How to Repair Water Damage on RV Slide Floors
Follow step-by-step instructions on how to repair water damage to your slide floors. Always repair RV water damage and never cover it up! Also, since all slideouts are built differently, the instructions below are for models that have wear bars.
Remove any lag bolts and screws that may be holding in the water damaged section of the subfloor. Only remove the screws/bolts from the area you will be replacing. Screws can be found on the exterior edge as well as underneath the slideout.
Set your circular saw blade to the depth of the subfloor. (In my case, it was 3/4″). Then, mark a line with a straight edge and cut along it with the circular saw. For any areas that the circular saw blade can’t reach, use a multitool.
Important: Make sure your line is square, and your cut is clean. This is important because the new subfloor piece will need to butt up against the original floor without any gaps. Also, be careful not to cut any wires that run through the subfloor and into the walls.
With a pry bar or hammer, pry up the water damaged section of the subfloor. Try to keep the black underbelly cover intact. Clean up any debris with a shop vac.
Measure and cut a new piece of plywood that will fit in the place of the water damaged section. Then, with a Kreg Jig – drill pocket holes every 4″. Use these instructions to set the correct depth of your jig. If you have wires that run through the floor into the walls, be sure to notch out a small rectangle for them.
Remember: Make sure the plywood extends underneath the wall studs, and your cuts are clean and square.
Slide the new piece of plywood in and make sure the underbelly is pulled tight. Once the plywood is in, apply a generous amount of wood glue down the seam. Then, use pocket screws to attach the new plywood to the original subfloor. Make sure the two pieces are flush.
Note: If you have trouble sliding the piece in place, use a block of wood and hammer it in. You also might need to pry up the edge of the wall for extra clearance.
Once the wood glue is dry, sand down the seam with 80 grit sandpaper to ensure a smooth transition between the two plywood pieces.
Tip: If you have an angled edge on the front of your slideout floor, rip down a 1×3 at 12.5º to make the edge square. Then, attach with wood glue and 3/4″ finish nails at a 45º angle.
From underneath the slideout, add 2 1/2″ exterior screws into the new plywood and wall studs. Then, replace any removed lag bolts. Finally, staple the underbelly back into place and use underbelly tape to repair any areas that you may have cut.
Important: Make sure the screws are countersunk so that there is no risk of the screw heads scratching your floor when the slideout is retracted in.