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Old 02-06-2010, 08:25 AM   #1
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Leaky roof during snow/rain

I have a 99 Jayco Eagle, 26 or 28 foot TT that I purchased last year. It is in great shape, used very little and we've taken it on only one voyage to the coast of NC. Had a great time. Everything on it worked fine and thanks to several people on this website, our maiden voyage worked out fine.

I have it parked outside, NOT under a shelter. Hopefully a shelter/carport structure will come in the next year or so. All pipes have been winterized. We have had several weeks of snow, rain, ice. For some reason, I got this weird feeling last night around 9 pm, to go out and check the inside of the camper, as it still has several inches of snow/ice on its roof. Well, when I did, I was met with a very large leak coming from a light fixture on the ceiling just inside the entry door. It is basically midway between the entry door and couch slide out. There is nothing directly above it on the roof, but I know that really doesn't matter as water can travel nearly from one end to the other before it becomes visible. I put a bucket under it and haven't been back yet. I'm almost afraid of what I am going to find.

Has anyone else had this problem. I am just hoping that it has more to do with the snow buildup around something (vent, AC, or something else mounted to the roof) and that without this buildup, it would not have leaked. I think its too dangerous to get up on top of it with the snow/ice on it. What kind of damage to my floor can occur with such a leak......if it is only a temporary thing due to snow/ice? would it do any good to turn the heat on in the unit and let it run for a day or two? Any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Alex
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Old 02-06-2010, 08:47 AM   #2
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Well, I just went out there and the bucket I had put out there last night was almost full of water. I would say the pail is about a 3 to 4 gallon pail. I bought it at walmart for a couple of dollars. So, I went to unscrew the light fixture on the ceiling where it is leaking from, and when I removed the first of about 8 screws, a steady stream of water came pouring out of that hole. There is a slight sag of the ceiling in that area, so I know it is full of water. I suppose I need to get that snow off the roof as soon as I can, but I don't want to damage the roof any more than it might already be damaged. Thanks again for any input.

Alex
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Old 02-06-2010, 08:55 AM   #3
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Ouch, you have a very serious leak. Cover the trailer with a tarp or get it inside until you can dry it out and check for leaks. Couple of things, get up on the roof when you safely can and check the roof for rips. Once you have warm weather, it will need to be pressure checked. There are several people who have used a leaf blower with great success. Otherwise it is probably cheap to pay someone who has the proper equipment to do a pressure test. My guess, you have some seams that have opened up because someone has not properly maintained and recaulked as necessary.
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Old 02-06-2010, 09:25 AM   #4
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It is not unusual to have leaks in an 11 year old RV. As suggested, you need to get the roof covered and get the RV dried out. Next thing to do is a through inspection of the roof and find the leak source. While up top, reseal all of the seams and joints. The roof inspection should be done on a yearly basis.

More than likely the leak is not new and you will find some structural damage. A leak can be hard to find as the water can travel a long way from the leak source to the point where it is seen.

Good Luck.

Ken
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Old 02-06-2010, 09:34 AM   #5
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Thanks Don and Ken. I had the roof checked and cleaned back in August of 09 at RV Superstore in Mocksville, NC. They said the roof was fine and that all it needed was a cleaning and treatment, which they did.

I think this time I am going to take it to Camping World in Greensboro.

I'm wondering if all this was caused by snow/ice, if the damage and or repair could be covered by insurance. Got any ideas.
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Old 02-06-2010, 11:55 AM   #6
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I had a leak like you discribed on my first travel trailer. It turned out to be the air conditioner not being tightened enough to the roof. Take off the inside the trailer cover of the air conditioner and tighten the hold down bolts about ( 1) one full turn each the most I was told to go was sung and a 1/2 turn,and see if this fixes the leak. NOTE: Over tightening will cause it to leak worse. Hope this helps. Joe
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Old 02-06-2010, 12:58 PM   #7
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IMHO I would first search out a reputable dealer who has the proper equipment to do a through pressure test of your trailer. This requires a high flow blower and a method of checking all the seams for leaks. Basically putting the trailer inside a tent and spraying a soapy water solution on everything looking for air bubbles. It can also be done at home if you have a leaf blower. Then you need to mark all leaks, dry the trailer thoroughly and then seal everything top to bottom.
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Old 02-06-2010, 07:33 PM   #8
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I keep seeing on here and other forums of people using a leaf blower to test for leaks....How does/ or can this work when no additional air is being added to build pressure? I am confused.
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Old 02-06-2010, 08:24 PM   #9
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The leaf blower idea came from an RV.NET post some years ago, no longer viewable. I seriously doubt it worked well anyway. No home-use leaf blower has the volume capacity to pressurize the interior of most RV's. I suggest you locate an RV service center that uses a Sealtech machine: Sealtech Manufacturing Inc. - RV leaks bubbles recreational vehicles When we picked up our new 5er it had a leak at a side window at RR of the 5er. The dealer used that machine to locate the leak, and also located 3 more undiscovered leaks. BTW, the one leak I found; the entry point was over 14' from where water was seen inside the 5er.
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Old 02-13-2010, 05:43 PM   #10
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Well, I thought I would update all you nice people who responded to my questions about the roof leak. It finally stopped dripping inside, and our buckets were left dry for a few days. We turned on the furnace and let it run for about 5 days straight in an attempt to dry out the carpet and other stuff that might be wet that we could not see. We also used our Hoover carpet cleaner and sucked another couple of buckets of water out of the carpet. I got my ladder and was able to get on the roof, even with the snow still on it. I carefully was able to sweep off the snow with a shop broom and I found the culprit. I found part of a tree limb still sticking out of the hole, so it obvious that it had fallen from the weight of the snow and caused a rip in the rubber roof and punctured the plywood decking under the rubber. I cleaned out the hole that was created, about a 5 inch diameter hole and was able to see the pink insulation which is under the decking and above the ceiling material (luan ??). I now have the hole patched with duct tape and have an appointment with Camping World Collision Center locally. I spoke with them and they said that they do not repair rubber roofs, that they are only replaced totally. Thank heavens I have insurance........that I believe will cover this. Comprehensive with no deductable........here I have to put in a plug for Allstate. I have had them for 17 years for home, auto, scooter, and camper, and have had nothing but stellar performance from them. I expect nothing less this time.
I will let everyone know how it goes.
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