How to Reseal RV Roof: The Ultimate Guide

How to Reseal RV Roof: The Ultimate Guide

9 min read

An RV that isn’t properly sealed can lead to hundreds of dollars in water damage. Therefore, it’s important to protect your RV – and your wallet – in the first place. Resealing your RV isn’t a difficult task and it’s definitely worth the little bit of time that it’ll take.

In order to reseal your RV roof, clean the top of your RV thoroughly to get rid of any dirt buildup. Next, repair structural damage, such as cracks, with repair tape. Then, seal any vents and antenna. Finally, apply a self-leveling sealant that suits your roof type (using the wrong one could cause serious damage). 

You’ll also need to ensure that you always inspect all the seams of your RV year-round, and use a sealer to fix up cracks to avoid any future damage.

I’m going to tell you exactly what you need to know about resealing your RV roof:

 

Benefits of RV roof sealant and coating

There are several benefits that come from RV sealant and coating:

 

1. It provides structural protection

When it comes to keeping your RV in good condition, structural protection plays a significant role. The good thing about using RV roof sealant and coating is that it helps to keep it in proper condition. The structure of your RV is what keeps it functioning well.

Therefore, you need to make sure that you often check whether it’s in good condition or not. This is where roof sealants and coatings come into the picture. If you happen to have an issue in your RV’s structure such as cracks or dents, you can use a sealant or coating to fix them.

 

2. Energy efficient

One thing you need to know or already know if you own an RV is that they tend to use a lot of energy. Even when going for short trips, an RV can use a lot of energy which can be quite costly. Luckily, the use of RV sealant and coating can help to reduce too much energy usage.

An RV coating helps to add insulation into the vehicle, which in turn, will help to reduce too much consumption of energy. Therefore, this will help to reduce these energy costs and make it possible for you to save money.

 

3. Reduces wear and tear

The older your RV, the more it takes a beating on the roof surface. When your RV stays for longer and gets exposed to the outside world, its roof can start to wear and tear which may require repair.

The good news is that RV roof sealant and coating can help to fix this issue. You can consider rubber roofing at the top, which will help to minimize the wear and tear of your RV roof. This will eventually help you save on costs.

 

4. Temperature regulation

When you apply roof coating on your RV, it will help to form a preventative barrier that will regulate the temperature inside. This will help to keep the inside of your RV cooler during the warmer or summer season and also in the winter.

When the temperature of your RV is well regulated inside, it will help you use less power, mainly because you won’t need to crank up the heating or air conditioning. This will be a win-win situation because you’ll be able to save on costs over a long period.

 

5. It reduces costs

Generally, the main benefit of RV sealant and coating is that it helps you significantly save on costs. All the benefits we’ve discussed above point to the fact that they minimize your costs and help you save money. When you keep your RV in great shape, you are bound to save money in the long run.

Keeping your RV’s roof properly and preventing any damages on the structure such as warping will help you save a lot of money that would have gone in repairing or roof maintenance. Therefore, you will end up saving more compared to the option of repairs.

 

Types of RV roof sealant and coating

There are three main types of RV sealant and coating which we are going to discuss in this section. These sealants and coatings are quite efficient, affordable, and beneficial. See them below:

 

1. Urethane Coating

Urethane coating is one of the most durable options that you can consider. It can be the perfect coating for your RV’s roof. It’s actually quite popular among RV owners and also mobile homeowners. What makes this RV coating stand out is the fact that it has a great structure that works well to protect against any falling branches or other small debris.

It also offers excellent protection on your roof against any other forms or elements that may try to cause it damage. However, it is essential to note that urethane comes at a higher cost. It also requires two coats to be effective.

 

2. Acrylic Coating

Acrylic is one of the cheapest RV roof sealant and coating, but it offers a good solution for dealing with any gaps on your roof. If you want to prevent further damages to your RV’s roof, you can fully count on the acrylic coating. It’s also ideal for your RV’s structure and it efficiently manages to reflect a considerable amount of sunlight.

The acrylic coating works really well and can help to seal any cracks or leaks on the roof of your RV, thereby preventing water from coming in. The only drawdown with this coating is that it is not durable compared to others on the market. It also requires too much effort in terms of application and can take up too much of your time.

 

3. Silicone Coating

Silicone coating is one of the most expensive RV coatings on the market. However, in terms of durability, you can fully count on it. The good thing about the silicone coating is that it helps in the prevention of weather degradation, sun, and wind damage. It also prevents your RV from pounding water.

It has an ideal structure that enables it to stay elastic and leaves it intact for a long period of time. The drawdown of using the silicone coating is that it can easily get dirty, which means you need to wash it regularly to ensure it stays in proper condition.

 

Top RV Sealant and Coating Brands

Here are some of the top RV sealant and coating brands on the market:

 

1. Liquid Rubber

Liquid Rubber is one of the top RV sealant and coating brands on the market. The company is based in Ontario, Canada, and manufactures several different RV sealants and coatings. They are known for manufacturing the most popular formulation of liquid roof coating.

Liquid Rubber is a brand that is known for manufacturing high-quality products that meet the right standards, which means they offer value for money. Therefore, when it comes to buying RV sealant and coating, you can definitely check out products made by Liquid Rubber.

 

2. Dicor Products

Another notable and top RV sealant and coating brand is Dicor Products. This brand is known for making everything that you require to keep your RV in proper condition. The company is based in Elkhart, Indiana, and has been around for nearly 40 years.

What makes them stand out is the fact that they always strive to improve their products and provides excellent quality to customers. They are known for manufacturing several bestsellers, one of them being the EPDM Self-Leveling Lap Sealant.

 

Things to consider when buying RV sealant and coating

When you’re buying RV sealant and coating, here are some of the things that you need to consider:

 

1. RV roof type

What kind of roof does your RV have? This is one of the crucial questions you need to ask yourself before going to buy any RV sealant and coating. Remember, you need to buy products that will work well with your RV’s roof to avoid regrets later on. Therefore, make sure you conduct thorough research and identify a sealant and coating that will be ideal for your RV’s roof.

 

2. Sealant & coating type

You should note that the sealant and coating are quite similar, but they serve different purposes. Therefore, when buying you should any of them you need to consider the roof type of your RV. A coating helps to protect your RV from damages, it offers insulation, and also adds structural features. A sealant helps to seal cracks, leaks, or patchwork in small areas.

 

3. Formulation

The material that has been used to make the sealant or coating that you’re using will significantly affect its performance. However, when we are talking about tape sealant and pasting sealant, the formulation doesn’t matter as much, due to the quality of the product. Most RV coatings are made from a wide range of materials, which makes silicone the best one for weather resistance even though urethane and acrylic also serve the same purpose.

 

4. Ease of application

Formulations are quite different in terms of application and the amount of time they take to dry, as well as the number of coats they require to work effectively. Silicone is efficient because it’s easy to work with, dries faster, it’s easy to apply, and only requires a single coat. Urethane and acrylic tend to vary although most of them require a primer coat and several coats to become effective.

 

Important information to know before sealing your RV roof

How much does it cost to reseal an RV roof?

There are professional RV dealerships and shops that provide maintenance services, which include resealing an RV roof. Most of these places may charge you anything between $1,000 or more for the job. To reseal larger RVs it may cost around $1,500 to $2,000. If you want to cut these costs you can choose the option of resealing your RV yourself.

 

How often should you reseal your RV roof?

Resealing your RV roof is one of the most important things you need to do. It is crucial to ensure your RV roof is always in good condition to avoid water leaks and other issues. You should always make sure to research your RV roof every year and every replace it after every 10 years. Failure to replace your RV roof after every 10 years will lead to water leaks and other problems.

 

Should you caulk around roof vents?

Yes, you should always caulk around roof vents to prevent water leaks. If you want to maintain a leak-proof RV, you need to often check on sealants such as caulk and ensure they have not cracked on the places that they have sealed. You also need to reapply the caulk around the base where the vent contacts surround the roof.

 

What to do before sealing your RV roof

Before you start, here’s what you need to do:

  1. Clean your roof thoroughly – You need to make sure that your roof is properly cleaned and remove all the debris or dust before working on it.
  2. Find which sealants are compatible with your roof material – It is also essential to find out which sealants are ideal for your roof material to avoid any further damages. This will also help you save on costs.
  3. Seal anything sticking through the roof such as antennas, vents, and others that may require fixing – Ensure everything is properly handled to avoid going back after a short while after fixing.
  4. Repair ripped or torn areas with fiberglass repair tape – Fiberglass repair tape can really come in handy if used right. Therefore, you can try and utilize it in this case.

 

How to reseal a rubber RV roof

When it comes to resealing a rubber RV roof, there are several things you need to keep in mind. Since your roof is delicate, it needs to be often maintained and thoroughly checked to avoid massive damages.

 

Materials you’ll need to repair a rubber RV roof

Even if rubber roofs are quite delicate, they do tend to last longer than other types of RV roofs. The most ideal products to take care of rubber RV roofs are Dicor and EPDM coatings. Once you apply any of these coatings, all you need to do is wash with soap often and you’ll only need to replace after every ten years.

Avoid using petroleum products to clean a rubber RV roof, as they make the roof look swollen or loose.

 

How to reseal a rubber RV roof (step-by-step)

  1. Inspect the lap sealant and repair any issues.
  2. Remove any appliance covers or vent fins.
  3.  Tape the plastics or tarps sheathing to the side of your RV to protect them from the sealant.
  4. Clean the roof and remove any dirt build-up.
  5. Take a mini roller and small brush and use them to apply a rubber coat and sealant on all the fixtures.
  6. Take a normal paint roller and use it to apply the rubber coat and sealant to the top of your RV.
  7. If your RV roof is an older model, you can apply two coats.

 

How to reseal fiberglass RV roof

Similar to EPDM roofs, fiberglass RV roofs also oxidize. Older RVs that have fiberglass usually oxidize faster than new RVs.

 

Materials you’ll need to repair a fiberglass RV roof

If you want to restore the gloss of your fiberglass RV roof, you’ll first need to clean it thoroughly. You can use warm water with a sponge for cleaning and then allow it to dry for some time. If you want to achieve the best results, the surface of your fiberglass RV roof needs to be free from any grease or oil.

Silicone sealants work best. I also recommend placing a gel coat over it once you’re done.

 

How to reseal a fiberglass RV roof (step-by-step)

  1. Examine your roof  – To clearly understand the quality of your fiberglass RV roof.
  2. Use a sealant and match it properly with your fiberglass RV roof – Silicone sealants are highly recommended because they are mostly formulated for fiberglass roofs.
  3. Use a gel coat – Normally, fiberglass comes together with a gel coat which provides the glossy texture of the RV roof. Therefore, you can apply the gel coat to keep your fiberglass RV roof in good condition.

 

How to reseal aluminum RV roof

If you have an aluminum roof, household roof coatings can significantly help you seal any cracks or holes perfectly.

 

Materials you’ll need to repair an aluminum RV roof

If you need to reseal an aluminum RV roof, consider using Eternabond seam tape. It comes in four-inch rolls that you can apply over the seams of your RV roof. It is similar to duct tape, although much better, and really comes in handy when it comes to repairs.

 

How to reseal an aluminum RV roof (step-by-step)

1. Clean the roof – As usual, the first step involves cleaning the roof of your RV before any repairs. While cleaning, avoid using any petroleum products as they can damage your aluminum roof as well.
2. Use a special coating like the Dicor Metal RV roof coating – It forms a rubber-like top layer on the roof and is resistant to rust or mildew.
3. Seal all the joints or rivets – Use a caulking gun.

 

Final thoughts

Resealing your RV roof is one of the most crucial activities and always needs to be done right. Hopefully, this post has shed some light on that issue and helped you learn some of the essential tips that will help you carry out this activity efficiently.

Victoria Miller

I'm the founder of NTT. I live in Miami, Florida, and enjoy learning everything there is to know about tiny spaces.