How to Caulk an RV Rubber Roof

How to Caulk an RV Rubber Roof
Rubber RV roofs, also known as EPDM roofs, are sturdy and long-lasting. They do require regular maintenance, however. Clean and inspect your RV roof every three months to determine whether it needs repair. During your inspection, check the condition of the caulking. Save yourself the time and hassle and only repair or replace areas of caulking that need it. Pulling up perfectly good caulking is a waste of time and effort.


Difficulty: Moderate

Things You’ll Need:
  • Stiff-bristled household cleaning brush
  • Liquid dish soap
  • Garden hose
  • Rag
  • Isopropyl alcohol
  • Disposable gloves
  • Self-leveling butyl rubber caulk
  • Caulking gun
  • Utility knife
Step 1
Choose a day to caulk your RV roof when no rain is anticipated for the next 24 hours, unless your RV is parked in an indoor space.
Step 2
Clean your RV roof with a stiff-bristled household cleaning brush and soapy water, made with liquid dish soap. Rinse the soap off the roof using a garden hose. Wait for the roof to completely dry before moving on to the next step. If you have a roof leak, skip washing and rinsing the roof. Instead, spot clean the areas you will be working on, using a rag and isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol).
Step 3
Inspect the caulking around the seams of the roof and around the vents, air conditioners and other roof appliances. Look for cracked, loose and missing caulking.
Step 4
Put on a pair of disposable gloves.
Step 5
Place a tube of self-leveling butyl rubber caulk inside a caulking gun and cut the tip off the tube of caulk. Self-leveling butyl rubber caulk is available at RV supply stores.
Step 6
Squeeze a small amount of caulk on top of cracked caulking. Only use enough caulk to cover the crack. When laying the caulking, consider that butyl rubber caulking expands to twice the size as it dries. Smooth out the caulking with a gloved finger.
Step 7
Pull up any loose caulking. Keep pulling on the loose caulking until it no longer easily pulls up and you reach a good area of caulking. Cut the end of the pulled-up caulking using a utility knife and leave the good caulking in place.
Step 8
Clean the area where the caulking was removed, using a rag and isopropyl alcohol. Also, clean any areas on the roof where the caulking is missing.
Step 9
Squeeze the butyl rubber caulk in the area where you removed the old caulking and in areas of missing caulking. Use enough caulk to cover the seams, remembering that the caulking will double its size as it dries. Use a gloved finger to smooth out the caulk.
Step 10
Check the new caulking in 24 hours after it is fully set to make sure that you did not miss any spots. Caulk any areas that you missed.

Article Written By Rose Kivi

Rose Kivi has been a writer for more than 10 years. She has a background in the nursing field, wildlife rehabilitation and habitat conservation. Kivi has authored educational textbooks, patient health care pamphlets, animal husbandry guides, outdoor survival manuals and was a contributing writer for two books in the Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader Series.

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