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Prevalent RV Roof Problems

At RV-Fixes, we witness trends in the RV industry, especially regarding roofs. Two major issues in the last few years keep showing up, and many RV owners are demoralized by the answers they receive from dealers or service centers.

Bad rubber roofs

The first big issue is a poor batch of rubber roofs. A few years ago, a well-known rubber roof manufacturer had a batch that did not cure correctly. Rubber roofs on RVs are half white or tan, and the lower half is black. The issue was with the upper white or tan side. We have seen both colors. There is very little regulation or government oversight in the RV industry, so there is no means to ensure these manufacturers’ problem recalls or notify owners. There have been small comments here and there on RV forums and articles; however, no owners were approached to inform them that they could have the roof issue.

Anyone who has bought an RV built in the last two years ought to take a moment to examine the membrane. The membranes affected can be sticky, soft, and sometimes powdery. It can smear or leave footprints if you walk across or get in contact. In the initial couple of cases we saw, it was believed that a powerful cleaner was used, which caused it to soften the material. However, a few RVers began to doubt the roofs. The roofs were finally discovered to be defective. They were aware that the roof manufacturer had distributed to repair centers and manufacturers many pieces of roof material that didn’t cure properly. If you discover you have some of them, you must report it right away to your manufacturer. Make sure you get the money you’re due for a defective product. Membrane roofs generally come with a 10-year warranty for the roof material and state that they are free from defects. In the past, these manufacturers have been exempt from warranty claims as most roof claims are based on caulking joints breaking, but they have stated that they will only warrant the membrane. This is the time to check the condition of your roof and hold the accountable people accountable for the work. There are many locations where we’ve seen clients receive payments ranging from $600-$1500 for a roof replacement. Payments are from either the RV brand or roofing company. Roofs that are damaged are found on various brands and styles of RVs because their roof material can be described as the industry norm for roofing. We recommend that all owners check the roofs of their RVs and replace them as quickly as possible.

Bubbled Roof

The other issue is mostly with travel trailers or 5th wheels. The next time you drive down an interstate, look at the approaching 5th wheel or travel trailers. You’ll often notice that the 5th wheels in the rear of the roof appear like a large bubble. The wind is blowing in either of two directions. One possibility is that you have the possibility of a tear or an area in the front of your strip that’s not being glued properly. The RV construction explosion shows an increase in the RV quality, and factories aren’t always using enough glue on RV roofs. When the air is in, the roof begins to expand and expand. In the first few instances, it is when the roof will then be flat. One good sign of this occurring while driving on the road is that you can see wrinkles appearing on the front of the membrane and a tear around the air cooling. The part that is ballooned up eventually connects close to the AC and then stretches against it until it tears around the base.

Inspection of the front seal will not always identify a problem as the other cause is air entering through the hitch, up to the end cap, and then under the front strip of joint. We’ve seen people who could stop the ballooning by sealing the cracks in the end cap, under the hitch region, and within the hitch. Again, unless you examine your roof periodically from time to time and you aren’t aware of this until it breaks and tears away and flaps in the wind. One of our customers told us that he saw his shadow while driving along a narrow mountain route. He told us it took him about a minute to determine why the form he noticed was not the one he was expecting to see.

We hope that these two roof inspection suggestions will avoid the possibility of a roof malfunction while camping. It’s always best to fix it at home, so your camping trip will be one of the great memories, not the waiting rooms at a service center.

Contact us with any questions or would like to request an estimate by ArmorThane; click here.

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RV Hail Damage – What To Do, Who To Call

Many areas in the US are prone to hail storms all throughout the year. In Missouri we are prone to some of the most severe hail storms across the nation. That means your beloved RV could be struck by an infamous hail storm at any time while driving along the highway until it is safely in the backyard. If you don’t plan to leave your vehicle in your garage throughout the year, Missouri RV owners are likely to be hit by hail at any time.

Tips To Avoid Hail Damage

Although we recognize that the nature of RV-ing frequently isn’t a good fit for this kind of preventive measure however, we’ve provided three useful suggestions to follow when you are in the middle of a hailstorm or when one is nearing your town or city.

1. Check the Weather Forecast

It’s a simple, but essential idea! One of the most simple actions you can take is to look up the weather forecast for hail storms that are in your current location or the area you are travelling to. If you are concerned about the possibility of hail, perhaps you should delay your travel plans. If you’re close to or in your home, make sure you put your RV in your garage or under your carport.

2. If you’re driving, locate a covered Area immediately

If you’re trapped in a hail storm on the road or in the RV parks, you should try to locate shelter as fast as you can. We recommend that you stop at an open parking garage, gasoline station, beneath a tree that is fully grown. In the event that none are accessible then park your RV close to a structure as you can. This will give you some shade.

3. Make sure you have an RV cover in the event that you are unable to access Shelter

If you reside in an area that is prone to hail, it may be worthwhile to invest in a protective cover to protect your vehicle. Although this won’t stop every hail-related dent or ding from happening, the cover can help minimize the amount of damage. In addition, they can be excellent in protecting your RV from weather conditions like intense rain, harsh sunlight and powerful wind.

What Should You Do When Your RV is struck by hail

The extent and size of the actual hail particles and the extent of damage they cause to your vehicle could vary from small cracks and scratches to massive golf ball-sized scratches. On the outside hail damage to cars may appear like the damage on an RV. The majority of cars can be repaired by a procedure called paintless dent repairs, but hail dent removal is different for RVs. This is due to the fact that RVs comprise a majority from aluminum, fiberglass as well as wood sheathing. This means that the repair of damage caused by hail to your RV is more expensive and time-consuming than fixing a typical vehicle.

In addition to damaging the windows and windshields of your RV and body hailstones, body hailstones may cause damage to the following:

How do I know when I’m in need of Hail Damage Repair?

Other than obvious dents on your RV’s bodywork , or cracked windows, here are couple of other indicators that your RV is in need of repairs following a hail weather event:

  1. Damage is caused to vent and AC unit lids. The impact of hail can damage your air conditioners, or vent lids. If not repaired properly it could result in an increase in moisture in your motorhome, which could result in further damage later on.
  2. There are tiny bubbles or spots in the membrane made of rubber. The small amount of bubbles and tiny pots following a hailstorm could be a sign that the membrane is not firmly attached to the underlayment in specific regions. If it is not repaired sooner rather than later this can expose your RV to further damage.
  3. There may be mild to large spider cracks, or bruises to the gel coat Your RV’s fiberglass may also be affected by spider web cracks and bruises that allow moisture to enter the RV. If water is allowed to penetrate the surface, it could result in roofs sagging and delamination.

A few of these fixes like a vent repair could seem straightforward enough to repair by yourself, but they can turn out to be quite complex. For instance air vents are electrical components. If they’re not sealed correctly it could result in water damage afterward. This is why it’s recommended to leave hail damage to experts.

What is the cost of hail damage to my vehicle?

As we have mentioned in one of our earlier blog posts, the cost to repair sheets of sheet steel on RVs is about $9.50 or $13.50 for each square foot. Due to this cost it’s commonplace for RV owners to leave small hail damage, particularly if the damage is cosmetic. While some RV damages may appear minor, it’s best to repair it right as soon as possible.

Minor cosmetic flaws do not just reduce your RV’s selling value, but they could result in more expensive damages in the future. Did you know that the majority of RVs sold after minor hail damage are offered for between 25 and 40 percent of the initial price in Missouri? In addition should you suffer more damages from hailstorms to come, your insurance provider may not be able to cover the repair, because they may refuse to cover your claim due to previous damage.

Repair Your RV Hail Damage Today

If you’ve experienced hail damage to your RV, please be sure to give Elite Dent Company of Springfield MO a call. Elite Dent are the go to professional paintless dent removal company in the midwest that will have your vehicle looking as new, and get you back in the road in very little time in any way. 

Are you experiencing hail damage to your vehicle? Visit this link to make an appointment to repair it. As the industry’s top choice Coach Specialists is here to assist you with your repair requirements for your RV. Contact us today or complete our contact form below.

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Types Of Polyurea RV Roofing Materials

After How Much?, the most frequently asked question is “What makes Polyurea different?”

Many products that are used on RVs were originally intended for other purposes, such as truck beds or industrial roofing. It is important to understand the differences between Poyurea, and other coating materials.

Pure Polyurea

There are two types of polyureas: pure and hybrid. Two drums make up a pure polyurea. The two chemicals will form a new product once they are combined. Pure polyureas can also be made depending on their formula. The formula for RV Roofing was designed to be strong, flexible, and bondable enough to be used on rvs as well as other substrates. Pure polyureas can be used in any weather conditions without affecting the final product. Because of their chemical makeup, pure polyureas can form stronger bonds than hybrids to most substrates. Because the two chemicals combine to create a new product ArmorLinerr, is not affected by humidity or residues on substrates. The more expensive pure polyureas have a slower UV decay rate and are also more expensive. They can be left in the sun for up to 20 years before they start to age.

Hybrid polyurea

A hybrid polyurea also comes in A and B drums. Drums contain a formula and a catalyst. The catalyst side activates the chemical side. It is similar to epoxy. The poly side is formed by this chemical reaction. Because it’s a catalyst reaction, hybrids have different physical properties than pure polyureas. Hybrids have lower flexibility and tear strength. The curing of hybrid polyureas can be affected by low temperatures, humidity, and oils. Hybrid polyureas cannot chemically adhere to surfaces that are not smooth or pitted. Within five years, hybrids will begin to show UV signs.

You can find more information about pure and hybrid and comparison at ArmorThane.

Polyureas come in different forms

Polyureas do not have the same type of material as Liquid Rubber Roof and similar polymers. It is similar to comparing ArmorLiner, or any other polyurea, to these polymers. Although they can be used in the same way, each has its own strengths and weaknesses. Polymer roof coatings have many uses and formulas and vary greatly from company to company as to what they do, and how they are applied as well as how they will give you many more hours of research.

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What’s It Cost To Reseal An RV Roof?

You’ve had your RV for many years now. It keeps you warm, dry, and safe year after year on each trip you take. You’re now giving your roof the bad eye, knowing that it is time to give up several months’ pay to give it some TLC, or perhaps it is time to reseal the RV roof.

So, what is the cost of resealing your RV roof?

It depends on what type of roof you have, and how much damage your roof has sustained. Here are the average costs per square foot:

Rubber roof45 cents per square foot
Fiberglass roof18 cents per square foot
Metal Roof21 Cents per Square Foot

You should consider the cost of roof coatings as well as the costs of roof cleaning chemicals and supplies that will be required to prepare the roof for the new coating.

What is the Difference between Sealants and Coatings?

Your RV roof will eventually need to be replaced, just like a house. It may be worth considering re-coating your entire roof if your RV is more than 9 years old. Coatings can be used to cover the entire roof. You will need to choose the right coating for your RV’s roof, depending on whether it is made of rubber, fiberglass or metal.

Before applying any sealants or coatings, thoroughly clean the roof. You can find many roof coatings online. Heng’s Rubber Roof Coating was the best. Two coats of rubber roof coating are recommended. The first coat should be completely dry before applying the second.

Only one coat is required if you are using a silicone roof coating. Acrylic and urethane types require two coats plus a primer.

You can use an RV roof sealant to “coat” your roof. Many are used to seal cracks and areas on the roof that have leaks. Sealants can be liquid, tape, caulk, or both. Sealants work by sealing holes in the RV roof, around vents, and gaps between windows, as well as cracks at the a/c unit. To ensure that sealant adheres properly, clean the area where it will be applied.

A caulk gun can be used with the appropriate roof caulk to seal cracks. Sealant tape such as EternaBond is another useful product. It requires very little preparation. It is available in a variety of lengths and widths. It also protects against the elements well.

It is common to use the terms coatings and sealants interchangeably. You can find the right coating or sealant to protect your RV.

Re-roofing or coating your roof

The process of coating an RV roof should take less than one day. Wash the RV roof first with a suitable cleaner. The roof should then dry completely. Rubber roofs can be cleaned with a cleaner/activator. Many are available on Amazon.com. The cleaner/activator can be used to open pores in the EPDM membrane over several hours. This allows the coatings to bond with the roofing.

It’s a good idea for RV owners to tape the edges using a quality painter’s tape to prevent any coating from sticking to the sides.

Use a medium-nap roll to apply the first coat. Let dry completely. Drying time can vary depending on temperature and humidity. Allow the second coat to dry for 3-4 hours before it is time to apply the roof coating. To ensure that the roof coating is fully dry, do not allow the RV to be used for at least 24 hours.

Clean and dry the roof area where the sealant will be applied. There are many options for RV roof cleaners. A mixture of Tide and warm water works well. Dawn dish soap is useful for many cleaning tasks but can leave a film on your roof that could prevent sealant adhering.

Check the RV roof under good lighting. You want to find potential leaks and seal them before any damage can occur.

You will only need to remove old sealant from cracks in the roof if it is separating or loose. Remove a rubber roof carefully to avoid damaging the material. The sealant can be removed with a putty knife, or a flat, wide blade. A heat gun and a putty knife are helpful in removing an aluminum roof.

Use a cloth to clean the area and then use denatured alcohol. Seal the RV roof with the appropriate sealant. If necessary, apply additional sealant.

Regular inspection of seams on your RV’s exterior is a good idea. You can find sealants that are compatible with the RV’s roof and surface in the RV Owner’s Manual.

How to Find a Roof Leak

A roof leak will not happen to everyone. There will be those who experience a roof leakage. It’s best to learn how to prevent them from happening, and/or where they are coming from if your RV does leak. In many areas of our lives, we can all agree with Ben Franklin’s statement that “an ounce of prevention is worth a thousand cures”. Leaks are not a topic that is fun, so it is worth your time to keep an eye on them.

A professional can perform a pressure test inside the RV to find external leaks. This is the best way to identify if there is a roof leak. Air will be forced out of your RV’s crevices and cracks if you create more pressure inside than outside. A professional can inspect the RV’s exterior with soapy water to find any potential leaks.

Leakage can be caused by several items, such as a damaged compression seal, urethane or silicone sealant, or a butyl tap used as a filler. You should inspect these items periodically for missing or lose gaskets, cracks or crevices as well as gaps at windows and loose sealant. You can save a lot of money and headaches by being proactive.

You can prevent roof leaks by having a plan for maintaining, restoring, or resealing your roof as necessary.

Is it time to replace my roof?

Rubber TPO roofs should not show signs of tearing or bubbling. You may consider replacing your roof if you notice multiple areas that are showing signs of wear or if the damage is so severe that it is threatening the entire roof.

You will need to take down the awning and other roof-attached items in order to replace the roof. You will need to remove the entire roof membrane and replace any plywood that is damaged underneath. The roof membrane can then be replaced and all roof items (vents, AC units, antenna, etc.) are put back in place. The RV’s sides and roof edges must be sealed properly.

This is a major undertaking that should be handled by an RV technician.

Polyurea Roof Coating

This is a cool product that will keep your RV roof dry and clean for many years.

Spray on rubber bed liners are also installed by the same companies as pick-up trucks. They also use the same product to replace an RV roof. This coating was applied to my pick-up truck and it never got punctured. It lasted for many years despite being thrown concrete, concrete, and even rebar. This is the product that I will use to replace my RV roof.

This type of roof coating is called polyurea roof coating. It is easy to maintain, seamless, puncture-resistant, and will not crack, sun-rot, or deteriorate. Roof coatings do not require inspection, re-sealing or conditioning. It often comes with a 20-year guarantee.

Here is the website for ArmorThane , which is a company that has a multitude of bedliner applicators throughout the world. You might be able to find one near you that does this.

Conclusion

When it comes time to replace your RV roof or reseal it, you can choose which option suits you best. While some people will save money by doing it themselves, others will hire professionals to do the job properly.

Whatever your choice, we hope that this article will help you find the right way!

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Fix Your RV Roof For The Last Time With ArmorThane

ArmorThane has changed the RV industry with its spray polyurea technology that creates seamless sprayed RV roofs. Your RV will be watertight without any additional caulking. If you are in the Callahan Florida area, give Final Touch RV a call to find out how ArmorThane can protect your RV. Or if you would like to learn about how you can become a certified ArmorThane applicator yourself, visit or call ArmorThane today!

Best Value

This is the best product available for the best price. ArmorThane’s spray-on roof coating will protect your RV for a lifetime. You don’t need to worry about roof repairs. Get the best quality product for your dollar.

Certified Workmanship

Final Touch RV has been certified by Armorthane to apply state-of-the-art polyurea coatings. Their professionals have received training and can offer a 100% guarantee for all work and product applications.

No Leak Guarantee

ArmorThane is the industry leader in polyurea coatings. Their coatings permanently seal cracks, creating a waterproof coating that will last a lifetime for your RV roof. No need to caulk! Call Final Touch RV Callahan, FL today for a reservation!
Many RV owners search online for solutions to their leaking rubber or fiberglass roofs. Most RV roof materials, such as rubber and sheet plastics need to be renewed every two years for their durability. Leakages in roofs can occur from wear and tear, weather damage, and trees overhanging.
ArmorThane, the industry leader, has the solution you are looking for ongoing roof repairs. The 100% spray-on polyurea protective coating forms a barrier against water seepage and deterioration.

The Process

The RV’s roof must be removed to reveal the plywood roof. Any adhesives are also removed from the wood and sanded. Then, all seams are repaired and any large gaps filled.
After all surfaces have been properly sanded and prepped, they are then masked and primed with special primers. Finally, ArmorThane is sprayed on the entire area. The new coating of polyurea forms a tight, flexible seal around any protrusions, holes, or bolts. It prevents water loss and UV sun deterioration and gives a beautiful, aluminum-like appearance.
Final Touch RV offers an array of custom colors for RV owners who want a more unique appearance.
Call Final Touch RV Callahan, Florida to make an appointment for your last roof or call ArmorThane to learn how you can become an authorized applicator.

BECOME AN APPLICATOR TODAY!

Why should I get an ArmorThane Roof?

Professionally controlled application

ArmorThane roofs can be applied indoors using a spray-on method by the certified technicians at Final Touch RV, Callahan, Florida.

Permanently Eliminate Leaks

Final Touch RV professionals apply ArmorThane, a polyurea coating, to your RV roof. You can travel with confidence knowing that there will be no leaks.

Strong, flexible and durable

The thickness of the ArmorThane coating is 1/4″ This durable, waterproof, and full-coverage spray-on roofing material will be your last roof. You are guaranteed!

Quick Turnaround

ArmorThane polyurea cure time is approximately 15 seconds. It fully cures in a matter of hours and not days thanks to its fast processing. In no time, you’ll be back on the road!

Are you ready to stop repairing your RV roof forever?

MAKE AN APPOINTMENT TODAY!

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RV Roof Replacement Using ArmorThane On A Weekend Warrior Fifth Wheel

Water and Rot can cause unsalvagable damage. At times an RV roof replacement is the only fix. An RV owner gets creative and uses ArmorThane to do just that!

Ever wonder what it looks like when you tear off the roof of an RV? 

Hopefully, you never have to know. If you do, it means you presumably had water damage, possible damage from falling tree limbs, or other maintenance concerns. RV roof replacement can be one of the most daunting projects to tackle, especially considering the level of labor and expense. It is more common than we would like to acknowledge, given that most RV roofs are not produced with longevity in mind. Water will ultimately find its way in. Sometimes it doesn’t even matter how diligent you are with your maintenance schedule.

ArmorThane RV Roof Replacement

Most RV owners choose to seal or partially repair their RV roof and avoid having to replace it at all costs fully. An avid reader of our blog, onearmyrver decided to go all in and tear off the roof of his 2006 37′ Weekend Warrior 5th Wheel and do a full RV roof replacement after finding significant water and rot destruction. After tearing off the roof, he moved on to remove all the low-quality insulation after the grueling process of ripping off the roof. Not surprisingly, only around 50% of the roof was insulated. We assume the factory never anticipated an owner would tear off the roof to see the shoddy work.

This is when the RV roof replacement got interesting. Once down to the bare structure, both spray and traditional insulation were installed where needed. Then, plywood was installed over the roof construction, which added supplementary weight (the repair increased the RV by 380lbs). Lastly, ArmorThane was used to coat the roof instead of the typical rubber roof material in an interesting twist. Though unorthodox, the premise is a great one. ArmorThane is a rugged weather-resistant material that seals permanently, locking out dust, dirt, and most importantly, water.

When you consider the cost of the typical 2006 fifth wheel, you can see why most folks decide not to do RV roof replacement as it is, cost-effective. The cost for a more conventional rubber roof does vary, but in this case, it would have run more than $5,000. The ArmorThane coating, which ran from the back of the fifth wheel to the front end and over the front, only cost $3,500. Also, the roof should last for many years without any problems as long as the vents/AC unit is correctly sealed and maintained.

Have you done an RV roof replacement? Would you consider ArmorThane bedliner material as an option? Please share in the comments below.

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