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Old 09-02-2017, 07:04 PM   #1
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Going up on the roof

I probably shouldn't admit this but I have not been up on the roof of my 2017 Classic yet for a lot of reasons including the little thing of Acrophobia which of course is not little to me but it is time.
I know I need to be careful but I need to know how tall of a ladder will I need? How and WHERE do I get on the roof. I know I will need to say away from the end caps so where do I put the ladder? Where do I put my feet once I have actually let go of the ladder? What should I check while I am up there? What do I need to take with me?
I am doing this now so if/when something fails I will know what "normal" looks like. I would rather get to know my roof at my convince instead of when something fails.
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Old 09-02-2017, 08:22 PM   #2
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What do you want to know is normal?? Do you climb under your tow vehicle every now and again to see if all is normal if not do not worry about normal on the roof. I also have a 2017 Classic and have solar panels on roof. Do not plan on going on roof at all. Part of the nice thing of having an AS is not having to climb up on roof to clean it as with my past rv. Just my input I hope I do not ever need to climb on roof but if did would go up on side with awning. Will be interesting with other inputs to find just how many owners have been on their roof.
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Old 09-02-2017, 08:27 PM   #3
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Someone will need to climb on the roof eventually to reseal it. Every few years. I plan on paying someone to do it. Supporting the local economy and all...
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Old 09-02-2017, 09:04 PM   #4
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I use an 8 ft step ladder. I go up on my roof quite often. No big deal.
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Old 09-03-2017, 04:07 AM   #5
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I've leaned an 8 foot step ladder against my Airstream at vertical rib locations, and I always put a 2'x2' foam pad between the camper and the ladder. I've never tried to stand on it, didn't want dents or falls. You can do a lot of minor maintenance without actually getting up there.
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Old 09-03-2017, 06:14 AM   #6
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I actually go up quite often on our 2017 Classic - recently to repair a leak caused by improper Sat Ant installation by the selling dealer. I have two ladders I use, one is a Little Giant step ladder that extends to a regular type ladder, the other is a folding extension ladder up to 15'. I put towels under the ladder where it rests on the AS and I lean it on the awning cover. I've done this on all four of our Airstreams and never had an issue with the awnings or damage. When up there I walk on the ribs or put down plywood to walk on and sit on when replacing the caulk.

Airstream says to check the caulk every six months, after being up there most recently I can see why, the caulk after 12 months is almost shot, so I will be up there again scraping and replacing all the caulk this fall. Our trailer is outside 24/7.

Bud
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Old 09-03-2017, 06:15 AM   #7
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The 8' ladder seems to be the magic size, and it's a common household item. Do any of you travel with some brand of collapsible/folding ladder in case there's a failure or damage on the road? Seems like FT road warriors would require one. I don't have space in the TV for a full size ladder, and I don't want to be like the SOB folks who bungee their construction ladder out back.

Thanks,
Larry
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Old 09-03-2017, 07:34 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YippieKiYa View Post
The 8' ladder seems to be the magic size, and it's a common household item. Do any of you travel with some brand of collapsible/folding ladder in case there's a failure or damage on the road? Seems like FT road warriors would require one. I don't have space in the TV for a full size ladder, and I don't want to be like the SOB folks who bungee their construction ladder out back.

Thanks,
Larry
Telesteps 1400 is the way to go, they are pretty much the original and their price can reflect that, beware if you decide on one of the many knock offs, they have been known to collapse under weight.

I agree that most everything can be reached without actually going up there, short of a major reseal.
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Old 09-03-2017, 10:05 AM   #9
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Hi

The neatest thing I have seen is to tape foam to the "top" end of an 8' or 10' straight ladder. It makes it a bit of a dedicated item, but ladders aren't all that expensive. It eliminates all the "position the padding" stuff when setting up the ladder. If you have some goof named Bob spotting the ladder it might also make things a bit safer as well

Bob (the guy spotting the ladder ...)
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Old 09-03-2017, 10:30 AM   #10
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Look up You Tube video from Colonial. Patrick did a nice vid of the how's and where's to get on your Airstream roof.
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Old 09-03-2017, 10:31 AM   #11
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Thanks. Getting my nerve up. Got a good ladder. Will I recognize where the ribs are? I am guessing I should look for the rivets. Not only do I want to check the sealant up there but I want to make sure that the skylight or other things aren't about to break loose.
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Old 09-03-2017, 11:03 AM   #12
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THIS is the whole reason I bought this book...but, I highly recommend it for lots of other reasons now that I have it in hand. Great guide. The following is from the "Airstream Life's (Nearly) Complete Guide to Airstream Maintenance" (2015) by Rich Luhr (also authored the Newbies Guide most of us know and love):

"Never go on the roof when it is wet or snowy. Never stand on the end-caps. If you can work from a stable ladder next to the trailer instead of standing on the roof, that's usually preferable. (Be safe with the ladder, too!)

The strongest place to get on the roof is by the entry door. Place your ladder there if you can. Leave the door open so nobody can open it and knock your ladder over. If you use a straight ladder, throw a towel or some other protective fabric where the ladder contacts the Airstream, to a void scuffing it.

The awning tube is strong enough for the ladder to lean on, and it will give you a hand-hold when climbing up. But after that, there are few things to hold onto. Keep your body low and try to have a grip on something as you move around.

You'll see rivets on the roof. Those indicate the locations of structural ribs. These are the strongest parts of the roof."

Also found this in the "how-to" section of Out-of-DoorsMart dealership. Also helpful. http://www.odmrv.net/tips/GettingOnAsTrailer.php
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Old 09-03-2017, 01:14 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quietguy View Post
Look up You Tube video from Colonial. Patrick did a nice vid of the how's and where's to get on your Airstream roof.


I've used an extension ladder leaned against the awning cover, with appropriate padding, myself. I watched Colonial's video, and saw that Patrick (apparently simply) stepped over from the top of an A-frame ladder to the top of the Airstream roof. Worked for him, but I could see how an old geezer like me could kick the ladder sideways and down, either when climbing up, or on the dismount :-O
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Old 09-03-2017, 02:30 PM   #14
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I plan to never get on my roof.

I use a 6 foot step ladder when I wash my AS. It allows me to view and wash my roof. I use a telescoping 4' long wash wand with wash mop head on the end. I wash the AS about 6 times a year and I can easily see if anything looks funny.
I plan to let the dealer check my roof annually and reseal as needed.
I keep my AS under roof when not in use. I expect to get min 2 years out of a roof seal. It really matters how much sun your roof see's.
Climbing onto the roof doesn't seem like a good idea to me but I am not planning to maintain my roof sealant myself.
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