RV Delamination And Cracks: Both Are Serious Issues



This post may contain affiliate links. If you purchase through these links, we may earn a small commission at no additional cost to yourself.


motorhome-with-delamination-problems-bullyans.jpg About 20 years ago, a new method of RV construction came on the market: smooth fiberglass exterior walls constructed by sandwiching an outer skin of smooth fiberglass with the frame structure and Styrofoam or fiberglass insulation in the middle and the interior wall paneling on the interior.

With adhesive between the different layers, it was intended to create a bonded single unit wall panel that greatly decreased the labor involved with building an RV.

An additional benefit was the fact that the new sidewalls had better aerodynamics. Plus, the new smooth look improved the sale of RVs from trailers to motorhomes.

As with many new methods it all looked real good in the beginning.  But soon, a few bugs came to the surface.  After a few years, some of the early models started having problems with the ply’s or layers of the wall structure starting to come apart (or delaminate).

 

What To Look For

The first evidence of a delamination problem is bubbles (or blisters) forming on the sidewalls as the luan plywood under the outer fiberglass layer breaks down, allowing it to pull away from the wall structure.

Delamination is generally caused by moisture infiltrating the wall and destroying the integrity of the luan plywood.

Flexing in the wall structure can also lead to the adhesive failing or cracks developing.  Cracks are another similar issue that will rapidly send the value of your investment plummeting.

delamination-on-motorhome-bullyans.jpg

 

Speaking From Experience

I had a 1993 Winnebago motorhome that had a crack develop as I was preparing for a trip from Minnesota to Arizona one February.  The crack ran from the corner of the kitchen window at an angle down toward an access panel.

An older Class C mini-home I once owned also had cracks at both lower corners of the window in the center of the back wall.

Here’s the bad news.  Both delamination and cracks are very expensive and sometimes impossible to properly repair unless the complete sidewall of the unit is removed and replaced.

 

How To Fix Cracks & Delamination Problems

Some body shops suggest that by cutting out the affected area of outer fiberglass and removing the damaged luan plywood, you can then replace the plywood with new substructure and re-glue the fiberglass panel back in place.  The finished repair will surly be visible unless masqueraded with a large decal.

fiberglass-repair-and-construction-handbook.jpg I tried fiberglass patches, layering a couple strips of new fiberglass over the crack and smoothing with Bondo.  Within the first day of driving, the cracks reappeared — going right through the new fiberglass.  Both attempts to make cost-effective repairs failed quickly.

I was lucky.  Under a special warranty program, the Winnebago factory covered the cost of my sidewall replacement for that particular RV..  The cracking situation I experienced was determined to be a design problem, and they stood behind their product.

Buyer Beware: If You Spot Delamination Or Cracks

Over the years, I’ve seen many RVs that have delamination issues that just continue to get worse.

This should be a huge red flag if you’re shopping for a used RV of any make or model.

If you detect any area where you feel the fiberglass has pulled away from the inner structure, just pass that RV by.

In some instances structural integrity of the whole RV has been compromised.  The wall skin supplies some of the strength of the entire wall.  Picture it like your house without the outer skin being attached to the studs.  The house would be weakened to the point of collapse.

The cost of replacing a sidewall would likely surpass the total value of the entire RV.  As the delamination gets worse — and it will — the value of your investment will slide downhill rapidly.

Unless you’ve managed to secure a deal good enough that you can overlook the damage, the best choice is to look at a different RV.

Resale value will be drastically reduced in the future.  Not many people will be interested in buying an RV that suffers from terminal delamination.

Curtis

I’ve been involved in RVing for over 50 years — including camping, building, repairing, and even selling RVs and motorhomes. I’ve owned, used, and repaired almost every class and style of RV ever made. I do all of my own repair work. My other interests include cooking, living with an aging dog, and dealing with diabetic issues. If you can combine a grease monkey with a computer geek, throw in a touch of information nut and organization freak, combined with a little bit of storyteller... you’ve got a good idea of who I am. To date, I've shared my RV knowledge in over 300 articles here at The Fun Times Guide! Many of them have over 25K shares.

75 thoughts on “RV Delamination And Cracks: Both Are Serious Issues

  1. Curtis, good article, I wish I had of read it before I bought my motorhome. Well, I may be okay but not sure.. We bought a 1994 Winnebago Vetra 37 foot. We good a deal, I hope.. We paid $4,000 less than any other vectra we saw on the market and about $5,000. under book. The coach interior is in great shape and I mean really great shap. No visible signs of leaking and I hardly believe it was a 1994 because it is in such good shape. It also runs great, has new tires, good running 7000 genset and blew by the inspection.

    One problem, it has some delamination, bubbles or warping on the passenger side behind the refridgerator area. Not real big, but an area of about two foot in the mid area.

    We bought this as we were new to RVing and did not want to spend alot of $$$ until we new we would like it. If we like it, we want to get a newer coach. We only plan to do some weekends and more than likely no more than 300 mile roundtrip.

    Telling you all this, what do you suggest I do?? Do I try to repair it? Do I just drive it and use it for a few years and hope I recover some of my investment or do I off load it today???

    I did not worry about this when I bought it, but because of your artcile and the possible structure problem I am concerned!! I don’t want to go down the road and the whole coach collapse on the frame, oh, and on me.. LOL

    Help,

    John

    1. John, From what you describe you’re probably ok structurally. I doubt anything will collapse on itself in the near future. The 2000 Fourwinds I bought this year probably falls into the same category. Will it affect resale or trade-in value? Probably to some degree. I bought mine aware of the issue but at a price that let me overlook what I considered to be a minor cosmetic flaw. I also intend to keep mine until residual value is minimal. A proper repair could be quite costly, a patch job will likely look lousy and will further damage your resale value. Your best bet is probably to go enjoy your RV and avoid walking past the blistered area. Out of sight, out of mind.

      1. Many thanks… If I can hold it together for a few years I plan to buy a newer Vectra, my wife and I really like that model… You would not believe the inside, it really looks like it is much much newer.. Take care and again, thank you for you input..

        John

      2. Curtis, I have a 1990 Fleetwood Pace Arrow 34L good conditions on the inside and 22,054 miles on it. I m the 2nd owner it was made out in Riverside CA. bought new has all the manuals for all the equipment in side. But on the driver side I have 3 small bubbles around the bottom of my windows which is where the moisture got in through the windows,..I notice when it rains the black velts that the window slides on get wet and I think that is where the water is coming in. This is my first motorhome and I got it at a really good cost I throught untill I started reading the forum and found out about Delamination….now Im thinking 5000 maybe wasn’t a good deal after all..I did have to reroof the top..BC

      3. Hey Curtis, same thing here 1995 allegro bus we have some blistering around windows and a small vertical crack in one area. I’m not worried about cosmetics really or resale I’m just wanting to slow down water damage. What’s the best silicone or similar product to seal it up with and application tips. Thanks! Again

        1. Jordan, The best silicone is just that, pure silicone. Not some product that is designed to be painted over and has other products blended in it. For fiberglass repair the best product is fiberglass. Pretty straight forward.

  2. Have you heard about delamination of the sidewall above the large slide in a ’95 Avion 5th wheel trailer? Perhaps caused by stress from the slide? Repair options?

  3. Don, delamination regardless of brand or type is an expensive and often futile repair issue. It’s usually an indication of water infiltration because it is the plys of the plywood separating, not the fiberglass letting loose from the plywood.

  4. I have a 2002 American Tradition that is showing quite a bet if delamination on both sides..There ar large bubbles in the exterior wall. The unit only has 40,000 miles on and is in excellent shape otherwise. Both insid and out. Is there anything I can do to prevent furthur problems. I contacted fleetwood bu they blame it on maintenance or lack of same ., which is crap

    1. Al, most often delamination occurs from water migrating into the wall panel causing the outer ply of the plywood to separate.  The best way to avoid further delamination is to prevent any further water from getting in.  This would mean resealing windows.  On my second hand fourwinds, a much less expensive RV, I ran a bead of clear silicon around every window or vent and closely inspected the roof edge for any small breaks in the rubber membrane.  

    2. Al I’m the guy who has the American Dream with the delamination issure. I to contacted Fleetwod and was told the same thing, like you this is BS. I have spoken to other people with Fleetwood coaches and they have similar problems. I beleive that if we could get enough people with problems we could file a class action lawsuit. Why is there so many problems with Fleetwood? I know many people with other coaches and not one has a delamination problem. Fleetwood knows they have a problem which they choose to ignor blaming it on the owner. I have spoke to dealers which are also aware of Fleetwood delamination. My email address is [email protected] if you wish to discuss this proposal. 

  5. I purchased a new fifth wheel in 2009 and it now has dinner plate and larger delamination bubbles on both sides. The manufacturer says they will pay to have the bad spots cut out and repaired. This is something that seems to be a defect in the manufacturing process. The trailer was 2 months out of warenty when we seen the first bubble and has grown three more in the past two weeks while sitting on the dealers lot. Any advise?

  6. I purchased a new fifth wheel in 2009 and it now has dinner plate and larger delamination bubbles on both sides. The manufacturer says they will pay to have the bad spots cut out and repaired. This is something that seems to be a defect in the manufacturing process. The trailer was 2 months out of warenty when we seen the first bubble and has grown three more in the past two weeks while sitting on the dealers lot. Any advise?

    1. Cory, if the manufacturer will pay to fix it I wouldn’t waste any time having it done.  Make sure to have pre-approval in writing before the work starts so they won’t mysteriously change their mind.  My guess is this is going to be an ongoing problem down the road too.   

    1. Hey Curtis, same thing here 1995 allegro bus we have some blistering around windows and a small vertical crack in one area. I’m not worried about cosmetics really or resale I’m just wanting to slow down water damage. What’s the best silicone or similar product to seal it up with and application tips. Thanks!

  7. I have a 2003 1/2 American Dream. This is one that only a few were made with three slides. This was a coach from the south. We purchased this coach in 2008 and it has been garaged since then only on the road in Florida for the winter. I went over the roof and awning rails along with the sky light in the shower with clear silicone. I have seen delamination on the passenger side behind the slide out which is not a bubble type but shows the design of the super structure. I went to Fleetwood in 2010 and showed them the problem, they indicated they had no idea what the problem was never seeing anything like that. They said if it were delamination the inside wall of the coach would be showing signs of wet or feel wet which it doesn’t. Any idea if this can be repaired Fleetwood said they could replace the back wall at a cost of $40,000. I’m very sorry we purchased a Fleetwood product and will never again.

    1. Bill, I cringe when I think of such an expensive coach having delamination issues.  Sadly Fleetwood is correct.  Replacing the whole wall structure is the only real cure. The one problem with such a costly repair is there is no guarantee that similar delamination won’t occur somewhere else on the coach later on.    Delamination can also be present without water leakage.  If you sealed a seam that had been leaking, the water would eventually dry up but the damage would have already been done.    Also the plywood layer can delaminate with long term storage in high temperatures (southwest summer desert heat).  There is no win in this situation I’m afraid.

    2. I have a 2002 American Dream with delamination problems on both sides. Get the same response from fleetwood. I too will never purchase or reccommend the purchase of any fleetwood product. The company does not stand behind their products.

  8. I have a 2009 cross country 38′ motor home that had front end damage from an individual that disconnected his toad with out putting his car in park. It rolled down hill and hit the front right hand side of the front end. The damage left the front end full of fiberglass cracks. The place I sent it to for repair, has over the last six months redone the repair in an attemp to remove the cracks, but has not been successful. From a distance it looks good, but up close you can still see stress crack lines in the paint. What can I do to get this correct ?

    Thanks
    Dobydog

  9. I recently came accross a 90 sun soverigne for the lumpsum of free. Interior is great though it shows signs of delamination. Now I consider myself a very handy person,and the delamination is happening in the wheel wells, is there any possible to take the lower portion of the siding off to relaminate the componant sides affected? If I do need to cut thr fiberglass at the corner of lower storage

    1. Roger, Can’t beat free! Being an older unit at the right price, I’d probably be willing to try an idea that won’t look like a factory repair. What say you cut out the section of fiberglass that is bad. Probably from each side of the wheel well cut straight up then cut horizontally to connect the two vertical cuts. Only cut through the fiberglass, not the wood behind it. Removing what will look like fender skirts, address any rotten wood issues, then re-glue the fiberglass back in place. Find some trim material and attache it over the seams where you made the cuts. In the end it will look like the area around the wheels was it’s own separate panel and assuming you have to do this repair to both sides it should look neat and clean when you’re done.

  10. I need advise ASAP
    we bought a 2011 new in April 2012 holdover..long story short…we believe roof leaking and the fiberglass is coming away from the camper wall. there is a long vertical bubble you can see. it is just starting to leak inside camper….my question is, what should i be asking for when they go to fix it. my hubby and i have no clue when it comes to body work….it is still under warranty so that is not the issue…i don’t want a half ass fix then it blows apart 1 day after warranty expires….HELP

    1. rtr94, The only real correct repair for a delaminated sidewall is to replace the whole wall. I had an early 90’s Winnebago motorhome that developed a cracked sidewall. The factory did replace the whole wall after I traded it back in to the dealer. The problem is going to be in convincing them to do it when it is a water infiltration issue. They will claim you didn’t maintain the roof seams. Keep in mind it could be an insurance claim issue as well if it gets declined for warranty.

  11. Looking at a 2005 Alfa that has started showing blisters on the big slide. Does that mean it will delaminate? Can this be fixed or replace the whole wall? Otherwise it is a good price for a beautiful coach. Also looking at another 2005 Alfa that does not show signs of blisters. Is it possible it can develop later? Mfg. 09/2004.

    1. nb1996, If delamination has started it will mostly worsen. It’s a very expensive proposition to repair properly. Unless you’re getting one heck of a good deal and don’t mind the looks I’d stay away from it. As to one not blistering at this time, there’s no way to tell what the future will hold.

      1. That’s not what I wanted to hear…..but what I expected. 🙁 Thanks. We will probably veer away from the bells and whistles and buy the less expensive coach and hope that it never blisters. From what I have read, Alfa is not the only one that has this problem, so will just have to take our chances.

        1. nb1996, True, it is a wide spread issue that pretty much leaves any brand that uses a laminated wall consisting of fiberglass, plywood, and styrofoam insulation susceptible. You’d think after +20 years they’d find a better method of construction.

  12. Hi, I have a 2002 Nomad fiberglass camper. We had a leak, wall & floor were damaged. We’ve replaced the floor & removed the interior wall panel. My question is, the wood that was glued to the styrofoam & fiberglass shell has separated & rotted. What is the best way to fix this?

    1. Nadine, There is no best way to fix it. You could spend a ton of money only to have another spot separate leaving you with the same issue. Delamination is a wide spread issue in the RV world and really hurts resale value.

      1. I was afraid of that. My husband is an Upholsterer (boats, cars, etc) & has come up with a plan. I’ll let you know if it works. Thanks!

  13. Hello. I was reading your article and Im hoping you can help me out a bit with some information. I am
    re-siding my motor home and am trying to figure out the order in which things should be done.
    we have a 1994 travelcraft 36 ft
    the siding started to crack
    we have removed the inside panels and found no vertical support for the last 10 ft from the door to the windshield. it only had horizontal wood and foam glued to the outside wood .
    we have added steel framing around the windows and installed 2 vertical supports
    now it is time to replace the out side siding .my question is do I laminate the aluminum to the wood before we in stall it or put the wood on then then glue the siding on after. we have to tuck under the fiberglass roof and under the fiberglass front end. the bottom and the back is glued to the next pannel that did not need replacing .

    1. Lee, What ever works for you. Original laminated walls are pressed together under pressure as a single unit. Self designed repairs are a what ever works situation.

  14. We just bought a 82 Avion.. In pretty good shape but the wall covering is disgusting.. Can you tell me how to wash it properly without ruining or needing to replace it?

    1. mandajones76, This is only a guess because I don’t know if the wall covering is vinyl coated. I’d try something like 409 but try a small spot first to make sure it doesn’t damage the the wall covering. Odds are with an RV that old the wall covering has become discolored due to ultraviolet rays. If so, nothing is going to bring it back to new. Painting the interior may be your only choice to make it look decent.

      1. mandajones76, Interior of the RV, same as interior on a house. I always go for Latex. Easy clean up. It the wall surface is vinyl coated it may take a couple coats to get good coverage.

  15. I have a bran new jayco jayflight travel trailer that I have only used once this past 4th of july weekend. we noticed that the right side of the RV tha panel had spots were it was lifting up on different areas. I took back to the dealer and was told that the whole right side of the RV needs to be replaced but will need to remove the windows and door to do the repairs. Does anyone know if the RV will loose value since it will go thru a major repair?

    1. Robert, Sadly your RV depreciated about 25% the moment you drove it off the lot. Pretty much normal in the RV world. That said, if the factory replaces the complete side wall they have the tools, knowledge, and expertise to do it properly which should have minimal effect on the value. I had a new 1992 Winnebago that went through the same process. As it turned out I traded it in damaged and was given a value of a non-damaged unit as the factory authorized the repair.

  16. we are first time travel trailer owners. we bought a used 06 outback. after about a year i noticed that a side wall was starting to pull away at the corner seam. it was small but i was afraid water would get in. so i tried silicone, it popped back up, i tried glues and epoxys, every time we moved it, the wall would pop back up. we just took a trip out of state for a week. got almost all the way back home, driving down the interstate and the fiberglass layer of that wall peeled right off the camper. i can now see the wood underneath. we covered it with a tarp and duct tape to get it home with no further damage and i was trying to look up how it would be repaired when i came across this article. now i’m wondering if the camper is pretty much totaled.

    1. Nicole, Sadly such damage isn’t something you can do a quick seal or easy patch on. It’s going to take some serious and extensive repair to make it right and more often than not the cost of having major structural repair done is going to exceed the value of the trailer. Time to take it to an RV dealer to have the damage assessed then talk to your insurance representative.

  17. Brand new 2015 5th wheel, back of unit is wavy looking and bouncy when you press on it. Is this delam? Rear ladder was bent in transport so wondering if vacuum seal was broken. Of course dealer says its normal but this is not my first travel trailer so I’m alittle more skeptical.

    1. Delamination is when the outer skin separates from the plywood underneath it. It looks like a bubble in the fiberglass. Yes you can push on it and you will feel that it is a bubble. Even a small one will get worse, there is nothing normal about it. It is either water damage or a manufacturing defect

      1. So I need to pursue back wall being replaced under warranty? It’s the whole back wall, like anywhere you push on it, it gives. (The dealer bent ladder, and noted my complaint about back wall at that time but down played it)

        1. I cannot make judgement without seeing it myself. But I would take it to another independent dealer and get an opinion of what you are suspecting. Then armed with that information go back to the original dealer and press harder about warranty. Of course the dealer will poo poo it, it will be an expense and problem that he will have to deal with.

  18. I’m considering a Coachman Freelander Class C Motorhome with the new Azdel inner layer that replaces luan. What have you heard or learned if anything about this new construction, or that brand?

    1. Anything that replaces luan is a major step in the right direction. is a major step. Luan is the cause of delamination because it can’t hold up to moisture

  19. We just bought a 98 Dutchmen Aerolite wholesale. It was known to have some leak issues so we were prepapred. Sort of. I have taken the floor up, including the foam insulation layer. There was some serious pulling away from the bottom outside shell but there is still wood glued to the shell itself. There are also a few holes in the shell. Anything that I can do to seal the shell before I install new floor? I have been told that roofing underlayment would be good to seal the bottom and create a waterproof barrier.

    1. The wood that is still attached to the fiberglass is the outer layer of the plywood on the walls. That is why they call it delamination because the plywood disintegrates. Repairing it so that it looks good and doesn’t leak further can be a losing situation. Delamination ruins the value of an RV so I hope you got it very cheap. I cannot recommend any particular way to repair it because success is difficult so try whatever you think will work

      1. Not walls just floor. The walls have been intact. Except in the bathroom where the leak was located. Previous owners repaired leak and covered the floor but didn’t actually replace the floor. We got it at a steal but this is my first travel trailer and the amount of work seems staggering. Looking to rebuild 2×4 floor joists and expand support system for the floor. Just looking for any help or support in this somewhat frightening and overwhelming project

        1. Sorry for the misunderstanding okay we are talking the floor. I’m thinking since you said there is foam insulation that may be expanding spray foam might be a good way to seal it. I don’t know how large of a area you are talking about and without seeing it I am only guessing but spray cans of expanding insulation sound like an easy way to seal it up. Just a thought, you might get an opinion from others you know that can come in size up the situation better than I can.

          1. I have asked a few different people, some that actually do rv repair (I live near Shipshewana Indiana so there are multiple options for questioning lol) and the best response was the roofing asphalt underlayment due to high waterproof ability and to be able to screw the shell to floor joists from the bottom and maintain the integrity of waterproofing. I attached some pics in another reply.

          2. Sounds like you have reasonably good sources of information. I’m sure they know as much as I do and they have seen the damage.

          3. Ok thank you. Just wanting to be check with multiple sources to be sure I’m doing it correctly. Don’t want to be in same position when next season starts.

  20. Hey Curtis, Just finished reading your article about delamination. I’ve attached a photo of an RV we are looking to buy. Owner says the cracking is cosmetiic but we are hoping you could look at the picture and tell us if thiis is delamination. Thanks! Kevin and Claudia

    1. I cannot see what you are referring to in the picture. Granted I am looking at it on my smartphone. Delamination is when the fiberglass layer pulls away from the rest of the underlayment and creates a bubble or soft spot. It always gets worse. If you have slight cracking in the gel coat that you are referring to it is generally cosmetic. But then cosmetic imperfection will affect resale value. That is the best I can advise you without seeing it in person. I would hate to steer you the wrong way.

      1. Thanks for getting back to us so quickly! We were referring to the crazing or cracking in the gel coat. Is it possible, or probable, that the cracks will migrate through the fiberglass membrane ultimatlely resulting in leaks that would cause delamination? Can, and should, these cracks in the fiberglass be repaired?

        1. From what you say it will likely only remain cosmetic. If you are getting a good price consideration ,because Cosmetics will affect resale, a good deal is a good deal. Personally I would not do anything to correct this. The price of repair would likely be high.

  21. We’ve got buckling on front cap near roof (just above the ‘X’ in Apex. What causes this? Expensive to repair?

    1. Buckling on the front cap would be the result of wind resistance going down the highway. The cap is apparently not made of sufficiently strong enough material to withstand oncoming air pressure. The repair would be replace the cap and yes I am sure it would be expensive.

  22. Hi Curtis.

    We recently bought a hybrid camper (pictured below). It appears to have a bad case of delamination along the side. My question is… in your opinion, is it worth fixing? We spent about $6000 on it, so we can’t just throw it away. I am looking at an epoxy system to essentially glue it back together.

    1. I’m not in a position to determine value of any particular RV. With extensive delamination any notion of hiring the work done is probably not economically feasible. That said if you have some ideas to improve the situation on your own that is your call to make. Most likely it is a cosmetic issue and not a structural issue so the biggest hit will be in your wallet because resale value will be greatly diminished when delamination is present.

    2. I did parts of mine with expanding foam. Some of the results were great – very solid, like new. In other places I couldn’t clamp properly and the bubbles remained, now firm at least. If I had it to do over again I’d just drill 1/4″ holes all the way through the wall and clamp using bolts and boards. You might want some holes anyway to ensure glue coverage. It’s easy to hide and seal a few little holes but ripples are impossible to hide. So, drill your holes. Fill glue from the edges. Fill glue from the holes. Put bolts through it and let it cure. Remove the bolts. Seal the holes with epoxy – clear surfboard epoxy worked for me and still hasn’t yellowed after three years.

  23. Hi, I went to trade my 2008 cougar 5th wheel in and was told the back wall had the delamination. I had no idea. Of course as you say, they don’t even want to give me what I owe on it. I did have an extended warranty , not sure if that will help cover any of this or not. I just don’t know what to do! Any advice, please? How do I fix it,? Thanks Pam in VA

    1. Sorry I don’t have any good news for you. All new RV’s depreciate 20 – 30% as soon as they are driven off the lot. Of course delamination makes depreciation horrendous. If you have a long-term loan you will be upside down Forever on it. There is no cost effective repair for delamination and I am doubtful that extended coverage insurance will help you either. Generally insurance will only cover mechanical issues not cosmetic issues but it is worth pursuing. The best suggestion would be to try and sell it yourself instead of trading it in. Trading it in is the worst possible scenario for recouping any real amount of your investment.

  24. I was considering buying a Coachman Pursuit and was told by the salesman that this is a good unit as it will NEVER delaminate. So my question is, is that true. Are there center motorhomes that are constructed to never delaminate?

    1. Never is a bold statement. Does it come with an air tight warranty? Not likely. Delamination is caused by water inflation. If the sidewalls are constructed of fiberglass, Luan plywood and styrofoam if water gets in the plywood will delaminate

  25. Good Morning
    I just discovered this interesting blog online and would like to ask a question: I bought a 2000 Coachmen Santara 311 with a bunk cabin that had extensive wood rot and water damage over the years. I completely stripped the cab down to the aluminum frame, rebuilt the wooden frame that had rotted beyond recognition and fabricated my pieces. I managed to get all the necessary materials (luan, filon, Stabond E 183 and T440C. My filon will will be delivered in two days. The only thing I could not figure out is what that card bord like underlayment for the fiberglass in the two rounding sections is i.e. where I can get that or what a good replacement would be?
    I took lots of pictures from demolition to rebuild btw. that I could upload here if interested…

  26. Hi
    I bought a 1994 Tiago as part of my bucket list (chemo and no chance of healing), and I am on my first trip and woke up to heavy rain and buckling walls just behind my head on the very back wall of the RV. I am so frustrated I am not in the best physical condition to climb on the RV especially not in the heavy rain.
    What can I do besides sealing all the roof seams again. What do I have to do to get the moisture out of the walls and will the bumps on the inside walls retracted after ? I really need help advise from somebody with experience. Can I seal it while raining. I have no place to put it under a roof 🙁
    It drives my nuts sitting in here and knowing that the rain pours into the structure somewhere and I can’t do anything.
    I put my last money on the line when I bought this RV. There is no https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/c53f2ed7b961d78854b43e0807b82d7b7689882d0c929d2185cea0cd55423ef6.jpg turning back for me.
    What to do so it will not develop mold inside? How can I get the wetness out of the wall and insulation.
    I am so frustrated , this was supposed to be the last “fun” I will have. Please anybody …!!

    1. I’m afraid I don’t have an easy fix for your problem. I see there is a window on that wall. It is the most likely source of the leak. if there is no sign of water infiltration above the window it is unlikely the water is coming in at roof level. Unfortunately to fix the problem correctly you would need to open up the wall and remove any soggy insulation and saturated wall paneling. The first step should be to stop the water from coming in by resealing the window. Some will say the only way to do it correctly is to remove the window, frame and all, and redo the sealant under the frame. Being you have limited strength and likely abilities I would recommend sealing around the whole frame with a good bead of silicone sealer such as you what can be applied with a caulking gun. All easily available at Walmart or Home Depot for around $10 or so, gun included. Once you have the water stopped you can assess what should be done inside. At best you could cut the wall paneling a few inches above the water damage and remove anything that is wet. Allow plenty of time and warm weather to dry out the framing, you can assist the drying process with fans positioned to blow directly on the damp area for a few days. Once everything is dry install new insulation and panel over the damaged area with a new section of paneling. Don’t get too aggressive in your deconstruction, only remove what is wet. Remember your rig is 23 yrs old, it only has to look good enough to suit you. Perfect may not be attainable. I hope you are able to get your bucket list back on track and enjoy your travels.

      1. Hi Curtis , thank you for your quick answer. I looked at it and it does not seem that it is the window BUT what I noticed was that the former owners must have replaced the back ladder and did not seal the new screws where they enter into the back wall. There were huge gabs and holes from the former screws 🙁 so applied that RV sealant to close those and I ordered eternabond tape which is highly praised on amazon in reviews. Just in case this was not it and I have to go back up on the roof to find the cause somewhere else. Thinking about using this tape on all seams along the roof anyways , just as a precaution . It really stresses me out until I have all done on the roof and can see with the next rain if I got it solved or not.

        1. Eternabond tape is an excellent choice. Be sure the area is clean and dry or it won’t stick. I have used it many times.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recent Posts