Caravan roof.

Jun 28, 2010
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Hi all. Has anyone's caravan roof gone and bent and creased up in all the heat ? I was cleaning the caravan ready to go away for next weekend when I saw it. We have got this caravan this year. It is a 2013 coachman vip 560/4. We have had three different caravans over the 18 years we have been caravanning and I have not see one do this. I rang up the dealer where we bought the caravan from and they say it is perfectly normal. They say the roof is not bonded but only on the sides. Has anyone seen their caravan roof do the same in the heat that we have been having?
 
Jun 2, 2017
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Hi
Hope not as I have a Coachman too!
Never heard of this problem but will have a look at mine to make sure-how bad is the 'Creasing'? and is it expected to go back when it cools down?
Mike
 
Apr 3, 2010
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Toured all over Europe, sometimes the temp was in the high 30's - used to take two fans with us. Never saw the roof change shape. Never saw any other vans with bent roofs either. Methinks you've been 'ad. ;)
 
Nov 16, 2015
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I have the same caravan, I have heard of this happening but to be truthfull have never been in a situation to get up on top in the heat to check it out. But just to add to your worries, check your back rear panels just in front of the top lights for cracks, a batch had awning rails fitted with out pilot holes being drilled and hence the crack.
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Mar 14, 2005
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My 2017 Vision 545 has exhibited some signs of this. Longitudinal bumps after standing in full sun in UK recently. Hotter than Spain with 30C shade temperature and no cooling breezes.
I put this doen to the roof being secured along its length down each side, getting very hot with good insulation beneath it, and simply expanding with nowhere else to go apart from forming the shallow rounded ridges. Once we get some rain and get down to more normal temperatures I hope the roof will contract back to flat.
This could be due to the newer more rigid construction. Older vans may well have mastic sealing round the edges, allowing for the expanding metal to push into it but perhaps not sealing so well when the metsl contracted again.
The roof skin does not appear to be bonded to its substrate in the same way the sidewalls are. Not sure why not.
 
Jun 28, 2010
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When I was cleaning it I noticed some mastic just where the crack is on your picture.Probably got a crack as well. Had a look at the roof first thing this morning when it was cool. It was not as bad but could still see ripples in the roof but not as bad. Had a look when I got home and it was bad again.We had some bad look with our swift caravan. We got a coachman thinking they where better made. Not the best start with it.
 
Mar 14, 2005
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Hello Ray
generally speaking the walls of a caravan are flat, and that allows the panel material to formed and bonded in a press. Roof panels usually have compound shapes, which would be too expensive to produce specialised moulds.

We were using Bessecar Cameo some 30 years ago, and we were experiencing a mini heat wave, and was alarmed to find an inch gap above the toilet wall in the caravan which wasn't there normally. The roof panels weree bowed upwards by the heat, they settled down again at night and when it was cool.
 
Nov 16, 2015
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I did notice this crack when we were in the south of France two years ago at 38c. . At that time the van had covered about 15,000 miles of touring. Coachman had it back and replaced the rear panel under warranty. No arguments. We love this model, Had a 2010 545 VIP. Didn't get on with it , but the payload was fantastic. I think 195 kg.
 
Jun 28, 2010
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Hi all. Had a look tonight and roof is still rippled but not quite as bad as it has been. I all so had a look at the back panel and we defiantly have a crack under the mastic.
 
Nov 11, 2009
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DavidWebster1 said:
Hi all. Had a look tonight and roof is still rippled but not quite as bad as it has been. I all so had a look at the back panel and we defiantly have a crack under the mastic.

What on a Coachman, I thought only lesser makes suffered such flaws:)
TIC post
 
Nov 11, 2009
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DavidWebster1 said:
Yes unfortunately on a coachman. We bought it thinking they where better quality. Not so sure now.

David
My post was a bit tongue in cheek and Coachman seem to be well regarded. Panel cracks do seem to be a fact of life these days. My last Bailey had front and rear panels replaced under warranty and my current Sprite has just had its rear panel replaced by Swift under warranty. So it seems endemic and not related to construction method. The rear panels are thin and generally ABS and must flex significantly especially under our poor road conditions. Before mine was accepted for repair under warranty I contacted a couple of caravan repair specialists to see if a plastic welding approach would work. They didn’t have much confidence that such a repair would really work and could relocate the problem elsewhere. Fortunately the warranty work was authorised.
 
Nov 16, 2015
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The crack can be plastic welded, I will look out the repair place that were going t do mine before Coachman wanted it back.
Hutch
 
Nov 11, 2009
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EH52ARH said:
The crack can be plastic welded, I will look out the repair place that were going t do mine before Coachman wanted it back.
Hutch

Of course it can be welded it’s no different to a motorbike fairing. But the caravan repair specialists I spoke to doubted the longevity of a repair which could move the dynamic stress elsewhere. But it’s worth a try if the van is out of warranty as it would be a lot cheaper than a replacement panel.
One other factor that my main dealer brought up was if damp has got in that area can be difficult to dry out. Mine has the rear toilet shower where the crack appeared. The wall finishing is water resistant and tends to stop any damp drying inwards. Even though mine had Eternabond tape over the crack zone in the five months awaiting repair the damp reading had hardly reduced from the 20-30% found during the service but it hadn’t gone up. Once the panel had been removed it took two weeks of natural drying before repairs commenced.
 

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