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Old 06-26-2022, 12:58 PM   #1
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Slide cover water intrusion

New to us 2009 Journey 34y. After a good rain today, water was leaking in over the galley counter through the light fixture and microwave.

Rain stopped enough for me to climb up and get a look. Pooling in center of slide cover and plenty of water on the slide top. I lowered the jacks and was able to get the water off of both.

Now what?
1. Is there a way to tension the slide cover for water not to pool?
2. Obviously the water is able to intrude from the top of the slide. What is the process of removing the slide cover and caulking?
3. What else should I check repair?
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Old 06-26-2022, 02:28 PM   #2
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Slideout tops and their seals are caulked during construction and in my experience with age they need to be cleaned and maintained with caulk.

I use Geocel Proflex RV caulk.

There's lots of YouTube videos on removing and replacing slideout toppers. You can probably find one for your make. Your make will determine if you can change the tension but usually once the roller tube is pinned for removal that's the tension you will get for new fabric. My hunch is your fabric on all toppers needs to be replaced unless you know they are new.

I also suspect your seams under the fabric are not weather tight anymore. You can get leaks on the top rubber horizontal seal which will let in water. It can be caulked between the sidewall and the rubber seal. Vertical seals can also leak especially if they get say a pool of water streaming onto it. They can also be caulked between the sidewall and the rubber. Worse case scenario the screws or nails, pop rivets, into the rubber are loose. A carefull inspection may reveal. Also, any screws in the slideout top should be checked for tightness. If loose, back them out, caulk or rtv the threads, and put back.

So, consider replacing all your toppers, and do a thorough caulking of the seams. If one is leaking, they all will soon.

With leaks, my approach is to address multiple possible entry points all at the same time because unless you see an active leak during rain and are sure of what's wrong just doing 1 fix isn't likely to fix the issue.
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Old 06-27-2022, 04:20 AM   #3
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Excellent answer. Thanks. Sounds like I have work to do!
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Old 06-28-2022, 07:31 AM   #4
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Also, there is a drain for the top of the slide. It's just a small hole and it sometimes plugs. Look for a small (approx 1/8") hole with a trim bezel around it near the top center of the slide sidewall, push in a small drillbit (without the drill motor) or pipe cleaner to assure the drain is clear.
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Old 07-05-2022, 09:22 PM   #5
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I'm sorry but the topper isn't a water intrusion seal for the slide is it? Rain and wind are both free to get under the topper. Most travel trailers don't even have toppers.
I changed both of our toppers this year but that was because they were tattered and tearing.
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Old 07-05-2022, 09:30 PM   #6
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LOL but when you do change the toppers that the time to work on the top of the slide :-}
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Old 07-06-2022, 07:57 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dickb46 View Post
I'm sorry but the topper isn't a water intrusion seal for the slide is it? Rain and wind are both free to get under the topper. Most travel trailers don't even have toppers.
I changed both of our toppers this year but that was because they were tattered and tearing.
In order to check the horizontal seal under the topper and maintain seams on the top of the slideout, the topper must be removed.

Since the OP has stated he's got a newly acquired older motorhome, he may want to replace the topper fabric at the same time.

Hope this helps.
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Old 07-06-2022, 08:09 AM   #8
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The fabric will stretch over time and sag trapping water on top. There is a way to tighten the topper. You have to pin the spring and manually wing the topper. Keep in mind the spring can be tight so hold on. I also put Zip Rite tape on all of my sown seams which keeps my slide tops dry. Most slide toppers don’t hang over enough on the ends and water running off the ends lands on top of the slide roof which is why I replaced 2 of mine with toppers that were 5 inches wider to get the water off the slide top.
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Old 07-06-2022, 08:50 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hittntheroad View Post
The fabric will stretch over time and sag trapping water on top. There is a way to tighten the topper. You have to pin the spring and manually wing the topper. Keep in mind the spring can be tight so hold on. I also put Zip Rite tape on all of my sown seams which keeps my slide tops dry. Most slide toppers don’t hang over enough on the ends and water running off the ends lands on top of the slide roof which is why I replaced 2 of mine with toppers that were 5 inches wider to get the water off the slide top.
I like the idea of the tape on the sewn seams

Curious, how did you manage to get an additional 5" of fabric on the tube? I might have been able to order another 1" (splitting the difference on each end) when replacing my OE fabric but it wasn't necessary in my case.
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Old 07-06-2022, 12:41 PM   #10
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Also here’s a thought…if your journey has the hwh hydraulic jacks, you might check your coach for level when the hwh unit says level, when I got my 2005, the hwh said I was level, and my eyeballs and a level said the rv wasn’t. I had to adjust the level sensor on the unit. If your RV is tilted slightly, water can run the wrong way on the top of the slide, and I don’t think it would take too much water pooling in the wrong place to get it to leak in…the other idea would be to use your leveling jacks when it rains, to tilt the rv so water sheds away from the RV…just a suggestion..
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Old 07-06-2022, 01:54 PM   #11
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Just drop either the front or rear of the MH enough so water will not pool on the topper.
The limits of being level pertain to the absorption refrigerator, 3° side to side, 6° front to back, as looking inside the frige.
Dometic just says "if you are comfortable living in the RV is it level enough.
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