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How to Repair Water Damage in an RV

Sep 18th 2015 at 1:28 PM

It’s quite frequently the case that by the time water damage in an RV has been located, there’s already quite a bit of damage within the wall/s. First off, you need to fix the leak. Then, you’ll need to do a patch up on the exterior. Now it’s time to proceed with the repair.

This job is not expensive. The boards for the framing part merely cost a dollar or thereabouts. The paneling can be had for around $14. The items are sold in a lumber yard.

You’ll also require some 3.5 inch screws to fasten the 2x2 framing together, plus some 1.5 inch screws for the 1x3 framing. And don’t forget the metal angle brackets which are ideal for any corners.

Cover over everything in the trailer prior to starting the work.

Begin by ripping out the wall or ceiling where the damage has occurred. All damage must be removed as it may carry mold spores. If any of the framework is rotten, use a jig saw to carefully cut it out. Care must be taken not to cut through to the exterior.

Once you’ve located the leak on the exterior and patched it over, you should leave it for a few weeks to months. If you still don’t know where the leak is, wait for the next rain storm and watch where the water enters.

It’s imperative to leave the siding and framework exposed. By doing so, you can ensure there are no more leaks and it will allow time for the framework and insulation to dry. If there’s a lot of water inside the walls, three months of warm weather is likely enough time. And do leave the windows open as frequently as you can to allow moisture to escape.

There are a couple of potential scenarios. One, the ceiling has a leak, and two, the wall is leaking.

For the ceiling, cut out the damaged wood, whilst leaving the remainder. Now, cut a new piece of wood to fit the area to be repaired. Allow a foot or so overlap so you have an area that can be attached.

For the wall area, the process is the same as for the ceiling, except where a corner must be repaired. In this case it’s good policy to use angle brackets to ensure a solid connection with the other wood supports.

Once everything is completely dry, it’s merely a case of replacing the paneling – either old, if it’s still in good condition, or new if need be - and all should be good to go.

If you require professional help with water damage in your RV, get in touch with Southwest RV, a specialist in all forms of RV repair.


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