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Old 11-13-2012, 11:08 AM   #241
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Splitrock View Post
If Airstreams were stored inside like a prized car instead of parked outside to rot, they would probably last a hundred years . . . maybe two. Here, a premium car parked outside in the elements is called neglect.
Most facilities for storing RVs only offer outside storage. When I am finished with my year-long labor of working on AS due to floor rot and leaks I may consider covered storage although I shouldn't have to do so. Most vehicles (cars, trucks, cargo trailers, etc.) don't leak like the Airstreams do. I am thankful that the Airstreams last as long as they do (unlike most trailers employing "stick" construction).

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Old 11-13-2012, 03:15 PM   #242
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Originally Posted by twoweeled View Post
My daughter just purchased an Airstream, and now of course I'm (was) thinking of purchasing one myself. That is until I read about the lack of support from Airstream. Regardless of warranty time. A product of this assumed level should be covered even after warranty expiration. You pay the price for a superior product, as well as superior support! If they expect the premium price without the premium support to the customer, then Airstream can kiss at least one customer good-bye!
How long is considered a reasonable warranty period? Manufacturers sometime help out after the warranty period has expired due to the nature of the failure. You just have to ask.
The maufacturer of any product has no control over failures caused by neglect. I have worked for 12 years in the motorcycle/automotive industry (as a warranty clerk too) and I can tell you that failures are more commonly caused by user neglect or error. And then there's just plain old wear and tear.
It is unreasonable to think the manufacturer should be responsible forever.

BTW, Jayco has a two-year warranty just like Airstream.
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Old 11-14-2012, 07:37 AM   #243
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It's fine to keep a trailer parked under a roof. But that's not the real world for normal use. For real use seams need to hold and floors shouldn't rot. An Airstream is an outside all weather structure. We shouldn't have to replace floors that were made from particle board. So OK when a trailer like mine gets older some work can be expected. But when a company sells something it needs to stand behind the product and correct the problems. I'm very grateful to these forums due to the fact that I had a real mess on my hands. People who know what they are doing shared their experience from repairing and rebuilding design flaws with me. Many of these problems should not be in new trailers like we are hearing about. Not at the cost of a new Airstream. While a new fancy car should be in a garage a semi truck shouldn't be. Things need to handle their environment,and if they can't it's time for the company to put the engineers back on the drafting tables. Airstream needs to be reading these forums and see what the problems are and very often the solutions. My next trailer might well be an old shell that I rebuild correctly. If that's the way to get quality then that is what I'll do. I won't be the first.
I agree with you 100% Mark. A large part of what you pay for is superior service, and the reason a lot of these people are not getting that service - is because Airstream doesn't feel they have to give it to it's customers. I think we all understand mistakes happen, but when those mistakes happen Airstream should be looking for ways to correct the mistakes. Not try to avoid them. I'm hoping GM learned that?
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Old 11-14-2012, 08:20 AM   #244
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This Airstream quality situation is a strange one. While looking over my trailer I find most of it is very well designed. There is an attention to detail that is mostly outstanding. Then in important areas they fall on their face. Things happen in designing new items but to many of these problems have been going on for years. Trailers that develop leaks in certain spots isn't acceptable after many years of production. My Dad used to say "was there something wrong with my money"? Putting a trailer under cover is a good idea if it's possible. But they are TRAVEL TRAILERS and they are supposed to be able to travel -a lot. A trailer that starts leaking because it has been outside for a couple of years isn't acceptable nor is it being abused. That is nothing but an excuse by a company not standing behind their product. Of course things like clear cote are going to weather and we can expect wear and tear.
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Old 02-18-2013, 04:40 PM   #245
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I dropped the Pan!

Well, I went for it. Instead of pulling the floor up I dropped the pan and cut away the reflectix to expose the wood floor. The good news: Doesn't look that rotten. Bad news, It's very wet. Especially at the back and near the door. I've got a dehumidifier and fans / furnace running inside and a Buddy propane heater under the floor (on low) to speed drying. I'll follow up with details and pictures. Before I dropped the pan I pressure tested for leaks and only found a few on the door hinges and water / outside shower access doors. I fixed the bumper last year so I'm hoping once I dry this out is stays dry.

Not sure if I should replace the reflectix or not. I'm thinking it might be better to have a cold floor that stays dry. Thinking about adding 4" deck plates in the belly pan to allow for ventilation / drying when required. Any ideas / advice welcome.

Gotta run as I picked this week for other maintenance and it's gonna rain Tuesday and Wednesday (figures). Right now I have a skylight out so time is of the essence.

Brad
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Old 02-18-2013, 09:50 PM   #246
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Belly Pan Drop Pictures

Bubbles from leak test. Pictures of wet wood, removed Reflectix, Extra wadded up reflectix that JC left for me to find (along with some other debris). My rivet head collection on the drill bit. Mr. Buddy drying the floor.
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Old 03-10-2013, 03:22 PM   #247
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Drying out the floor

So, here’s the full story (so far). I’ll use a few posts to timeline this. Sherman, set the wayback machine to Jan 2011. “OK Mr. Peabody!”
We own a 2008 28FB Ocean Breeze. We purchased it in March 2010 in a private sale. After reading all the info in the forums about rear bumper leaks, I decided last January to do some maintenance and in the process, check the bumper seal. I ordered some replacement rubrail molding and pulled the old molding off. This exposed what I dreaded, moisture and some green slime along with some extraneous slivers of insulation and grey duct tape!. No seal anywhere and I could just make out the plywood floor through one of the exposed cracks. Even though it remains dry where I live for most of the year, the dew that forms every morning on the skin of the AS runs down to the bumper where it replenishes the moisture behind the Rubrail. Bummer. I took the time to dry the crack out with a heat gun and I placed a plastic flap over the work area to keep morning dew out of the joint while I worked. I used alcohol and cosmoline remover to clean the area after it was dried out.
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Old 03-10-2013, 03:34 PM   #248
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Drying out the floor

Then, I taped the joint area with painters tape and applied Vulkem. I smoothed the joint with a latex gloved finger and waited about two hours before pulling the tape. I also cleaned and Vulkemed the top internal corners of the bumper box. I followed the joint down the banana wrap past the skid plate and on forward to the door on one side and the furnace on the other.
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Old 03-10-2013, 03:47 PM   #249
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Drying out the floor

Then I replaced the rubrail and used parbond to seal the top of it. I used stainless screws dipped in Vulkem to apply the rubrail. Again, I used painters tape and applied parbond, smoothing out the nasty areas with a latex finger and a rag with cosmoline remover. The tape needs to be pulled within 5 minutes or so because the parbond sets up pretty quick. Then I replaced the molding. Since I had replaced rivets with stainless screws, I needed to drill out holes in the 3M molding tape to allow for the proud screw heads. Even though I was careful I still see a few bumps in the molding. My long term fix for this and other shoddy maintenance on my part is to immediately offer a martini to any visitor that starts examining the Supertrouper too closely.
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Old 03-10-2013, 03:59 PM   #250
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Nice job! I especially like the Martini offer!
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Old 03-10-2013, 04:25 PM   #251
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Hey Don't interrupt, I'm on a roll!

Quote:
Originally Posted by blmitch5 View Post
Nice job! I especially like the Martini offer!
Offer stands! More posts in the queue. Please stand by!
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Old 03-10-2013, 04:28 PM   #252
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Drying out the floor

So after the “fix” was completed, I became very proud of myself and I was convinced that I had nailed the problem and that the floor, if wet, would dry on its own. I had parbonded the Vista Views and re-silkaflexed the bananawraps. We went about our business goig to Disney in Anaheim and several state parks throughout the year. In August, I purchased a moisture meter from Amazon for 30 bucks to check the floor. The meters pins push through the vinyl floor and it has a “hold” feature so you can get a measurement and “hold” so you can pull the meter back to your face to read it. It also has a modulated beeper (faster beeps=more water)
Link: General Tools MMD4E Digital Moisture Meter - Amazon.com
I checked the floor moisture…..

<Insert sad “wah, wah wha” trombone with modulated mute here> (Thanks Bob Barker!)

Yes, 50% moisture under the dinette, 40% near the door. Seems like what everyone here said about the design was true: Once the water gets in, it can’t get out. I measured through the end of the year but didn’t see much of a difference. So in February I took a week off work to do maintenance on the Supertrouper. I pressurized the trailer to look for leaks and applied Acryl-R to the usually problem areas (thanks to Vinnie (Airslide) for stopping by and looking things over with me. I plan to have him install Maxim skylights in the the next few weeks (they are on order) to alleviate once and for all the cracked skylight issues.) I replaced the sewer vents. I pulled the back of the bellypan down and attempted to dry the floor out. I cut out the insulation and I placed a dehumidifier inside and routed the continuous output to the shower drain. I also put a supervised Buddy Heater under floor to dry it out. Pictures in previous post:
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f396...ml#post1263005
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Old 03-10-2013, 04:40 PM   #253
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Drying the floor out

After a few days I measured the floor again. Not much change on top. So, I bit the bullet and pulled the furniture and floor covering. It only took an hour. Those of you doing this in an FB: The last hidden screw in the street side furniture is in the hole cut out for the furnace vent. Tricky! Anyway, there it was, a puddle of water on the floor and mold on the bottom of the vinyl! UUUUGH. The good news, the wood seems fairly in-tact. I could poke and prod it without breakup. Interesting to note that the last four inches or so of the floor is an “end” that is stapled to the rest. This might have been a saving grace limiting the worst of the water log issues to the end piece. The problem is that the water leaks down and get held by the insulation which waters the whole floor to the first solid frame cross member which is obvious by the stains.
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Old 03-10-2013, 04:58 PM   #254
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Drying the Floor out

I dried the floor out continuing with fans, heatpump and dehumidifier. It took a few days. During those days I reinstalled insulation under the floor using Owens Extruded Polystyrene because of it’s water imperviousness and because it’s lightweight. I screwed a few redwood boards fore to aft to the floor structure and then sandwiched the insulation with redwood boards running street to curb attaching through the insulation and first boards to the floor. In this way I created a 1/2” gap between the floor and the insulation. I was also careful to ensure the insulation / wood did not touch the frame members (there’s a 1/4” gap all around in case the frame flexes). I used coated deck screws for this work. After the floor was dry, I applied two quarts of Prestone Antifreeze (Ethylene Glycol) to the floor with a paintbrush inside the trailer. I applied this in two applications about 2 hours apart. This should kill any spores in the wood and will mix with any leftover moisture. I’m continuing to let the glycol dry and will apply CPES (Epoxy Paint) to the dried floor. It’s taking a week to dry completely.
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Old 03-10-2013, 05:10 PM   #255
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Bellypan .....ARISE!

Then, to ensure that I can check on the moisture in the bellypan, I purchased two 4” deckplates at westmarine and installed them in the bellypan with Olympic rivets. I used lots of silkaflex to seal. I’m still learning how to shave the Olympics so I left them with nubs for now. I then utilized Clecos (thanks you to whoever invented those!) to seat the bellypan for riveting. I got the large head rivets from Vintage trailer. I added a few rivets near the deckplates to help carry the extra load. The deckplates simply screw out and allow hand and light inspection as well as blowing air if required for drying. The deckplates have integral o-ring seals.

Again, Thanks to everyone in the forums for the wealth of knowledge shared with us and to Vintage Trailer Supply and Out-of-Doors mart for keeping our AS specific supplies in stock and to Vinnie for the local support. It's good to know that there's someone close who is as passionate about these machines as we are.
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Old 03-11-2013, 08:54 AM   #256
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I'm glad that you're getting things put back together. I'd recommend that you put a reminder on your calendar to check this at least annually. Also, step back and see if you can figure out anything more to seal all areas where water could get in. These leaks are really frustrating!!!!

All my best,

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Old 03-11-2013, 06:02 PM   #257
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Is it safe to say that a bulk of the leaking problems are the FB models?
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Old 03-11-2013, 07:32 PM   #258
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Is it safe to say that a bulk of the leaking problems are the FB models?
No, I believe that all Airstreams are prone to leaks. Some leak problems are design issues and others are caused by lack of attention to detail during manufacture. The more you look at threads about leaking and rot of sub floors, the more you will see that virtually none of the year models or floor plans are immune from the malady!

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Old 03-11-2013, 07:39 PM   #259
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Only FB?? No, I don't think so.

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Is it safe to say that a bulk of the leaking problems are the FB models?
I wouldn't say that. There are many leak causes on many models (as with all RVs) but the bumper issue seems to be well known and understood. Search the threads for bumper leak and you'll find all sorts of data. All I know is that all my wishful thinking did not keep water out of the floor and that the design of my trailer as it was built (2008 27FB) ensured that the floor would get wet and stay wet at the back of the trailer. I've heard whispers that they install a gasket of some kind in the new ones. This was not a maintenance issue as there was no seal behind the rubrail and or a way for the water to drain away from the area before getting behind the rubrail. I have had other leaks which were maintenance related. My problem is I became aware of the issue only after the warranty ran out.
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Old 03-11-2013, 07:45 PM   #260
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I love the deck plate idea. I had replaced the insulation in the belly of my AS at the rear of the trailer. One year later, when working on the trunk area (which I removed), the insulation was soaking and loaded with black mold.
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