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Old 11-28-2016, 06:29 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Driftless area, WI
Posts: 19
Year: 2001
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Ford E450
Engine: 7.3l Powerstroke (chipped)
Water leaking down ribs of bus. HELP!!

Hello,

So I got my 2001 Ford/Thomas short bus in August. I have been gutting it, repairing and sealing the floor. The walls are also all off.

The besides sealing the floor the emergency hatch was also leaking so I repaired/sealed that. It has been raining hard for the last 24hrs here in Platteville, WI. So i thought this would be a perfect time to test me sealing job. I was going to go take it for a spin and when I walked in the bus I found some water in it. It is not from the emergency hatch, that seal is holding.

There was tiny streams of water coming down nearly every rib of the bus. It was coming down decently so I thought that it was to fast to be coming from a window leak. So i thought perhaps the roof.

So I just took off one of the aluminum roof panels as I am going to do a wood ceiling anyways. To my surprise it was bone dry up there.

Has anyone had water leaking down the ribs of their bus? Any thoughts are suggestions would be greatly appreciated! Thanks!

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Old 11-30-2016, 12:37 PM   #2
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Driftless area, WI
Posts: 19
Year: 2001
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Ford E450
Engine: 7.3l Powerstroke (chipped)
My roomate and I did some leak testing last night and the source of the leaks is indeed from the windows. Glad i found this out as i almost put down my vapor barrier, insulation, and plywood.

I am going to reseal all of the windows this weekend. I have read some posts on what type of caulk/sealent to use and it looks like automotive seam sealer or butyl caulk is the route to go. I was going to use butyl caulk just beacause i have used it a bunch on this bus so far.

My major issue is i am unsure if these sealents will work well when they are applied around freezing temperatures. We are suppose to have highs around freezing this weekend and lows in the 20s. Does anyone have expierence sealing below freezing temperatures? What did you use and how did it work?
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Old 11-30-2016, 05:00 PM   #3
Bus Crazy
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario
Posts: 1,677
Year: 1997
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: B3800 Short bus
Engine: T444E
Rated Cap: 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by GreenThunder View Post
My roomate and I did some leak testing last night and the source of the leaks is indeed from the windows. Glad i found this out as i almost put down my vapor barrier, insulation, and plywood.
Don't forget that those steel walls already arevapour barriers. You don't want one impermeable vapour barrier up against another since that will sandwich water and let it travel around via capillary action. If that's what you meant, that is...

Quote:
Originally Posted by GreenThunder View Post
My major issue is i am unsure if these sealents will work well when they are applied around freezing temperatures. We are suppose to have highs around freezing this weekend and lows in the 20s. Does anyone have expierence sealing below freezing temperatures? What did you use and how did it work?
I have all sorts of winter caulking experience! The one.. the only sealing caulk that I'll use in the winter is Supra Expert (PDF link). It's a super stretchy solvent-based sealant that can be applied in any temperature. It'll flow nicer, though, if the tube is warmed indoors first.
If you're looking for non-drying sealant then use butyl caulk. All automotive seam sealers I've seen are butyl caulk. It, too, can be applied in any temperature, though it's a bit more tricky to work with since it's viscosity will increase significantly in the cold.
Otherwise wander in to a hardware store with properly knowledgeable staff (as in not HomelessDepot or any other box store) and ask around...
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Old 11-30-2016, 05:14 PM   #4
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Driftless area, WI
Posts: 19
Year: 2001
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Ford E450
Engine: 7.3l Powerstroke (chipped)
Thats great to hear. Can you usual find that at hardware stores or big box stores? Or do you order it. Thanks for help!
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Old 11-30-2016, 05:25 PM   #5
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Driftless area, WI
Posts: 19
Year: 2001
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Ford E450
Engine: 7.3l Powerstroke (chipped)
Quote:
Originally Posted by jazty View Post
Don't forget that those steel walls already arevapour barriers. You don't want one impermeable vapour barrier up against another since that will sandwich water and let it travel around via capillary action. If that's what you meant, that is...
Also the vapor barrier will not go up the walls. I am planning on just covering the floor with it (6mil plastic sheet), then after that lay down 1/2 inch insulation (wish I could go thicker, but fighting for head room), then 1/2 inch plywood.

Would you recommend against this? Should the vapor barrier be in a different order? Perhaps between the insulation and the plywood?

My theory from what I have read on the forum is that the vapor barrier should go in between the insulation and steel floor to prevent condensation from the floor from rotting the insulation. However, I have no experience whatsoever in construction and building materials. I like wood working a lot and am pretty decent at it, but besides that aspect of this conversion I am a complete rookie. What would you do with the vapor barrier?
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