Your RV Roofing Guide: Liquid Roof Coatings and More

Whether you know it or not, the roof of your RV is probably one of its most important parts. Keeping it in good condition will prevent all kinds of damage from leaks and debris, and the right roof material or coating can even provide energy savings by reflecting sunlight and extreme temperatures. The best thing that you can do is understand how your roof works and what maintenance is required to keep it in good shape.

Rubber and Other Roofing Materials

There are a number of different materials available for RV roofing, including fiberglass, aluminum, vinyl, and others. Liquid roof coatings, however, are quickly gaining popularity for their convenience, durability, affordability, and ease of installation. Like a sheeted rubber roof, this option creates a strong, yet flexible seal that covers the entire roof without the need for screws or other hardware. There are fewer seams to seal and much less maintenance to keep track of with liquid roofing, too.

EPDM is a synthetic rubber compound that is used to make liquid roofing products. This unique compound is available in black and white, although most black roofing will turn white on the top over time due to oxidation. This is actually a good thing, because it creates a stronger protective layer over the rest of the roof.

Liquid roofing is preferred by many because it is easy to apply. Anyone who can use a paint roller or squeegee can put on a rubber coating, and create a strong, durable roof that won’t need much maintenance for the first 10 years or so.

Caulking and Sealing with Rubber Roofing

Although rubber roof coatings create a solid sheet of material, you may not want to paint it around all of the fixtures on top of your roof. Things that may need serviced, like your air conditioning unit, should be sealed with an EPDM sealant tape or caulking sealant. This allows you to create a durable seal that is still removable for easy access.

The replacement process for liquid roofing is also much simpler, leaving you fewer areas to caulk or seal after the job is done. Remember that even with liquid roofing, you should still fully remove the old membrane rather than just placing a new roof over top. One recoating should be fine, but if your rubber roof is more than 15 years old or has extensive damage, it might be best to start fresh. Removing the old roof also allows you to inspect and replace any damaged plywood or support boards underneath, adding even more value and protection to your investment.

Caulk-style sealants are still quite popular among RV owners, but there is a growing market for sealant tape like EternaBond or Dicor’s popular DiSeal Patch Sealing Tape. These tapes are great for quick repairs, as well as for fixtures that may have difficult angles or shapes that need sealed. Keep in mind that repair tape is temporary and will usually only last for a year or two. Sealant tape can provide many more years of protection, and is what you need when you are sealing the fixtures around your roof, if you choose this product over a liquid sealant.

In Conclusion

Although rubber roofing is a fairly simple product to use and maintain, you still shouldn’t do the work yourself unless you are comfortable with the job that needs done. Fortunately, the RV community has done well in providing plenty of resources and information on DIY RV repairs and replacements, including roof maintenance and repair. Take advantage of these resources and learn as much as you can about the benefits of EPDM roof coatings. It might be exactly what you need.

Five Reasons to Consider an RV Roof Replacement Kit

Since the majority of RV owners are also the DIY type, there are plenty of RV repair and replacement products on the consumer market today. One of the most popular items, for a lot of owners, is the repair or replacement kit. A “kit”, as the name implies, includes everything that you need to either replace or repair your RV’s roof. You can find kits for all types of roofing materials, including the liquid RV roof replacement kit, which is growing in popularity for its versatility and convenience.

If you are in the market for a new RV roof, you typically have a few options. You can buy the materials yourself and install a new roof. You could also take the RV to your local dealership or shop and have them replace the roof. This, however, could cost a small fortune. Most shops charge upwards of $100 per hour for labor, after all, and with modern RV roof kits, anyone can install a new roof without a lot of time or effort.

Here are five reasons that you should consider an RV roof replacement kit for your next RV roofing upgrade:

  1. Get everything at once. By purchasing a pre-packaged kit, you can guarantee that you will have all of the products and tools that you need to get the job done. You won’t have to worry about forgetting the primer or running to the hardware store for a mop or other supplies, because they are all included.
  2. A kit can save you money. When you have to buy all of the items for a new RV roof one piece at a time, it is going to add up quickly. Kits are designed by manufacturers to help you reduce your expenses while also giving you an easier way to re-roof your RV when the time comes. Furthermore, a kit costs a fraction of what a shop or dealer would charge for a roof replacement on an RV.
  3. Rubber is low maintenance. Unlike other roofing materials that require routine resealing and other time-consuming maintenance, a replacement rubber roof is more of a “set it and forget it” product. This roofing doesn’t need resealing every year, and can stand up to the elements much better than products like fiberglass or synthetic TPO roofing.
  4. The kit might even be cheaper than repairs. Look closely at your roof and take a true assessment of the situation. Then, you will be able to see what kind of repairs need done and what products you need to buy to do the job. In some cases, you might realize that you need so much stuff to complete a simple repair that a replacement kit is just as easy, and maybe even more affordable.
  5. Rubber roofing kits are DIY-friendly, even for novices. Unlike some roofing products, a rubber roof is fairly simple to install and maintain. Even the newbie RV owner can manage replacing a roof with the right kit, and save a lot of money in the process. Not only do you get everything that you need, but you have an easy long-term solution that you can take care of yourself.

Which RV Replacement Roof Kit Should I Buy?

There are a number of products on the market today. Not all of them are the same. For starters, you need to focus on RV roof replacement kit options, because rubber is the most user-friendly, cost-effective option for RV roofing. Make sure that the kit provides enough materials for the size of your RV, and if not, make sure that you purchase additional kits as needed. Look for reputable brands and ask fellow RVers for recommendations to make sure that you get the best replacement roofing kit for your RV.

Tips for Maintaining Your RV Liquid Roof Coating

Of all the materials used for recreational vehicle roofs, RV roof coating is perhaps the most common material found on today’s vehicles. There are two main types of Liquid roofing: EPDM, or Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer, and TPO, or Thermal Polyolefin. Both are synthetic rubber compounds, but each has its own unique formula, as well as special requirements for maintenance and repairs. You should always consult your RV owner’s manual to determine what type of roof you have and how to best care for it.

If the roof of your RV was replaced with a different material than what was installed by the manufacturer, you may not have this guide on your side. Fortunately, liquid roofing is fairly low maintenance and doesn’t require a lot of upkeep. This durability makes it an economical choice, which is why many manufacturers stick to the RV roof coating, even with an abundance of modern technology and potential opportunities for new roofing solutions. It works, so why change it?

How to Maintain EPDM Roofing

If you install the roof correctly, an EPDM roof is not going to require a lot of maintenance in the early years. Over time, EPDM may need additional resealing of seams and fixture edges, but this is typical regardless of the type of roof that you choose. EPDM is a low maintenance product, but it doesn’t respond well to solvents and oils. Therefore, you should always choose RV cleaning products and RV roof coating materials that are safe for use specifically with this type of material. Otherwise, you could cause extensive damage and ruin the resale value of your RV.

How to Maintain TPO Roofing

TPO roofing provides a durable, sturdy sheet-style installation that is popular among many RVers. It is a newer product than EPDM, but there is some information about maintaining the TPO roof on your RV. For starters, this roof will need more maintenance than an EPDM roof because the seams need regular treatments with adhesive to ensure proper sealing. This constant replacing of the seals can cause additional wear on the seams and result in premature deterioration. However, the increasing availability of TPO-friendly products designed to enhance longevity is helping to combat this. Make sure that you choose roofing materials and coatings that are designed to work with TPO materials.

Liquid Roofing Offers Even Less Maintenance

Liquid RV roofing is growing in popularity because it is versatile, convenient, and cost-effective. The liquid roof creates an additional flexible seal around all of the seams and fixtures on the roof of your RV, adding strength to the caulking that you add to seal everything. Plus, this product self-levels when it is poured, which can eliminate pesky pooling that can lead to damage and water leaks. Liquid roofing is a great choice for those who want the least maintenance and the easiest application. This method requires minimal tools and effort, compared to TPO and EPDM sheet roofing, which require much more time and a variety of tools that the average person might not have on hand.

Annual Cleaning and Inspections

Regardless of whether you choose an RV roof coating or another material for the roof of your RV, regular inspection and cleaning will be your best defense against damage. You should visually inspect the roof of your RV at least twice a year. If it is not stored in a climate-controlled environment or is exposed to extreme temperatures on a regular basis, more frequent inspections may be a good idea.

You should also clean your roof once or twice a year. A simple cleaning with soap and water (or other cleaning products designed for your roof material) can remove dirt, debris, bird droppings, and other items that could cause unnecessary damage or wear to the roof surface. Make sure that you are only using cleaning products designed for the type of roof that you have. Otherwise, as mentioned above, you could do more harm than good.