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Old 07-07-2018, 02:10 PM   #1
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Need Advice on Roof Sealant

We took our trailer to dealer for some work and they also performed a free inspection. We were told we needed sealant on the roof, but we decided not to have the dealer do the work.

Is this something we can do ourselves? If so, what is involved? And if we do decide to have the work done by the dealer or another facility, how much can we expect to pay to have it done?

Thank you for the information.
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Old 07-07-2018, 02:51 PM   #2
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Sealants Summary ...
There are several sealant threads in the forum. The one below is fairly comprehensive in listing the most commonly used / preferred by forum members.

I’m sure many will chime in with advice. All I will say is be sure to completely remove the old sealant before applying new, as new doesn’t stick to old

http://www.airforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=116214
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Old 07-07-2018, 02:52 PM   #3
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And of course you can do this on your own.
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Old 07-07-2018, 05:38 PM   #4
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Thank you DMT, I appreciate the information and advice.
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Old 07-07-2018, 06:51 PM   #5
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I think that if you have the ability to do the work yourself nad take the time t select the bet products you are almost certain to a much better job that most RV shops - you are working on your own RV after all!

I did a lot of re-sealing on our trailer when in Florida last winter, and found that a scraper in a Dremel oscillating tool did a great of of quickly removing old sealant around skylights, fans, etc.

Just be careful with it !

It is worth the effort to get all the old stuff off off and clean surfaces really well (paint thinner?) prior to applying new.

Where a seam will be visible I think it worth using painters tape to ensure a neat job - be sure to remove the tape soon after sealant application.

I generally used Sikaflex Polyurethane products (or similar) for major seams and "Acryl R" in a dispensing gun for finer seams such as around awning brackets etc.

Brian.
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Old 07-07-2018, 10:25 PM   #6
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I use sikaflex 221 gray and gutterseal. Both blend into the aluminum nor will they harm the aluminum either like silicon does. Sikaflex is easier to work with but I like the gutterseal too. Removal of old caulk (only comes off by mechanical means). Then clean the area with acetone. No alcohol derivatives with sikaflex. It makes the caulk not stick. But it's a very easy and doable job. Just time consuming
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Old 07-08-2018, 12:53 PM   #7
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I've been resealing our Fan-Tastic Vents with Eternabond tape. Much of the Trempro 635 that I used 9 years ago had deteriorated and there were cracks in the vent bases. The Eternabond is easy to use and while it doesn't look as nice as a good line of caulk, it's on the roof so it doesn't matter to me.
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Old 07-08-2018, 01:18 PM   #8
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x2 on the Eternabond tape. I like their Alumibond due to the foil exposed side that goes well with the aluminum skin of the trailer. Prep the surface well and it will stick longer than you'll need it to.
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Old 07-08-2018, 05:24 PM   #9
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Some where along the time your trailer was made Airstream started using Adseal on the roof and seal tape on the vertical seams. Both are very easy to work. However, if yours was done with sikaflex or some other hardened sealant, you will have to spend a day scraping all of the old stuff off. Some don't like Adseal because it removes easily and may be a less permanent sealant. I have now used both and no leaks. Next time 5 years goes by I will use adseal. A lot less labor is involved. Using an oscilatting tool is an excellent idea!
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Old 07-08-2018, 05:35 PM   #10
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Depends...

There are a lot of things that can leak on the roof of a 30ft AS.

What exactly did the dealer say was leaking?

Different things call for different products.

I used Extreme Sealing Tape on the FF vents and TV antenna.

Bob
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Old 07-08-2018, 08:36 PM   #11
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Will Eternabond tape work on roof seams as well?
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Old 07-08-2018, 08:51 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sburrw View Post
Will Eternabond tape work on roof seams as well?

Eternabond is excellent on roof seams. I covered all seams on our Avion. Really suggest using the Alumibond tape. Blends well with the aluminum skin. Just clean the area to be covered well, remove all silicone. Once covered, you will not have to worry about a roof seam leak.
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Old 07-09-2018, 01:34 PM   #13
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Just resealed around all the roof vents and antenna on my 2005 Safari (first time ever done). I reviewed lots of posts and youtube videos on processes to do this. Settled on using on a heat gun ($20 at Lowes) to heat up the old caulk and a rigid plastic scraper to remove it. The heat gun made the job much easier. I then used Goo Gone to remove the residual caulk, followed by a wipe down with denatured alcohol (a mild solvent). This got it down to original pretty easy. Then used Sikaflex semi-self leveling ($15/tube)to re-caulk. Probably applied it too wide and thick, but I supposed it does not matter other than wasting caulk. Time commitment for a single fan box was less than an hour. I was new to this, and had no problems other than leaves and twigs falling from trees and sticking to the new caulk....
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Old 07-09-2018, 01:51 PM   #14
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Following this thread.
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Old 07-10-2018, 09:56 AM   #15
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[QUOTE=...followed by a wipe down with denatured alcohol (a mild solvent)....[/QUOTE]


It has been reported elsewhere on the forum that Sika was adamantly against the use of alcohol as a cleaner before the application of their product. Apparently it affects the bond.

Don
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Old 07-10-2018, 10:32 AM   #16
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Use brake parts cleaner or mineral spirits...
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Old 07-10-2018, 09:05 PM   #17
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Do not use any alcohol derivative with sikaflex. Make sure your carb or brake cleaner does not have something like methanol, alcohol or such. Acetone works great and dries faster than mineral spirits.
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Old 07-10-2018, 11:04 PM   #18
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Does anyone have a credible source about alcohol use and sika. It seems to be a rumor or urban legend that was started here, but when I look at the sika website, they even sell a prep product they recommend that is alcohol based. I also read from Lewster on this forum that alcohol preclean is fine, and that it was misinformation. That it wasn’t okay.

I am not trying to call anyone out, I would just like to clarify with real, credible information. I will also search the forums and see if I can find the links etc.
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Old 07-11-2018, 03:52 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by PaulnGina View Post
x2 on the Eternabond tape. I like their Alumibond due to the foil exposed side that goes well with the aluminum skin of the trailer. Prep the surface well and it will stick longer than you'll need it to.
I like this idea. Especially on the roof. Thanks!
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Old 07-11-2018, 04:32 AM   #20
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time2play-

Another Eternabond believer here. I have been using it for years on several of our and friends rubber-roofed rvs, as well as our own '14 Airstream, "Pete". RVs with rubber roofs that "fold over" the edges and are secured with screws or screw strips (some on the roof itself, not over the edge) are particularly prone to leaks. Those roofs can trap water on the corners, where it seeps into the deck and wall structure through those screws. I've probably used 300' of E-bond 2" and/or 4" sealing entire edges of those roofs. On Pete, I did every straight edge that I could, when he was new (fan openings, vent pipe bases, and recently when I replaced the skylight with a Maxim).

In my opinion, all the advice above is spot on. You have to remove as much of the old caulk as possible, clean it well, (I use Acetone sparingly/with heavy rubber gloves), and lay it down the edge of anything you're trying to seal, centering the actual "gap" under the tape. While it may not (likely will not) stick to any remaining silicone or "silicone properties" caulk lines, as long as it bonds on both side of those lines, you should be good.

One more thing, search for "captain tollys creeping crack cure" threads on AF. It's from the boat industry, and it works great on the myriad of rivets on Airstream roofs (most are not one piece roofs, so rivets that can pool water around each one)

Hope this helps.
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