flex Seal Spray is the most commonly used spray-on liquid rubber sealer available. The convenient aerosol spray allows for the easy application of Flex Seal with no brushes or rollers required. However, be careful with the overspray. It can be a bit messy.

    Flex Shot

    Flex Shot is a perfect solution for those tight, hard-to-reach places. It is ideal for caulking around your windows or air conditioner, etc. Its straightforward to use and will stop flowing the minute you release downward pressure on the bottle.

    Flex Seal Tape

    Flex Seal Tapecan be applied to the leaking area of a roof before using one of the other flex seal products above. For example, the tape is perfect for a tear in your roof that could be caused by hitting a tree branch.

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    Rexoseal Rv Roof Leak Crack & Hole Repair Kit

    • The kit you need to patch and fix any leaks or cracks around the vents or seams of your RV Roof. NO MORE CAULKING NEEDED!
    • Rexoseal Has 55-60% More Rubber Content Than Other Cheaper Coatings.
    • Applies over Rubber , Wood, Metal, Aluminum, and Fiberglass.
    • Easy do-it-yourself system and instructional videos with no special tools or skills required.
    • Kit includes 1 Quart of Rexoseal RV, a sanding sponge and 5″ x 25′ of Rexoseal Reinforcing Membrane. Covers approximately 35 sq. ft. per coat, requires a minimum of 3 coats with the reinforcing membrane.

    How To Repair Or Replace Your Rv Roof

    Complete Guide To Fixing a Leaking RV Roof (9 Examples)

    If you own an older RV of youve owned your camper for awhile, theres a good chance that youll need to replace the roof at least one time during its lifespan.

    If you stay on top of repairs and maintenance, and fix any leaks quickly, you can minimize or postpone the need to replace the whole roof.

    However, if there are multiple areas where the roof is damaged, or theres a single area with extensive damage that is compromising the rest of the roof, it may be time to replace it.

    Read Also: How To Afford A New Roof

    How To Repair Your Rv Roof

    Before ordering, determine if your roof is aluminum, fiberglass, steel or rubber sheeting. Measure all seams of RV roof including the outside edges, cross seams and around all vents, pipes or air conditioners. These RV roof seams must be covered with Roof Seal Tape from any of epdmcoatings seam tape before RV roof coating and we need to know how many feet of tape you will need for rv roof leaks repair.


    RV Rubber roof has a tendency to develop a layer of oxidization that must be removed by cleaning with acetone. Remove any loose rv roof coatings or rv roof sealants that are not adhering well to the rv roof. Immediately after cleaning, apply tape to all seams. Remove about 1 of the liner from the tape and press it down at your starting position for rv roof repair. Pull the liner from underneath and press the tape as you go, gradually releasing the liner so that the adhesive rv roof surface does not come in contact with itself or unintended rv roof surfaces. RV roof coating of bonding Roof Primer must then be applied to the rv rubber roof surface to prevent any further oxidization. Do not cover the tape with primer.

    If you have a few tools and a friend who can help you then you can repair your RV roof by Do-it-yourself Rv roof leaks repair which is almost inevitable in RV roof leaks repair.

    Improperly Sealed Rooftop Objects Or Failed Sealant

    This is the most common reason why RV roof leaks begin. And once theyve begun, youve got a potentially serious problem on your hands.

    The biggest issue is that your RV roof could be leaking without you even knowing it. RV roof leaks can allow water to seep into the roof without ever alerting you to a problem with a noticeable leak .

    Everything you see on this roof involves multiple holes penetrating the structure. There are many areas of an RV roof that can leak if the sealant is not diligently maintained over time.

    This actually happened to friends of ours who bought a used RV. Unbeknownst to them, water had been leaking, undetected, through an unprotected seam for some time. Because the leak occurred slowly over a long period, the damage to the roof was able to spread gradually without becoming evident, since there were no obvious signs of water in the RVs interior.

    Thats right we said NO obvious leaks into the interior of the RV. None of the things we all look for when thinking about the potential for an RV roof leak. No wet walls or ceiling, and no staining.

    What actually tipped our friends off was an increasingly soft feeling and a crunchy sound when they walked on one particular section of the roof. Until then, no one was the wiser.

    But areas of sealant along a rooftop seam of the RV had failed at some point, and water was able to seep into the roof unnoticed. Well show you more about this case a little later in the post.

    Recommended Reading: How Old Should A Roof Be When Buying A House

    Temporary Fix For Solid Roofs

    Fiberglass, vinyl, or rubber is the most common roofing material for solid roofs on pop-up campers, and you can use the same methods for permanent and temporary fixes on either of them. Roof leaks on solid roofs are most common around seams, things sticking through the roof, and holes in the roof.

    • Leaks along seams

    Its important that you know that the roof and walls of your camper are composed of two different pieces of material. In other words, its not one big piece of structure. Wherever the roof meets the sidewalls of your pop-up camper, silicone or sealant is used to seal the gap. These gaps where the silicone is old, worn, or damaged, are prime areas for roof leaks to manifest.

    The best way to repair leaks along seams is to remove the old sealant altogether. Once its cleared away, apply a new layer of silicone sealant that is durable, waterproof, and strong. This should take care of your roof leak.

    • Helps you keep your RV roof leak free
    • Provides a water-tight seal
    • Leaks around fixtures

    The most common reason for roof leaks in all campers is gaps or damaged seals around roof fixtures. If you have a rooftop air conditioner, bathroom vents, or anything else going from inside your camper through the roof, its a possible leak point.

    The only way to properly repair this type of roof leak is to remove the thing sticking through the roof, remove the existing sealant, and reapply a new layer of silicone or sealant.

    • Holes in the roof

    Key Things To Do If Your Roof Is Leaking

    RV Roof Replacement! No More Roof Leaks!

    Roof leaks arent fun for homeowners. Your home is a place that should make you feel safe and protected from the outdoors. Unfortunately, outside elements like rain and snow can creep their way into your house, whether you like it or not. Incidents happen, and when they do, its best to take action as soon as possible especially when theres a possibility of water damage to your home.

    If you find that your roof is leaking, you can do some key things to manage the situation and minimize any potential damage from the water. Here are seven steps to follow:

    Read Also: How Much Does A Roof Cost In California


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