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Old 07-02-2020, 03:57 PM   #1
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DUST Sucking REAR Window 2019 Airstream

Our 2006 Safari rear window sucked dust.
Our 2014 International rear window sucked dust.
Our 2019 International rear window sucks dust.

Do you notice something all our Airstreams have in common? They ALL have a large rear window. We have never opened the rear window as we always had plenty of windows to open for cross ventilation.

The rear window has curtains that slide within tracks. They are off white. The dust is often Red or Brown in the Rocky Mountains.

The aluminum bottom track will collect this red and brown combination of dust(s) as curtains prevent most of this fine dust from going much further. Or maybe the real fine dust is what we wipe off the table and counters. Much of this comes from the bottom edges of the walls and the fit to the floor and fender well. This is material for another discussion.

The gasket around the window is rubber. It compresses against the tinted glass.

The tinted glass is tempered and curved. Take a four foot level and have someone hold the level agains the glass lightly and run a sheet of paper along the contact. If the window is adjusted perfect, the paper on the left side and the right will have a similar fit or one side is snug the other is not, and visa versa.

The dust collects on the left and right sides and then scatters when conditions change. These conditions are material for another discussion.

Adjusting the latches helps. Adjusting one side, then the other will produce different results even if exactly the same adjustment. The window is curved. Like the Earth. The rubber window gasket is like having the surface of the Earth with different geography, but in a very much smaller scale.

Following this? If not. Do like I did. Grabbed a bag of Tortilla Chips and an Ice Cold Coca Cola. OK... we are good to go.

The gasket and the window glass do not seal, well. Maybe well on one side and not the other. Maybe the center is snug and both ends are sucking the dust. I say the ends are the culprits. Like the neighbor’s dog who does his business on your yard every morning. Find the dog... you find the business. Same with dust.

If you are having Brain Drain and drowsy... take a break. You are reading this solution, not writing it. I have to do the thinking and writing for both of us. OK? We hate dust IN the trailer. If you do not, this may not be for you anyways.
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Old 07-02-2020, 03:58 PM   #2
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Part 2 Solution :) I hope.

I had what was left of a roll of Scotch 2242 Rubber Electrical Tape bought at Lowe’s or Home Depot. That is up to you to figure out. I get a 10% discount for being a veteran. I like that better than the ‘Hug a Veteran’ option.

I ran the tape in three sections. It is 3/4 inch wide, adhesive on, only, on one side. It is thicker than electrical tape and rubbery, secured to the bottom, left and right sides of the window. It looks good, considering I did it myself. The hinges need to work around as they are in the way. Do not stretch the tape, apply it without tension.

Nancy did not supervise or assist. If this does not work... I will not mention what I did. Guys are smart, too.

The adhesive side is applied to the glass. Read this a second time, like I did. The adhesive is the 'sticky side'. This took me awhile to work out, so you benefit from my experimenting. A sharp razor is needed to CUT the TAPE. Not your fingers. Really.

You then need to adjust the left and right levers to secure the window. Not too tight. Not too light. Like Goldilocks and the Three Bears... just right. It will take a bit of back and forth adjusting. Recall the window is tempered and curved. It can break into small pieces if you are all thumbs... maybe quit while you are ahead. OK?

Your wife will notice the rear window is... missing. OK? She will. Trust me.

MY fit is snug but can be adjusted if one side is Sucking Dust... a bit more. The rubber will fit the irregular surface of this pretty much worthless material used in the window seal now.

I will have a follow up as we gather dust in Nevada and anywhere else dust is to be discovered. This cannot be any worse than what is currently considered to be the Factory SEAL.

The REAR of an Airstream creates a pressure change that forces itself into the INTERIOR of the Airstream when traveling on dusty, wet or ‘clean’ roads. I believe the interior of the Airstream becomes a Dust Sucking Vacuum Cleaner. No doubt a service to the Community, but the NFS and BLM have unlimited dirt, dust and gravel to spare.

Airstream's Suck... true. You can take it either way, but 'sucks' like an expensive vacuum cleaner with nice wheels.

This Thesis is at 775 words. Fourteen more than planned. Dust Sucks. What was your cure? I found a use for what I had left of this pricy tape. I have some loose washers and a cotter pin to find a use. Any suggestions?

Oh. Before doing any of this. Clean the mess up first. Jeeezzz... you guys are no different than me. A clean window has a better surface for the 'sticky side' of the tape.
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Old 07-02-2020, 04:05 PM   #3
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Well, that's one problem I have never had. No dust intrusion in my rear window ... ever.
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Old 07-02-2020, 04:47 PM   #4
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Mountain Roads of Illinois are NOT DUSTY???

Quote:
Originally Posted by dznf0g View Post
Well, that's one problem I have never had. No dust intrusion in my rear window ... ever.
*****
OK... lets get this straight. You live in the Mountains in Illinois. You have National Forest dirt roads and Bureau of Land Management dirt roads? You drive into and out of these Mountains clean as a whistle?

Obviously someone cleans your roads. You saved about $5.00 in tape. More savings if you are a Vet.

I will work a deal with you. Come out and visit... Nancy, I and our two Blue Heelers. You can... follow ... us on some 'real special' Rocky Mountain improved Stage, Pony Express and Oregon Trail roads.

The Telluride, Colorado Loop comes to mind if your rear window still... has no dust. We can work on this. I have even better options, but we can start small and work into the Hell we have to travel called 'improved roads".

I would be more concerned... if you will still have a... rear window.

There was no dust in our trailer when we bought it off the lot in Henderson, Nevada. Actually none of the new Airstreams on the lot had any dust.

Ours came from the Mountain Region of Ohio. Not an issue there, either. Somehow I need to get a map and figure this out.

OK... anyone else NOT HAVE A DUST ISSUE? We can Caravan fifty or more Airstreams to clean the Rocky Mountains that are dirty beyond imagination.

I will give you a 100% Guarantee that YOU WILL be buying lots of this 2242 Scotch Rubber Electrical Tape. I will sell it to you at the FIRST campsite for $120 a roll. YOU will find that a... deal.

You are lucky in Illinois. You have mud.

Oh... wait. Oswego, Illinois 577 feet elevation. Our last campsite on the Telluride, Colorado Road to Hell was over 9000 feet. You are pulling my leg, aren't you? We have much better dust. We dropped 1500 or more feet to get out of the dust. You have MOOOOtans. Not the same Rich. See you this Fall?

Jackson Center, Ohio... 1,025 to the Summit at the Airstream Factory. That is a bump in the road... for us.

Those CLOUDS you see out your window... OUR DUST. Yes... smell it? Moooo.
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Old 07-02-2020, 04:55 PM   #5
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Um, my trailer has wheels and I'm retired. I get around.
Oh, and we have plenty of dirt and gravel roads in Illinois.
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Old 07-02-2020, 06:09 PM   #6
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Have you or anyone else tried, or even considered, installing a positive pressure system for the trailer to keep dust out like the Aussies use in the Outback? We also tow on a lot of gravel roads. Just go slower does not work when you are doing a couple hundred miles. We still get dust in a slow speeds anyway.
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Old 07-02-2020, 07:08 PM   #7
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Have you or anyone else tried, or even considered, installing a positive pressure system for the trailer to keep dust out like the Aussies use in the Outback? We also tow on a lot of gravel roads. Just go slower does not work when you are doing a couple hundred miles. We still get dust in a slow speeds anyway.
*****
Of course I am having a bit of fun with the entire subject. But... there are 'other' entry ways for dust to enter an Airstream.

- Fender wells. Various models and years vary considerably.
- The Refrigerator is the easiest to recognize. No way to cure, just clean out.
- The edges of the floor, contacting the aluminum shell.
- The door on the NON Hinge side at the bottomll and often the bottom edge.

The Rear Window happened to be on my 'hit list' after the latest 4300 miles in the Rocky Mountain Region camping in the 'Outback', as they say in Australia.

The 2014 had dust coming in over the fender well on the right side. I found an access point and had pink insulation I could push it into the open area and that took care of the dust getting inside the living area.

Maybe others will take a little time to discuss what they did with dust entering the interior.

Each time we stopped, Nancy would wipe down the interior for the light film of light dust. Some in the window was so fine, it would take a paper towel to loosen it up to vacuum once home.

The 2006 had so much dust, Jackson Center recut the fender wells and sealed them. Took care of needing a brush and dish pan. The refrigerator was also a big Dust Sucker.

Those who travel the asphalt and paved roads, no sweat.

Those who Off the Grid Boondock are on roads where the dust is always there until a rain, which temporarily keeps the dust down until a number of vehicles move through the area and back to dust.

You also learn how to avoid camping near a dusty road and avoid getting your exterior... static electrically attracting fine dust that sticks to the aluminum surface.

When we return home, we pay the $41.50 to have a Blue Beacon tow vehicle and trailer wash. Does 90% of the work with a little touch up at home to the exterior.

Then the F350... these Fords are not as tight as Toyota Tundras. What the Airstream missed sucking into the interior... it can be found in the Ford. The shell over the back sucks more dust than you can imagine. I admit it. This is piles of dust, not a light dusting. Get inside it and wash it out the back to do it right.

The Tundra's cab and tailgate was a lot tighter and with some strips could seal out most dust accumulation.

The F350 2016 bed and shell... $2 at the car wash and we are back to... no dust. Still you better bring a towel for... yourself.

Watch the SALT on those who drive the Salt Lake west of Salt Lake City. Sparkling salt covered pickups... do not want to tell them about salt, metal and some moisture for instant corrosion. West Wendover, Nevada will have a parking lot with salt covered pickups. Yep... tastes like salt, alright.

The REAR Storage compartment. Look how they secured the bottom from underneath. It is riveted in the forward area correctly to avoid dust. Yet the outside is open and the dust is caught and directed INTO the storage area. The older models had holes drilled so the water could drain out. This 2019 does not. I need to tinker a bit with this, although it takes about two minutes at a car wash to get it washed out... most of the time.

The Battery compartment. Whew... Power washing at car wash and there is plenty coming out from the bottom, as well.

Propane Tank compartment. Clean it out or accept rusty tanks and crud at the base. Car wash three minutes and cleaned out.

When we sell our Airstream. The First Lookers buy.
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Old 07-03-2020, 11:20 AM   #8
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Love traveling the back roads in the southwest. Dust entering living area in my '62 GT is a given when doing so. However, I found that covering exterior vents, (water heater, refrig, etc.) with plastic film makes a huge difference. The film is made for protecting wall to wall carpeting during moving, etc. It's a 24" wide roll and is slightly sticky, although not adhesive. Obviously, the refrigerator & water heater are not on.
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Old 07-03-2020, 12:12 PM   #9
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Dust inside?

I heard of one man while traveling the dusty Alcan Highway years ago, opened his roof vent so the opening was on the front end. This allowed air to "pressurize" the inside and keep the interior much cleaner.
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Old 07-03-2020, 06:23 PM   #10
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Well. The reverse is true. Don't forget and leave your vents open. Most of them face aft and create quiet a bit of vacuum. You could remount one vent faced forward and then you would have a pressure source if you leave the other one closed. I had one trailer that had Herr vents that open both ways. I have not sen those for years. That would be handy.
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Old 07-03-2020, 06:41 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dznf0g View Post
Well, that's one problem I have never had. No dust intrusion in my rear window ... ever.
Add us and our 2014 I international to the list as well. Never knew it was an issue.
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Old 07-03-2020, 07:02 PM   #12
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Hi, my Safari has the small windows and we have not had any problems of any kind with them.
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Old 07-06-2020, 01:04 PM   #13
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"The tinted glass is tempered and curved." I am confused Ray, the middle window between the curved glass is the one "sucking" right? If I remember correctly the 'middle" window is flat. Never had that problem with my Safari, had others. As a suggestion to help with the seal between the rubber and the window, try using a very light coating of silicone grease to the rubber. Rub it in well, but will still leave a slight residue on the window. Should help with the "sucking" and preserving the rubber. Learn this from owning one too many British cars.-----Hugh
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Old 07-06-2020, 01:39 PM   #14
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Just... ONE more test at home

Zapper. I applied a four foot level across the rear window and Nancy took a sheet of paper and could slide it on each end. It varied but the center is flush. This was after I did the 'tape work'.

I used Silicone spray. Let dry and repeated. Three weeks later... dust and still needed my 'dog tag' to break the tight seal between the original gasket and glass. The dust gets into the end corners.

We will be on our way to Utah, Wyoming and Montana later in the month. Plenty of dusty BLM and NFS Roads to travel.

The last trip was 4363 miles, Northern Rockies and lots of dust.

Previous trip was 3,552 Southern Rockies. Lots of dust. A bit of Rocky Mountain's best, too!

Those asphalt only Airstream owners... and Rocky Mountain Dirt Bagger road explorers. (Florida SAND does not count as dust. Sand is not dust.

Take a FOUR FOOT LEVEL. A professional level, not your grandmother's wooden ruler. Have one person hold it against the base of the rear window. Rest it above the rubber that the latches are attached. Run a sheet of paper along side the edge to center to edge.

If the paper does not slide alongside the edges... you have a tight window.

I can still slide the paper towards the center... then cannot... then start on the opposite side and the paper slides towards the center. These corners... suck dust.

As said before... the Refrigerator area will bring dust inside, as well.

For one more test. I will unlatch the rear window. I will to the same test. Maybe the end latches cause the curved ends. With all this Covid19 shutting down Las Vegas, Henderson and Boulder City... what else do I have left to work with?
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Old 07-06-2020, 01:55 PM   #15
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Great Ideas are SOLVED by small problems. :)

Released the left and right latches.

The REAR WINDOW is tight in the center, between the four foot level and the sheet of paper slips through a bit more on the left facing side than the right. (A professional level. You have to participate with very fine dust particles... cough, cough size.

The collection area between the window and screen have been cleaned, again. Another 'Top Secret Beta Test' later this month in Nevada, Utah, Wyoming and Montana... the Super Dusty OTG Boondocking States Test.

If this does not cure the problem... a NEW 2020 27 foot Airstream, Solar with Lithium Batteries, a three inch lift kit, FIVE Michelin 16 inch LT Tires and Sendel Wheels WILL FIX IT. Any other suggestions? I really, really hate dust, kind of thing.

Maybe a 2021 if I have to think about it during the Summer. Once I have been advised by those with experience in these... areas of concern.

I also find lots of dust in the 2016 F350 4x4 Diesel. Especially in the bed with the shell.

Can some of you understand where this is going? Sometimes small issues can reward the whiner. Yaa Hoo... the rest of you. Eat your own Dust. I have a solution. Maybe.

If you have similar issues and... a great solution in mind... I can give you some routes that you car farm your interior after your OTG Trip. Wink... Wink.
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Old 07-06-2020, 02:07 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ROBERTSUNRUS View Post
Hi, my Safari has the small windows and we have not had any problems of any kind with them.
******

Robert... you know you have dust. You also need glasses.
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Old 07-06-2020, 02:10 PM   #17
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Add us and our 2014 I international to the list as well. Never knew it was an issue.
*****
Canadian dust does not exist in Montana, Wyoming, Utah or Nevada. Come on down the the lower 48 when the Border Opens. The Forests are in the way and the snow is around longer than we have Summers.

You are obviously near the border. I see Palm Trees and could be a trash can. I need reading glasses, also.

We can work something out just going to Utah... maybe the Red Desert of Wyoming... but WE WILL get you dusty. Bring a Leaf Blower. Ray likes to help friends...
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Old 07-06-2020, 02:27 PM   #18
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Quote:
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******

Robert... you know you have dust. You also need glasses.
Hi, Ray; Unlike you I can't afford to buy a new trailer every other year, so I'm stuck with my basic small window Safari. [15 years] I have taken this trailer on several trips including Alaska and completely across the country and back. No dust sucking in my trailer. I do need new glasses, but my old transition, blended bi-focals work just fine for me.
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Old 07-06-2020, 02:35 PM   #19
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Hi, Oh I forgot; We did travel with a dog named Dusty, if that counts?
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Old 07-06-2020, 02:41 PM   #20
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Hi, Oh I forgot; We did travel with a dog named Dusty, if that counts?
*****
You were holding out.
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