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Old 04-07-2006, 08:56 AM   #1
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1979 31' Excella 500
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Question Window leaks, where to start?

1979 31' Iternational. It is raining here again today and my airsteam is leaking again. If I look at the windows near the dinette and pull the plastic shroud back around the little windows underneath, I can see a lot of water sitting on the aluminum shelf just below this window. Leads me to believe I have a leaky window problem which is pretty severe. Could confirm once it stops raining with a hose. Where to start with windows?
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Old 04-07-2006, 01:42 PM   #2
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Window experts? Anyone? Do I start on the inside by removing the plastic trim around the smaller lower windows? Start from the outside? The caulk from the outside seems to be there and in fairly good shape.
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Old 04-07-2006, 01:54 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wacnstac
Window experts? Anyone? Do I start on the inside by removing the plastic trim around the smaller lower windows? Start from the outside? The caulk from the outside seems to be there and in fairly good shape.
Vista view and stack windows were sealed by Airstream using the infamous "silicone sealer".

Remove all traces of it. Apply a bead of vulkem sealer over the gray gasket material. That will give you a positive seal between the glass and the metal frame.

CAUTION: You "MUST" remove all traces of the silicone sealer. If not, the vulkem will not correctly bond.

Andy
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Old 04-07-2006, 01:57 PM   #4
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I just peeled (with a heat gun) all the Vulkem (factory) from the windows below my Vista Views, I had several cracks in it from age. Re-applied new Vulkem along the top seam. Once it was off, there was evidence that water had trailed in through there..

I would not go after the inside before I try real hard to find it outside, that is where the water is coming from.....
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Old 04-07-2006, 02:06 PM   #5
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Forgive me for my Airstream ignorance but the larger windows are the "stack windows" the bigger windows, and the smallers ones below them called "vista"?
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Old 04-07-2006, 02:28 PM   #6
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Talking Hopefuly former leak

Hope this helps...
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Old 04-07-2006, 02:54 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wacnstac
Forgive me for my Airstream ignorance but the larger windows are the "stack windows" the bigger windows, and the smallers ones below them called "vista"?
The "vista view" windows are above an opening window.

The "stack" windows are below the opening windows.

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Old 04-07-2006, 02:58 PM   #8
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It appears my problem is the stack window, but I wouldn't rule out the opening window either.
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Old 04-07-2006, 04:13 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wacnstac
It appears my problem is the stack window, but I wouldn't rule out the opening window either.
Mine was or I beleive it wason the middle one. There we singns of water beneath the sealer.
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Old 04-08-2006, 08:00 AM   #10
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There is definitely some bad joints around the windows. Do you guys use vulkem to caulk between the window itself and the aluminum frame here?

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Old 04-08-2006, 08:38 AM   #11
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wacnstac,
What I did in that situation was to cut the "plastic" back with a sharp razor knife, clean thoroughly and lay in a bead of vulkem. I used the blue masking tape to keep the vulkem mess to a minimum and to give me a uniform bead.
In retrospect I should have made my bead a bit wider than my pictures show, the Vulkem does shrink a bit. However the leaks have gone away

Aaron
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Old 04-08-2006, 09:26 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by balrgn
Mine was or I beleive it wason the middle one. There we signs of water beneath the sealer.
After more rain, still leaks, less tho, I may be getting closer to the source(S)

I did not use Vulkem between the windows. I was lucky and the inside window pops out. I used window calking that came on a roll. Vulkem out side.

I did find that my window latch was not closing tight enough as well. Had to machine a lock nut to keep it tight, the threads have worn in the where the nut tightens to the locking bar.
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Old 04-08-2006, 12:42 PM   #13
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Critical here too is to use Parabond in the mitered corner on the window frame. On your first picture of the wrap window that would be the upper and lower joint on the left side of the wrap window's frame.

Otherwise I did the same as you except it did not turn out so pretty , however the best I can tell the leaks have stopped

One more think to mention. I replaced both of my missing wrap windows with lexan. While it works it tends to flex and I think that causes the vulkem seal to break while under tow. I don't know if glass has the same reaction or not. I push on the lexan while looking at the seams and when its failed you can see it seperate and thats where the water enters.

You can also push on other parts of the trailer and watch for seperation like at the vent covers or lower trim above the bellywrap. If you push on the aluminum and see the seal give way, its a good indication water will get in.


Quote:
Originally Posted by wahoonc
wacnstac,
What I did in that situation was to cut the "plastic" back with a sharp razor knife, clean thoroughly and lay in a bead of vulkem. I used the blue masking tape to keep the vulkem mess to a minimum and to give me a uniform bead.
In retrospect I should have made my bead a bit wider than my pictures show, the Vulkem does shrink a bit. However the leaks have gone away

Aaron
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Old 04-08-2006, 01:13 PM   #14
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Tim,
Right you are about the Parbond, I forgot about doing that. We these vintage units you got a tube of caulk in hand and you just start putting it in and forget all of the places you did put it. I even took the front rock shield off and redid it. Good thing there were several holes behind the hinge that were leaking. Put rivets in them to blank them off, then used butyl tape sealant and vulkem on the re install. After I finished with the rock shield and the wing windows the leaks in the front went away, then it was on to the Vista Views....

Aaron
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