Sign in to follow this  
charlier

Enclosed Car Trailer Ventilation

Recommended Posts

Was wondering what other enclosed trailer owners do when it comes to ventilation?

I have seen roof mounted vents and some side mounted vents.

Have also seen A/C units on car haulers which appeared to have living space in the front.

What has been your experience with water leaks with rooftop and side mount vents?

Do the vents really make a measureable difference in lowering temps inside the trailer on a sunny, hot day?

Also, one would imagine that the color of the trailer has a lot to do with the temperature inside (ie black vs white vs silver vs custom colors).

My trailer is silver in color and seems to reflect some of the heat of the sun. It still gets hot inside but I suspect not as hot as other darker colored trailers.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I installed 2 quality roof vents in mt 24' trailer 6 years ago and they haven't leaked as of yet, and they do keep it somewhat cooler. They have a metal plate inside that you turn to open / close them.

Before I installed these I was looking at a type that you could mount on the side of the trailer however I didn't feel like ordering them as the roof style were in stock.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I leave the vent on the roof of my enclosed trailer open

365 days a year. The vent has a MAX Vent cover that keeps rain out and works as a directional exhaust vent when towing.

The vent sandwiches the roof between the upper an lower half and then it's sealed with silicone. The vent cover attaches to the vent, not the roof, so it requires no additional holes.

Heat rises everywhere and here in Florida we can count on heat all year long. We have the same type vents on our Motor Home and I keep them open too when not in use. If we don't provide an escape for hot air, the contents will melt.

In Florida people who leave their windows closed in their cars are subject to heve windows blow out due to trapped heat! I don't want anything on my old cars melting or

exploding. Vents cure that, but I don't store a car in the trailer either, just use it as a storage pod when not transporting a car.

Another trick is to pain the roof with a white reflective coating. While you are at it, paint you name or # on the roof so the Police can find it when it's stolen. Form the ground all these white car haulers look alike but from the air they can see "34 Ford" on the roof.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Paul,

Good points about the roof painting.

I did just that 2 years ago after noticing the white coating on a school bus roof. Painted the galvanized roof on my trailer with Premium White "Elastomeric" roof coating (bought it at a local RV dealer). It forms a rubber-like coating that withstands expansion and contraction. Did a before and after check of the heat inside my un-ventilated trailer. It certainly makes a huge difference. Of note, it took 3 coats but well worth it.

Peter J.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks to everyone for their thoughts on trailer vents and roof coatings.

The White "Elastomeric" roof coating seems like an interesting solution in that it both seals the trailer roof and reflect the sun's heat.

Doing both of those jobs plus remaining flexible seems like a great combination.

Peter, in your post you said you used 3 coats on the roof of your trailer.

Do you by chance remember how many gallons of this coating you used?

When you applied the coating did you use a paint roller or some other means to apply it?

Any idea of the high temp difference before/after the roof coating was applied?

BTW, I have a wireless thermometer in my trailer since last winter.

The low temp was 8.2 degrees (F) (last winter) and the high temp is 106.3 degrees (F) (so far this spring).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi, Charlie.

I used 1.5 gallons and applied with a roller. The coating is of thin viscosity so it took 3 coats to build up the millage. The roof is galvanized like many trailers, thus, very hot heat retention. With the coating on it is slightly warm on days of 90-98 degrees. Lower than that, it is actually cool to the touch. Previously, one could burn their hand touching the unfinished galvanizing.

Did not check the before and after inside temperature, however, it was like opening a blast furnace before coating. On very hot days now the air temp is actually comfortable when entering the trailer.

FYI...Bought it at Keiffer's RV Sales, Stowe, PA up the road from you, Charlie.

Regards,

Peter J.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Peter, Thanks for the additional information.

Funny you should mention Keiffer's RV Sales.

I just had my trailer to their shop for it's annual state inspection a couple of weeks ago.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

They also sell Premium White "Elastomeric" at Home Depot for under $17.00 a gallon. The have some with a 5 year guarantee and some with a 10 year. (about $2.50 difference) I hate painting roofs so I just bought the 10 year stuff and did my enclosed trailer and my motor home. All with a roller and the hardest part was walking only where the concealed ribs attach to the side wall. (you don't want to be walking around in the middle). Wait 24 hours between coats.

Previously I used cool-coat and I like this new stuff better. It's a real rubber seal, so I made sure I painted right over the original roof to sidewall seams. All done with a roller on a long stick.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Peter, I have a follow-up question for you regarding the Elastomeric painting you did.

What type of primer did you use on the stainless steel roof of your trailer before you painted it with the Elastomeric paint?

Given how slippery stainless steel can be, I would think that some sort of etching primer should be used to prevent the Elastomeric paint from just peeling off.

Your thoughts about primer would be appreciated.

FYI Paul, I found this paint in my local Home Depot but the cost was $26/gallon. Looks like my Home Depot might be selling a higher priced brand.

Did notice the local Walmart sold a different brand for around $17/gallon.

Charlie

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi, Charlie.

The roof is galvanized not stainless. Prep instructions state scrubbing the roof with a water and TSP (Trisodium Phosphate) solution, rinse it well, and, let dry.

Coated mine some time ago and 5/8ths of the roof is looking good. Noticed a few areas that I am in the process of touching up. Started to scrap it two weeks ago then rain halted my efforts. After Cumberland I'll finish it. No more than a 30 minute job.

Peter J.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Charlie,

My Home Depot sold me 5 Gallons of LANCO White Seal

Ultra Elastomeric for $68.00.

Says right on the bucket "No Primer Needed". I did wash the metal roof well and got it real dry before I started.

Before I painted the trailer's metal roof you couldn't touch it in the sunlight and the heat buildup inside was kinda like a pizza oven. Now it's cool to the touch all day and a whole bunch cooler inside. (I didn't use a thermometer before or after, but wish I had.)

I still have a gallon of the old Cool Seal, but I'm sold on this LANCO White Seal Elastomeric product.

I put one coat on our motorhome roof and two coats on the metal roof of my enclosed trailer. I still have half a bucket or more left. With the rubber roof on the RV I thought I'd re-coat it in a year or two because I had done two coats with Cool Seal 4 years ago and it's kept inside. I didn't want to much rubbery build up.

I have a car buddy who also owns lots of rental property and he uses it on his built up roofs. Loves It !

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Peter and Paul, Thank you for the additional information.

The other day when I got home I checked the temp inside my trailer (at 6pm). I have a remote unit inside the trailer and the main unit inside the house. I found it interesting that and it was almost 30 degrees higher inside the trailer than the current temp was outside. I have to wonder just how hot it really gets inside the trailer on a very sunny and hot day.

I think it is only a matter of finding the time to give the roof of my trailer a good cleaning and then apply the Elastomeric paint.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

After about three months, I finally had the time to get the roof of my trailer painted with the Elastomeric Paint.

I took advantage of a sale on Behr Brand paints Home Depot had a few months ago.

The Behr paint recommended that the roof be cleaned well, then primered, rinsed and dried.

The instructions specified that a roller with 1 1/4 inch nap be used to apply the paint. The first coat went on somewhat thin.

After waiting 24 hours, the second coat was applied which when combined with the first made a good, thick, coat.

Since the paint was applied I have noticed that the temperature inside my trailer now seems to run 9-10 degrees higher than the

outside air temperature on a hot, sunny, day. This would seem to be an improvement over the 20-30 degree difference in

temperature when the trailer did not have the roof painted with Elastomeric Paint.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I read this thread a few weeks ago. I live in Phoenix, Az. (hot is an understatment!)and have a Hallmark with a galvanized tin roof. Took everyone’s advice this weekend and did the elastameric coating. This really dropped the inside temperature, and helped give piece of mind on the lapped seams remaining watertight. I am surprised this is not done from the factory.

Very helpful post!

Jim

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this