Permanent Roof Repair

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Photo Credit: Bob Livingston

Wood roller is used to smooth out the surface of the tape and to ensure proper bonding of the adhesive.

by Bill and Jenn Gehr
March 25, 2014
Filed under Gear, Gear Reviews, RV News

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EternaBond Tape Makes Short Work out of Sealing Damaged Membranes that can Lead to Mildew, Mold and Dry Rot

 

Rubber roofs made from EPDM or TPO material are lightweight and pliable, but are vulnerable to damage caused by tree branches that can result in tears or rips in the membrane. Left untreated, water damage will lead to mold, mildew and dry rot — leading to extensive and expensive repairs. Fiberglass and aluminum roofs are susceptible to cracks or oxidation. Over time, all roof coverings will require some sort of care. EternaBond RoofSeal is a micro-sealant tape that will stop any leak in its tracks. The bonding strength is unsurpassed, and yes, we found out the hard way; the tape cannot be removed once it’s in place. EternaBond tape is pressure activated and UV stable. With a shelf life of five years, the company’s patch tape is a must-have for any motorhome tool kit. The bonding strength is so good that no other sealant is required along the edge of the tape — and the tape will easily last the life of the motorhome.

EternaBond can be used to make a lap seam for a large patch on any type of roof material and is available in white, black, gray and aluminum colors. It comes in 50-foot rolls in 2-inch widths and 25- or 50-foot rolls in 4- and 6-inch widths, which for practical purposes, are the best sizes for on-the-road toolboxes. Widths up to 48 inches and a double-stick version are also available. It can even be rolled up into a ball for patching holes or cracks. Many RV supply stores will cut the material as needed and sell it by the foot.

Left: Tape is available in widths up to 48 inches, but the 2- and 4- (shown) and 6-inch versions are most practical for typical repairs. Right: It’s best to remove the backing as the tape is put in place; the adhesive is super sticky.

Left: Tape is available in widths up to 48 inches, but the 2- and 4- (shown) and 6-inch versions are most practical for typical repairs. Right: It’s best to remove the backing as the tape is put in place; the adhesive is super sticky.

The tape was applied to a slideout roof that had developed a leak large enough to allow water into the motor­home during heavy rains, and it was only a matter of time before the structure would became permanently damaged. As always, preparation is the key to success. Before starting, the surfaces must be cleaned thoroughly. Acetone was used for the heavy cleaning after washing, followed by a wiping with alcohol. The tape was then cut carefully to fit the length of area to be repaired and laid in place. Using a felt-tip pen, the location was marked for the installation of the tape. Shorter pieces can usually be handled by one person, but you’ll need one or two helpers to set the longer lengths of tape.
It’s important to take your time when installing EternaBond tape, as once it touches, the roof adhesion is instantaneous. It’s easier to start at one end and peel the backing slowly as the tape is laid in place, using the markings as a guide. Each piece should be overlapped at least ½-inch. A heavy wood roller is then used to ensure proper bonding of the adhesive.
Total installation time will vary depending upon prepping and cleaning; this install took about an hour. The price for the EternaBond RoofSeal varies, depending on size. For example a 50-foot roll of 2-inch tape is $46.05; 25 feet of 4-inch tape is $50.50 and 50 feet retails for $84.39. The 6-inch material is $75.76 and $126.58 for the 25- and 50-foot rolls, respectively.
No one wants to think about motor­home roof damage, but if it happens, EternaBond will seal the hole quickly and permanently.

EternaBond | 800-248-4010 | www.eternabond.com

 

 

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