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Old 10-19-2010, 07:37 AM   #1
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Dealer says roof needs to be re-sealed

Took my MH to Lazy Days, 5 days ago, to find out why the passenger slide and the Norcold Refrig. do not work. Today, they called me and said the refrig. needs a new "brain". The slide needs a new motor $$$$$. However, both should be covered by the EX-warranty (I hope).

But.....my roof needs to be re-sealed, said the "tech". He noted some cracking in the putty, sealant, or whatever they sealed it with before. And, they wanted $800+, to do the job. I immediately said "NO WAY". You just sealed it about 2 years ago, for $600+. Actually, it was sealed on 6/30/08. Plus, I was just up on the roof about a week ago and I didn't see any evidence of cracking. In fact, the sealant was still mallable, in that if you touched it, you could change the outer shape. My shoes made an imprint in it, if I stepped on it!

My question(s) to the more experienced members of this forum is.....do you think this is one of their "make work" schemes? Does an RV roof need to be resealed every year or two? I don't want any problems, but I don't want to "throw money away" either. Seems to me, that if necessary, I could do the job (if really needed). I'm capable and have the time. I know it's a "labor intensive" job and at $125/hour, it could cost $800 (maybe).
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Old 10-19-2010, 03:23 PM   #2
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The roof seams and openings need to be checked every year and it is typical to need some touch-up each time as old caulk weathers/dries/cracks/etc. I would not expect a touch-up job to take more than an hour and probably more like 0.5-0.7 hours. Nowhere near an $800 job if it was done two years ago.
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Old 10-19-2010, 04:54 PM   #3
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I was just looking to see what year & make your MH was. Is there a PM guide for roof inspection, & sealing? Sounds like I need to inspect mine. Would an IR camera reveal any areas on this type of roof?

Thanks
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Old 10-19-2010, 05:25 PM   #4
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Gary, I tend to agree with you. I'm almost certain that there are no serious cracks in my sealant. I don't have the MH back yet, but you can be sure that I will give the roof a close inspection, when I can. I have been reading posts about others, using "Eternabond" to seal the seams, etc. If I have to do a complete roof job, I will probably use that method.

Dirtbuster, I have never used an IR camera, period. So I can't help you on that. However, there are a lot of experienced RV'ers on this site. I'll bet someone can answer your question. Why don't you submit a new thread on the subject?
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Old 10-20-2010, 09:17 AM   #5
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I don't see what advantage an IR camera would have. They are great for finding heat sources or viewing places where there is little light, but that doesn't seem to apply to an RV roof. Just my $0.02...
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Old 10-20-2010, 09:59 AM   #6
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For $800 they should be using Eternabond so you don't have to get the roof resealed again!

I agree with others, $800 is way too much, I'd make them take you up to the roof and show you where they are going to spend 5+hrs caulking.
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Old 10-21-2010, 09:24 AM   #7
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Yes, I thought $800 was WAY too much. Especially when they only charged $600+, 2 years ago. Wonder what the other $200 is all about. I plan to do just that....ask them show me where the cracks are, when I go to pick up the MH.
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Old 10-21-2010, 10:13 AM   #8
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gripper,

From your description of the condition of the sealant I would inspect it yourself. Sometimes cracking can result from the curing process and if the condition of the sealant is as you describe I would clean and refill the cracks and monitor the sealant as you would each time you get on the roof. I can't see removing good sealant that is soft and supple and shows no signs of chalking for some minor cracks/checking especially where you don't have any leaks.
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Old 10-21-2010, 07:49 PM   #9
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Not sure if EternaBond would be the correct fix for your specific roof. I used it on my old Winnie and it worked well, but the two adjoining surfaces were at nearly the same level. If the roof of your Providence is anything like mine, the roof seam falls below the sidewall seam. I don’t think EternaBond would work well in this case, especially around the end caps.

For what it’s worth, I recently had a new sat dome installed. While the tech was on my roof with the Dicor sealant for the dome, I asked him to re-seal my roof seams. The shop charged me $75. Next time it's done, the old caulking will need to be removed first, so I will probably just do it myself.

I was at a different shop two days ago getting the 5 year service done on my genset. The dealer had his rates posted for a roof re-seal....$32 a foot. Rediculous!

By the way, here’s a tip: if you have a roof mounted TV antenna, they are notorious for leaking where the coax cable enters the roof. There should be a little rubber boot around the cable. Make sure you fill up the hole under the boot with sealant.

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Old 10-21-2010, 08:25 PM   #10
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Me too.

I stopped by LD on the way home for some repairs to our Dometic frig. The tech said I need a complete new frig at $4800 and a total resealing of the roof for another $1000. I got a feeling of the" Big Screw" coming and told them to give me my keys and I left. They had the adaucity to ask for $250 fee for examing the mh. Good bye to LD. I have used the frig for over a year since and the roof reseal cost $65. Don't think I will ever go back to LD.
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Old 10-22-2010, 02:03 PM   #11
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Not sure about the RV industry, but I can tell you from experience from working in the auto service industry.
Technicians usually make all their money from a portion of the labor hours sold called flat rate hours. They are not paid by the hour for standing around. Typically factory warranty work pays very little, sometimes less then the actual repair time needed to complete the job. Flat rate charges are determined by the manufacture and the dealers are only allowed to charge a set labor time per repair.
Extended warranties are a little different. They usually pay a flat rate time that is slightly better then warranty time. When a service advisor calls in to get authorization from the extended warranty, a set flat rate repair time will be authorized before repairs can begin.
Lastly customer pay labor comes into play. Technicians tend to want to make up for lost wages incurred from low paying warranty work especially if the customer appears to have money. If a shop charges $100.00 per hour and the tech makes $25.00 per flat rate hour, the tech can easily make $50.00 per hour if he can complete a sold repair in half the flat rate time.
This is why CP labor estimates seldom come in at less then the quoted amount when the final bill is tallied, even if the vehicle was repaired faster then the estimated time.
The time to negotiate a customer pay labor price is before repairs are authorized. Many times technicians will reduce their estimated flat rate hours to get the job. If you want to go one step further, ask the service manage for a discount on the labor rate after the repair hours are negotiated.
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Old 10-22-2010, 05:16 PM   #12
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I figured I might find someone on this forum, who thought like I did. Lazy Days charges $125.00 per hour and the two jobs I took it in for, were X-warranty jobs. So I just felt that LD didn't think there was enought money in it for them, so they "dreamed up" other jobs that they thought I would fall for. They even wanted to clean out my battery box (I said no thanks, I can do that myself). However, I did agree to let them lubricate my slide-outs, because I don't want any trouble there. But $800 to $1,200 for a roof reseal job "fagettaboudit"!

Craig, I can't believe you only paid $75 for a reseal! Wow, what a steal! Was that for the entire roof or just a few bad spots?

Thanks guys. I am glad I said no the them. I was worried that I might be causing additional problems, if I didn't have the job done. You can bet that I will check the roof good, when I can, for I do have a roof mounted "batwing". As to the Eternabond....I don't know much about it. Just read some threads and the fixes sounded great. I will do some more research, to be sure it's right for my RV.
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Old 10-23-2010, 09:12 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gripper View Post
Craig, I can't believe you only paid $75 for a reseal! Wow, what a steal! Was that for the entire roof or just a few bad spots?
The entire roof. If you're ever near Rancho Cucamonga CA, see Pete (owner) of Inland Valley R.V. Repair. Very honest guy.

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Old 10-23-2010, 10:48 AM   #14
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To seal or not to seal ??? I worked in the boating industry most my life. Here's my Story;; The roof fiber glass poped out were it come down to meet the side wall. This is a common ocurrance on some Motorhome. We were onthe road when it happened, Called the factory, It was under warrenty. That's good, They couldn't get us in for repair Untill 2 weeks. That's bad; Having worked with sealents And a bit of Knowledge about them. I went to a Boat yard and got some 5200, I used it on the boats; A step ladder, Got up there Cleaned The edges, Layed a bead of 5200 in, Smoothed it out with my wet finger, . Moving ahead 6 months I took it to my Dealer, To reseal it; He worked on it for about 1 hour; Told me the Job I did was for superior to what they do;When I ashed him about the 5200, He said they don't use it because it is a permanent seal.. I said I want mine permanent. You see I don't want to remove my roof;; I have used on all 7 of our motorhomes to seal the roofs. and have had No problem... Some Dealer/repair Will dissagree Because Thats there lively hood;; Life is good;
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