Ask the RV tech: “I smell mold in my RV. What should I do?”

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RV Tech Corner
with Mark Gorrie

Dear Mark,
I opened one of the cabinets next to my bed in my travel trailer and smelled the unmistakable odor of mold. The cabinet was dry and clean. What would cause this? —Sandra Spaulding

Dear Sandra,
You most likely have a water intrusion issue due to failing seals. All seals on your RV should be inspected at least monthly. There are several places to inspect:

    • Roof: Around all vents, caps, rails, etc. Also inspect the roof for damage to the roof material.
    • Front cap/wall: Around any rails, marker lights, added attachments, etc.
    • Rear cap/wall: Around any rails, marker lights, added attachments such as backup cameras, etc.
    • Slideouts: Around windows, seals, extrusions.
    • Sidewalls: Around windows, rails and any attachments.

IN MOST CASES cracks in caulking material are easily remedied with a fresh bead of caulk. Tears in the roofing material can be repaired by using a product like Eternabond. Tears or damage to your rubber seals will require replacement of the seals.

As for your moldy smell, once you find and repair where the water is entering, drying out the area really well may resolve the smell. However, in some cases, black mold may form depending on how long it has been leaking. You may want to inspect the area after a few weeks of a good airing out. If you aren’t comfortable doing your own inspection, RV service centers and mobile repair services offer seal inspection services, and sometimes for free.

Another story on RV mold by RV technician Chris Dougherty.

Mark Gorrie has been an avid RVer since 2003 and owns RVForce LLC, a full-service mobile and shop-based RV repair facility based in Winter Haven, Florida. RVForce has a full team of certified technicians on staff to answer your RV questions. Email them to support@rvforce.com .

##RVT960

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Alex
1 month ago

Consider buying a dehumidifier to dry out your RV interior. Even though our 31 ft Class C is stowed covered, we’re amazed by several quarts of water it removes in 24 hours. We run it for one day each month when stored and a couple of days after we use it. No musty odors anymore. Even newer RVs on dealer lots acquire odors from humidity absorbed by upholstery, cushions and carpets. We found ours for $20 on Craigslist but new dehumidifiers can be had around $150.