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Sealant on external trims/bumpers


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Hi again, I have been looking at several motorhomes this week and most of them have issues with the sealant on the external trim of the vehicle. (I don't know if trim is the correct word but it is the plastic skirting around the bottom of the motorhome and the bumpers).


Generally the trim and bumpers are very flimsy and not that well fixed to the vehicle but sealant/silicone on the upper surface/against the body of the motorhome seems to be sticking to the 'trim' but not the vehicle and it seems to be pretty common. Is this something to be concerned about (water ingress) or is this trim purely cosmetic with the shell of the motorhome being watertight?


On another vehicle there was sealant between the top of the cab (external) and the join with the coachbuilt part of the motorhome and the sealant has shrunk and/or cracking. If this happens, does all the sealant need to be removed first or can new sealant be laid on top of the old stuff?



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I don’t think it’s practicable to generalise on whether the sealant used between ‘trims’ (eg. skirts/bumpers) and body panels is performing a critical waterproofing function or is just cosmetic. It’s going to depend on how the motorhome manufacturer has attached the skirts/bumpers.


As far as sealant used on a motorhome's roof is concerned, this needs to be inspected VERY carefully. If it is evident that the sealant has shrunk/cracked, there’s every chance that water ingress will occur and normal practice would be to remove the shrunken/cracked sealant completely and replace it. You could put new sealant on top of the old and it might be OK if water ingress has not already taken place, but it’s going to be a ‘bodge’.


Incidentally, looking back at your earlier posting here




it is generally assumed in France (unless it’s visibly obviously not the case) that a motorhome will have a Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW) not exceeding 3500kg. Autoroute tolls therefore will be based on the motorhome’s height (measurable at toll-booths) and the vehicle’s number of axles. Although a motorhome with a GVW over 3500kg ought to fall into to Category 3 (or Category 4).




in practice, as long as the vehicle is below 3 metres in height, has two axles and is not a ‘monster’, it will normally be charged the Category 2 toll rate.

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