Unusual leak in 27FB Twin Globetrotter Curbside storage compartment
I want to start by saying the staff at Jackson Center, (JC), does a good job of handling all the problems they are dealt with in the time they are allotted. We had quite a number of small issues, and one large one, on a Warranty issue visit in early June. One item we had was the forward awning arm was hitting our rub rail.
JC determined the fix was to place about a 1/2" square piece of plastic or acrylic between the aluminum skin and the Zipdee rubber bushing. We are in the middle of a 2 month trip to the Southwest. About 2 weeks ago we had a leak in the front curbside storage compartment where about 2 ounces of water was found. We didn't know if the leak occurred while we were driving in rain / sitting still while camping in rain / or a leak from a water pipe.
After monitoring all circumstances, we determined the leak occurred while sitting still camping when it was raining. I googled the issue on "airforums". The consensus seemed to be that these compartments leaked. The solution was to use "D" shaped weather stripping around the edges of the compartment. This did not prevent my leak.
The next suggestion was to put duct tape around the compartment doors to make sure no water was coming in thru the door. I did this and the storage area still had water in it after a rain. So, the compartment was leaking with the weather stripping around the compartment door and the door being sealed with duct tape.
I had never had water I this compartment before so this led me to think the JV "fix" may be connected to this. The piece of plastic / acrylic that JC used is very firm with no give or flex. Before this fix, the flexible rubber bushing on the awning appeared to provide the "seal" to keep water from entering into the skin. Once JC put this inflexible piece of plastic/ acrylic between the skin and the bushing, I believed this allowed water to enter between the plastic and the aluminum skin and follow the grooves of the screw to the inside of the skin and down into the curbside storage compartment.
I removed the plastic piece and purchased some silicone adhesive and applied it to the entire backside of the rubber bushing / the hole in the skin where the screw goes / and the screw itself in an attempt to seal the area where the rubber bushing is attached to the skin. This appears to solve the issue.
I sprayed water on my roof for 10 minutes and noticed if the awning is closed and the trailer is slightly leaning forward, rain rolls of of the front of the awning and down the rivet line directly over this bushing. The rain doesn't hit the storage compartment door. It is funneled directly down that rivet and the area of the bushing.
I did this test the day before I applied the silicone and the compartment leaked. After applying the silicone, the compartment did not leak.
In my opinion, if the original awning bushing is removed for any reason you should make sure it is properly sealed with a gasket or sealant to prevent future leaking. I also don't believe there should be an inflexible item placed between the skin and the bushing.
I realize this post is a little long. However, as a background, the major issue I had as a Warranty item was a frame separation issue on the front of my Globetrotter. This caused water to enter the font of my RV when driving in heavy rain and our interior floor was damp. JC diagnosed this issue and repaired the frame separation. When this occurred I never had water standing in the front curbside storage compartment. This made the current issue harder for me to diagnose. JC fixed the frame separation issue but it appears to me the fix they did for the awning issue created a different avenue for water to enter into the front curbside storage compartment.
The Globetrotter inverter is on the other side of the curbside front storage compartment so I believer this could be a safety issue should water enter the compartment and make its way to the other side of the wall. I had previously applied caulking to all the interior compartment walls to prevent any drafts or leaks from the compartments to the interior.
This issue may not occur to anyone else but I wanted to try and save someone some time in the future in case they do have it.
2018 GMC Sierra 2500HD Duramax