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Old 04-03-2019, 06:54 AM   #1
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Water dripping inside the windshield!

I have a 2001 Fleetwood Southwinds 32V that sat unprotected through the November snow storm in central Pa. Plenty of freeze/ thaw cycles that time of year. Now camping in early spring and when the sun comes out and warms up the front cap of the RV, water dripps down onto the dashboard.

That's the background so I have two issues. 1) I think that the front marker lights are leaking slightly, so I have taken out all of the insulation inside the cap and found black mold. I'm planning to replace the marker lights with new, but can't imagine how THAT MUCH water can get in through those lights that really aren't in that bad of shape. Condensation? or both condensation and leak combined? 2) Now that I have all the insulation out, does anyone have any shortcuts for re-installing new insulation up there behind the entertainment center. I presume that if I don't reinsulate, I'll just have condensation again.

Another comment, I don't believe there is water running to the front from a leaky roof since the roof is in very good condition, never replaced but adequately maintained. Also, there appears to be no communication between the main roof area and the area under the cap.

This condition seems to be worse on chilly sunny mornings after we have run the furnace all night. Low temps in the 30's, highs in the 50's in NE US.
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Old 04-03-2019, 07:31 AM   #2
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It's hard to picture what's going on without seeing it. I'll say this- we had a leak also- after trying different windshield sealants with no luck, I decided to run a length of Rescue Tape across the top edge of the windshield so it covered half the rubber gasket and half of the cap. No leaks since then- probably 2.5 years now- you can't see the tape unless I pointed it out to you.
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Old 04-03-2019, 08:17 AM   #3
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Look for a water-line mark in the inside of each lens. A 5er we once had developed a water leak in the front cap. I looked for weeks until I noticed a water-line mark inside one clearance light. What was happening was, the lens leaked water, which then filled the lens up to the wiring hole in the mounting plate, then flowed down the wiring, into the front wall.
My solution was to drill a 1/8" hole in the bottom of each lens cover, no more leaking into the wiring hole.
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Old 04-03-2019, 09:28 AM   #4
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My previous MH was a '01 Southwind and I definitely had condensation issues inside the front cap. Some days it was enough to drip onto the dash. A small fan behind the TV to move some air inside the cap helped.
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Old 04-03-2019, 11:18 AM   #5
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Water dripping inside the windshield!

Quote:
Originally Posted by c_oneil View Post
My previous MH was a '01 Southwind and I definitely had condensation issues inside the front cap. Some days it was enough to drip onto the dash. A small fan behind the TV to move some air inside the cap helped.
—————
Try this...

Insulating that empty dead air space under the fiberglass shell with Reflectex glued to the inside front cap surface then putting encapsulated fiberglass insulation in the dead air space behind the overhead cabinets should take care of the condensation problem in cold weather. In cold climates an insulation barrier will keep the ambient water vapor in the RV away from that ice cold inside front cap surface and prevent condensation. Insulation is the solution.

That insulation will also help keep summer temperatures down in your RV by isolating the hot fiberglass front cap from the ambient air in the RV.
(Lowe’s sells incapsulated insulation by special order for about $20-25/ roll). One is enough to finish the job with extra to spare.

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Old 04-03-2019, 11:59 AM   #6
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Thanks Big Tom, not sure how to access the cap behind the driver’s side without tearing out the whole entertainment center but I like the idea of incapsulated insulation. I had thought of using shipping peanuts. Like your idea better.
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Old 04-03-2019, 12:01 PM   #7
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C_O’Neil’s fan would do a similar job. Thanks.
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Old 04-03-2019, 12:06 PM   #8
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There are no obvious water marks inside the amber lenses but I do see black stain around the underside of the fiberglass in the area of each light. Also, guys, I forgot to mention that the windshield is new and has new sealer securing the rubber gasket along the top. Thank you all for the ideas and quick responses.
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Old 04-03-2019, 06:04 PM   #9
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I used fiberglass batts that were encased in plastic to keep the water off them. No more issues with front cap condensation.
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Old 04-04-2019, 07:35 AM   #10
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Hi Pirate, you are the only one who actually said, "No more". The others said, "Helps" From pics on the internet, it looks like your Hurricane is similar to my Southwinds under that front cap. How were you able to reach behind the cabinets to get out all of the old wet insulation, and thus, how were you able to place the new insulation without taking the interior woodwork all apart? Or did you take the woodwork all apart?
Also, do you recall the name of the insulation you used or did you make up your own plastic encased batts? Thanks for the help.
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Old 04-04-2019, 05:30 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ClassyClassA View Post
Hi Pirate, you are the only one who actually said, "No more". The others said, "Helps" From pics on the internet, it looks like your Hurricane is similar to my Southwinds under that front cap. How were you able to reach behind the cabinets to get out all of the old wet insulation, and thus, how were you able to place the new insulation without taking the interior woodwork all apart? Or did you take the woodwork all apart?
Also, do you recall the name of the insulation you used or did you make up your own plastic encased batts? Thanks for the help.
There was hardly any insulation to remove from the front cap area. I am able to stand on my doghouse and get behind the tv. Pulled out all the existing insulation and then sprayed 3m glue to the front cap. Rolled up the bat in a manner so I could tuck it up, and then unroll it. I used some sticks and other cave-man type tools to make sure the batts stuck to the glue. Again, there was just enough room behind my cabinets to do this. It's been several years, I don't recall if I got the batts at Lowes or HD. Go visit and dig around. Mine was a stick item.
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Old 04-04-2019, 06:18 PM   #12
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I have a 2002 Winnebago 32V. They have a known condition of rusting of the steel frame that the windshield glass is adhered to. Don't know if the Southwind uses the same construction technique. Water sits on top of the frame at the top of the windshield. Eventually enough rust to separate the frame from the sealant and then water enters and drips on the dash. Here is a link to my journey: Another leaky windshield. And the DIY fix. - Winnebago Owners Online Community
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Old 04-04-2019, 11:30 PM   #13
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This is what I used to insulate my Adventurer and purchased at Lowes. When installing I used clear packing tape to seal up the open ends and completely seal off any fiberglass fibers.

Johns Manville ComfortTherm R-13 40-sq ft Encapsulated Fiberglass

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Old 04-08-2019, 11:01 AM   #14
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Update on "Water dripping down onto the windshield" problem. I read with great interest all of the advise offered. Some of the ideas would work for my specific application, some wouldn't, and some I felt would not work in my hands. So, for anyone else following this thread for your own 2001 Southwind 32V issues, here is what worked for me.

I removed the TV completely, used a Dremel Oscillating tool to remove part of the ceiling of the entertainment center for access to the inside of the front cap. Inspected carefully for remaining water in the old insulation and removed any questionable material. At this point I noticed water damage and moldy coloring near the locations of all five of the front cap marker lights. After replacing all five lights with new, rewiring them and sealing everything with flowable RV sealer (NOT SILICONE), I returned to the inside of the RV and placed kraft-backed R-13 insulation across the entire front inside cap area being careful not to allow the pink part to touch the front cap surface itself. I sealed every possible air leak with pieces of pink fiberglass so that warm moist heated air from inside could not reach the cold inside surface of the front cap (it is still winter, you know, but this will work for summer as well). I basically treated this area like an attic in a house that I would have insulated back in my high school days when I worked for White Glove Air Treatment Company in Vienna, Virginia. Between stopping any outside rain water from leaking inside and stopping any air transfer from conditioned to unconditioned areas I think I licked the problem. If I need to improve anything, I might place 3" vents on the sides of the front cap to allow circulation between the pink fiberglass and the inside surface of the cap.

An this was the short form of the story. Feel free to comment pos or neg for the benefit of anyone else following. Thank you again to all who offered input to help solve this or get those creative juices going again.
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