By Dustin Simpson, California RV Specialists
Manufacturers recommend that you check your RV’s roof and body sealants every 90 days.
Resealing and caulking your RV helps to protect your investment and creates a watertight seal to protect your unit from outdoor elements.
Applying caulking around trim and windows helps to ensure that no outside elements get inside through the window frame or other gaps.
When there is no caulk to prevent blockage, dirt and dust enter the RV more freely. If moisture from condensation, rain or snow, or by washing your unit gets into the RV, it can damage the structure or cause dangerous mold and mildew. Water and mildew stains can appear on the carpet and on the walls. However, in most cases, it doesn’t show up right away, causing unnoticed dry rot to occur.
Caulking around certain joints creates a watertight seal that prevents water from the outside from seeping into the cracks and crevices of your RV. If water gets in, it can cause a lot of damage that can be extremely costly to repair and even total your unit.
Applying caulking can also help prevent hot or cold air from moving outside. If you don’t caulk the borders around doors, windows, and walls, cool or hot air will escape. As a result, your RV’s heating and cooling usage will increase to make up for the loss, causing energy costs to go up if you’re living in the unit full time.
At California RV Specialists, we offer a free exterior evaluation and inspection of the body and roof sealants. Get your unit inspected even if you’re not in our area. Ask your local shops if they do free inspections.
Tools you’ll need to reseal your RV
- Denatured alcohol – (Some states and towns do not sell this anymore at local hardware stores)
- Acrysol – Available in a spray can – (see online store)
- Cosmoline – (Not sold to the public)
*Use paper towels or old rags when cleaning.
- Plastic scraper
- Window glazing stick
- No-drip caulking gun
- Plastic razor blades
- Dicor cap sealant
- Boss sealant
- Geocel sealants
…or any RV sealants/RV silicone. Do NOT use Home Depot or Lowe’s silicone. There are hundreds of types of silicone. Make sure you use the right ones. When manufacturers say don’t use silicone, it’s because most people think of standard silicone or water-based silicone. You MUST use silicone and sealants made for RVs.
- Insert moldings screw cover
- Gutter spouts
- Clearance lights
Most manufacturers don’t seal everything, probably because it’s such a long process—especially when they advise you, as the owner, to check and seal as needed as part of maintenance.
Some manufacturers recommend every 30 days, others every 90 days. That number depends on use and weather conditions.
I really hope this information helps protect your investment.
- Ask Dave: What sealant should I use between coach and chassis?
- Replace or repair RV’s window glazing seals to prevent glass damage