Roof Repair or Rebuild?

Discussion in 'Roof/Floor Repair & Maintenance' started by Kendra Kaye, Nov 23, 2021.

  1. Kendra Kaye

    Kendra Kaye New Member

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    Hoping to get some advice/help/encouragement here before we more or less beg someone to come take the camper we purchased a few months ago off our hands for free.

    A few months ago we purchased a 1998 Viking 2460 that cosmetically is in great shape. Unfortunately we made 2 big mistakes: 1) We trusted the person we bought it from to tell the truth about leaks/water damage/etc. and 2) We didn't do our own due diligence to beforehand to learn what we should look for in a used pop up. Lessons learned.

    We knew some minor repairs and general maintenance were needed and in the process of doing those have discovered soft spots on the floor as well as water damage to the ceiling from the gasket around the AC (new Dometic unit put in last summer to replace an older AC unit) not being tightened down enough.

    We have removed the AC from the roof and are trying to take stock of how bad the damage is. It appears to be mainly around where the AC was. We don't believe an entire roof rebuild is necessary but have some questions.

    1. The roof is aluminum. Around where the AC was I can lift the aluminum from the luan underneath but I can't tell if beyond that it is glued down. If we remove the corner seals should we be able to lift the aluminum right off the roof? If not, how do we go about replacing the rotted luan that is right underneath the aluminum?

    2. We are trying to figure out the internal structure/frame so that we don't do more damage when we try to cut into then luan that's gone bad. What is the best way to figure out how it is framed?

    3. We would like to add metal bracing for more support for the air conditioner. Would it be best to do this internally or externally (as it attached to the finished ceiling)?

    We live in Iowa where we can have some pretty extreme weather. We do have it in our garage with the bed slides taken off so we can pop the top and work on it in a covered space.

    Any help or advice would be so very appreciated. We're in a bit over our heads.

    Kendra
     
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2021
  2. Raycfe

    Raycfe Waterford Ct.

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    I would work on it from the ceiling side. You could remove the AC all together and seal or cover up the hole. Doing a roof repair could turn into a very big job.

    As for just adding supports ......... ribs could be fashioned to support the roof as long as the sides panels are in great shape for them to fasten to.
     
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  3. WrkrBee

    WrkrBee Un-Supported Member

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    Last edited: Nov 28, 2021
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  4. Kendra Kaye

    Kendra Kaye New Member

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  5. Kendra Kaye

    Kendra Kaye New Member

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    Thank you so much for taking the time to reply. I am hoping we can work on it without taking the roof off completely, but that might be wishful thinking. Husband is adamant about having AC so we gotta figure out a way to repair so we can keep the AC
     
  6. Kendra Kaye

    Kendra Kaye New Member

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  7. Kendra Kaye

    Kendra Kaye New Member

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    I appreciate the tip. Would check it out if we lived closer. We're in Iowa
     
  8. Volly

    Volly New Member

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    Happy to help you. With your popup and from what you have said so far, here is what I would do:
    1. Can you post pictures of the inside, outside, and underneath please? More is better. It would give me a better idea what you are dealing with.
    2. I'm looking at pictures of one in another post: https://www.popupportal.com/threads/1998-viking-2460-st-popup-camper-remodel-project.86639/. This post has a bunch of screenshots of what you will see when you open things up.
    3. You should replace the seal tape on the corners of the roof as well as on each corner of the lower part of the popup. This will prevent future leaks. You can get it from Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/XFasten-8-Inch-30-Foot-Sealing-Patching/dp/B07663NFZZ. When you take the old seal tape off you will first see white center plastic strip. It should come out pretty easy. It is there to hide the screws. Remove the screws then you can remove the metal strip. Under the strip is the old seal tape. You will need to scrape it off before applying the new tape.
      Note: This replacement of the tape will also let you see if there is any rotting wood under the tape. If it is, you will need to replace it.
    4. On the outside corners while under the popup, check to see if the floor is rotten right at the corner. Most likely you will have some rot. It isn't a big deal to replace the rotten wood in those spots. It is just 3/4 OSB. If it needs replacing, then ONLY replace the rotten area, not the entire floor. Use silicone to seal where the old wood and your new piece join so there is no exposed gap. You will have to remove the rotten wood from above so you may have to pull out some of the interior wood pieces. It isn't bad at all to do this. You simply screw them back into place when you have made your repair. If for any reason the vinyl is messed up, just clean the vinyl then put down peal & stick squares. Look here for an example of what I did to a customer's popup.
    5. Take a look at this video of someone fixing a roof on their Viking popup. It should help. (You can mute the music for there is nobody talking during the clip)
    You can PM me if you like if you need to ask more questions. Happy to help.
     
  9. Volly

    Volly New Member

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    This is a restoration I did to a popup a while back. It was lots of fun looking back on it.
     
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  10. Kendra Kaye

    Kendra Kaye New Member

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    Thanks so much for all the helpful tips.

    I think it is the roof repair that is intimidating me the most. The exterior seals and floor I'm pretty confident we can do, as long as we can get all the cabinets out. We have a kitchen galley and tub/shower combo we'll have to figure out how to get out (shown in pics). Hoping everything is just screwed in and not glued.

    As far as the roof, we believe that water damage is centered around where the AC was. PO installed a new one last summer and I believe he didn't tighten down the gasket enough. We know there was an AC unit there before, but not sure if it came originally with the camper or was installed later. We'd like to add some metal bracing somehow. Pictures show ceiling from the inside and ripping of luan right underneath aluminum skin. Looks pretty rough since we've already started some demo. Before that you wouldn't have known there was any water damage unless you knew specific things to check (we didn't, hence why we are in this situation).

    Also included one picture of floor from underneath. You can see how rotten the wood is. All the corners are like this, as well as the stretch along the entire backside. We believe the back bottom side panel will need to be replaced as well. Most of the flooring is solid though - just those corners, back end, and possibly right inside the door. We can't see it from the bottom but can feel it from the top.

    This camper has some wonderful features. Of course if we went to look at it today knowing what we know now we would run for the hills, but here we are. If we can get these repairs done and renovate the inside like we originally planned we might end up with a camper better than new. Sure are learning a lot about pop campers, the hard way of course.


     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2021
  11. Kendra Kaye

    Kendra Kaye New Member

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    Really like those peel and stick tiles. Will definitely check out. I had been thinking wood laminate planks, but also want to avoid adding any significant weight to the camper

     
  12. Volly

    Volly New Member

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    I tried to look at the pictures you posted but I don't have permission to see them.
     
  13. Kendra Kaye

    Kendra Kaye New Member

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    I'm sorry. I think I fixed it. Still learning how to use the functions in this forum

     
  14. vdotmatrix

    vdotmatrix Active Member Gold Supporting Member

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  15. vdotmatrix

    vdotmatrix Active Member Gold Supporting Member

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    I was responding to the butyl tape post. try and match the width and the thickness when you get to this part of the restoration. I hope you have a an RV store somewhere close to you.I used buytl tape and left a small1/8" channel in which to run a bead of the proflex RV as added insurance... I do not think you are at this stage yet unless you guess are not sleeping or eating .... take your time!
     
  16. Volly

    Volly New Member

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    OK, lets deal with the roof first. That isn't hard at all to fix. What you see as layers of wood is just 5mil plywood. behind it is a stick frame. In tackling it, I would go from above first to remove the roof skin and to fix the framing. It is easier for if you go below first, you will have to work over your head and that can be tiring to do. What I would do is:
    1. First remove the 2 metal strips that run from front to back on the driver and passenger sides of the roof. I see you already pulled the center strip off and removed the screws for the one on the passenger side.
    2. Remove the driver side strip
    3. Under the ledge in the front and the back of the roof you will see metal strips. Remove them.
    4. Around the AC vent there "may" be staples or screws holding the roof skin down. If they are there, remove them.
    5. Lower the roof
    6. You should be now able to remove the roof skin. It should lift up from the wood frame. IMPORTANT - do NOT bend the skin if at all possible when you remove it. If it is stuck on anything, you will need to use a long but thin item like a puddy knife to separate the roof skin from the frame. Usually they are not glued so you should be fine.
    7. Now that you see the frame for the roof, you will need to cut new members for any rotten wood that is there. Measure for the pieces you need and cut to length. I suspect they are using 1x2 strips. Measure the width to verify first. You may need to cut away the 5mil plywood that is attached to the frame piece you are replacing.
      Note: Anytime I've gone into a popup frame, I've found they use large staples to join the framing together. That is a specialized tool that you usually don't find at the big box store. What you can use instead is L brackets or straight brackets. It is important when using that you put two brackets on each joint - one on each side of the joint. This will make for a strong joint.
      IMPORTANT - Do NOT put a bracket on the top or bottom of the joint. Only on the sides. Otherwise the roof or ceiling lumber will not be flush thus causing a problem.
    8. Once you have the frame fixed, put the roof skin back on (You should also around the edge of the skin where it and the wood meet - put a bead of caulk so to help seal it better.) and reattach the metal side strips you removed on step one. You will need new sealing tape to do this step.
    9. Raise the roof to max height.
    10. You now will be removing the bottom rotted plywood and replacing with new 5mil plywood. You have two choices here. You can patch it in a section or replace the entire thing. I'd patch it. For the covering on the 5mil plywood you can use contact paper, cloth with contact cement, or paint if you replaced the entire thing. Personally I would use white paint.
     
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  17. Kendra Kaye

    Kendra Kaye New Member

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    Thank you so much for these wonderful tips. Feeling a little more encouraged to start what seems like an overwhelming project.

    Will update with pics as I go along,
    Kendra

     
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