RV Renovation – It’s More Work Than We Thought!

The renovations on the RV continue to take up our weekends.  When we agreed to purchase it we did not really know how much work was going to be involved!  Of course we are still very happy with our decision.  We have never shied away from sweat equity projects!

The leaky roof was much more of a problem than we originally assumed and there has been a lot of water damage.  Mike took two full weekends tackling the problem.  He cleaned out all of the old caulking from the roof seems, re-caulked everything and added new screws.  Then he covered all of the seems with a special type of RV roofing tape (which I highly recommend as an economical way to fix a leaky RV roof).  It was a lot of work but….no more leaks!!!

Fixing the roof!

I tackled the inside with a bucket of soapy water, a toothbrush, rags, and the occasional spray of bleach.  The motorhome had been rented out previously and had not been cleaned yet from the renter.  I scrubbed away someone else’s dirt and cleaned all of the surface mould from the roof leaks for two full days.  Yuck!

The walls were in pretty bad shape.  After we took off the ugly window treatments there were many screw holes and peeling pink and blue wall paper.  I took a scraper to all the holes, filled them with drywall filler, then sanded until relatively smooth.  Thanks to the Internet I found out I could paint over the wallpaper.  The first coat was a oil based primer (stinky!) that has to be used so that the water based paint does not make the wallpaper peel and bubble.  I want the motorhome to be super cheery with a lot of funk so I chose a really pretty yellow for the walls.

The old blue and pink in the cupboards and the new cheery yellow on the walls!

This was the first time I have ever seen carpet pulled up and I now truly understand how disgusting carpet is!  So much dirt and muck!  Carpet really just acts like a giant sponge and sucks everything down into its dirty depths.  Underneath the underlay was a fine layer of dirt.

Now you see it……


Now you don’t!

And what is it with putting carpet in the bathroom?   Who had the bright idea that carpet under a toilet was a good thing?  SOOOO gross.  This is where my trusty bleach bottle was employed extensively!

Carpet under a toilet = NASTY

Mike took out all the windows and used spray foam insulation around the openings to make the motorhome more airtight and then re-caulked the outside of them to stop water leaks.

Newly insulated window frame

Pulling apart and fixing up a motorhome has been a good lesson for us in just how they are put together.  Our conclusion is that the manufacturing process is done very cheaply and without much thought to eventual water damage and insulation gaps!

There is still so much work to do but it is starting to come together.  Hopefully in another month or so we will be ready for the camping season!

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  1. Kirsty says:

    Hi there, I’ve just found your blog and have enjoyed reading so far. Your RV looks fab, I can’t wait to see the final result. How long do you think it will all take?

    We might have to do similar if we find a campervan that suits us, fits our budget, but needs an overhaul. I like the idea of updating the decor, but not all the yucky cleaning!

    I love that your kids are thinking a home country trip is just as exciting as an overseas trip too. We’re the same as we’re planning to travel round the UK and Ireland next year. It *feels* really safe and not as exciting as what we could do, but really the kids are so excited (as is my not well travelled husband!) and we do love our country.

    Good luck with it all!

    1. worldschooled says:

      We have actually slowed down on the renovation…Mike has been working everyday for the past three weeks! Yuck!

      We are almost done though…some little things left, I have to sew more curtain and figure out what we are going to do for curtain rods…A few more days of work and we should have it done.

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