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Old 05-15-2015, 03:29 PM   #1
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Don't wait too long

Well, I had 3 windows in my Windsor that over about a 2 years continued to fog, getting progressively worse. The drivers side window in particular had gotten to the point that I had to do something.

I was able to repair the 3 windows however although I was able to get the drivers side window clean it did still have some etching. If I hadn't waited that long I am sure I could have gotten it repaired and good as new, so lesson learned, Don't wait too long if your windows are fogged.

After researching on repairing fogged RV windows I decided that I would try and repair myself. There was one good thread posted last year that really helped and I did email the OP several times to ask questions and got fast responses. Fogged Window repair thread.

There are also some Youtube videos that provide some info along with other articles. You can also buy a complete kit on line and order a video it that's the route you want to go.

I was able to buy most of the material I needed from DK Hardware at decent price and combined shipping. Below is what I ordered.

CRL Black Silicone Foam and Metal Spacer I.G. Sealant
I bought 3 used 2 of these
CRL 3/16" Polyethylene Sealant Guide
CRL Black 3/16" Wide Edgetech Super Spacerô - 66 Foot Roll
I still have ~1/2 of this left.

I also ordered some Dicor Butyl tape but ended up not using it.

To clean the windows I had purchased a good quality aerosol window cleaner. I also bought extra fine steel wool "00000".

I did this project myself, the 2 small windows were fairly easy but the large drivers side window did take some grunting (and confidence) to take in and out solo. I did rig some bungy cords to hold the large window in while I went from ladder to the inside. If possible I'd recommend having some help on the larger windows.

The first window I tried was the small passenger side window. Below are the steps that I did.
  1. I removed the Screen from the inside
  2. I took the inside trim piece off.
  3. I used a stiff plastic putty knife to break the seal around the window on the outside and gently pried the window out of the opening.
  4. I had a workbench set up in the basement shop and put the window on it. The window had a small plate with 4 screws that held the outer frame together at a seam, I removed the 4 screws and plate using a #15 torx type screw driver.
  5. There was a spreader bar that held the bottom portion of the top stationary window in place, there was 1 screw on either side that I removed and then using a metal chisel gently spread the seam apart to remove the spreader bar and removed the stationary glass. There was a rubber gasket that encased the stationary glass and held in the window frame. This window was not fogged so I just cleaned it up good and set it aside.
  6. The sliding window was fogged and needed to be taken apart. On the top of the window was a metal piece that the window lock was attached to, this was held onto the window with some sort of adhesive and was difficult to get off. I used a sharp utility knife with extendable blade and kept working both side. I also used some mineral spirits to try and soften the adhesive. I also used some small wooden wedges and forced them into the end. I finally got the metal piece off with breaking. (Note: on the drivers side window I used Lacquer thinner which broke down the adhesive quickly and it took a lot less effort to get the metal end piece off).
  7. I then split the window, I used a utility knife all the way around and the window split fairly easily. I then cleaned off all the adhesive.
  8. I then washed the window with soapy water and then cleaned using the cleaner. There was still some water spots on the window so then I tried a combination of CLR and steel wool which did a good job. I did this with both pieces of glass and then I cleaned the windows again with the cleaner and started the process of reassembly.
  9. I attached the Edgetech Super Space, leaving about ~1/4" space to the edge of the window.
  10. I mated the 2 pieces glass together making sure the adhesive on the spacer made good contact all the way around.
  11. I then used the 3/16" sealant guide on the end of a tub of Black Foam Sealant and sealed the perimeter of the window. I did purchase a battery operated caulk gun which made this process fast and easy, I set it at the slowest speed and just worked my way around. (after the 3rd window I got very good at this and didn't waste any sealant and/or make a mess).
  12. I did let the first window cure over night before reinstalling but found that if you were careful this was not necessary.
  13. I reinstalled the window and then used a silicone type caulk to seal the out side window frame to the side of the coach.
I also repaired the entry door window and drivers side window using most of the above steps.

One observation is that on my Windsor, Monaco did not use the butyl type caulk on the window but instead used a rubber type weather seal that you could reuse if you didn't cut up too bad with the putty knife. Lowes sells a similar weather seal. I was also surprised at how big the opening was in relation to the window. In a couple places the window barely covered the opening, meaning that the sealer around the windows edge needs to be checked often to make sure it is doing it's job.

2 of the 3 windows I was able to get very clean with no signs of the previous fogging. The drivers side sliding window still has a slight haze but it is substantially cleaner then what it was.

I have enough supplies to probably do 2-3 more windows and if I see any of my other windows starting to fog will jump right in and repair.

So if you have fogged windows and are somewhat handy you can probably repair them yourself. If not you can buy new windows or have someone else fix them. Either way, don't procrastinate like I did.
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Old 05-15-2015, 03:35 PM   #2
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Great info, thanks. I have one fogged that is the first window behind the drivers seat. I have a list of upgrades I want to do, so the window will wait for now. Good write up!
Bill
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Old 05-15-2015, 09:36 PM   #3
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Jim,
You are exactly right on what you say about this repair. It is absolutely within the capability of most people.
I used the same exact components to repair all the windows on our previous Winnebago DP and it turned out very good. Previously, I had ordered new window Insulated Glass Units from the manufacturer at a considerable cost and two of them failed after about 18 months.
With this new super spacer and the sealant, none of the windows failed after quite a while. I saved what I have left of the super spacer by sealing the edge of the plastic sleeve with the edge of an iron.
When/if our Monaco windows start to go, I am definitely repairing them myself.

All the best.

Roy
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Old 05-16-2015, 07:21 AM   #4
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Yes, I forgot to mention that I vacuum sealed (2 layers) the remaining spacer material to prevent it from drawing moisture.

Good to hear that your repair lasted, although I can repair again I'd rather spend my time fixing something else on the RV
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Old 05-16-2015, 09:25 AM   #5
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Thanks Jim! I'm gonna hang on to this info!
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Old 05-16-2015, 09:34 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jacwjames View Post
Yes, I forgot to mention that I vacuum sealed (2 layers) the remaining spacer material to prevent it from drawing moisture.
Can you expand on that a bit? I dont quite grasp what you vacuum sealed, and how you did it.

Thanks.
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Old 05-16-2015, 06:41 PM   #7
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Yes, my repair was done about 3 1/2 years ago. We have sold the coach since then but I am pretty sure the windows are still good.

I tried to vacuum seal the left over silicone super spacer but could not fit the envelope into DW's food saver. So I just removed as much of the air as I could and sealed it with a regular iron by using the edge. I also would be interested in how you managed to vacuum seal your envelope.
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Old 05-16-2015, 06:48 PM   #8
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I would add that if I were to do this again, I would definitely get a power calking gun. I also think I might figure out a way to keep the plastic guide block attached to the calking tube. I found it difficult to hold it in place while I worked the calking gun while moving it along the edge of the window unit without making a mess. Next time, I might also cobble up a turntable. My DW helped by turning the window but a turntable would have made her job easier.
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Old 05-16-2015, 09:07 PM   #9
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I used a couple of large zip lock back and hooked to a small vacuum pump I have to seal the spacer in the bag, hopefully this will prevent moisture from ruining the spacer.

I had a small work stool that I attached a towel to the top of and was able to use this as a pedestal and just rotated the window on it as I applied the sealer.

I found that if I twisted the guide block onto the end of the tube of sealer it stayed on pretty well and I was able to get enough pressure through the block to fully fill the void.

The last window I did turned out really good, the sealer was evenly distributed with very little rework. Once I finished injecting the sealer into the void with the caulk gun I took the guide block and pulled it all the way around the window to finish up and then took a rag wrapped around my finger with some mineral spirits on it to take off the excess on the edge of the window and clean up the edges.
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Old 05-17-2015, 06:22 AM   #10
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Wow! I was not aware of the CRL products when I did the windows on a previous coach several years ago. They had a hollow metal perforated band separating the two pieces of glass, and inside was desiccant.

I cannot tell from the CRL description, but does the spacer foam strip contain a desiccant?

I agree that of all the windows I've R&R on Monaco's (a bunch of them), the cutouts always seem too large, and there will be at least one corner that barely seals. I used wooden spacers to position them as best I could.
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Old 05-17-2015, 07:27 AM   #11
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From what I've read the CLR product has the desiccant in the rubber type compound.

The spacers that I took out of my old windows were metal and did have the desiccant in the metal. It appeared to me that the windows that failed had sections that the seal had broke, it also appeared that there was not an excessive amount of sealer to seal the window.

With the CLR product you place the spacer on the window allowing enough of a gap so that when the window is assembled there is sufficient room for the sealer. On the large sliding window on my drivers side I allowed more space so I could put a wider bead of sealer in to seal the window thinking this might be better.
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Old 05-17-2015, 06:05 PM   #12
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You should note that the CLR super spacer is available in different thicknesses so you need to make sure you get the same thickness as your original spacer. It is also available in black and grey, and perhaps other colors as well. It does have a foil lining on the outside that wraps around each side a little and that may show from outside the coach depending on how much you inset the spacer. I did not find that objectionable though. It also has adhesive on both sides so once you position it, it sticks where you put it. Once you put the second pane of glass on top, the sandwich stays together pretty well while you shoot the sealant. I also used my TIG welder to flood the space between the glass pane with Argon gas, but I think that is completely necessary in most cases.
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Old 05-17-2015, 06:10 PM   #13
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Also, Jim is very right about not waiting too long. One of my windows was badly etched because it had been leaking for quite some time. I tried to polish the inside surface of the outer pane but ended up ruining it. So I went to my local glass shop with a template and ordered a replacement out of tinted tempered glass. It was an exact match and only cost me a few $$.
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