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Old 05-16-2022, 09:36 AM   #1
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2022 27' Globetrotter
DALLAS , TX
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Wasp screens? On what openings? Prevention? Which products or screens?

Hi Folks, here in the south we have a friendly pest we call mud daubers (mud wasps or dirt daubers).

They like to build mud nests in any sort of nook and cranny. They are particularly fond of clogging vents in water heaters, space heaters, etc.

Our first RV and first Airstream arrives sometime in mid to late July and I'm trying to plan ahead.

In which locations on your airstream have you had problems with wasp nests (especially mud daubers)? What did you do about preventing such nests in the future? What product(s) did you use (wasp screens?)? and where did you buy them from? And how did you attach the screens to the RV without damaging the RV?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 05-16-2022, 09:53 AM   #2
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Greetings from the Florida Panhandle

We have always used the screening on both the water heater and furnace exhaust. We have never had any trouble with wasps.

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Old 05-16-2022, 10:46 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by moosetags View Post
We have always used the screening on both the water heater and furnace exhaust. We have never had any trouble with wasps.

Brian
Thanks for the response Brian. Did the airstream come with adequate screens already installed at the factory? Or did you add some aftermarket products? If you added aftermarket screens, which ones did you add?
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Old 05-16-2022, 10:12 PM   #4
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I live in the south. Didnít have too much trouble with mud daubers on the Airstream. Only one incident a few years back, they built a nest in the water heater compartment. Nothing too drastic as we caught it early and purchased a screen off Amazon.

With the new Airstream I had the dealer install a screen on the furnace door prior to delivery. I later upgraded the water heater which included a new door and now that youíve brought it to my attention I have to check for a screen on that door. Thanks! Lol

All in all, the Amazon screen worked just fine if you decide to go that route.
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Old 05-16-2022, 10:51 PM   #5
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I pulled out the retracted steps on my FC25FB and disturbed an active mud dauber nest being constructed on the folded step, nestled neatly beneath the underbody of the coach. Before I could react and retreat, I suffered several wasp stings on my arms. Wasp spray and nest removal later on solved the problem. Daubers are a constant nuisance in Texas.
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Old 05-17-2022, 08:28 AM   #6
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I pulled out the retracted steps on my FC25FB and disturbed an active mud dauber nest being constructed on the folded step, nestled neatly beneath the underbody of the coach. Before I could react and retreat, I suffered several wasp stings on my arms. Wasp spray and nest removal later on solved the problem. Daubers are a constant nuisance in Texas.
Hi Genebuilder, sorry to hear about your experience. Usually mud daubers are pretty docile and non-aggressive. Usually the nest is built by a single wasp. The biggest problem with mud daubers is that they like build nests where humans need airflow, lol.

Are you sure that they were mud daubers and not yellow jackets? Yellow jacket wasps build nests with a paper-like consistency and each nest can play host to multiple (I.e. many) wasps. Yellow jackets (black and yellow) and other paper nest building wasps are very aggressive and will attack enmass if disturbed.

Your experience sounds more like run in with a paper wasp family.
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Old 05-17-2022, 09:11 AM   #7
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Good observation. Thanx for the info.
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Old 05-17-2022, 09:24 AM   #8
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Not screenable, but...I check the AC mouse wheel fan at every Spring get-ready. You'll know at first turn-on

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Old 05-17-2022, 10:07 AM   #9
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I added a furnace vent screen awhile ago as it is otherwise not accessible for my plan b solution. As for the WH & Refer compartments (I've read Daubers are attracted to the smell of gas???) Plan B: I semi-annually rotate in a fresh lg dog flea and tick collar to each compartment originally intended to deal with bugs/spiders. No evidence of either or daubers for that matter. In EUG Daubers were pretty prolific and the collars successful.


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Old 05-17-2022, 10:08 AM   #10
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Mud daubers built a large nest in one of the squirrel fans in one of our A/C units. When it came on, it vibrated severely. I thought the fan motor or a bearing was out. After the second attempt, I found and removed the fist-sized nest. Now, we have A/C covers in addition to the screens on the hot water heater and furnace exhaust vents.
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Old 05-17-2022, 10:17 AM   #11
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AC Screening

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Originally Posted by ROBERT CROSS View Post
Not screenable, but...I check the AC mouse wheel fan at every Spring get-ready. You'll know at first turn-on

Bob
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We went to the hardware store and bought some window screening and Gorilla tape, the took the cowling off and covered every hole.
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Old 05-17-2022, 10:50 AM   #12
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I have an old Airstream with replacement appliances. Bees/wasps like the hot water heater (I didn't know you could get a screen for this, thank you!) and also the furnace (purchased a screen long ago) and oven vents (made my own screen. Birds and wasps love to get into the Dometic Penguin A/C. I have put screening over the shroud openings to discourage them.
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Old 05-17-2022, 03:54 PM   #13
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Ditto...

Quote:
Originally Posted by DanHogHunter View Post
We went to the hardware store and bought some window screening and Gorilla tape, the took the cowling off and covered every hole.
... but used Dicor instead of Gorilla tape.
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Old 05-17-2022, 08:08 PM   #14
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In summary, the spots I need to armor in some manner are:

Water heater
Furnace
Air Conditioner
Oven vents
Refrigerator (if gas fired?)

Followup questions:

How are they getting into the A/C? Is there a fresh air inlet for the rooftop A/C inlet that I need to screen off?

I though the fridge pulls air from inside the trailer and exhausts the hot air from a roof vent. Wait, that is probably for the 12v only fridges in the recent airstreams. So you folks are referring to the fresh air intake for the propane fired fridges in the slightly older airstreams? I presume the fridge roof vent already has a screen. If not, let me know as that would be another location to cover with a screen.
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Old 05-18-2022, 02:23 PM   #15
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No need to buy screen, duct tape and all -there are perfectly good (and cheap) insect screens on Amazon. They are easy to install and work great, easy to remove as well.

https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/...e?ie=UTF8&th=1
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Old 05-19-2022, 06:24 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Atwebs View Post
No need to buy screen, duct tape and all -there are perfectly good (and cheap) insect screens on Amazon. They are easy to install and work great, easy to remove as well.

https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/...e?ie=UTF8&th=1

I'm not aware of any pre-made screens for the AC.
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Old 05-19-2022, 06:26 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by foobar View Post
In summary, the spots I need to armor in some manner are:

Water heater
Furnace
Air Conditioner
Oven vents
Refrigerator (if gas fired?)

Followup questions:

How are they getting into the A/C? Is there a fresh air inlet for the rooftop A/C inlet that I need to screen off?

I though the fridge pulls air from inside the trailer and exhausts the hot air from a roof vent. Wait, that is probably for the 12v only fridges in the recent airstreams. So you folks are referring to the fresh air intake for the propane fired fridges in the slightly older airstreams? I presume the fridge roof vent already has a screen. If not, let me know as that would be another location to cover with a screen.

The AC cover has vents all around the cover. Once you take the cover off, you will also see vents in the base of the AC.
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Old 05-19-2022, 10:57 AM   #18
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Just sayin...

Quote:
Originally Posted by DanHogHunter View Post
The AC cover has vents all around the cover. Once you take the cover off, you will also see vents in the base of the AC.
Pics for reference...
Wasps and/or Dirt Daubers like these AC hideouts :-)
If they get in squirrel cage fans, it can cause a bit of an issue.
If they nest within just the cover, it can effect the airflow a bit.
If they get angry cause I'm on the roof cleaning or other maintenance, we get into some disagreements.
I prefer to avoid all of the above.
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Old 05-19-2022, 06:30 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Atwebs View Post
No need to buy screen, duct tape and all -there are perfectly good (and cheap) insect screens on Amazon. They are easy to install and work great, easy to remove as well.

https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/...e?ie=UTF8&th=1
Thanks Atwebs. This looks like it might take care of the water heater and perhaps the furnace combustion air intakes.

So how do folks armor the air conditioner hole in the a/c cover? Duct tape and window screen doesn't seem like it would stay in place very long
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Old 05-22-2022, 09:38 AM   #20
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wasp screens

We had mud dauber nests clog both the water heater and furnace exhaust pipes during our first year of operation. (Symptoms were a strong smell of propane outside and reduced/stopped operation of the furnace/water heater.) Apparently they are attracted to the sweet odor of propane.

Dealer recommended screens on both units, which we installed. Have not had an issue since.
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