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Oh No!! Damp Problems Again


Big Tim

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:(:( Many of you may remember my posts earlier this summer regarding resealing all of my van. I did this after the annual service in May identified some areas of high damp meter readings. The dealer recommended having parts of the van resealed. As I had recently become unemployed I saved money and used my time by resealing the whole van myself.

 

However whilst away this weekend I found a small(3-4 sq inches) "soft" area in the rear nearside corner where the back and nearside wall join.

 

Very concerned I took the van into a local dealer (A) on the way back from our holiday. The dealer (A) found damp readings of 60 down the rear nearside corner. Dealer (A) said that the rear corner awning rail and rear awning rails would need to be removed and resealed. The rear and side internal wallboards would need to be removed and replaced. As the wallboards are inside the fitted wardrobe all of the wardrobe would have to be taken out. Dealer (A) esxtimated that this would require 20-30 hours work at £35/hour (ie, £700-£1050), 2 sheets of wallboard and screws and other sundries. I WAS STUNNED.

 

I then returned to the dealer (B) who had carried out the service in May. Dealer (B)carried out another damp test (£15!!). He confirmed the findings of the other dealer (A). Dealer (B), however, said that he did not think it was worth replacing the wallboard and suggested only resealing 3 lengths of awning rail at a total cost of £285 and drying out the wallbord with an electric heater myself.

 

I can see no point in resealing the rails again as I did that really carefully and thoroughly and I find it hard to believe anyone could do it better.

 

My real dilema is whose advice, Dealer (A) or Dealer (B), do I follow regarding the replacement or nor of the wallboards!?

 

If I leave it am I risking damp spreading throughout the caravan?!

 

Is it possible to dry out the wall from the inside?!

 

 

The good news was that the damp readings in other places had improved.

 

I'd appreciate any comments or advice

 

Thanks

 

Tim

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Guest Hobbybod
:(  :( . . . . . . .

However whilst away this weekend I found a small(3-4 sq inches) "soft" area in the rear nearside corner where the back and nearside wall join.

 

. . . . .

Is it possible to dry out the wall from the inside?!

The good news was that the damp readings in other places had improved.

 

I'd appreciate any comments or advice

 

Thanks

 

Tim

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Tim further to my rather 'negative' comments in the other forum, I thought the following 'treatment' I did on the back of my Mardon, prior to the factory 're-build', could be helpful.

 

I was preparing the 'van for holiday one June and opened the large back window to help air the 'van out, one sunny day. I then noticed that, without the closed window giving some strength to the rear panel, the pack panel around the nearside grab handle was extremely weak and flexible. Tightening the grab-handle nuts just drove them through the body work. Both damp and rot had severely weakened the back panel around the window frame and grab-handle.

 

At the time, expanded polyurethane foam (in spray cans) had just started to be available in DIY form, so I dried out the cavity as best I could and 'hardened' the effected wooden window framing etc. with resin, and then injected foam into the cavity around the grab-handles and window frame.

 

Now this has to be done very carefully as the foam expands (up to 20X original volume) and sets, in response to moisture.

 

The pressure developed by the expanding and setting foam can be considerable, so it's very important to clamp together (with boards) the inner and outer skins of the panel, otherwise the pressure will push them apart!!

 

Leave the clamped boards in place for >a day. When finally set, you have an insulation of expanded polyurethane which bonds the inner and outer skins together. This resulted in completely curing the 'soft patch' and greatly increased the strength of the back panel such that there was no flexing when the rear window was open.

 

Subsequently, when Mardon totally replaced the back panel, the workshop guy said they had great difficulty in removing the 'repaired' panel because of it's strength and the bonding of inner and outer 'skins'!!

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Guest mr_sheens

you cannot dry wallboard out whilst in situ in the caravan by the use of dryers or dehumidifiers. 60% would suggest there might be a risk of the wallboard decaying. my advice would be to have it resealed and monitor how the wallboard goes. once it has been sealed it should stop any more water getting in. at this point the trapped water will naturally "dry" by spreading itself out thinner into fresh timber "capillery action". if at the point the wallboard does decay, then have it removed and replaced. i only every remove wallboard unless its absolutely necessary!

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