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Old 07-23-2021, 05:27 PM   #1
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Awing bracket, roof seam, gutter drain leak repair

https://www.irv2.com/forums/f103/air...-544888-2.html

I decided I better start a new thread that goes beyond the earlier thread I have posted a link to. Bear with me as I set this up.

In the process of trying to determine why my air conditioner discharge water was leaking through the wall and out the seam above my passenger side wheel well I explored much further than I initially anticipated. I had several responses to my previous post about the same problem but, it was because of bad caulking around the front cap seam and gutter drain.

After speaking with a Newmar technician yesterday about this I decided it was going to be a much more involved project. The technician was quite aware of water leaking through the wall and exiting by the wheel well. If you get up on your roof and look by the drain cup and underneath the awning bracket by the drain cup you will be looking at the main problem area. On my coach at least. Newmar only ran the seam tape for the front cap to about 1 1/2Ē away from end of the front cap seam. That leaves about 1 1/2Ē of gap in the roof about 3/8Ē across. Additionally, the gutter stops about 1/2Ē before the drain cup and, there is a very large gap underneath that gutter. In case you donít know that gutter is added on to the roof hence, all the screws that you will see and the seam tape over the gutter and roof.

The awning brackets are attached to the roof with about 6 lag bolts. Before installing the awning brackets there is butyl tape put on the underneath portion and where the lag bolts go through the bracket to the roof. On the portion of the awning bracket that is underneath the awning rails there is little to no caulking. As I was investigating the lack of caulking underneath the awning brackets I had water push out of 7 of the twelve awning brackets as I was leaning over the brackets to investigate. The butyl tape should stop this, right? Not necessarily according to the Newmar technician I spoke with. So now I have water underneath 7 awning brackets and I have six screw holes underneath that go through those brackets directly into the roof. And, yes they go all the way through to the insulation. Is that water going through the screws into the coach? I donít know but, that is the type of slow leak that can lead to significantly expensive damage over time.

Now for the gutter drain cup and roof seam. I will post some pictures again of the large holes in the gutter drain and roof seam. It very hard to tell but, the dark spot in the photos is the gap in the roof seam and at the end of the gutter drain. If your caulking in these areas is deteriorated and cracked then those holes are a direct line to water leaking into your roof. The gutter drain has seam tape that goes over part of the roof and part of the gutter. That little piece of seam tape will prevent air conditioner discharge water from reaching the gutter most of the time if you are level. Hence, the water pooling around the forward awning brackets.

Hereís my plan after talking to the Newmar technician. I removed the gutter drain screen and removed any loose and deteriorated caulking. Very difficult job with the awning rails on. Then I removed the deteriorating caulking in that roof seam. I thought about eternabond tape for the little space then decided against it. The tape has to be rolled very tight to the roof seam or itís just as bad as cracked caulking. Also, there is already much caulking on top of the taped roof seam that Newmar installed. If I try to remove that then I will further damage the roof seam tape. I will use the self leveling Dicor as Newmar did. I will cover it more thoroughly and check it frequently. I will use the non sagging Dicor around the end of the gutter and around the drain hole.




Now for the awning brackets underneath the rails. I got some rubber roof cleaner and sprayed that on the backside of the awning brackets underneath the rails as well as some of the caulking along the awning brackets. I used a small stiff brush to rub this in and clean the caulking. Then I used a wet sponge to wipe off the roof cleaner and dried it with a cloth. I then went over the area with denatured alcohol on a cloth for the final cleaning. Tomorrow after I believe everything will be dry I will caulk all these brackets underneath the awning rails. As I stated, every bracket had cracked caulking.

This is not for the faint of heart. You will be on the roof leaning over the awning rails trying to get a small brush in there to clean off the caulking. I have about 10-12 man hours into this now. If this doesnít solve my leak problem then I am going to have to schedule a Seal Tech test at Lazydays.
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Old 07-23-2021, 06:31 PM   #2
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Old 07-24-2021, 06:10 PM   #3
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Thanks Paul, I'll be following as well. I also have to re-repair my drain cup passenger side since the tape came loose again.
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Old 07-24-2021, 09:17 PM   #4
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Today I finished all the caulking on the portion of the awning brackets underneath the rails. I may have mentioned before that the caulking gun will not fit underneath the awning rails. I bought some plastic tubing to extend the tip on the caulking tube . It had to be quite long and, it didnít appear that was going to do a good job laying down a nice bead of caulking. I trimmed a paint stirring stick and taped that to the tube. I was able to get underneath the awning rails and lay down a nice bead of caulking.
Working in the gutter drain cup was quite difficult trying to get caulking around the drain hole. A very tight space to work in. I used a small piece of straightened hanger to help get the caulking where I needed it. Then dipped my hand in some water with a few drops of dish soap so the caulking wouldnít stick to my fingers and smoothed the bead. The areas I could not reach with my fingers I used the paint stick dipped in the water and dish soap. It appears I got a nice tight and smooth bead around all of the drain hole. I then caulked the opening in the end of the gutter directly above the drain cup being careful to smooth the bead so as not to be in the gutters and impede water flow. I used Dicor non sag in the gutter opening and around the drain holes.
As I stated before. I chose not to use eternabond tape on the opening in the roof seam as I would have damaged the factory seam tape trying get it cleaned up enough to lay down the tape. Additionally, eternabond tape needs a very flat surface and has to be rolled or it wonít have good adhesion. Even with the tape I was still going to have to put on the self leveling caulking over it. I just filled the roof seam gap with caulking like at the factory, only better. The seam on the drivers side was fine as well as the roof seams on the rear of the coach. I am on the roof frequently checking caulking and, Iím very disappointed I missed that cracked caulking. Difficult to see because of the awning rails. It was a rather large gap I filled so I will check it tomorrow and see how deep the depression is from the self leveling caulking spreading out. I will add more until I get it level with the roof and then keep a closer eye on those areas. I will also use some more of the non sag caulking to reattach the drain screen. I am at about 16 hours on this project.
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Old 07-24-2021, 10:31 PM   #5
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I will give you high praise for taking the time to make caulking, that no one will see, look right. If it's worth doing, it's worth doing it right. I know it does need to be spread out evenly to get a good seal.

I found a new product that 303 came out with a few months ago, 303 Graphine, (nano technology) that I tried on my truck and have been amazed at how long it has looked nice, months longer than other products I used in the past. Today, I got up on the ladder and applied it to the front cap above the windshield. I looked at the roof, and it was a filthy mess. I'm just not as comfortable getting up there anymore. Well, you spurred me on to break out the big ladder and wash the roof.....checking all the drains. Luckily, mine are still operating well, but we hardly ever see any rain.

It was one of those days I dreaded, but the weather was cool and the coach is now all ready for a couple of upcoming trips. I will see how the 303 Graphine does with bugs on that front cap. Going to try it on a spot on the clear bra this week, to make sure it doesn't damage it and then coat the entire bra.
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Old 07-25-2021, 03:34 AM   #6
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Paul, I never reattached my drain cover, instead I bought these and just placed one in the cup itself.

https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

They don't fly out and work better in my opinion.
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Old 07-25-2021, 09:09 AM   #7
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Don,

I realize that nobody will ever see the caulking but, youíre right that itís worth doing right. I just wish Newmar was just as careful when it came from the factory. There was absolutely no way to get a good bead underneath those awning rails without the tube extension. The technician I spoke with at Newmar gave me the idea so I canít take credit for that modification.

The issue with the gutter and roof seam could have been prevented at the factory. Unfortunately, on that one particular area someone just slopped a pile of caulking in there and walked away. It must have been someone other than who did my other three drains and roof seams because, they are done correctly and very intact. I canít explain the lack of caulking underneath the awning rails. According to the technician I spoke with at Newmar itís supposed to be caulked.

I have a lot of hours into something I shouldnít have had to do. Not done right from the factory. If this doesnít solve the leaking then my next option is the pressurized seal tech test. A good two days to let the caulking cure then I will take it out of the garage for a trip.
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