If the existing RV roof sealant shows clear signs of damage such as bubbles, small holes, or obvious cracks, then it’s time to find out how to remove RV roof sealant.
The best way to know if the sealant requires changing is to press it with your finger. If the sealant gets pressed down and turns back into shape later, there’s no need to change it. But for sure, you need to examine the sealant every six months.
- Materials You Need to Remove RV Roof Sealant
- Step by Step Instruction on How to Properly Remove Existing Roof Sealant
- Step 1: Find out if you can walk on your RV roof
- Step 2: Check if the weather is good for at least three days
- Step 3: Utilize a sturdy ladder to reach the RV roof
- Step 4: Determine what kind of sealant was used on the RV roof
- Step 5: Prepare all the tools
- Step 6: Wear protective gear
- Step 7: Use acetone to clean the RV roof
- Step 8: Soften existing lap sealant
- Step 9: Scrape off the lap sealant
- Step 10: Repeat step 8, and 9
- Step 11: Apply acetone again on the RV roof
- Step 12: Reseal Your RV roof
Materials You Need to Remove RV Roof Sealant
Most RV roofs use a Dicor sealant more often compared to other kinds of sealants. It is a popular and high quality product known to RVers, plus it lasts long. And to efficiently remove dicor lap sealant, you need the following materials:
- Disposable rag cloths (2 sets)
- Old work clothes
- Hot air gun
- Rubber gloves
- Sturdy ladder
- Scraping tool
- Small container
- New sealant
Step by Step Instruction on How to Properly Remove Existing Roof Sealant
If you have tried to remove silicone roof coating in the past, then you are not a novice on how to remove RV roof sealant. The process is not easy, but it could be fun.
You can actually do this project on your own, which allows you to be more invested in your RV. Let’s check out the best steps on removing lap sealant from your RV roof.
Step 1: Find out if you can walk on your RV roof
There are RV roofs that cannot handle a full weight of a grown human. Check with the manufacturer if your roof is strong enough to walk on. Or you can research this information online. But what you must not do is get on the roof without knowing.
Step 2: Check if the weather is good for at least three days
The best time for recaulking RV roof is when the weather is sunny. Check the weather in your area and choose days where there is no forecast of rain. It is not a good idea to work in rainy weather since you need the RV roof dry in order to perform the sealant removal and resealing.
Step 3: Utilize a sturdy ladder to reach the RV roof
Find a sturdy ladder and position it outside of your RV. The rear is a good place to put a ladder, or you can go for the side as long as it is not near a window. Make sure that the ladder is positioned properly to avoid an accident while you are climbing it.
Step 4: Determine what kind of sealant was used on the RV roof
There are many types of RV roof sealants in the market today. It is important to find out exactly what type of sealant is used so you can prepare the right tools to remove it. And if the existing sealant is Dicor lap sealant, then proceed to the next step.
Step 5: Prepare all the tools
Remember that your goal here is not only to remove the existing sealant. When the task is done, resealing RV roof is an immediate priority. So, prepare all the materials needed for both the removal and resealing process. Organizing everything is the key to an efficient performance.
Step 6: Wear protective gear
The sun can hurt your skin and eyes, so prep yourself by applying your preferred sunblock. Wear a hat with a tie so the wind will not blow it away. Also, sport a pair of sunglasses to protect your eyes, and wear hand-fitting rubber gloves.
You must wear the latter in order to protect your hands from the acetone and possible injury from scraping. Additionally, put on old clothes while working on the RV roof.
Step 7: Use acetone to clean the RV roof
Acetone is a fast-drying cleaner that you must use to apply on your RV roof. Pour a considerable amount of acetone on the rag cloth and clean every inch of your roof.
Before you proceed to the next step, make sure that the roof is completely dry. Take note that skipping this step would not bode well for your project.
Step 8: Soften existing lap sealant
Use a hot air gun to soften the existing sealant on the RV roof. Directly point the nozzle at the sealant for a few minutes, and avoid heating other parts of the RV roof that does not have a sealant on them. Be careful also not to accidentally heat any part of your body.
Step 9: Scrape off the lap sealant
Once the sealant is a bit soft, start scraping it off the surface with your preferred scraping tool. Some RVers use an old credit card. Some use a putty knife, and others prefer a heavy-duty plastic scraper.
The latter is the favorite among RVers since it is safer and leaves minimum to zero marks on the roof’s surface.
Step 10: Repeat step 8, and 9
Keep repeating steps 8 and 9 until there is no old sealant left on the RV roof. Remember not to force the sealant to come off. Heat the sealant to make it soft and easier to scrape off. Additionally, support cleanliness by transferring the waste sealant to a small container as you remove it.
Step 11: Apply acetone again on the RV roof
Once the old sealant is removed from the surface, clean RV caulking residue completely by applying acetone again. Use a second set of rag cloth to do this process.
Apply acetone on the surface only where you removed the sealant. Wait for the roof to dry before you take action on resealing your RV roof.
Step 12: Reseal Your RV roof
After you remove old caulking from travel trailer, reseal the roof. Use a high-quality sealant to do the job right. After resealing your RV roof, gather all your tools and get down from the roof using the ladder. You can now enjoy your RV without worrying about water leaks.
Now that you know the best way to remove RV roof sealant, it is now easier for you to take on projects like this. Keep in mind that whether you deal with an RV aluminum roof sealant, a silicone sealant, or a Dicor sealant, having all the tools needed is the most important part of the project.
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