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Old 11-06-2003, 10:51 AM   #1
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Replace original vent pipe cover?

I am chasing down leaks ... leaks are my life at the moment ...

As part of this effort, I am going to replace the vent pipe gaskets. The question is, should I also replace the vent pipe covers? Mine might be original and they seem OK (intact). They are apparently made of plastic or some type of hard rubber.

Are they likely to fall apart when removed? Is $80 for two new aluminum covers a smart move? Thanks for any thoughts.

-- RL

PS: Picture shows one of the covers. Note that the screen is very high up in the pipe and obviously not intact. You can just barely see the fringes of the screen around the edges of the hole.
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Old 11-06-2003, 10:52 AM   #2
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Here's the other one (curbside)

Curbside vent pipe. Plenty o'Vulkem here! From water stains on the inside, it was apparently leaking at one time.
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Old 11-06-2003, 02:00 PM   #3
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Vent pipes

I just received my new gaskets and screen to install. From what I understand the screen goes over the pipe first and then the gasket goes over the screen. Directions are on the Inland RV web site.
I have the metal covers but reading other post yours are most likely to brake when removed (plastic).

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Old 11-06-2003, 03:24 PM   #4
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Are those even "originals"?? pretty ugly looking...

well, fwiw: I was going through the "saga of the mystery leak" a few months back, just before you arrived on the scene. I'd seen the many, many admonisions from the many more experienced airstreamers here to check the plumbing vents. And that was on my list of things to do, eventually, but I didn't really think they could possibly be the source of my particular leak; the water was coming in at a point that was higher than the level of the vents, and nowhere near either one of them. I was thinking "air conditioner" or possibly one of the crank-up vents, but after resealing everything possible up there on the roof, the leak still appeared in heavy rain. (didn't happen in light rain, which makes sense now)

I finally ordered the gaskets for the vents from Andy, and I wish I had done it earlier. The existing vent gasket was not keeping any water out of the trailer whatsoever; it was barely even touching the vent pipe. the confusing thing is that the black-tank vent pipe, which is in the rear curbside corner, is plainly visible inside the trailer where it comes in through the roof, and there wasn't a speck of water visible in there. so where did the water go? The theory is that it was absorbed by the insulation, and wicked to all sorts of other invisible places inside the walls and even up into the ceiling. Water was dripping into the interior of the trailer at the seam between the center ceiling panel, and the wall panel, about 10 or 12 feet forward (and uphill) of the vent pipe.
It only happened during heavy rain...because of the vent cover acting like a "leaky bucket". there is a drain hole to let water escape that falls between the cover and the actual vent pipe; the gasket keeps it from coming into the hole in the roof through which the vent pipe passes. if the rain fell at such a rate that it filled this "bucket" up quicker than the drain hole could allow it to escape, the water would rise to a level above the gasket, which wasn't sealed to the pipe anymore, and would then "pour" inside the trailer. (when it wasn't raining hard, the only water that would come in would be those few drops of rain that just happened to fall right on the small gap between the gasket and the pipe...pretty small target).

ANYway...since I replaced the gaskets, it has rained quite heavily a number of times...no more leak. (at least none that I can see
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Old 11-06-2003, 04:49 PM   #5
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Vent covers and their gaskets are at the top of my list on any unit I buy. I did my 76, the 65, and the 78.

The Argosy's needed new covers since they used ABS at the time as a cost savings, the 65 safari I upgraded to newer style. In all cases the gasket for the most part came apart as I tried to remove it, so here in sunny/rainy florida I would have been dealing with buckets of water.

Like Andy says "check those vent gaskets"
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Old 11-06-2003, 05:53 PM   #6
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I need to replace too

I'm getting a leak and don't I don't know if my vent gaskets have ever been replaced. If mine are plastic are the odds they'll break when removed. If so I should order them before I start rather than take a chance then not be able to finish the job if they do. Thanks.
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Old 11-23-2003, 01:33 PM   #7
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I'm undertaking the replacement of my 2 roof vent gaskets today.

Does anyone have any suggestions for getting the screws out that simply will not turn? The first vent I managed to get most of them out, and the other heads were already for some reason sheared off. Vent number one done!

The second vent... I can't get one out. I have tried drilling off the heads, but they are steel screws and I can't get any leverage to really lay in to them. I've gone through a handful of high speed steel bits already.

Oh, it is obvious that these vent gaskets have NEVER been changed in 30+ years.

Any suggestions would be greaty appreciated. Rain is in the forecast for Tuesday, and I want to see how much of the leaks these stop.
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Old 11-23-2003, 01:50 PM   #8
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Pick provided good photos and discussed the screen on this thread.

Would grinding the heads off let you remove the vent cap, then have better access to the screw shanks? Anybody -- Sneakinup's question is still open...
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Old 11-23-2003, 03:07 PM   #9
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Thanks for the lead to the post. I searched earlier, but for some reason didn't find it.

Misery loves company. It's good to see that I am not the only one that had trouble with that.

I can't get close enough to grind it off without ruining the vent or my awning cover, so... I am just going to have to hit Home Depot again for a few more fresh bits. I've sharpened them, but still no dice. Ahhh, it's only money.

By the way. I never got any instructions with mine from Inland. I vulkemed underneath the gasket where the vent came through the aluminum, and a shot in the holes. Then I put a fine finger shmearings worth around where the gasket and the vent pipe meet. Then I layed the screen over, put the vent cap on with yet a little more Vulkem, screwed it down and trimmed the excess screen. It's on there tight and added vulkem should keep it dry... I hope.

Tomorrow when I get the other vent cap off I will try that one with the screen under the gasket.

Next project... lifting up my AC and replacing that gasket. I'm not looking forward to that one!
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Old 11-23-2003, 04:46 PM   #10
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Here is a link to the thread with the instructions for installing the new gaskets.

Of course there is nto additional help for that frozen screw.
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Old 11-24-2003, 10:00 AM   #11
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Unbelievable!

Of all the "projects" I have done so far on my trailer, that one @#$@#(* vent was the worst so far.

Last night I had a brainstorm to get a tiny grinding bit for my Rotozip tool. (Someone suggested grinding, but in my head, I was thinking of my 4-1/2" grinder. Duh!) That managed to get the heads down flat. Then I carefully cut away the old gasket and caulking from underneath each screw, and using the a hacksaw blade, slid it under the edge of the vent so I could slide the blade back and forth to at least notch the screw. After that, I used a flat chisel and carefully whacked it until it sheared off. Then I was able to drill out what was left of the screws and reinstall the vent and gasket.

Let it rain!!!!
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Old 08-29-2004, 08:48 PM   #12
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Help! Vent Pipe Replacement

I'm in the process of polishing my trailer. As I'm doing this, I'm also attempting to replace the refrigerator vent, stove vent, and the two pipe vent covers. I bought all the above from Inland RV and have discovered none of them fit (match) exactly the plastic ones (probably original) I removed from the trailer. The aluminum vent pipe covers from Inland RV are smaller than the plastic ones I removed. To attach them I am going to have to drill new holes in the trailer. I am leary to do this. How would I fill the original holes (vulkam/rivets) and however I do this wouldn't I always have a potential source for leaks in the future?

Thanks in advance!
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Old 08-30-2004, 07:40 AM   #13
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I will have four to do my self soon. The old style is larger then the new Inland version, so do I just rivet the old holes shut or fill them with velkum?? I will have the inside skin out so sealing from the inside will be an option.
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Old 08-30-2004, 07:46 AM   #14
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Yes, the new kit from Inland will not fit the old rivet holes. Seal the old rivet holes with a dab of Vulkem and a new Olympic rivet.

If the vent sits on top of an old hole, just use a dab of Vulkem. The new vent gasket you bought will do the rest.

No, they won't leak in the future if you seal the holes properly the first time.
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Old 08-30-2004, 08:09 AM   #15
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Olympic rivets and Vulkem it is.
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Old 08-30-2004, 08:42 AM   #16
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Re: Frozen Vent Screws. I seem to remember a Bob Villa Sears commercial where he demonstrates a screw extractor tool sold by Sears. It looks like a drill bit that is capable of biting in when it is rotated counterclockwise. Might be worth a trip to Sears or search their website.
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Old 08-30-2004, 08:56 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pick
Re: Frozen Vent Screws. I seem to remember a Bob Villa Sears commercial where he demonstrates a screw extractor tool sold by Sears. It looks like a drill bit that is capable of biting in when it is rotated counterclockwise. Might be worth a trip to Sears or search their website.
I fell for that one...I've tried it numerous times, and have YET to get it to work. that was 20 bucks wasted.

only thing I've gotten to work is a thing called an "e-z-out". (I think). you drill a small hole into the center of said screw, then use the gizmo, which is a tapered "bit" with left-hand thread. it fits into a hand-held "chuck", with a lever handle. as you turn it into the hole, (to the left), it grabs and wedges itself in there tighter and tighter, until it can't turn any more, at which point it starts working on the screw.

The other method I've used with good success is to cut a big slot into the screw head w/ a dremel and a cutoff wheel, and use a big screw driver. but if that doesn't work, (sometimes the head will snap, or you just can't get enough leverage), I go w/ the ez-out.
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Old 08-30-2004, 09:06 AM   #18
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rluhr,

Thanks, I knew someone had dealt with this issue before.
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Old 08-30-2004, 12:12 PM   #19
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..screw extractor tool sold by Sears.

I bought one of these to remove rusty screws from my rear tail light assembly. Totally useless on all six bad screws!! Tried it on the Thetford valve screws -useless. I've had zero luck with it.

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