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Old 12-15-2017, 08:34 PM   #1
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2017 27' International
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New Airstream Mold

Good evening! I'm hoping some of you veterans can help me out. I purchased a brand new 2017 27 foot international in March. My wife and I have been fulltiming in it since May. We had some issues (water heater stopped working, light switch shorting, window wouldn't stay closed) so we took it in to get warranty work and all was well. For about three weeks now, it's started smelling like mold in the airstream and is getting increasingly worse. It just smells dank. Another thing that leads me to believe there is mold is that I am allergic to mold and keep sneezing when I walk in. We have tried baking side, hanging the moisture bags, and scrubbing every visible surface with Clorox. All to no avail. I don't see any mold; just smell it. Should I order a mold test kit? Can I take it to a dealership with this vague diagnosis? I am getting worried about approaching my year of ownership and the factory warranty expiring. Any of your insight or help is very much appreciated.
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Old 12-15-2017, 08:58 PM   #2
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Sorry about this. Your warranty (if you bought new from a dealer) is 2 years - so yes, definitely contact the dealer for starters. Do it by email and have a date stamped communication that you started this process before the warranty expired.

I don't know what may be causing it - could be a leak, could be a need to ventilate better - but talk to the dealer and the factory if need be.

Good luck!
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Old 12-15-2017, 09:01 PM   #3
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Heya - 2017 Airstreams have 2 year warranties - so youíve still got plenty of headroom to work this out. Donít fret that you are getting to the end of your rope.

If its moisture related, it sure sounds like there is a persistent leak somewhere. Could be from a line / connection in the fresh water system or it could be the shell.

Next steps are to enlist the help of a very high quality moisture meter. Your dealer / service center should have one. Youíll need to have them inspect and test every square inch of the floor, especially around the perimeter of the trailer and under / inside cabinets / wardrobes.

I would start there, then evaluate next steps based on what you find (or what you donít find).

Since you full time, and perhaps have some flexibility, you may consider a trip to Jackson Center and have the factory work it out. If there is a shell leak then thatís where you would want it to be corrected. It could be very involved.

Good luck!
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Old 12-15-2017, 09:04 PM   #4
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It may be the plumbing vent under the sink. You can get a replacement at any hardware store for around $10. The key in installing it is to ensure that there is no air leaking around the threads - so you either use teflon tape or vaseline.
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Old 12-16-2017, 06:38 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveSueMac View Post
Sorry about this. Your warranty (if you bought new from a dealer) is 2 years - so yes, definitely contact the dealer for starters. Do it by email and have a date stamped communication that you started this process before the warranty expired.

I don't know what may be causing it - could be a leak, could be a need to ventilate better - but talk to the dealer and the factory if need be.

Good luck!


Ah great to know it's two years and not one. I think my dealer told me one when they were trying to sell me an extended warranty. That is a huge relief. Even better idea emailing so I have everything time stamped. Thanks for your help.
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Old 12-16-2017, 09:00 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wulfraat View Post
Heya - 2017 Airstreams have 2 year warranties - so youíve still got plenty of headroom to work this out. Donít fret that you are getting to the end of your rope.

If its moisture related, it sure sounds like there is a persistent leak somewhere. Could be from a line / connection in the fresh water system or it could be the shell.

Next steps are to enlist the help of a very high quality moisture meter. Your dealer / service center should have one. Youíll need to have them inspect and test every square inch of the floor, especially around the perimeter of the trailer and under / inside cabinets / wardrobes.

I would start there, then evaluate next steps based on what you find (or what you donít find).

Since you full time, and perhaps have some flexibility, you may consider a trip to Jackson Center and have the factory work it out. If there is a shell leak then thatís where you would want it to be corrected. It could be very involved.

Good luck!


Thank you so much for all of your suggestions! Now that you mention a shell leak, we actually had the a leak one time but the dealer thought it was from the second AC so he just threw some caulk up there. Maybe water is coming in there and settling.

I'm going to call my dealer today and talk to them about the moisture meter. Taking it to Jackson is a great idea and since we have another year for the warranty I think I could make it out there this summer.

Thank you again!
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Old 12-16-2017, 09:49 AM   #7
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One more possibility: if youíre full-timing in cold weather, look under your mattress, between the mattress and the plywood it rests on. This cold/warm interface can suffer from condensation and then mold. There are some simple preventative measures that can be taken if this is an issue.
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Old 12-16-2017, 11:54 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chelseykate View Post
Ah great to know it's two years and not one. I think my dealer told me one when they were trying to sell me an extended warranty. That is a huge relief. Even better idea emailing so I have everything time stamped. Thanks for your help.
Your owner's manual probably has all the details about the warranty.



Have you used the furnace, or air conditioning, a lot, in humid weather, and noticed condensation forming on the inside of the glass windows? If so, that same condensation got into every nook and cranny of the trailer, including areas with little or no ventilation. These areas are dark, and perfect Petri dishes for mold to grow. Only you can assess this. The owner's manual has language about controlling condensation, and warnings (I think) that mold from this is not covered by your warranty, because it is considered "operator error" in many cases.

We use a plug-in 120-volt product called a Dampp Chaser to ward off mold. Amazon and other sources carry them. Will post a link later if you can't find them.

Good luck!

Peter
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Old 12-16-2017, 03:06 PM   #9
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PS -- Here is a 24" Dampp Chaser unit:

https://www.amazon.com/Dampp-Chaser-...s=dampp+chaser

They come in a variety of lengths. Great low-wattage way keep things dried out, and to chase the damp away!
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Old 12-17-2017, 05:01 AM   #10
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chelseykate-

One other thought in addition to you checking all of the excellent recommendations above. If you smell "a funk" when you come in the door a thought I had is that it could be the tanks - black and grey water tanks...........

Make sure your black tank is at least 2/3 full before dumping it, and you may want to follow the same rule for grey as well. I know some campers leave the grey valve open for convenience all the time when hooked up at a full service rv site, but not me. I don't even leave my sewer hose connected to the drain in the ground.......some funky odors come from some rv park systems and I leave the ground drain cap in place. No sense allowing those odors into your camper (and odors can get in, an Airstream is not a sealed unit). Grey tanks can get pretty rank with food particles, hair, sunscreen, etc.....and not allowing a bunch of water to "whoosh" all that out can lead to odors.

You might also want to google the "geo method" of holding tank treatments. We tried all of the over-the-counter add-ins for our black tank, and only when we went to the geo method did our odors go away completely. (plus it's inexpensive) We camp year round in Florida (meaning in the heat a lot), and the geo method really works for us. I also make up a 1/2 strength mix of geo in a bucket and pour it down all the drains to treat the grey tank once in a while.

Hope this helps.
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Old 12-17-2017, 07:59 AM   #11
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Hi:
Shinypete has excellent advice regarding maintenance of your tanks.
I've full timed in a modern unit and now have a vintage that I restored.
Remember that humans can exhale a quart of water while sleeping at night...
that's number one. Second, taking extended showers really adds moisture
to the interior.
Ventilate, Ventilate Ventilate.....I leave a hatch and window slightly cracked at night for cross ventilation, and when I wake up everything gets opened up and really dry the place out. I'm up in the PNW and it's wet ALOT here but I've managed to keep the place oder and mould free. PS: Military showers or shower outside and wipe down the shower, and whole BR if needed and hang that towel outside till it's bone dry.
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Old 12-18-2017, 08:20 AM   #12
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Hi chelseykate,

We're sorry to learn about the issue you described in your 2017 27' International. Please call our customer service and technical support team at*1 (877) 596-6111, option 2 so we can learn more and help.

Thanks.
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