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RV weather seals—also called gaskets or weather stripping—are as important in warm weather as in cold, and warm weather is a much better time to replace them if you do the work yourself. Warm weather keeps rubber gaskets more flexible, making them easier to work with.
You have three very easily understood reasons for renewing weather seals before summer. Seals that are in sound condition:
Weatherstripping is likely to deteriorate around entry doors, storage compartment doors, windows, operating roof vents and slide-outs.
Some weather seals apply with glue, often (but now always) in the form of an adhesive backing on the seals themselves. The adhesive surface is exposed when you peel off a plastic or paper cover. These seals are common on entry doors.
Seals for sliders often are fastened with glue but require an application of liquid adhesive, since they typically don’t come with a pressure-sensitive backing. Some mount in tracks on the RV.
Other weather seals press into place. Many have a slotted surface that attaches to the edge of a window or compartment door, or to an upward-facing, leak-discouraging lip on the frame of a roof vent.
Seals may differ by make and model of RV, but buying more-expensive original equipment seals usually is not necessary. Several manufacturers offer aftermarket window, door and vent gaskets in a range of sizes, styles and prices. They typically have catalogs in RV stores or online charts to help find the proper fit. For instance, if you go to manufacturer Steele Rubber Products’ web page and click on slide-outs, you’ll find single and double bulb seals of varying heights and widths, seals with fins, seals with track mount, and seals with peel-and-stick adhesive, all shown in profile. Matching a seal profile usually turns up a match.
Other replacement gasket suppliers include CR Laurence, Bling-Flagship, Lightman, Minor Rubber, Perma-Fit, Trimlok and Zoro.
For a proper fit:
When buying slider seals, make sure they’re wide enough to overlap or cover the gap between the slide-out and the adjacent, stationary RV wall. That keeps out water, dust, pests and debris.
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