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Old 05-20-2009, 08:27 AM   #1
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1975 25' Tradewind
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Auburn , Alabama
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 30
75 Tradewind leak

I have a 75 Tradewind that has a water leak running down the inside, left door frame. Caulked around door and windows but leak is still there. Climbed up on the ladder this morning to ponder this. Everything looks good but the antenna base caulking looks a little suspect...Could the leak be coming from the antenna base and running down a rib to the door frame? Or maybe the front vent which is right in front of the antenna? Also, what is the best way to get on top without doing damage to the roof?

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Old 05-20-2009, 09:24 AM   #2
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1978 25' Tradewind
London , England
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 56
Leak detection.

We have chased leaks for a long time and have one left which we have a good idea about now. Its pretty easy to clean up around the roof vents and recaulk with grey polyurethane sealant. Leaks from the roof run down between the inner and outer sheets and sometimes come out at horizontal inside seams. You should also check round the plywood floor because any leaks are going to cause rot there. You may have more leaks than you can see. The detailing at the floor edge is bad because the wall depth sits on the ply floor which is factory fitted to the chassis before the body is dropped on!

We think our last leak is from the rivet holes where the ZipDee case runs along the top. The regular movement makes the holes bigger than the rivet. We are going to scrub the dirt out when the weather is dry. Then one of us is going to hold the ZipDee aluminum off the roof so that the other can inject sealant. We've found it useful to put masking tape each side of the sealant so that it ends up as a neat line. Polyurethane sealant is the stickiest substance on the planet. If you don't have a ZipDee awning ignore this.

We sealed round windows the same way. Rake out and clean the gap between the architrave and the body panels. Make sure it's dry. Tape up both sides so that you can only see the strip which will be visible sealant. Force in the sealer. I think we poked it with a putty knife or scraper. Smooth it off with the finger of a rubber glove or rounded object then peel off the tape. Very satisfying. You can seal between the body aluminum panels the same way.

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Old 05-21-2009, 07:16 AM   #3
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1975 25' Tradewind
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Auburn , Alabama
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 30
Thanks for the suggestions. Hard to fix leaks when it keeps raining around here!
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Old 05-21-2009, 09:11 AM   #4
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1972 25' Tradewind
Mobile By Way Of Atlanta, By Way Of Denver! , Alabama
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 72
Kudos to the "very satisfying" comment, Ianrjam! I just spent all of Monday cleaning Luna's (my 72 Tradewind) windows of gunky silicone and taping off for new Vulkem. Then it only took me a couple hours to seal and peal off tape.. looks SOOOOO much cleaner! Although it was a lot of hours, in some sick way, I totally enjoyed it!

Good luck barron64! just take your time and you will be much happier with the outcome

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Old 05-21-2009, 09:55 AM   #5
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When you said that the water is running down the inside, left door frame, am assuming that you are looking at the door from the inside & the frame that has the water is the forward part of the door frame? Do you notice the water high or low on the floor? Does the leak happen anytime it rains or only when raining & windy?
You mentioned that you caulked around the door . . . did you also remove the outside light above the door & caulk that as well? If the leak is coming from the forward part of the trailer, reseal the porch light forward of the door.

If the water seems to be entering high on the frame, it could be from the antenna - if you remove the antenna & the insulation is soggy, then there's the problem.

If you only notice the water when it's raining & blowing, it could be that the door seal is suspect or the eyebrow above the door.

Leaks are pesky things to find - sometimes, the water entry point can be several feet away from the exit point. Over the years owning various trailers, we've sat inside during a rain event, observing how fast/much water is entering.
If we suspect an external entry point for the leak, we fashion a temporary "cover" over that area & install hours before the next rain - we apply with blue painter's tape on a dry surface - if the area is larger than tape width, we will fasten a small piece of plastic. Note that we remove ASAP after the rain experiment and NEVER use regular masking tape or duct tape on the trailer surface! If the cover stops or retards the leak, then we know where to seal.
Leak chasing can take lots of observation and detective work!
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