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Old 04-03-2013, 11:46 AM   #1
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Leak detection using Sealtech

Took the 1971 Cayo C-11 to the closest RV dealer with a Sealtech machine yesterday. They found two minor leaks, and just as importantly, confirmed that the rest of the exterior was sound, needing no further maintenance. It was well worth the $125 fee.

I declined their offer to patch the leaks with some silicone.
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Old 04-03-2013, 12:25 PM   #2
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Was this at the Airstream dealer in north of Twin Cities? I asked about this last year and they promptly told me any leaks, corrosion, or adjustments 90 after purchase are not warranty items; they did not want to do it.

I would like to have it done, maybe I should wait until after the warranty expires and they will be happy to. Or test it, then go to Jackson Center where they fix warranty items without hesitation.

doug k
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Old 04-03-2013, 12:33 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by dkottum View Post
Was this at the Airstream dealer in north of Twin Cities? I asked about this last year and they promptly told me any leaks, corrosion, or adjustments 90 after purchase are not warranty items; they did not want to do it.

I would like to have it done, maybe I should wait until after the warranty expires and they will be happy to. Or test it, then go to Jackson Center where they fix warranty items without hesitation.

doug k
When I wanted to get my limited checked I went on their web site and found a list of dealers and went to one that was near where I lived.

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Reganzo
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Old 04-03-2013, 12:47 PM   #4
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When I wanted to get my limited checked I went on their web site and found a list of dealers and went to one that was near where I lived.

Regards,

Reganzo
Okay, I made the mistake of taking it back to the Airstream dealer I bought it from.

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Old 04-03-2013, 12:53 PM   #5
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Was this at the Airstream dealer in north of Twin Cities? I asked about this last year and they promptly told me any leaks, corrosion, or adjustments 90 after purchase are not warranty items; they did not want to do it.
As far as I know, that dealer doesn't have a Sealtech.

The dealer that did the work for me was Gag's Camper Way, in Mankato. They don't sell Airstreams -- or know much about them -- at Gag's, but their technicians seemed otherwise knowledgeable, capable, and hard-working. They're familiar with the Sealtech machine and appear to use it frequently. They include it in several of their standard annual maintenance packages.

There are a number of dealers on the Sealtech list in Minnesota, all smaller. None of the high-volume dealers concentrated along Highway 10 in Ramsey have one, as far as I know.

Doug, the closest one to you is in Little Falls.
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Old 04-03-2013, 01:03 PM   #6
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They have it . . .

Shorewood RV Center | Iowa and Minnesota's RV Dealer | Proudly carries Monaco Motorhomes Airstream Travel Trailers > Service > Leak Testing

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Old 04-03-2013, 01:05 PM   #7
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When I wanted to get my limited checked I went on their web site and found a list of dealers and went to one that was near where I lived.
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Okay, I made the mistake of taking it back to the Airstream dealer I bought it from.
The next closest dealers not under the same ownership and management are another 400 miles away. I don't know how good their service departments are or how they handle warranty problems. Even if they're fantastic, it's probably not worth the trip unless traveling in that area for other reasons.

I do most of my own work now that my trailer is out of warranty and am working with various nationwide suppliers for parts. And, I'm cultivating relationships with nearby service centers for things like the Sealtech test that aren't practical for me to do myself.
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Old 04-03-2013, 01:11 PM   #8
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Cool. News to me -- they're not on Sealtech's list:

Sealtech Manufacturing Inc. - RV leaks bubbles recreational vehicles

I've written elsewhere about my frustrations with warranty service, though it's unclear to me how to apportion the blame between the dealer and the factory. In the end, all the problems I wanted them to fix under warranty were fixed in a fashion I considered acceptable (or better). I would work with them again if a situation came up where Airstream-specific knowledge and parts were necessary.
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Old 04-03-2013, 03:18 PM   #9
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We bought two new Airstreams from them and asked for warranty service once, corroding clearance lights, leak by the door, and door adjustment. The service writer was terrible to us for asking, denied any responsibility, and made us look like fools. I'll never go back.

Airstream Service in Jackson Center spent much of a day replacing all clearance lights, fixed the door, the leak, and many minor details and never blinked an eye, all under warranty.

I like the idea of a leak test though, before my warranty runs out. I may try another location.

Thanks, doug k
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Old 04-17-2013, 11:09 AM   #10
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It's been raining, and snowing. I (uncharacteristically) have my C-11 outside, because it's parked where I can get at it for the interior and mechanical work I have underway.

It has, unfortunately, also been raining inside, under the air conditioner. Quite a bit, in fact, over a gallon in a week of rainy weather.

Apparently, this rig left the factory with an Armstrong A/C, held in place by eleventy-one rivets all around the perimeter where the enclosure met the roof, as was the custom in those days. In 1985 (judging by the date code) this was replaced with a Dometic Brisk Air. It appears that whoever did the work more or less just pried the Armstrong base off the roof, maybe drilling the rivets a little, leaving most of the rivets still halfway there and stuck in the aluminum skin, then covering them with a generous layer of butyl rubber caulk. A subsequent repair added large dollops of cheap acrylic caulk over the butyl rubber. It took me over an hour with the heat gun, drill, and die grinder to clean up the mess.

The thing is that the sealtech test missed this. Not sure whether to chalk that up to sloppy testing procedures or to inherent limitations of the process.
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Old 04-17-2013, 11:39 AM   #11
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My 75 Armstrong was held on by around 40 screws. The screws were removed and each hole was drilled and an Olympic rivet with a dab of sealer was installed.
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Old 04-23-2013, 07:22 AM   #12
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I'm finding that I appear to have a second leak that the Sealtech test missed, probably the window over the bunk but I may have to pull some interior panels to find it.
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