Replacing Our Exterior Slide Seal

Posted in How To's, RV & Camper Maintenance on June 13, 2018 Last Updated on June 13, 2018

The top slide seal on our camper was in pretty bad shape. With all of the Facebook posts we’d seen, it looked like replacing even a portion of these slide seals is super expensive to have done by a dealer. Being we love DIY we decided to do it ourselves. We began looking up slide seal costs. RV websites and a local dealer wanted over $400 for the single bulb seal we needed. Yes, over $400 for a single bulb slide seal.

We did some shopping around, and found exactly what we needed – actually, almost 20 foot more than we needed – on Amazon for less than $100. Yes, that $400 slide seal was less than $100!

As far as replacing your RV slide seal… If your wiper seal is still in good condition, as ours was, then this process is super simple. Here’s how we did it in less than a couple of hours.

Things you’re going to need.

Removing the Old Seal

For some reason, I was a dunderhead and did not start taking photos right away. We’ll have to work with what I have 🙂

Old Slide Seal

As you can see, our old seal was in bad shape. Cracking, smushed and, in some places, falling apart.

The first step, was to remove the staples on each end of the seal. This was done by using a pair of pliers, “jiggling” the staples, and pulling. With the staples out, it is simply a matter of grabbing the old seal, and pulling. Our seal was deteriorated to the point that it just pulled off, without even needing to slide it off the track.

Old Slide Seal Removed

With the old seal removed, we finally remembered to start taking pictures. Here you can see the bad condition our seal was in.

Slide Wiper Seal & Bulb Seal Track

With the old seal removed, you can see the track the bulb seal slides into.

Sealing Things Up

Now is the time to remove any remaining staples from the old slide seal, and seal the holes up with Proflex RV. If there are larger holes, like the one in the above photo that can be seen where the track meets the metal of the rv if you look closely, it’s a good idea to patch them with Butyl Tape before covering with Proflex.

We did this a little out of order, which is why you see bulb seal in these photos.

Installing the New Seal

Once your caulk is dry, or if you have clearance to add the seal without disturbing it, you can install the new bulb seal. Simply slide the new seal onto the track, and begin pushing it down the length of the wiper seal track. Our seal was done from one end – the starting end – by one person, and went on smoothly. If you seal sticks, you may need to have someone feed the seal along from the other end.

New Slide Seal in Place

Slide the new seal until it is in the location of the original. It should protrude slightly over the lower, vertical seal.

Cutting New Slide Seal

Cut the other end of the slide seal, leaving the same overhang as before.

If needed, you can now add any staples to hold things in place. We did not staple our seal down, as any time it could move, the slide will be holding it in place. You will also want to caulk any areas where water may enter your rig around the seal. Our seals are pretty solid already, and this was not required – but it’s always good to double check.

And, that’s it! We easily replaced our RV’s exterior bulb seal. The side slide seals use the same process, should any of yours be worn. While you have your ladder out, don’t forget to inspect your roof for any needed repairs. We have a post on sealing up your camper, if you need tips on that too!

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