Advice needed re damp :(

Discussion in 'Motorhome Chat' started by Busterbulldog, Jan 7, 2013.

  1. Busterbulldog

    Busterbulldog Read Only Funster

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    Hi guys,apologies if I have posted this in the wrong forum.
    I decided on the weekend to continue with the interior upgrades I started some time back. You know the score if you have time to do it you just as well be away...so it kinda stalled.
    Above the overcab bed is a roofvent,inside this was a black blob..above the flyscreen,it looked like a slug.I took the vent lower sections apart and have discovered a nasty sopping wet surround,rather black and timber spongey soft on lower side. After having a tap around my gut feeling is it has spread. Im guessing that I may have to remove a section of the ceiling but I dont really know how its constructed,ie what is in between the metal roof and the ceiling wallboard,whats there thats sucked up the water and allowed it to spread? Motorhome is a 1995 CI . Can somebody help me out with a good link to a repair guide?Is there a chance I could remove the rotten inner frame revealed by removing the roofvent dry it out through the gap and replace the frame and vent then count my lucky stars.The existing vent is 400x400mm. Stu
     
  2. rainbow chasers

    rainbow chasers Read Only Funster

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    Firstly, you would need to reseal the roof light in order to stop the leak. There may be damage to the skylight itself, so inspect for cracks and leaks around the fitments.

    Once sealed, you can reattach, allow the upper seal to set for a few days and then remove the lower section and let it breathe. It may dry out enough, depending on how bad the damp is - if spongy, would suggest is is pretty bad - but it may dry out once the leak has been sorted and by allowing the air to get at the wood.

    Worth a try, if not you may be looking at either replacing or cutting a new piece in once to wet has been removed.
     
  3. TheBig1

    TheBig1 Funster Life Member

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    the roof is made up of a similar construction to the walls. metal outside supported on a wooden frame with insulation foam between, covered with ceiling board below.

    you will find that the frame around the rooflight is solid timber, and the roof supports are glued and stapled to this. its highly unlikey to be just the frame wet though and water will run to a lower point ruining the frame where it meets. you need to get the van under cover. remove the rooflight, then strip the roof boards around it. use the manufacturing joints rather than cut new board in.

    its an expensive job to have done due to the time it takes to do properly. very important that you dry it out well before fitting new boards, as the wood has a tendancy to crumble meaning you need to replace all affected pieces
     
  4. Busterbulldog

    Busterbulldog Read Only Funster

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    I have not removed the roof vent yet as I only discovered the problem this evening. I have no means of getting the truck under cover.After tapping/feeling around Im pretty sure its spread further around the lower part of the vent,the hardboard has dropped a little and feels damp comparatively. I have a fan heater up there,see if that helps overnite,then I think I shall remove the frame surround and see what its hiding.There was me thinking of putting it up for sale as looking to upgrade.Lets hope for a dry weekend. I suppose its only wallboard,timber and insulation so hopefully not too major a headache :Eeek:
     
  5. DP_JAY

    DP_JAY Funster Life Member

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    If you cannot get it undercover then the most important thing is to re seal the roof light properly otherwise damp will keep coming in faster than it can dry out.
    Warmth will help to evaporate the moisture but if not removed it will only form some where else so I strongly recomend a dehumidifier.Not that dear to buy and you can always sell it on afterwards.
     
  6. Terry

    Terry Funster

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    Hi if you are good at diy then it's easy job :Smile: if not get rid :Sad:As already been said seal the roof light to stop any more water entering, while up there check the roof for tin worm.If it is as damp as you say the water will have gone down to the base of the bed :Eek!: so you will end up replacing all of the board's and some timbers in the Luton :Sad:The only way to dry it out is to remove the boarding and more than likely dry it out with a towel :BigGrin: and then heater.It's a tight squeeze up there but a little time and effort and the job will be a good un :thumb:
    Terry
     
  7. Busterbulldog

    Busterbulldog Read Only Funster

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    Of course the skylight is the 1st thing that needs sorting,unfortunately I work during current daylight hours.Covered temp with tarp,picking up dehumidifier in the morning.Hoping for good weather on the weekend.Will holecut some exploratory holes and see if its gone beyond the hatch.If need be I will strip it down and renew whatevers needed.I guessed someone would have done a how too on here...seems not...all good fun though .thanks for the help so far chaps
     
  8. Terry

    Terry Funster

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    Hi BB remove covers hiding screws on fanlight, remove FL locate jionting strips, remove with a big chisel or flat scraper by praising T section off carefully. This will allow access to the board's etc remove and inspect,----remove mattress and base boarding, dry base then reassemble replacing knackered timbers/boards
    Terry
     
  9. DP_JAY

    DP_JAY Funster Life Member

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    As said it is not the end of the world if you are a diy'er, but remove/cover as much from thevan as possible before you start, mainly cushions etc. If not you will wish you had as you will need the room & the dust etc gets everywhere. The new MMM has just come out & ther is a piece on damp repairs page 178.
    Good luck.
     
  10. Busterbulldog

    Busterbulldog Read Only Funster

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    Bought a dehumidifier and put it in the mh earlier.Ceiling apears to be drying up ,stiffness is back.As yet have not had a chance to remove the top off the skylight.I purchased some sealant earlier to refit it when I do.Apparently the grey putty substance is no longer used under health and safety reasons...is this correct.Next step drill some exploratory holes,if all looks intact I plan to rig up an airline and feed fresh air into the cavity for a few days coupled with a heater and dehumidifier.Is it ok to then pump any spaces with expanding foam or will the cavity be too full with insulation? What type of insulation is in there? Glass fibre?

    Jay I'm not familiar with MMM , a magazine I assume?
     
  11. DP_JAY

    DP_JAY Funster Life Member

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    Probably polysryrene. Would be better to remove the whole ceiling sheet though.
     
  12. TheBig1

    TheBig1 Funster Life Member

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    dependant on age of construction, but polystyrene was phased out some time ago and they used a pu foam insulation now. i would avoid using expanding foam into the voids unless you plan to trim it back after its set. the expansion will leave bulges in the outer and inner skins

    the butyl non setting mastic in a tube can still be bought, but its better to use the correct fitting tape, as this guarantees an even seal all round. most caravan accessory shops or online you can buy sealing mastic tape. its not expensive
     
  13. Terry

    Terry Funster

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    :Doh: if it's gone that far as to soak the board's to make them soggy then the timbers will be shot :Eeek:Drilling holes ? How are you going to cover the holes ? You may as well do the job properly and remove the board's for inspection.Boards are usually vynil lined which stops the moisture getting through properly, hence removal :thumb: It will take weeks after the board's feel dry to dry the timbers, rather than a couple of day's if the boards are removed :Wink:New board's are aprox 20 quid each--2 max 3 board's will be plenty :thumb:
    Terry
     
  14. Busterbulldog

    Busterbulldog Read Only Funster

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    Question...As is ....If I dry it all out...as is theres no visible damage other than timber round hatch,ceilings still solid and firm now drying ..do I just leave it refit the skylight properly and consider myself lucky? Theres no smell...no stains and no visible damage or sign of. Of course I will need to replace hatch surround as a good fix will be needed for screws. Maybe worth resin coating the frame too?
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2013
  15. Terry

    Terry Funster

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    Because we cannot see it and your first description sounded like you had had/got a major leak that decision has got to be yours :Smile: Now you describe a minor leak.You may well get away with a simple reseal of the fanlight and dry out :Smile:The only thing that tells me further investigation is needed is you say the timbers around the FL are shot / need replacing/epoxy, this does not happen overnight :Sad:
    You could always park on a small slope and drill a small hole in the under Luton to see if water comes out , that is a simple way to see if it needs under the bed stripping down :BigGrin: A bit drastic drilling a hole :BigGrin: remember to fill it :thumb:
    Terry
     
  16. DP_JAY

    DP_JAY Funster Life Member

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  17. DesRes

    DesRes Funster

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    How about a few photos BB?
    Plenty of suggestions flying your way but we're working a bit blind!
    I'm no expert, other than my previous van was ruined due to damp.:RollEyes:
    The job's gotta be done properly or you'll live to regret it.:cry:
     
  18. DesRes

    DesRes Funster

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    Complete horror story. I had to renew the complete floor in mine. Lay in the street for a month changing it section by section. Nearly had heart failure when I found how rotten the timbers were that were bolted to the chassis, fell apart as soon as I touched it.
    Van was worthless apart from to us, but ran it for six years after the repairs.
    My new floor was more solid than the original!:Eeek:
     
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  19. Busterbulldog

    Busterbulldog Read Only Funster

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    Yes the front section of the hatch hole is poke ya finger through rotton..I know this doesnt happen overnite.
     
  20. Busterbulldog

    Busterbulldog Read Only Funster

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    Here you go


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