It's been a long week of roof repair

There's nothing like using a wire brush on an aluminum roof to get all the old paint of caulk off to bring out all kinds of hidden damage.

I knew going into this repair that once I started, I'd find all kind of surprises.  I've scoured the hi-lo camper forum for pictures and details of other people's renovations so I'd be as prepared as I could be.  I knew the camper roof had small holes in the aluminum.  That wasn't a surprise.  The surprise was the amount, and the size of some of them.

First step was using the wire brush thing on the drill to get all the old paint off.  Once we had the sides at the top done, I used a patching compound to fill in the holes.  3 coats to get it to where it was even, and I felt wasn't going to shrink/expand to leave spaces.  I used the same brand that the roof sealer I bought was.  It was basically like painting on silicone caulk.  My kids said it looked like frosting :)

Then on to the roof.  There were a lot more holes than I was expecting.  It was also really hard to get the old caulk the previous owner had put on to repair and seal damage before.  I was "planning' on a day to get this done.  It took 5.  Not that we spend every hour, but with life, rain, and our arms just getting tired holding the drill, it took much longer than I expected.

First collage shows all the damage.  The rusty thing?  That's the hole for the emergency escape.  There's a little bit of water damage to the roof about 2 inches around the whole hole.  Not falling apart damage, but a bit of separation. I'm guessing it's had a small seeping leak for quite some time.  The roof/ceiling has 4 layers - aluminum outside, 1/8" plywood, 1" styrofoam insulation, and then another 1/8" plywood for the inside ceiling (the walls I believe are the same)  I will put some liquid nails between all the layers, and then clamp them together to dry, and call it good.

Second collage is the roof top cleaned off, and all the holes and cracks sealed.  The picture in the upper left is the first section all cleaned off and ready for the sealer patch stuff.  The rest are after it's all been cleaned and has the patching compound on. See that line on the picture in the upper right where it doesn't have it?  I missed that until I was priming the whole thing.  And by then it was too late.  That part was NOT leaking before, so I'm hoping the sealer itself will be enough for it. 

And now - the grand finale.  It still needs one more coat.  The manufacturer says 2 is always required.  I just went to check it, and it's completely dry after 2 hours. Not even tacky "dry", but completely dry dry. But the instructions said to wait 24 hours between coats.  It may kill me to wait until tomorrow to do the 2nd coat.  But I will.  Then it goes up and we start on the inside!

Isn't she pretty???


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