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Friday, June 2, 2017

Eternabond Tape and Washing Motorhome Roof

To start off this blog, I just wanted to mention today is a special anniversary. 22 years ago today, Steve and I had our first date!!  A friend from work had set us up and we had spoken on the phone for a few weeks, and finally decided to meet face-to-face.

I was a very busy single mom, selling real estate and handling all the advertising for the firm. It was rare that I could take off an hour or two on a Saturday in between open houses. Steve said he had to leave later that afternoon to pick up some new exhaust pipes for his motorcycle. So we only had about an hour or so to get together.

We arranged to meet at a little ice cream shop not too far from my house, called the Hansen's Dairy on Gray Street in Green Bay.  https://www.facebook.com/Hansens-Dairy-and-Deli-162993840386629/

I was delightfully surprised at this beautiful tall good-looking guy who seemed to be honest and sincere. Ya know, after my dating a few toads who didn't even turn into a frog, much less a prince, I kind of figured out this guy here was a real "Keeper".

He said he found me very easy to talk to and enjoyed the stories I told about camping and kids and dogs. He really loved camping too and we made a good pair.

Hansen's ice cream store was having a promotion with Stewart root beer and they were making root beer floats in these commemorative mason jars that they were giving away. We each saved our jars from that date and we still use them every year for a rootbeer float.

Guess what's for dessert tonight?

Here are some pics of what we looked like way back when----


Okay, enough of that love bird stuff. Now on to the topic of my blog. Back in 2009, we had coated our roof of our motorhome with a layer of elastomeric paint. Here is the blog post from that day.  Coating our RV Roof with Elastomeric Paint   At the same time we had sealed both end caps where the fiberglass meets the roof with a four inch wide swath of Eternabond tape

Sadly, this spring we went to investigate the motorhome after sitting out in the winter snow, and realized we had a roof leak!! Upon further examination Steve found two little areas that he felt the Eternabond tape had come loose or worn through with two little holes. I personally think it was from a tree branch somewhere last fall.

Either way, it let the ice and water get into a little gap which left a huge stain on the ceiling of our motorhome. Steve immediately sealed the gap on the roof with some Dicor brand RV caulk and that took care of the leak. On the inside I spritzed the ceiling with the Fantastic/Scrubbing Bubbles/Oxy Power solution, scrubbed with hot water and white terrycloth rags, and the stain faded away to almost nothing.

(best stuff EVER for removing roof leak stains from white carpeted RV ceilings!) 

But just to be sure this didn't happen again, we ordered a wider roll of the Eternabond tape to go over the existing layer.  6" x 10 feet ordered from Walmart for $35.90 plus $4.50 shipping.

It came the other day, and Steve decided it was time to scrub the roof really well before applying the Eternabond. Using TSP cleaner, and a good stiff brush, he scrubbed the roof from one end to the other. He uses our pressure washer to spray it off, but not under heavy pressure. He sets it very light. Also he uses hot water from the house in the hose. He had added a valve in the basement to turn our outside water spigot from cold to hot if need be. Very handy~

Here is all of his equipment getting set up on the ground. He said there was really no need for me to go up on the roof with him, although I did help with the initial application of the elastomeric paint years ago. This time I just got to stand on the ground and hand him things as needed.

He loves his telescoping ladder and keeps it in the storage compartment on the motorhome. He has two foam blocks that are used for hauling canoes or kayaks on the rooftop of a car. He puts them on each side of the ladder so it does not mark up the painted fiberglass of the motorhome. This kinda grips it and doesn't let it slide from side to side either.

Yep, this is the before picture. What a filthy mess! I gave Steve the camera to take these pictures up there. The paint is flaking off our Maxi Air vent covers. I asked him to remove those now so I can take off the rest of the chipping paint. Maybe some fingernail polish remover acetone will do it?

Yes, those are our solar panels up there. We have five 100 watt panels which adequately provide us plenty of power for the for deep cycle batteries that we use when boondocking.

Just look at how filthy dirty this thing is,
 and all the dirt running down the side of off the roof.


So here is my guy up there working hard in the morning before it got too hot out.  The temps were in the mid 70's and there was a nice breeze too.

Once he gets the roof done, he has to quickly drop down and wash the sides before the TSP leaves streaky marks.

Steve uses an automotive car wash solution in his bucket for the sides of the motorhome. We do not use Dawn dish soap because it can strip off our finish. 

Our motorhome sides never needs any wax. It's never been waxed in the 21 years since it was made. It has a special Mercedes paint, with layers of clear coat over it. All it needs is automotive car wash soap and a little light brushing and a rinse---  Voila it's done.

The stainless steel door panels on the lower portion must never ever be scrubbed or polished with anything, There is a protective coating on it. Once you accidentally strip that coating off, then you always have to clean them with scouring stainless steel cleaners. Other people with the same type of motorhome found out the hard way to never remove that coating.  Now they have to polish it all of the time. So we are very careful to never remove the coating on our stainless steel doors.

I went up on our back shaker porch and snapped this picture when he was done. It looks pretty clean from here and he said it was like night and day as he scrubbed off the roof.

Here is the area of the two little holes that were in the old tape. I think something poked through there, or rubbed it down to the horizontal seam you can see. That is where we think the water intruded and froze and left a gap over the winter. The few times we went in the rig during the winter we didn't see any evidence of a roof leak, so I think it just leaked this spring after the ice melted

Here is the new roll of the wide Eternabond that we bought. I snapped a picture of the label but we will store the label and receipt away because there is a 25-year warranty on it. This is some of the best stuff out there and almost any RV repair place will recommend Eternabond sealing products.

Steve waited until the roof was good and dry later in the afternoon. He came back from one of his old fart party bus runs and went back up on the roof to apply the Eternabond.

Look what a nice neat job he did! He rolled over it with a small wooden wallpaper roller. He applied a lot of pressure. The more you squish as you roll the tape, the more it mixes the chemicals inside the tape material to create a good bond. Now they also include a little tube of sealant with the Eternabond tape to go around all of the edges. He did that too,

What a great job, and thanks to Steve
we can now rest assured that we will not have
 another roof leak
hopefully ever again.

While I was relaxing out in the backyard in my chaise lounge (watching Steve work) I shot this little film of our silly dogs. They so totally enjoy their "Big Backyard". Just watch them race around. Those are some really happy dogs:

It looks like our weekend is not going to contain any camping. Steve is helping his brother today with building a retaining wall with some big stones that were delivered at his new house he just built. Then we are going to be helping out with some items over at the Calumet County Historical Museum before the big opening for the season on Sunday.

Also, I am working today on a donation quilt for the Wisconsin Sheltie rescue. We adopted our Shelties from this great organization. This year is their 20th year in existence and they are having a reunion in June. I usually donate a couple items for the silent auction to help with fundraising.

This year I found some really cute doggie material in prints and I am working on some blocks. I'm almost ready to start putting them together with blue strips in between. I only have two weeks to get it done so I better get my butt in gear.

I think I'm going to toss a couple steaks and baked taters on the grill tonight, and of course we will have our anniversary root beer floats in our little mason jars.

What a lucky girl I was to find this wonderful man 22 years ago, and I think if you asked him, he would say the same thing too!


  1. It is great to read you blog. I had a repaired a similar leak about 45 days ago and now I know another approach to the problem. I look forward top reading your next contribution.

  2. Congratulations on your special anniversary.
    It's a constant chore maintaining an RV.
    Good luck with the quilt.
    Be Safe and Enjoy!

    It's about time.

  3. Congrats, love the tradition of RB floats. Becki


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