Hi. I've discovered a small leak on one side of the roof vent and want to seal it asap. I understand there is debate on using Silicone caulking vs. non-silicone and wondering if anyone here has experience with what is best to use? My 89 Born Free has a rubber roof (light grey) so not sure if Silicone is the best to use? I want to avoid applying an ineffective caulk and then have to remove all that gunk before re-sealing again. Call me lazy. ;)
Any advice is appreciated. Thanks and HNY!
Do not use silicone under any circumstances, it will not work properly on an RV and it is a bear cat to get off. The best way to reseal the vent is to remove it completely and clean off the old butyl tape and scrub it with naptha or mineral spirits to get it really clean. Then apply new butyl tape to the vent and screw it back down. Then you will need dicor self-leveling caulk. Liberally caulk the edge and the screw heads. Since it is on the roof no one will see it so do not worry about being neat, the key is to cover it liberally. One word of caution, be careful when scraping on the rubber roof as it can be torn and then you will have another repair to make. Gently scraping will remove the old butyl tape and the cleaner will not harm the rubber roof.
Now if you are just wanting to seal the vent temporarily and do a permanent later when the weather warms up then just use the dicor caulk and liberally apply it all around the edge and screw heads. It will peal off later and clean up properly for a more permanent repair later.
Using silicone will make a temporary repair but it will cause you no end of grief when you go to remove it and do a proper repair. It has its place in uses, but and RV is not one of them.
Butyl tape and the self-leveling dicor can be found at most RV stores. I purchase mine from Amazon and keep a supply on hand at all times, I buy the dicor both self-leveling and regular in packs of 6 and buy the large roll of butyl tape. Keep the butyl tape in a zip lock bag and it will not dry out.
Thank you Russ. I had read something about Silicone being a no-no and knew I'd get a good answer here.
And I've just given myself a project with no excuses for not knowing how to do it. Uh oh. lol
Happy New Year,
Take every tube of sealant you have that contains silicone and place it as far away from your RV as possible. It will go on smooth look good for a short time fail in short order and leave a residue that will have to be removed before you can successfully apply a new sealant. A Polly based is far Superior and will last far longer.
Thank you! Will do. :)