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Old 11-22-2020, 04:24 PM   #1
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Roof bubbles, maintenance questions? (newbie)

Hi everyone. I made a couple posts already and got some much appreciated help. Im in South Florida. Just purchased used 2015 TT a couple days ago. I just got done doing a full close inspection and found some things i didnt see before. Partly because i didnt know what to look for.

I found a few little bubbles on the roof and one big one. I need help on what to do. I dont know if they are full of water or air. Should i pop them and put eternabond tape over them. What are my options? Also let me mention the previous owner told me he had a 3 stage roof treatment done when he bought it and that it hasnt even wore down to the original roof yet. I think this might just be that extra coating bubbling up? I can see it peeling under the AC as well.. What should i do about that?

Also noticed some sealant missing in a few spots where the roof meets the gutter or side wall. Do i use proflex rv there or something else?

I even noticed a crack or hole form in part of the window frame.. How do i seal that? Sorry for all the questions i just really want to do this right so my trailer can last me many years! Cant belive i found so many things i didnt see when buying it. Im worried about mold as im very sensitive to it. Previously got sick from a moldy apartment..

Thanks in advance. Pictures attatched
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Old 11-22-2020, 04:59 PM   #2
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I would suggest the possibility that water has gotten under the rubber roof and has damaged the wood roof deck. I think you need the opinion of an expert who will look at it.
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Old 11-22-2020, 04:59 PM   #3
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Looks like a mess to me

It's hard to tell just from pictures. It looks to me like your camper has a portion of the roof membrane that is not clued down properly during manufacture. Someone appears to have layered on a bunch of caulk over the corner in an attempt to stop a leak there. This isn't a good way to fix the problem. Around the TV antenna, someone added a bunch of caulk in an probably attempt to stop a leak there. From what I read, leaks typically come from the cable. I see no caulk there. This looks like a mess to me. On the edge, it looks like someone added some silicone sealant to stop a tear or leak there. Silicone won't stick to the rubber roof. If water as leaking in and not properly fixed, there may be rot in the roof or wall structure. If you aren't very handy, I suggest bringing the thing to someone who does this for a living. I hope you got a good price for the RV. It can be very expensive to replace a roof.
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Old 11-22-2020, 08:55 PM   #4
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Please dont say that! Making me really nervous. I am handy but i spent almost my whole savings on this thing. Any advice and where to start would be great.
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Old 11-22-2020, 09:21 PM   #5
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First thing I'd do is clean the roof with Mold Armor with stain remover. It can be found at Depot, Lowes, Menards, or even the ole interweb. Wear old clothes, spray on dry roof, let it sit 15min and hose it off. Stubborn stains will need an after treatment, wet or dry and a little scrubbing.
Secondly, I'd slice open that bubble like a cyst and see what's going on underneath. Take a look see for any cracked sealant or somewhere around that antenna for a water leak, IF its water causing that bubble. If everything is good, etrnabond it a forget it. The rest of the sealants on and around the roof, if the precious owner(s) used some kind of silicon sealants and they need attention, peel that garbage off and use the correct sealant. I use Dicor self leveling on the top of the roof and had to touch up a few spots on the roof sides where it meets the rain gutters with it.
I'm sure others will chime in on other sealants that will hold up as well.
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Old 11-22-2020, 09:22 PM   #6
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I would go up there and test each square foot for softness, bulges, etc. If the roof deck is still fundamentally sound then you need to secure it. If there is a bad spot or two you may have to do surgery. If there is major roof damage then you may be calling around for repairs.
If no major repairs then you need to re-seal all the openings on the roof and the edges. By re-seal, I mean get all the old sealants, caulk or whatever off and start with clean caulk and/or Etearnabond.
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Old 11-22-2020, 09:48 PM   #7
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Eternabond tape is your friend. I have it on all caulked sections of my 8 year old roof and I still inspect it 10 times a year. Don't fret too much as it looks like most of your roof is in pretty good shape. As stated above, get to the bottom of what is causing the big bubble. I imagine replacing part of the roof decking would be a big job but better than the whole thing. Hopefully it'll be the additive that the previous owner applied and no damage underneath since the original membrane is still intact. Take care in cutting into the bubble. Keep us posted
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Old 11-22-2020, 10:29 PM   #8
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I have not seen anything like that bubble before. These rubber roofs are not glued down. Hence why we so many wrinkles in them. A lot of people freak out about the wrinkles.

That large bubble is not blown up due to water damaged wood. Now there maybe some water damage under it. I suspect the membrane layers are delaminating. Normally I would say just watch it. But, in this case as it is so blown up, I would consider creating a slit, maybe an inch or two long. Investigate if the membrane is delaminating. If it is, just apply some eternabond and keep an eye on it.

As for caulking around the gutter. I looks like it might have a little tree damage. I would use OSI Quad, for that caulking job. Normally self leveling Decor is used on the roof, but it would just run right down and make a mess. Could use eternabond. But DO NOT STRETCH it, or it will peel up in a couple days.

For the window a little black OSI Quad would work there too.
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Old 11-23-2020, 06:57 AM   #9
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Thanks guys. Now i need to know how do i clean the rubber roof before resealing or laying down eternabond tape. If i slit the bubble or even around the gutters where seals are missing i dont want to be spraying water all over it so it can seep under? I see people say using mineral spirits or acetone? Then read it says never to use it unless going over the lap sealant. So im confused. I want to get this done asap.

Im planning to go to camping world in a few minutes to get some dicor self leveling and dicor non leveling for the gutter area to seal. I want to see whats under that back corner thats wrinkling and also whats inside that bubble. Make sure there is no wood damage or mold. Dam this makes me nervous.
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Old 11-23-2020, 10:12 AM   #10
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Take a look at this.



As for cleaning the roof, I used Dawn dish detergent and a scrub-brush.
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Old 11-23-2020, 10:25 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RichCarter View Post
As for cleaning the roof, I used Dawn dish detergent and a scrub-brush.
X2. Dish soap will remove any wax you apply to the side of the RV. So I always start at the top and work my way down. Change products as I go.

I lower my stabilizers when I go up on the roof. Wrap my ladder with some towels where it touches the roof (tore my membrane the first time I went up). I wrap the garden hose around the AC unit so it does not want to slide off the roof. I fill my bucket, and use a carwash brush. I wash and rinse about 5 -7 liner feet at a time.
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Old 11-24-2020, 10:24 AM   #12
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I got up on the corner this morning to inspect the wrinkles in back corner. Wood feels super solid just as everywhere else around it. It is above bunks. Which also feels seems solid from inside.

I could see a small crack where it meets the black molding but it seems it was just the special coating the previous owner put on the roof. I actually peeled it back a little to see if it was wet or damaged underneath. I can see the original rubber roof underneath. I dont see any tears or anything. Seems dry. I cleaned with a soapy rag then wiped with a water rag then wiped really good with alcohol. Think I'm just going to put some self leveling dicor all over the seems there and call it a day. Probably add some eternabond after it dries and cure a few weeks. Does this seem like a good plan?

I really wanted to see the wood but it feels very strong and that seems like a big job. Would either have to slice through the orignal rubber roof or pull up the moldings and things.

Pics attatched
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Old 11-24-2020, 10:34 AM   #13
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Here are pics..
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Old 11-24-2020, 10:38 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Jayco2015JayFLIGHT View Post
I got up on the corner this morning to inspect the wrinkles. Wood feels super solid just as everywhere else around it. It is above bunks. Which also feels seems solid from inside.
I can see the special coating the previous owner put on the roof peeling a bit and can see the original rubber roof underneath. I dont see any tears or anything. Seems dry. I cleaned with a soapy rag then wiped with a water rag then wiped really good with alcohol. Think I'm just going to put some self leveling dicor all over the seems there and call it a day. Does this seem like a good plan? Pics attatched
Generally speaking that sounds like a decent plan. If the previous owner applied some paint like coating, you may want to keep a closer eye on the roof. The coating starts to peal, the caulk below it, my have failed, and you can not tell. Which might mean leaks in the future. Just reinforces the every 6 month inspection.
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Old 11-24-2020, 10:59 AM   #15
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Jagiven your the man thanks for the quick reply and all the sound advice you have given me. Next im going to slice that bubble. Feels solid around it. Im thinking its just the protective coating seperating from the rubber roof. Hopefully just air bubble and not water! After i will most likely self level caulk it first and then eternbond it. I dont have the eternbond tape yet. Have to order today. Debating on how much to order i dont know if i should go around all vents, skylights and what not as preventative measures? Kinda of looks ugly but who sees it right? Did you eternabond your rig?
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Old 11-24-2020, 02:45 PM   #16
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I would pull off the current caulk around the vent pictured. It looks to me based on ripples that your roof may have pulled away from the edge of the vent and been caulked over or even pulled out from under it.

That is a vent for either a sidewall ac or the fridge. You can look at the ones online to find where the screws (4?) are and clean the crud off and then get to the heart of the matter. To me, the roof looks like a loose sheet on a bed and not the bubbles I have seen pictured elsewhere.

Same on the corner pictured.

And - staples?? got to go away and fix whatever that is.

Looks like you have a mess, I would hit one item at a time. Good luck!
And post pictures of what was wrong and how you fixed it please to help the rest of us do it if we need to.
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Old 11-24-2020, 03:12 PM   #17
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order the tape first then splice it open.. seal with eternabond.. skip the dicor....
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Old 11-24-2020, 04:02 PM   #18
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X2, get the eternabond first! It is great stuff. But as noted above, if the paint like coating is pealing, the eternabond is only as good as what it is trying to stick too.

I really like eternabond, and I would recommend it in a heartbeat. BUT I am not sure due to that coating. I would closely inspect all the sealant around the roof openings before I made a commitment. It is good stuff and it will stick, but I keep going back to the possible separation/pealing issue.

Without seeing the caulking and the coating around the vents and like, I would say do it. Most of the time a 4" wide roll is enough. On my HTT, there was so much caulking along the front cap joint I purchased a 6" wide roll (50' long). I could have bought a 4" and a 6" roll, but it would have cost me more.

Do not stretch Eternabond as you apply it, or it will release within a few days (experience talking here). If you just lay one the roof and roll it on, it will never release. I did every single roof caulking point excluding the gutters, and antenna. Took two days. Day one, washed the roof really well, and let it dry. Day two, I applied the eternabond directly over the existing caulk. Only I and the one above ever see it. Many people like to remove the old caulk as the eternabond lays down flatter.
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Old 11-25-2020, 03:59 PM   #19
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As for caulking around the gutter. I looks like it might have a little tree damage. I would use OSI Quad, for that caulking job. Normally self leveling Decor is used on the roof, but it would just run right down and make a mess. Could use eternabond. But DO NOT STRETCH it, or it will peel up in a couple days.

For the window a little black OSI Quad would work there too.
I ended up just putting the clear proflex for the window.

So Osi Quad is ok for between the gutter and rubber roof?? I was under the impression it was only to be used like proflex. I know proflex says on the tube not for Edpm roofing. I did buy a tube of non sag dicor to use there. Is this the best way?

I texted the previous owner to ask him if he knew what type of sealant was used to seal between the gutter and roof. Guess what he said..? Silcone..I guess that means i have to pull all of it off? Alot of it still looks good but nothing sticks to silicone right?? Now if i have to take all the good parts off how do i do that without damaging the rubber roof? Plastic putty knife maybe? Some of it seems on there pretty good..
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Old 11-26-2020, 06:13 AM   #20
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I have some good news.. I slit the bubble open! It was indeed just the coating bubbling up.. Original roofing looks brand new underneath! No water! I decided just to put the self level over it because the coating is starting to peel up and what not. Like Ja said its only as good as the surface it trying to stick to. Its not pretty but i think it sealed up. Ill keep a close eye on it..

The reason it started to bubble up is the original caulk underneath is actually coming up or releasing from the original roof rather and the coating was painted over top of it. So i slit the bubble and squirt the dicor underneath the original caulk then folded the flap back down and tucked it under. Then followed with more dicor all over the top of the slit. Now i started with a small slit but then realized the coating had been stretched from the bubble so i coudlnt make it flat. If i sealed it back like that would have a bunch of wrinkles which would probably end up cracking. I decided to make the slit bigger so i could make it nice and flat but meant more dicor everywhere lol. Not the prettiest. Let me know what you guys think.

Also upon closer inspection under the AC and refridge vent looks to just be peeling of protective coating as well. More good news. But have to figure out how i sure take care of that? Maybe just try to razor off the peeling area and let it do its thing. I guess its probably all going to start peeling off soon.. I think my roof is fine. Was really worried there for a minute. But everything seems solid.
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