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How To Replace Rubber Roof On Travel Trailer

How To Patch A Rubber Roof

Installing a Rubber Roof on a Travel Trailer

If you can get your hands on some EPDM rubber, this is a quick and easy way to patch up your RV’s roof.

  • Take a piece of EPDM rubber membrane and use a razor knife to cut a patch 2 inches larger than the damaged area. Round the corners and leave no jagged edges.
  • Center the patch over the damaged area and use a pen or pencil to draw a line around the patch, marking its location on your roof.
  • Lift the patch and use a scraper to remove any old caulking stuck to the damaged section. Clean the area using a clean cloth and a touch of rubbing alcohol or some Protect All Rubber Roof Cleaner. A scrub pad may be used on stubborn dirt, stains, sap, etc. Clean the bottom of the patch too.
  • Apply an even coat of EPDM adhesive to the bottom of the patch and to the damaged area outlined on the roof. Once the adhesive is dry, press the patch into place. Lay down a bead of Dicor Self-Leveling Lap Sealant over the edge the patch. Once dry, your job is done and your RV’s roof should be ready for rain.
  • Install Your New Rv Rubber Roof Replacement

    Finally, its time to install a fresh piece of roofing material. This might be aluminum, fiberglass, EPDM, or TPO rubber membrane.

    Start at one end of the RV. In manageable sections, apply the recommended roof adhesive. Then roll out the new roofing material and take care to push out all the air bubbles.

    Depending on the material and the weather, the roof material may need to sit in the sun to relax or soften up so you can get rid of the creases and bubbles.

    Pro tip: Leave the first 1.5 feet or so unglued at the beginning. This will allow you to come back once the entire layer is installed and tuck in the new material to the termination caps.

    After covering the entire length of the roof, cut off the excess material at the end of your RV. Now you can go back to where you started and tuck and adhere the first section of the roofing material.

    RV rubber roof material from Dicor RV Parts Nation

    How To Replace Or Repair Your Roof

    Now that you have determined the type of your RVs roof, its time to evaluate the extent of the damage to your roof and other parts of your RV, and then begin the necessary repairs. Above, we covered the four types of RV roofs youre likely to encounter when making repairs with those being, aluminum, fiberglass and the last two which are different types of rubber or rubber composites and polymers that are in the rubber family.

    Below, Im going to focus on replacing or repairing the rubber roofs as these are the more popular type of RV roofs and the ones youll likely encounter when working on an RV roof. First, well begin by explaining how to replace the TPO and the EPDM in sheet form, and then well look at replacing your roof with EPDM in a liquid form.

    • Will not chalk, fade, or streak
    • Color is balanced throughout roofing membrane
    • UV protection

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    Does My Camper Or Rv Have A Rubber Roof

    Beginner InfoCamper UseGeneral CamperPhoto via iRV2 member donnyman

    When deciding to take a look at my rubber roof on my camper to see if any repairs were needed, I wondered why rubber roofs are becoming more common on campers and RVs. It turns out there are several reasons. Rubber roofs are cheaper to maintain or repair, have low weight, are less slippery, and less likely to have weather damage.

    If you own an RV or camper, you may be wondering which type of roof you have. In short, aluminum and fiberglass roofs are hard. Fiberglass tends to be solid but is not metallic while aluminum is definitely metallic. Vinyl kind of looks and feels like rubber, but if you try to pinch it, it wont pinch up. If your roof isnt fiberglass, aluminum, or vinyl, then its probably rubber.

    But there are also 2 main types of rubber roof and they require different maintenance. There are ways to tell which type of roof you have and what maintenance you need to complete on the rubber roof of your RV.

    Rubber roofs are low weight and dont cost as much. They are also the newer type of roofing for campers and RVs. In fact, campers report that RV repair shops often replace damaged fiberglass roofs with rubber. A rubber roof is less expensive to replace, while replacing a fiberglass roof could run into thousands of dollars. A TPO rubber roof might cost only a few hundred dollars to replace. A well-maintained rubber roof will last for years.

    How To Repair Aluminum Rv Roof

    Installing a Rubber Roof on a Travel Trailer

    Have a metal roof on your RV? Heres how to seal and repair their punctures.

    Resealing aluminum RV roofs

    For aluminum and other metal RV roofs, resealing is done with a special coating designed for the material, such as Dicors Metal RV roof coating. This forms a rubber-like top layer and is resistant to mildew and rust.

    Of course, you wouldnt apply a thick white coating to a rounded metal RV like an Airstream. For these , sealing joints and rivets with a caulking gun is essential.

    Repairing punctures or tears

    Depending on the size of the puncture, you may be able to repair your metal roof with a peel and stick patch. Make sure to buy one that is designed for metal roofs, as the adhesive formula is a little different. Simply clean the area, stick the patch over it, and roll out air bubbles with a small roller.

    For more significant damages, the best way to repair a metal roof is by replacing the metal panel, which is a process that will vary depending on your particular RV.

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    Rv Rubber Roof Repair Tips And Tricks

    • Written by Jennifer Aube on Jan 20, 2010To ensure our content is always up-to-date with current information, best practices, and professional advice, articles are routinely reviewed by industry experts with years of hands-on experience.Reviewed by H.R. Helm on Jan 02, 2020

    So you need to start to think about your rv rubber roof repair job because you are seeing a few more signs of leaking and water damage. Here are some tips and tricks that will help you with your repair job.

    Walking on the RV Rubber Roof

    Before you go through to repair your rubber roof, you will want to inspect the surface to get an accurate idea of where the issues may be and what needs to be patched or fixed up. Walking properly along the roofline is important. First, lay plywood down along the seams of the rubber roof or other light wood material. When you walk on the roof over the plywood or wood boards, your weight is distributed evenly across the boards and across the roof rafters of your RV.

    Always Repair the Defect First

    Dealing with Small Leaks and Seals

    If you have a small leak in your rubber roof or if the seal is just not quite doing the job anymore, you can simply use a rubber roof coating to seal over the leak. Before you apply the rubber roof coating, you will need to clean off the spot that has the leak. Then just take out your paint brush and paint over the leaking problem, like you would when painting a wall of a room.

    A Word about Harsh Abrasives

    Avoid Poking Holes

    Rv Roof Repair: Fix Your Epdm Rubber Roof The Easy Way

    RV roof repair is vitally important. Neglecting it can compromise the integrity of your RV travel trailer or motorhome. And since fixing a tear in your rubber roof is so easy, there’s no reason to delay.

    Perhaps you’ve discovered from experience that RV rubber roofs and tree branches don’t mix. Rough housing on your rubber roof won’t help matters either, and is just plain dangerous. Whatever the cause, accidents can rip your rubber, and that can lead to water leaks. Next thing you know you’ve got extensive water damage and your RV has turned to a pile of rubble.

    But fear not, because repairing damage done to your RV’s roof is child’s play. And if you’re short on money or time, repairing a rubber roof will be much less costly and less time consuming than a complete RV roof replacement.

    To help you stay dry I’ll talk a little bit about EPDM rubber roofs , then I’ll go over roof repair methods, patch kits, RV roof repair tape, and lastly, resealing roof seams.

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    How Much Does Rv Armor Roof Cost

    How much does RV armor cost? Direct from the company, a new RV armor roof costs about $140 per linear foot with a minimum cost of $3,650. That may be a steal given the fact that RV Armor guarantees its news roofs for life. To learn more about RV Armor roofs and their costs, etc., just keep reading our article.

    How To Install The Epdm Roof

    RV Rubber Roof Repair [ Replace Water Damaged Roof ]

    Installing EPDM

    You are now prepped and ready for installation. Start by laying out the entire sheet of EPDM on the roof of your camper. This helps get everything lined up and helps relax the material.

    Once it is laid into position, you need to decide how much of it you want to glue down at one time. Some folks do half a time and some do much less. I chose to break it up into smaller sections and it seemed to work pretty well for me.

    Once you decide how much you want to glue down at once, its time to fold back a portion of roofing material. Once it is peeled back, you are ready to apply the acrylic adhesive. My kit came with RecPro RP-8010 acrylic water-based adhesive.

    After thorough mixing, pour the adhesive onto the decking and use the roller to apply the adhesive. I used a paint roller with an extension fitted with a 1/4 nap roller head to apply an even coat of adhesive. Allow the adhesive to sit for a bit before positioning the EPDM material back into place.

    Slowly work the EPDM material into position to minimize air pockets and wrinkles. Continue repeating this process as you work your way across the RV roof.

    If you discover air pockets that need to be addressed, now is the time to fix them. The glue allows you a little time to reposition the material if needed, so be sure to take advantage of it. Any small air pockets can be addressed with a squeegee or shop broom. This also allows the roofing material, decking, and adhesive to form a nice smooth bond.

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    How Much Does It Cost To Replace A Roof On An Rv

    On average, the costs to replace a roof on an RV is $300 per linear foot. This means that for replacing the entire roof of a 30 feet long RV you could pay $9000 .

    The costs to replace a roof on an RV will vary considerably due to the different types of materials used. See the table below for more information*.

    Type of RV roof Total costs for 255 square feet

    *The labour cost and additional costs are not included in the total cost

    Rv Roof Repair Everything You Need To Know To Diy

    Having a healthy RV roof is key to keeping your rig ready for the road. Regular cleaning and maintenance is necessary to ensure that everything stays in tip-top shape, but there may come a time when your roof needs a little more than a good scrub. Cracks, scratches, and holes in RV roofing arent uncommon problems, and youll likely come across them at one point or another. Fortunately, there is some RV roof repair you can do yourself.

    Before you head off to the dealer for repairs, check to see if its something you can complete on your own. Many repairs are relatively simple and can be achieved with supplies purchased at an RV retailer or a home improvement store. If you have a DIY RV roof repair project, keep reading. We have some helpful RV repair tips on completing some of the most common RV roof fixes.

    In this guide, we discuss how to:

    • clean an RV roof

    Lets get started!

    Also Check: How Do I Know If My Roof Is Leaking

    Removing A Plumbing Vent Cap From Rv Roof

    So next I started working on removing the roof fixtures one by one. I went for the simplest one first, a vent cap from a kitchen sink plumbing vent pipe.

    I used a stiff scraper with a chisel-like blade and just started prying and chipping and scraping and hacking. There is no other way around this, you just have to start digging until you expose the screw heads.

    The screws on this vent cap were hex-head metal screws so I used a small socket driver to remove them. Some came out clean. Others were rusted and I had to use a vice-grip pliers to grab the heads and turn them little by little. Then I removed the top piece of the vent cap assembly.

    This is a sight Ill probably have to get used to, finding the remains of animal habitation in every nook and cranny. I spend an awful lot of my time creating good wildlife habitat in my yard so I dont get offended when a creature chooses to set up home in my RV. But when its going to mess up the functionality of the RV then I try to take some steps to prevent it, without having to kill anyone. Luckily nobody was home in this old nest so I just tossed it. Perhaps Ill put a screen over it when replacing it.

    Which brings us to the next point. You should try not to damage these pieces as youre scraping off the old caulk and sealant just in case you need to use them again. I figure Ill replace cheap pieces like this cracked and worn out vent cap, but other more specialized pieces might be harder to replace.

    Do I Need Additional Protection For My Rv Roof

    Pin on My collection

    After you reroof your RV, you want to apply additional protection against the elements to help extend the durability and appearance of your roof. Here are some options you can use:

    • Rubber roof coating if your RV has a rubber roof, adding a layer of rubber roof coating helps preserve the flexibility and structural integrity of your roof. It also helps waterproof your roof.
    • RV Liquid Roof RV liquid roof is a compound made from EPDM rubber in liquid form. As with rubber roof coating, it helps add a layer of protection on your RV roof.
    • Roof covers roof covers are a cheap and easy way to add protection to your RV roof. Look for waterproof and UV-resistant models to help protect your RV roof against sun and rain damage, especially if you store your RV outdoors.

    Also Check: Roof Replacement Cost California

    Place The Roof On Your Rv

    Apply adhesive to the flanges of the deck, and have a friend help you lift and place your rubber roof. Allow the adhesive to dry overnight.


    • Use caution when working on the roof. Do not stand close to the edge.

    Writer Bio

    Brenna Swanston is a freelance writer, editor and journalist. She covers topics including environment, agriculture and travel. She previously reported for the Sun newspaper in Santa Maria, Calif., and holds a bachelor’s in journalism from California Polytechnic State University. Swanston is an avid traveler and loves jazz, yoga and craft beer.

    How Much Does It Cost To Replace Rubber Roof On Rv

    The cost of a rubber roof will vary from one manufacturer to the next. Overall, vehq.com estimates that a rubber roof replacement costs between $300 and $325 per linear foot. However, how much you spend on a roof repair will depend on various factors such as whether youre doing the replacement by yourself or hiring a professional.

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    Rv Roof Inspection: A Guide

    The first thing to do when inspecting an RVs roof is to pull out a ladder and carefully inspect the condition of the roof. If the roof is metal, especially the seamed model , lay a sheet of plywood or a few boards lengthwise, wide enough to walk on.

    This way the boards cross the rafters of the roof and your weight will be evenly distributed. A rubber roof has an underlying layer of plywood or chipboard, normally between 3/16 and ½ inch, which is enough to support your weight.

    The membrane on a rubber or metal roof is made of very strong and durable materials, but it is quite thin and could be punctured by a sharp object. You can walk on the surface but with care, first check that there is nothing under your shoes, such as a rock, which could damage the roof covering.

    Crumbling will occur naturally on any type of roof and various pollutants will partially or totally alter the surface. Aluminum will age and turn a slate color, while a rubber roof may show lime residue. Be sure to wear proper clothing and footwear to perform a proper inspection. Because, WITHOUT ANY DOUBT, you will get dirty.

    The roof should be inspected at least twice a year and when a fault occurs it should be corrected immediately. Some brands of gasket will perform better than others. For example, Fleetwood just recently changed the brand of gaskets used on their rubber roofs from the Wilderness and Mallard models.


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