In recent years teardrop campers have become immensely popular. A teardrop camper is a type of travel trailer that is small and easily towable by most cars, SUVs, and trucks.
These campers are easily recognizable by their unique shape. They are round on one end and tapered on the other (this isn’t always the case, some are more boxy or triangular).
Yet, if you’re considering purchasing one of these campers, you need to research to find out more about the problems it could have. That’s why to help speed up the process; we have discussed everything you should know about teardrop campers and water leaks.
Here’s Where Teardrop Campers Leak:
Often Teardrop campers designed with a single shell of molded fiberglass have a higher chance of not presenting any leaks during their lifetime. However, some will start to present water leaks before the five-year mark. If it does leak, you can find it by the doors, windows, galley, and roof vents.
1. When Do Teardrop Campers Typically Start Leaking?
When a teardrop camper typically starts leaking will depend on the brand that manufactured it, how well it was constructed, and what RV materials were used to make it.
In most instances, a well-constructed teardrop camper won’t leak until it is between five and ten years old.
However, some will start to present water leaks before the five-year mark, while others (few) can pass the 10-year mark without leaking. As we mentioned, a few teardrop campers claim never to leak, but this remains largely untested.
2. Do Teardrop Campers Leak More Than Other Types Of Campers?
Unfortunately, teardrop campers are known for leaking more than other types of campers. This is because most teardrop campers, especially the older models, are not four-season proof.
This means that they are not designed to be used in four-season weather and are not designed with materials capable of withstanding inclement weather for long durations of time.
Essentially, when a teardrop camper is exposed to bad weather consistently and is not designed to withstand bad weather, it will start presenting leaks.
Additionally, many regular teardrop campers are not designed to be as durable as normal fifth wheel, toy haulers, and travel trailer campers. That’s why many will start to break down sooner and display signs of wear and tear faster, leading to more water leaks.
3. Where Do Teardrop Campers Typically Leak?
As with most campers, there are a few places on a teardrop camper where water leaks occur more often.
Below we have briefly listed a few places water leaks commonly occur on teardrop campers:
Many campers have reported that their roof vents leak because of deteriorated caulking or sealant.
This usually occurs because of incorrectly installed roof vents.
Another common place for water leaks to occur is in the galley. Usually, with galley leaks, foam gasket tape placement around the perimeter of a teardrop camper’s hatch is incorrect.
Instead of a person lining the gasket tape perfectly with the rubber bulb seal, an RV owner should position the tape as far forward as possible along the underside of the galley hatch.
Doing this will create a ‘drip catch’ allowing running water to drop into a gutter, preventing leaks.
By the Windows:
Some teardrop camper owners have noticed leaking into their motorhome from the sliding windows of their camper.
Usually, this occurs because the seals have too much ‘wiggle room,’ which allows water to seep inside.
By the Doors:
Many people experience rain leaking underneath their teardrop camper doors. This is often caused by seals that are not doing their job.
It should also be noted that teardrop campers often leak when being towed through the rain. Often campers will find the water coming in through the windows, under the door, and through roof vents.
That’s why you should consider taking precautions to seal these areas if you know you will be driving through bad rainy weather.
4. How Much Will It Actually Cost To Fix A Leak On Teardrop Campers?
How much it will cost to fix a leak on a teardrop camper will depend on how severe the water leak is and how much damage has occurred.
Often a leak repair can cost between $20 and $1,000. For example, window leaks on a teardrop camper can cost as little as $20 if you only need to reapply caulk.
Yet, if you have a plumbed toilet in your teardrop camper, you can expect to pay about $130 to have the leak repaired. Additionally, if you have a refrigerator leak to repair, you can expect to pay up to $1,000, depending on the size of your fridge.
Moreover, those experiencing roof leaks can expect to pay hundreds if not thousands of dollars because labor costs will need to be paid alongside materials.
5. How Hard Is It To Fix A Leaking ROOF On Teardrop Models?
Firstly, if you plan on fixing your teardrop camper’s roof, you need to know that you will likely need to have someone helping you.
This is because it can become difficult finding the leaks on your own and then fix them without assistance. Secondly, you need to remember that how you fix your teardrop campers’ roof will depend on the type of material it is made of.
If you know the severity of the damage, have someone to help you, know what you’re doing, and have the right tools, you can easily complete a DIY roof repair job on a teardrop camper.
Yet, it can be incredibly time-consuming (although admittedly faster than larger campers) because there are several steps in each roof repair process.
6. How Hard Is It To Fix A Leaking WINDOW On Teardrop Models?
Fixing a leaking window on a teardrop camper is significantly easier than fixing a roof leak.
This is because most window leaks are caused by deteriorated caulking or sealant on the seams. Interestingly, not all window leaks on teardrop campers are permanent, as some only occur when the camper is being towed through heavy rain.
If a leak is only occurring during transit, it’s usually best to seal the windows, roof vents, and doors. This process is as simple as taping the windows after placing plastic over them to keep water out. To seal the door, you can use old rolled-up towels or rubber at the bottoms to prevent water from entering.
Additionally, it’s often best to cover the roof vents with plastic and tape them as well, as you would do with the windows.
Should the leaks by the window be permanent and occur even when the teardrop camper is stationary, your first step would be to see if there is deteriorated caulking. If there is, you will need to scrape out the old caulking.
After doing that, you will have to prep the area with a cleaner so that you can apply a new layer of sealant. This isn’t overly difficult, but it can be time-consuming and also tiring, considering that you have to take care not to scratch the windows.
If your window leaks after this, you might have to consider consulting an RV repair technician for assistance.
7. How Do You Inspect A Water Leak On These Models?
Since most teardrop campers are smaller than other motorhome types, it is fairly easy to spot a leak.
Below we have given a few simple tips on how you should inspect your teardrop camper for leaks before damage occurs, and you have to try and get your camper repaired (if not too late already).
- Look at the exterior of your teardrop camper to determine if there are any signs of delamination. You’ll likely have a water leak if you notice or can feel bubbles or ripples.
- Look on your ceiling for any bubbling or discoloration. If you have any other opening cut into your teardrop campers’ roof, look there too if there are signs of water damage.
- Inspect your teardrop camper’s seams, including the roof, body, and window seams. If caulking has deteriorated, there could be a water leak or one forming soon.
- Look for soft spots on your roof or on the flooring inside, as soft spots often indicate water leak damage inside a teardrop camper.