Water leaks are dangerous. If you do not spot one, the water can ruin good flooring no matter where it is. When your slide-out floor gets soaked, it can be a pain to replace it as the wood the RV makers use, is not usually the size you can buy at your local lumber yard.
The cost of this repair is going to depend on the quality of the materials you buy. Some people suggest using marine-grade plywood as it will stand up better to water and water leaks than regular plywood. It is basic carpentry so hire someone who is good at this type of work.
It would be nice to say that this repair will only cost you $100 and that is it. Unfortunately, specific prices cannot be given simply because material costs are different, labor costs are different and the size of the slides are different.
Also, you may add in special features like window tape, tarp and other waterproof or resistant materials to help protect the floor from damage. To get your specific cost here is what you need to do:
1. measure the slide floor to see how much plywood you will need
2. calculate the number of screws you will need
3. add in any extras like window tape etc.
4. calculate the number of hours it will take someone, or you, to do the repair correctly.
Those four factors will determine your basic cost. If you and a friend did it, you could possibly get away with paying the labor with a case of beer. In that case, your main costs will be the materials and time to rip out the old floor.
There are different ways to do this repair and some methods would depend on the size of your slide out. Here is just one method to use:
1. Remove all furniture etc., that can be removed and put in a safe spot.
2. Extend your slide out to its full distance.
3. Support the inside and outside of the slide with hydraulic jacks and sturdy 2 by 4s or 4 by 4s. You do not want it to bend, flex or move at any time during the repair.
4. Remove the old floor material. Be careful as it could be extra weak and break apart easily. Put this material out of your way so you do not trip over it.
5. Install the new floor. This step is going to be different for everyone if they have different size slides. One owner had a floor that measured 12’ 3” and the lumber yards did not sell plywood in that size.
You will have to do some figuring on how to get all the pieces to fit in the best way possible if you have a large slide floor to replace.
6. When done, remove the jacks and the 2 by 4s and retract your slide.
There is a product called Darco that is used to help the slide-out floor slide better. The problem is that some owners cannot find this material is thick enough sheets to replace the old material the manufacturer placed on the slide-out.
Some people have gone to a plastic-like material and they had to glue and press only 8 inches at a time to keep any bubbles from forming. To replace this material will take a lot of work.
We are mentioning this material as it is essential to have when you want your slide to work properly. You can replace the Darco with other alternatives but you would have to talk to some experts to see how those replacement materials would actually work.
For the rest of the flooring, plywood is your only option. The type of plywood you use will be up to you and how much space you have to put the new material. Some people recommend marine plywood for its resistance to water.
However, that plywood may be too expensive for some budgets. You can always waterproof the new material or cover it in a waterproof tape or tarp-like substance to keep the moisture away. But you also have to make sure the new materials do not interfere with the slide operation.
To do this correctly, you may need someone or something holding up the plywood when you remove the screws. The damage may be so bad that when you remove the screws, the plywood will simply fall out.
That is either a good or bad thing depending on how the old plywood breaks or falls. In most cases, you will have to deal with the brace or braces the manufacturer placed there to hold the expected weight placed on the slide-out.
You will have to support the slide-out so that it does not get damaged during the repair. Once that is done and you have something holding up the flooring, remove the screws and then take out the plywood.
After that is done, all that is left to do is reverse the process and install the new plywood. If your slide-out is like other owners’ then you may be faced with a sandwich. There will be a top layer with a layer of foam insulation and another layer of plywood
You may have to remove all three layers to do a good job. Before you install the new layers make sure they are properly protected against leaks and moisture
If you have ever removed the carpet from a floor before, you know it is a tough job to do. However, it is not as tough as trying to remove carpet from a slide-out. That is because the carpet edges are usually tucked under the slide-out walls and or molding.
That makes it a bit more time-consuming and difficult to do. However, you start by cutting the carpet edges that you can see. Don’t cut the carpet too deep as you do not want to damage the sub-flooring material.
As you cut, you should pull the carpet away from its place. After you have removed the carpet, you will need to scrape off any glue used to hold the flooring in place or remove the staples if the latter were used.
To get the carpet under the walls or molding, you may have to remove screws holding those items in place along the floor. Once that is done, you simply pull those carpet pieces out.
You can replace the old carpet with new one but that may not always be the best idea. Keeping carpets clean is difficult. You can opt for a vinyl plank floor or some other flooring material which are easier to keep clean.
The installation has to be as careful as the removal process as you need to clean the area first to make sure all dirt, etc., is removed. Then follow instructions that come with the new flooring material to get it done right.
There are different methods you can use depending on the type of sag your floor has. But before you decide it is sagging, make sure that this is not a purposeful design. Some slide-outs are made to sag a little bit to help drain the water away from your RV.
It pays to know the difference between a design sag from a real sag. It will save you a lot of hassle as well.
- loosen the carriage bolts from each bracket
- position the room horizontally by pushing or leveraging the outside wall
- tighten the carriage bolts back up
- loosen the carriage bolts on each bracket
- next, loosen the jam nut
- turn the vertical adjustment bolt up or down to correct the sag
- tighten the jam and carriage bolts once again
Now if these do not do the trick, you may have put too much weight on the bolts holding the slide-out in place. If that is the case you may need to get the dealer or repair shop to replace those bolts or weld them back on.
In other cases you may need slide-out supports to help hold the weight of the floor.
Replacing the floor in your slide out may be a tough job to do. But if you do not want to fall through the floor at some point, it is a job that has to be done. You can do it yourself, hire a handyman or let the dealer handle the repair work.
The last option is the only one when you are still under warranty. Always check first before starting any repair.