Solving The RV Foggy Window Syndrome
Almost all motor homes have thermopane-type dual glazed windows that act as insulation and prevent interior condensation. Between these pieces of glass is a dry air that will not form moisture when subjected to temperature changes. However, all that changes when the seal between these two glass pieces become compromised and develops a leak. I use the term “When” in lieu of “If” because over time most, if not all, will suffer this failure. Over time it is subjected to movement, vibration, altitude pressure variances and of course, the harsh temperature changes and environment conditions. There are 4 or 5 glass manufacturers that all the RV builders use, so no matter which brand of RV you have, all will eventually fail.
So, what do you do when foggy windows strike? You could replace them at the RV maker’s factory or authorized dealer. But that can be very costly. The preferred method, however, is to have them repaired or actually refurbished. There are several companies that offer this type of service and may well do a good job. One such company, located in Hudson, Florida, SunCoast Designers, specializes in this field. They offer a number of 50 amp, water equipped RV sites as well as an on-site dump station.
The process is far more involved than I had imagined. They remove the window(s) from the coaches while they are sitting in the serviced lots and then plastic seal the hole(s) temporarily while the window refurbishing takes place. Inside the plant, the window assemblies are dismantled and inspected. The separated glass pieces are then feed into an automatic washer. The washer first expose the glass to a static charger then subjects them to several water fed brushes that scrub the surfaces thoroughly. Next the pieces enter an air dryer followed by a static diffuser. The static portion of the process aids in the flash drying of the finished product.
Continuing from the washer, the glass rolls over an illuminated inspection area where the operator can confirm the clarity of each piece. It then arrives onto an air table where a new seal is made and fitted to meet the specifications required by that piece’s design. Here they are united with their matching half and loaded into the next processor, the Heat Press. The machines press clearance is preset for each assembly which is dictated by the design’s specifications. The glass reaches temperatures of about 150 degrees F. while it is pressed and travels through the processor. Upon its cycle through the press, dry air pressure is fed into the cavity through a small opening that was left by the assembler for that purpose, after which it is sealed immediately. The completed assemblies are then put on a rack and allowed to cool. Once cooled and further inspected, the assemblies are mounted into, or on, the window frames, again subject to their individual design characteristics. When all is finished, the sparkling new looking assemblies are destined to return outside and be re-installed in the coach.
The seal material used by SunCoast, in some cases, is better than some of the original manufacturer’s product. This may be why they now offer a 10 year prorated warranty, up from the previous 5 year offering. SunCoast, great people with a great service.
Helping You See Clearer – Lug_Nut – Peter Mercer