Your RV's roof is a very important, yet often neglected component. We depend on roofs to keep us dry and comfortable. This one component is often neglected and can lead to major damages leading to costly repairs. Your roof and sealant should be checked regularly, at least every 90 days, as suggested by manufacturers. Below we will walk you through what to check and how to care for your roof and sealant.
Maintaining the Roof on your RV
TABLE OF CONTENTS
- Maintaining the Roof on your RV
Step 1: Rubber Roof or Fiberglass
- Regardless of the type of roof you have, it requires you to check the sealant and condition of the roof.
- A fiberglass roof will be smooth or rough to the touch depending on the method of the manufacture. It will however be a hard shell-like surface.
- Rubber roofs will have a hard backing beneath them, but the top will have a rubber or vinyl like feel to it. It won’t always be as elastic as you think.
- If you are unsure of your type of roof, consult the dealer or reach out to the manufacturer with a VIN and they can provide the information.
Step 2: Cleaning your roof and sealant
- You should clean your roof and sealant once a year at the least. It is suggested 2-3 times a year if in dirtier conditions.
- Fiberglass roofs and sealant can be cleaned with regular RV wash or a mild detergent like dishwashing liquid.
Rubber Roofs should be cleaned with Rubber Roof Cleaner and treated with UV Treatment. In warmer areas or long lengths of sun exposure, the roof should be cleaned and treated twice a year.
Step 3: Checking your roof for damages
- Every time you take your unit on the road it is prone to damage from low-lying trees, light poles, etc. After every trip, you should inspect your roof for scrapes that could have made openings in the roof.
- If you find a hole, you should take pictures of it for documentation for the repair facility and for insurance claim. You should then cover the hole with duct tape, sealant, or any possible method to prevent any water from entering
- Insurance companies generally do not cover water damage if a hole occurs and there was no attempt in covering it or preventing further damage.
Step 4: Knowing what type of sealant to use
- Consult your owner’s manual, the manufacturer, or the dealer to determine what type of sealant to use on your roof. There are many options and only certain ones will work for your roof material.
Step 5: Checking sealant every 90 days
- Sealant is the #1 defense to keep water from entering your unit and causing costly damage.
- You should check your roof every 90 days at the least to ensure there is no separation, cracking, peeling, or openings. Manufacturers do not cover sealant after the first 90 days of purchase, it is considered a customer maintenance item.
- The sealant should be cleaned with a mild detergent and allowed to dry before applying any new sealant.
- If you see small spots that open on your sealant you can simply put a dot that covers it. If you see where the entire area of sealant is cracked or pealing up you should seal the entire area as if you were icing a cake.
- Any areas that look like they will open soon or if you can tell where a screw is beneath the sealant you should cover that area as preventative maintenance.
- The side rails that hold down the edges of the rubber to the walls of your roof also have sealant and should be cleaned and checked as well.
- If you have sealed an area multiple times and has become very piled on, you can remove the old sealant with a scraper, clean the area and apply new sealant.
If your RV is stored uncovered, the frequency of how often you check should be every 30-60 days.
This content is not a legal standard or regulation, and does not create any new legal obligation. It is advisory in nature, informational in content, and is intended to assist and educate consumers in the use and enjoyment of their recreational vehicles. Great American RV Superstores does not hereby make any warranty, express or implied, and does not assume any liability with respect to the use of, or damages resulting from the use of any information, method or process included in this content.