Caulking Guide?

I'd like to do a thorough check of everywhere on my [email protected] that may require fresh caulk.  Has anybody put together a guide of where to check and what to not refresh?  I know I can do a walk-around and use my own eyes to figure out where caulk should go, but I might miss a spot or put caulk somewhere it's not needed.  E.g., I understand that caulk is not needed around the colored trim pieces.

Thanks in advance,

Matt
Matt
Appleton, Wisconsin
2006 [email protected] 320 S ("Fireball")
TV: 2007 Nissan Pathfinder

Comments

  • lkc001lkc001 Posts: 458Member
    great idea!--also what kind of caulk to use/where.  I do know not to use silicone.  
    2016 Nissan Frontier SV V6 4x4
    Finally!  New Owner of a 2017 Tab 320S! 
    Woohoo!
  • ScottGScottG Posts: 3,242Moderator
    Look in the "Users Manuals..." category under "Maintenance Notices."
  • mgreen2mgreen2 Posts: 48Member
    annual inspection recommendations from NuCamp. Use marine type polyurethane caulk.

     
  • mdomb529mdomb529 Posts: 11Member
    Thanks!  This is great!
    Matt
    Appleton, Wisconsin
    2006 [email protected] 320 S ("Fireball")
    TV: 2007 Nissan Pathfinder
  • lkc001lkc001 Posts: 458Member
    I'm not understanding exactly where "under the wheelwell" picture.  1.  Are they talking about what appears to be a metal bar or short section of "frame" between the plastic wheelwell & the underbelly cover?  2.  When they are talking about "between the sidewall and wheelwell, under the fender, do they mean where the wheelwell & sidewall meet on the drivers or passengers side?  Like just run a bead of caulk along the curve of the wheelwell?  and; 3.  Exactly where on "under the door frame"?  Do they mean the area between the metal framing/weephole of the doorjamb & the red plastic trim in this pic?                                                                                                I really wish some arrows would have been used like in the photos of the seal around the front window--THAT is clear and detailed.  Some of this doesn't just come naturally to some of us.  TIA for any explanations.  
    2016 Nissan Frontier SV V6 4x4
    Finally!  New Owner of a 2017 Tab 320S! 
    Woohoo!
  • lkc001lkc001 Posts: 458Member
    bump? anyone?
    2016 Nissan Frontier SV V6 4x4
    Finally!  New Owner of a 2017 Tab 320S! 
    Woohoo!
  • BaylissBayliss Posts: 347Member
    @lkc001, I agree 100% with you that the information provided by nüCamp is lacking in clarity.  If they are monitoring these posts (they must, because they often incorporate the very clever modifications of forum members), then they should fix this particular factory maintenance notice, adding additional photos and a detailed explanation.

    I found this link, which may help, but in addition to that, read on:

    https://tab-rv.vanillacommunity.com/discussion/6471/important-maintenance-reminders

    As I believe you have already alluded to, the only obvious location in the first photo is the horizontal bar indicated with a yellow arrow in the photo below.  You can see the caulk/sealant along that section of metal.  I have not looked closely at the frame around the wheel well, but I presume it looks the same on the frame both forward and to the rear of each wheel.



    Although I could not quickly locate it on this forum, I searched through my files and found the following info that was posted by @Michigan_Mike in May 2016.  It has a slightly better explanation of why the factory sent out the maintenance notice.  I have also included some additional (itemized) info regarding the specific areas involved, which I assume are responses to questions posed by @Michigan_Mike (or someone else?)  I highlighted the most important information:

    ATTENTION! - Special Factory Maintenance Notice

    Michigan_Mike (May 2016):

    This information was passed along to me by the factory and they asked that we share this with forum members, so please take a few moments to read it:

    If your trailer is 1 year or older, we want to encourage you to properly maintain it.  As you prepare for the camping season, it is vital that you do this – and it’s the perfect time before you start travelling/camping. 

    Perhaps the most important thing you can do is to check the seals.  If any of the seals are cracked, you must re-caulk them.  From time to time we have clients contact us with 2 and 3 year old trailers that have experienced some level of water damage.  Upon investigation, the reason, more often than not, is that they did not stay on top of the seals.  We don’t want anyone to experience water damage – it can lead to something ugly, like stained or swollen wood or something horrendous like an entire floor or sidewall replacement, depending on the trailer. 

    1.   Door. Yes, under the silver door frame, not under the (red) trim.

    2.   Fender. There was no picture of that.  If you look at your trailer from the side, you will need to remove the actual fender – 7 total screws.  5 on the fender itself…Be careful not to miss the 2 on the bottom that screw into the adjacent trim pieces.

    3.   Wheel Well.  The picture of the black material with black caulk is for the wheel well.  Caulk both sides.

    4.   Kind of caulk to use:  Any caulk that is exterior protected.


    And, @lkc001, as far as the wheel wells, based on what I read, it appears that you will want to check the areas around the wheel well indicated by the yellow arrows in the photo below.  AND, after removing the wheel fender, the area around where the fender attaches to the sidewall of the trailer (red arrow.)  I am guessing that once you remove the fender, you will see the sealant used at the factory and will also see any potential cracks/gaps that have formed over time.  It would probably be a good idea to put some caulk/sealant in the screw holes as well before reattaching the fenders.  (NOTE:  back in June 2016, @SweetlyHome posted some photos and info on what they found when they removed their fenders.  I could not find the original post, but they did find cracks in the sealant.)


    As far as the door, this is a photo that @Michigan_Mike included in his post:


    I am assuming that you need to seal the area under the metal where the arrow is pointing.

    Bottom line of all this is that you should, at least annually, check ALL areas where there is caulking/sealant, both inside and out of the trailer, and re-seal as needed.

    Sorry for the long post, but I hope it helps.  (Greg)

    2019 [email protected] 320 S Boondock Lite; Alde Compact 3020 Boiler; 2007 Toyota Tundra TRD (5.7L V8)
    Greg & Marlene (Tucson, AZ)


  • lkc001lkc001 Posts: 458Member
    @Bayliss ; Thank you for replying and for confirming what I think is a great lack of information on their "maintenance" caulking.   

    When I look at my Tab, I see NO evidence of caulking between the plastic wheel well trim and the outside wall.  The plastic trim is just screwed into the Tab sidewall.  I can see daylight in the spaces between the screws.  I also would think it would be a concern to take the trim off every year?  Won't that weaken the screw holes over time?  The side walls are not solid metal or wood with permanent threaded attachments.   Then what if the screw holes won't even hold the trim in place? 

    I can clearIy see from the INSIDE passenger bench seat the caulking painted around the wheel well, which makes sense to check this and reapply as needed, but again, WHERE on the outside does caulking go? 

    I also see NO evidence of any caulking between the metal frame of the door and the plastic trim that runs along the bottom of the Tab.   

    Your arrows and suggestions were much better than Nucamps, but again, where exactly are we supposed to check for cracks in the caulking if there is none there to being with? 

     If any of the moderators that are in touch with Nucamp are reading this, can we please ask them to provide GOOD pictures of exactly where we are supposed to caulk?  This would include them taking pictures with the wheel well trim taken off and show exactly where we are supposed to caulk.  This is one thing that I do find unacceptable for the caliber of manufacturer that is Nucamp.  

    Of if anyone else has pics of where the caulking is supposed to go, can you please post clear pictures of the caulking?

    Would be greatly appreciated.  Thank you
    2016 Nissan Frontier SV V6 4x4
    Finally!  New Owner of a 2017 Tab 320S! 
    Woohoo!
  • SweetlyHomeSweetlyHome Posts: 231Member
    @Bayliss ;
    It took some doing but I found that 2016 posting.  There was a lot of discussion on the caulk to be used and I'm not promoting one over the other.

    https://tab-rv.vanillacommunity.com/discussion/comment/40879#Comment_40879
    Dave and Katie~Jupiter, [email protected] 2012 L with 2018 Toyota 4Runner

       
  • BaylissBayliss Posts: 347Member
    edited October 8
    @SweetlyHome, I was hoping you would fill in the blanks.  Thank you!  

    @lkc001, it is interesting that you found no caulking where the fender attaches to the sidewall, or under the door frame.  Another reason why it would be very helpful if nüCamp could update their maintenance bulletin with very specific and updated information.  Maybe they have found no need to caulk those areaa, or maybe there has been some modification made to those areas since 2016, although I doubt it.  However, if they did make a relevant design change, it would be greatly appreciated if they would share that info.

    I do agree with you wholeheartedly that removing the fender screws multiple times is likely to result in them becoming ineffective.  It is already a common problem that the screws throughout the exterior of the trailer become loose and need to be checked regularly.

    In response to your specific question about where to caulk if there is no caulk present to begin with, I would say that you should only need to caulk places where you can see cracked or obviously missing sealant.  However, if you can see light coming through an opening that is obviously exposed to the elements (i.e., rain, snow, dust, etc.) and is likely to eventually cause damage to the interior of your camper, caulk those as well.  Use a polyurethane based caulk, because silicone will not adhere properly to the fiberglass/Azdel exterior of the trailer.  I have noticed an exposed area around the cutout for the outside 110v plug where light and air is clearly penetrating through the sidewall of the camper, so I have been intending to use some spray foam to seal that off, because the gap is too wide for sealing with caulk.

    I await (along with you) nüCamp's input.
    2019 [email protected] 320 S Boondock Lite; Alde Compact 3020 Boiler; 2007 Toyota Tundra TRD (5.7L V8)
    Greg & Marlene (Tucson, AZ)


  • lkc001lkc001 Posts: 458Member
    @Bayliss ; Thank you for your responses, and I agree with you.  When I say "I see daylight".  It is not a water instrusion area, nor will it get into the tab interior.  I don't know if the 2017 is different from other models either.  My plastic fender trim has screws going around the rounded part of the trim, screwing directly into the outside wall of the trailer.  There is just light between some of the screw holes between the plastic fender trim & the trailer wall.  It is just a matter of a few places where the fender trim is not completely flush up against the trailer wall.  No  water intrusion points, no caulking there now-- just 5-6 screws that hold the fender trim on.  So again, I don't know what they are talking about caulking behind the fender trim--there is no caulking there now.  I find this lack of information and clear pics frustrating. 

    Until I can get some more info and pics I don't think I am going to be removing the screws on the fender trim every year.  I just think that is a recipe for stripping out those screw holes permanently.  
     
    Thank you for the tip about the exposed area around the outside 110v plug--I will look at that.  My plan is to get on the ground again on my back and look for more areas where I would be able to clearly see caulking and reapply as needed.  


    2016 Nissan Frontier SV V6 4x4
    Finally!  New Owner of a 2017 Tab 320S! 
    Woohoo!
  • lkc001lkc001 Posts: 458Member
    @SweetlyHome ; Thank you so much for the link to your post!  Now I see what they are talking about--it's actually behind & lower on the wall and they are talking about the actual wheel well!  Geez , Nucamp--your instructions are so unclear. . . . .  I'm going to try to get to that without taking off the plastic fender trim.  
    2016 Nissan Frontier SV V6 4x4
    Finally!  New Owner of a 2017 Tab 320S! 
    Woohoo!
  • BaylissBayliss Posts: 347Member
    After reading @lkc001's last comment and going back and looking closer at @SweetlyHome's photos, I too now see the specific area involved.  I was planning on taking a look at that area from inside the camper to see if there is any caulking there, but I can now see how it makes sense to ensure it is sealed in that same area from the outside.  My 320S is still fairly new, plus I have it stored in a covered facility, so it is not really an issue currently.  However, in the future I will pull off the fenders and give it a look.  Thanks again to both of you for the discussion and information.
    2019 [email protected] 320 S Boondock Lite; Alde Compact 3020 Boiler; 2007 Toyota Tundra TRD (5.7L V8)
    Greg & Marlene (Tucson, AZ)


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