How do I know if my roof is leaking?

RV roof leak damage

Water wicked into RV roof from cotton backing of vinyl roof.

Another common questions we get at shows and seminars. How can I tell if I have an RV roof leak?

This is a tough question and not always an easy one to answer. The best leak is one that you immediately see water coming in, it usually causes less damage because you know it’s there and can get it repaired. The downside to this type of leak, it can be tricky to find the leak unless you have an obvious hole.

The best way to know if you have an RV roof leak is to constantly inspect your roof. The most common RV roof leak is actually a seeping leak, you don’t usually see signs inside the RV until the wood up top has rotted. Walking on your roof and being familiar with how it feels and normally looks is your best way to find a leak. Pay special attention to around components. The smallest crack in your caulking will let water in and over time, OSB and luans, typical woods used on RVs, start to wrinkly or come apart. Skylights are a high risk for leaks. The plastic is usually cracked around the screws and the cracks start to spread out allowing water intrusion. If you notice you are starting to get condensation between your two skylight layers, there is a high chance you have a leak.

High risk RV roof leak

The front and rear corners are another high-risk leak point. Depending on your roof design, water gets trapped in the corners and will seep into your roof. Caulking was designed to repel water, but it doesn’t do a good job when it is under water. If you look at your roof and see dirty build up in small depressions, and any of those are around caulk, it is at a high risk leak point. Some roof designs have a rectangle of metal trim that will hold water on the roof and cause the same type leaks. This is why it is important to walk and check your roof, you’ll know when it gets spongy or soft and you will be able to complete an rv roof repair without costly structural repairs.

What are the signs of an RV roof leak?

Look across your RV roof and see if it is wavy. It should be relatively flat, with small imperfections here and there. A sudden increase in peaks and valleys is a good indicator you have had water intrusion and the glue has released from the wood, or the wood has decayed and the membrane is no longer adhered. If you have an older TPO roof, this is a major indicator of a leak. The older TPO roofs have cotton on the back side of the vinyl and it will wick the water into the roof, as seen in the picture.

Be Proactive

These are few things you can actively do to keep a look out for RV roof leaks. Early detection is critical to avoid costly structural repairs. RV roofs are a major investment without other repairs so it is best to be proactive. RVs that sit in storage are high risk for structural damage so it is important to go out and inspect your roof, even if you can’t go camping.

Put an end to the leaks!

If you want to end worrying about repairing your rv roof leaks, contact us to discuss the application of a FlexArmor roof.  We guarantee no leaks for the lifetime of your RV.  Not only does it give you peace of mind, but it increases the value of your RV because you can transfer the warranty to a new owner if you choose to sell it.  Request a quote today and stop worrying about rv roof repairs!