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· quack...
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Far too often, I just don't know where my topics fit best on this site. This isn't about constructing something new but, construction seems relevant enough.

My ex has been living in a small camper for a while. Lots of miserable thoughts in regards to this but, to stay on topic the best I can...... How does a person weatherize such a thing?
This link isn't her exact camper but it's the same one. Used 2006 KZ KZ JAG KZ JAG 28JBSS Travel Trailer - BUNK BEDS!

Two of my children visit there every other weekend and ever Wednesday overnight. Overall, it's just not ideal but something I believe is rather important is, they've been finding their beds wet and even with mold at times.
I do not know(my ex didn't answer) if there's been a leak at all. One child mentioned part of the wall is warped now.

What I DO know is that it for sure has a lot of condensation at the windows. The kids are in the double bunks. If you look at the pictures, there are two windows(one above the other) on the left side of the camper where the bunk bed is.

Without seeing it in person and just trying things myself, I'm not sure what to suggest, and something NEEDS to be suggested at this point. Who wants their child climbing into a bed that is wet and possibly moldy?

Do any of you have some knowledge about how campers like that are built, at least enough to suggest things that could be done to limit condensation at the windows?
One of my kids didn't like the idea of putting plastic over them as they like looking out the window(at what? There's nothing but another camper right next to it... ha) and I get that.
I'm not sure how plastic can be attached to them.

Anyone have any ideas?
 

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I had a similar camper to this. If the wall is actually warped and the bed wet, it probably has a leak in the roof. I had one and it took forever to find it. It took 3 attempts with caulk and black pitch to finally seal it. That just stops the leak, lord only knows if there’s mold in there. After the leak is fixed I would clean those mattresses and walls the best you can. About the only way I can think to possibly get mold out of ceiling and wall interior is to maybe try an ozone machine. It should be torn down and cleaned out, but a camper is a PIA as compared to simply stripping a piece of drywall off in a house.
BTW, campers have one or two roof vents that are supposed to be kept open or cracked even in cold weather for ventilation. If not this will cause worse condensation in the interior.
 

· I love boobies
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When I was building the house we living in a '65 airstream on the property and had condensation problems too. That camper had little windowsills that I would place folded rags on to absorb the moisture and then change them every morning and sometimes in the evening. The propane heater made the condensation worse too.
 

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Campers have condensation problems with or without leaks. Do you have it anywhere in your heart to 1) do some work sealing window trim and roof of camper yourself and 2) buy a dehumidifier for the inside of it? This is for your kids benefit, not your ex.
I lived in a camper with kids for awhile and I had a small dehumidifier sitting on the table and running all winter. The roof did not leak though, that is a separate issue.
It's easy to get seal tape and pull the windows out to replace the seal so they don't leak.
 

· quack...
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Do you have it anywhere in your heart to...
I don't think my helping is an option. Her mother lives in the camper with her. They're both kind of angry people, and the camper is a mess. I can't imagine them wanting me in the property.
But if I can get good enough advice I can pass it along and I believe she has friends that would help her if she asked.
I would help, if I thought it was an option.
I've told my kids several times, if I won the publisher's clearinghouse(about my only chance of getting rich) I'd buy them a duplex or a home with an in-law apartment so that she could still have her mother real close but not be in each other's faces. Sincerely, I would do that if I could. And just as you said, it would be for my kids not her.

I'm not sure if a dehumidifier is an option there or not. It's a bit cramped as it is.
 

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I don't think my helping is an option. Her mother lives in the camper with her. They're both kind of angry people, and the camper is a mess. I can't imagine them wanting me in the property.
But if I can get good enough advice I can pass it along and I believe she has friends that would help her if she asked.
I would help, if I thought it was an option.
I've told my kids several times, if I won the publisher's clearinghouse(about my only chance of getting rich) I'd buy them a duplex or a home with an in-law apartment so that she could still have her mother real close but not be in each other's faces. Sincerely, I would do that if I could. And just as you said, it would be for my kids not her.

I'm not sure if a dehumidifier is an option there or not. It's a bit cramped as it is.
I've lived in an RV for several years. I have first hand experience with how important a dehumidifier is.
 

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Campers are not made to live in year round and most of them are not built very well to handle cold weather.
The walls on the darn things are only 2" thick and every single component is pretty much built to bare minimum standards. Just enough to get the thing sold, off the lot, and down the road.

People that live in them for extended periods (which I wouldn't recommend) generally do things like; install skirting to block wind and cold underneath, put them under some type of canopy or lean-to, upgrade the LP tanks to big ones, add some electric heat, etc., etc.

I just spent 7.5 months in an brand new one while doing a major home renovation. This rig was set up inside our barn and connected to utilities and I hope to never spend another night in one. Had all kinds of little issues and problems and this was a new unit. Campers are for "camping" ..... a few weeks at a time max.
 

· quack...
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Campers are not made to live in year round and most of them are not built very well to handle cold weather.
The walls on the darn things are only 2" thick and every single component is pretty much built to bare minimum standards. Just enough to get the thing sold, off the lot, and down the road.

People that live in them for extended periods (which I wouldn't recommend) generally do things like; install skirting to block wind and cold underneath, put them under some type of canopy or lean-to, upgrade the LP tanks to big ones, add some electric heat, etc., etc.

I just spent 7.5 months in an brand new one while doing a major home renovation. This rig was set up inside our barn and connected to utilities and I hope to never spend another night in one. Had all kinds of little issues and problems and this was a new unit. Campers are for "camping" ..... a few weeks at a time max.
I hear you. I don't think it's where she wants to be(at all) but I think some poor financial decisions have left her with little other choice. Her dream was to live in it while building a house but, I don't see that happening any time in the foreseeable future.
 

· quack...
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
3M has those window insulation kits. Just checked amazon and see they have some you can put on the inside and some you can install on the outside.
Don't ask me why, I don't remember, but I was thinking on the outside might be better or more convenient. But then it says only to install when it's over 50°F and, well at least in the next 10 days or so, the only days above 50 will be rainy.

I will suggest to her the use of a dehumidifier but would those window kits help?
 

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Not without the dehumidifier. I had dual pane windows in the motorhome. Without the dehumidifier we would have been soaked.

I'll bet if they put some sort of humidity monitor in there they'd learn how bad it is. It's very unhealthy for to be above 50%.

Anyone that fulltimes in an RV knows about needing the dehumidifier in the Winter when it's all buttoned up.
 

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I don't think my helping is an option. Her mother lives in the camper with her. They're both kind of angry people, and the camper is a mess. I can't imagine them wanting me in the property.
But if I can get good enough advice I can pass it along and I believe she has friends that would help her if she asked.
I would help, if I thought it was an option.
I've told my kids several times, if I won the publisher's clearinghouse(about my only chance of getting rich) I'd buy them a duplex or a home with an in-law apartment so that she could still have her mother real close but not be in each other's faces. Sincerely, I would do that if I could. And just as you said, it would be for my kids not her.

I'm not sure if a dehumidifier is an option there or not. It's a bit cramped as it is.
You seem like a good guy. There are very small dehumidifiers if it is an option. I have one that used to be in my camper. Now it's in my bathroom and it stands about 8"tall. I could get a pic if you wanted, very small. Also I have seen at RV supply stores there are canisters they sell of a substance that removes excess moisture from the air. The lack of space in a camper is no joke especially with kids and a mom. Thankfully I never had my mom in mine with me. 😂
 

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This one came from Amazon. It truly is small, sits on a small corner shelf of my bathroom. Actually, the kids could have one in their bunk with them if they could put up a shelf.
I've had the brand in this picture and the brand in the link below. I liked the brand in the link a bit better, it was a little louder but it pulled water out of the air a bit faster.
 

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If any one tries to seal joints, around roof vents, windows, etc use urathane caulk. Not silicone, latex or other types. As mentioned already humidifier is helpful.
That works. There is actually a type of putty tape that is used to seal the windows and stuff on campers. It's much easier than it sounds to just remove the windows and joints and replace the tape. That's the "right way" to do it but with older campers it may be more trouble than it's worth. Skylights on campers are the real enemy🤣
 

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That works. There is actually a type of putty tape that is used to seal the windows and stuff on campers. It's much easier than it sounds to just remove the windows and joints and replace the tape. That's the "right way" to do it but with older campers it may be more trouble than it's worth. Skylights on campers are the real enemy
A heat gun or good hair dryer helps warm that putty up and makes the job a lot easier
 

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Weatherizing is not just using a dehumidifier. If you close up everything in the trailer, you will still get higher humidity inside from cooking or just breathing.... You need an air flow letting higher humidity inside air out and lower humidity in.

From what the kids are saying, I'd believe there is some sort of leak in the general area where the roof meets the outside wall. If it can't be located, start by painting the whole roof with a couple coats of elastomeric paint. It'll keep the trailer cooler in the summer too.

Outside, use straw bales around the base of the trailer if skirting is not an option.

Sometimes asking to do something is not a option. Show up with a "gift" of a dehumidifier or tools to caulk saying "the kids told me...."

If the mold is really bad, I would consider not letting the kids stay until the issue fixed.
 

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The dehumidifier needs to be rated for approx 1500 square feet.
If the kids are old enough, you could supply it, and they could carry it in as a gift from them and set it up. Basically you plug it in.
The water catchment compartment will need to be drained a couple times a day for a few days, then probably once per week.

A tarp on the roof wouldn’t hurt in this case at all.

RV living is rustic, but it’s doable, super affordable, I did it for years while building my own home and I’d do it again in a heartbeat…
 

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This one came from Amazon. It truly is small, sits on a small corner shelf of my bathroom. Actually, the kids could have one in their bunk with them if they could put up a shelf.
I've had the brand in this picture and the brand in the link below. I liked the brand in the link a bit better, it was a little louder but it pulled water out of the air a bit faster.
I think this one is too small, just my opinion.

Also dehums only work if the air is warm, if it’s just above freezing it won’t pull moisture.
 
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