How Often Should I Apply My Roof Sealant
Well, this is mostly dependent on what kind of situations you expose your roof to and the climatic conditions of the area you tend to frequent most. Ideally, you might need to apply every 6 months to a year. Best practice would be to inspect your seams after every six months. If you keep your roofs under additional cover, sealing it annually would be sufficient enough.
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What Is A Rubber Roof
Rubber roofs are the most commonly used materials in RVs today. Rubber roofs are durable and offer low-maintenance. You should clean your RV roof at least two times a year, or more, depending on your RV usage and where you park the vehicle.
Keep in mind not to use petroleum-based cleaners or any product that has citrus ingredients on your rubber roof. These products will only cause permanent damage to your rubber RV roof. Your RV wall panels will damage as rain and melted snow seeps into the seams and ruin the RVs insulation.
When the winter comes, stored water in the seams expands as it freezes, causing cracks and further damage to your RV roof. These small cracks can lead to holes, rips, and tears to your RV roof, which is why its essential to check your roof regularly.
Epdm Repair: Membrane Punctures
Repair a puncture in an EPDM membrane with a piece of EPDM membrane or EPDM cover tape.
The repair must extend a minimum of 3 inches beyond the edge of the hole in all directions. Cut an appropriate-sized piece of EPDM membrane or EPDM tape. Round all corners of the repair piece with scissors or shears.
A puncture in an EPDM rubber roof membrane caused by a dropped piece of plywood.
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Seal The Edges Of Your Patches
Use the same method for securing your patch that you did when applying it, to begin with. Use a thin layer of rubber roof repair adhesive around all four edges of the new piece and let it dry overnight before testing its water resistance.
If there is still some moisture coming through after letting everything set up, add another coat or two on top overtop these spots in order to get rid of any leaking issues permanently.
Measure And Cut The Right Sized Patches
After you have cleaned off the area to be repaired, simply cut a patch that is slightly larger than the hole. The size of your rubber roof will determine exactly how big these patches need to be.
When cutting out the patch from new material, its best if both pieces are equal in size and shape so they fit together well when applied.
Trim down one side until it slides right into place over the top of where the old piece was removed with no gaps or overlaps .
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How To Find A Roof Leak
Learning how to find a roof leak is easy but accomplishing the task can be frustrating. And fixing a leaky roof can be less time-consuming than locating where the water is coming in.
Water frequently enters the house near things that go through the roof. Projections or penetrations such as vents, dormers and chimneys are frequent places for leaks. Locating the exact source can be tricky because visible signs of a leak on the inside might be several feet away from either to the left, right or below the actual source.
To find the source of a roof leak:
- Look in the attic with a flashlight for evidence like water stains, trhen trace them up the roof and rafters to the entry point.
- If the leak isnt obvious, have a helper watch in the attic while you get on the roof with a garden hose.
- Begin soaking low on the roof, just above where the leak is visible inside the house.
- Use enough water to mimic heavy rains.
- Run water over the low side of the penetration for several minutes while the helper watches for any water droplets.
- If none appear, move to the right or left side of the penetration and let the water run over the area for several minutes before moving to the other side.
- Work your way up the roof, isolating areas around each penetration until the helper yells that a drip is visible.
- That will be the vicinity of the leak.
Patching Outside Corners Skylights Chimneys Curbs Etc
Outside corners are much more difficult to patch correctly, if youve never done it. You will have to apply a patch on 2 different surfaces, there is an angle change , and you will have to carefully stretch the UNCURED flashing to give it the correct shape.
Often, there is old flashing in the way, which you will have to remove without causing any further damages. I suggest a practice run, if this is your first time:
Cut a 6×6 piece of flashing from a 10 roll that I provide with the kit, fold back 1/2 of the release paper, position it at the corner of a dresser and try to stretch the exposed material so that it molds to the horizontal part .
Here is a short video on how to flash an outside corner:
Now, this video makes it look easy, but it demonstrates a new roof install. When it comes to a repair, you have to deal with OLD flashing that is already in place. Often, you also have 2 or more roof layers, which makes the roof to chimney angle more than 90 degrees. This can both simplify and complicate a repair.
If the old patch is small 6×6 or so, you can use a 12×12 patch to go over it. If the existing patch is bigger than 6×6 or you have multiple old patches, you will need to remove old flashing completely, if you want your repair to work and to last long.
It is always best to install patches over the original membrane and to make sure there are no additional layers in between, because that complicates installation and poses risk of leaks.
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Gather Your Roof Repair Tools And Materials
The first step in repairing a rubber roof is to make sure you have everything you need. These items should be fairly easy to find around your house, but if not, they can also be purchased at most hardware stores for fairly cheap prices:
- Rubber Roof Repair Kit
- Utility Knife and Replacement Blades
- Metal Ruler/Straight Edge
If you dont have a rubber roof repair kit, we suggest using any ready-to-use 30 oz. crack and joint sealant with the accompanying crack filling tool.
It works great for smaller issues like cracks or punctures in your rubber roof. Just make sure that if you do order it online, it gets shipped to an address where someone is home during business hours.
Finding The Source Of A Leaking Roof Can Be Tricky
Its not uncommon for roof leaks to start high and for water to travel down rafters or drywall
before dripping through the ceiling or running down a wall.
Sometimes the water will travel several feet from the entry point to the point at which the leak shows up.
PRACTICE SAFETY FIRST Never climb on a roof while it is raining. If you dont feel secure on your own roof, please dont hesitate to contact a professional roofing company. Many offer a free inspection or fast response roof repair services.
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How To Repair A Rubber Epdm Roof
- Skill Level: Intermediate
- Estimated Cost: $20 to $300
Long-lasting repairs to an EPDM roofing system requires the right repair materials and careful prep of the repair area. EPDM roofing membrane is made with synthetic rubber and is not compatible with asphalt-based products. This includes any type of roof cement flashing as well as any asphalt-based roof coating, including aluminum roof coating. These materials will contaminate the EPDM rubber membrane, leading to a more extensive repair.
Patching materials for EPDM roofing are sold as either standard membrane materials that require separate adhesive or as pressure-sensitive materials that have the adhesive pre-applied to the underside of the membrane. Patching materials also are sold in kits that include cleaner, primer, and roller for bonding the patch. These kits can be expensive, but they may include enough material to make several repairs.
- Paintbrush or paint roller with medium-nap cover
Epdm Roofing Issues Poor Installation
Proper preparation is key for EPDM installation.
If the roofing area is not properly cleaned, dried and prepared prior to installation, then this too can create problems further down the line.
Our EPDM systems such as HERTALAN® and RESITRIX® can be installed on most substrates, however you should always check first that the substrate you are using meets the installation requirements, and install a protective barrier if needed.
If the surface is damp in any way, there is the possibility that the membrane will not adhere to it. This can cause air and moisture to be trapped underneath, which can create a bubbling effect.
You may see some waviness or unevenness on your roof, this is usually found on older roofs where there is residual moisture, on decking where there is natural moisture and on insulation where you can frequently see movement and shrinkage. Due to EPDMs extreme flexibility, the function of the membrane is not affected, so these changes are merely cosmetic.
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What Kind Of Sealant Products Should I Use On My Rv
Liquid Rubber created a line of products specifically for RV roof coating use. Our online catalog has an extensive selection, so you can find one that suits your needs. The best all-around product is the RV Coating along with the Liquid Rubber EPDM Primer, which provides the best protection against the elements.
We’ve even created an easy-to-follow video, showing you the best way to apply liquid rubber products, along with tips for the best results. After all, you’ll only get maximum effectiveness when you’re using our products properly.
How To Repair A Epdm Rubber Roof
EPDM Rubber Roofs can be easily repaired with the right material and some know how. Follow the steps below to make quality and lastly repairs to your rubber roof.
Here are the following items you will need:
Thoroughly clean the area to be repaired. Begin by sweeping up dirt and other debris. If the roof is ballasted, move the rock away from the area carefully so not to make any punctures or tears in the rubber material. Once area is free of any debris or dirt, use the rubber roofing splice wash or approved rubber roofing cleaner with cotton rags or sponge to whip down area. Allow 1-30 minutes for the cleaner to completely dry.
Apply the rubber roofing primer to area that is to receive the patch. Use the brush to apply the primer. You dont want to apply so much that the primer puddles but you do want the area completely covered. The rubber roofing will turn dark black when covered with the primer. While the rubber roof primer is drying the primer will brome tacky to apply the patch cut the patch for the size that you need while the primer dries.
Once the uncured flashing is applied to the EPDM rubber, cover the edge of the flashing with a thick bead of rubber roofing lap sealant.
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Uncured Vs Cured Flashing Tape
This is called uncured flashing tape. That means it is stretchy, I can pull it, and it will allow me to flash around these corners and the inside corner out onto the roof deck. It wont want to come back to its original shape, but it will form to that. Another term for it is form flash.
As opposed to if the tape was just running on top of something on one plane, that is called a cured cover tape. That tape is never going to be used to transition up a wall or around a corner because its cured and not stretchy. You can force it to go around a corner, but it will eventually pull up again.
Why Should You Fix A Roof Leak Yourself
Reason #1 You can do it, and its not that difficult!Reason #2 You will feel good about the work you did, and can brag to your friends!Reason #3 You will save a bunch of money .Reason #4 It should only take 3-5 hours of your time .Most important reason: This is YOUR roof, and you care much more than any roofer out there, that it stops leaking!Bonus reason: Nobody ever showed me how to repair or install a flat roof .
A Word of Caution if you do not feel comfortable doing this yourself, you should NOT get started!
If you open up a roof, cant put it back together, and it starts to rain guess what? The roof will leak, and probably more than it did before.
BUT I am a firm believer that most people who are the least bit handy, can handle this, and do a pretty good job!
So when I needed to do my first EPDM repair, I went to Youtube and watched this video. Everything else was practice and experimentation. And guess what my first repair never leaked! I even called the homeowner a few years later to ask how my patch was doing
Here are examples of repairs that I did:
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Hire A Professional Roofing Contractor
If you are not sure about how to repair a rubber roof yourself, it is best to hire a professional contractor for this job.
They can handle any size of the hole or tear without worrying about an expensive patch kit from the store when they complete your project in record time and with great results.
This will also ensure that everything has been done properly so no further damage occurs over top of what might have already occurred which could result in larger problems down the road.
You can learn more about our services at .
Where To Buy Rubber Roof Flashing And Tools
So the best place to go is a Roofing Supply store, but:
1) they only sell to contractors2) they only sell in bulk
So even if they do sell to you, you will have to buy a 100 foot roll of 6 tape or 50 foot roll of 9 or 12 tape. Primer and cleaner one gallon or more.
These flashing materials do not come in small quantities, so if you buy a contractor pack you will most likely have a lot of tape and flashing left, and nowhere to use it.
Other places where you can buy EPDM materials are select Home Depot stores, but these also come in bulk only, and are intended for a bigger job, such as a porch, or a small to medium size roof. I calculated that you will have to spend at least $390 + tax at the Home Depot to buy everything you need for a repair.
Of course you can go to Google or Amazon and buy what you need. Lets see how much it will cost:
Cleaner: The cheapest suitable option I found on online is the cleaner spray by Eternabond. This should work for EPDM roof repair, as well as patching small holes with eternabond tape .
This spray is $12.48
Primer you need a really good primer to properly adhere EPDM patches / flashing to the roof. Firestone QuickSeam primer is the real deal, and while its pretty expensive, it gets the job done right. This is the product I use on all my repairs!
I also tried some of the quick patch brands from Amazon Cofair and Dicor again, too thin, and do not stick well.
A quart size can of Firestone Primer is $49.48.
Cost is $37.54
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Tips And Tricks: When Repairing The Rubber Roof On Rv
Here are some ideas and tips to keep in mind before conducting a repair to your RV roof.