Some miracle products get the job done. For RVs, that miracle product is Eternabond tape. It’s one product we think every RV owner should have and know how to use. Today is your lucky day if you’re unfamiliar with this essential product.
We have used Eternabond tape for many applications over the last 10 years, and today, we’ll share the truth about the Eternabond tape and how you should and shouldn’t use it. We will also talk about how it has held up for us. Let’s get started!
What Is Eternabond Tape?
Eternabond tape is a patented micro sealant tape that comes in varying size rolls. It does a tremendous job of stopping and preventing leaks in an RV’s roof. It has synthetic polymers, a high-temperature tolerance, and sticks to various surfaces. The primer on the tape creates an almost impossible-to-break bond between the tape and the surface.
What Do RVers Use It for?
There are many uses for Eternabond tape in RVs. The typical use is to create a water-tight seal on the RV’s roof. Accidents happen, and an RV’s roof is a very fragile material. RVs often use Eternabond tape to repair small holes, leaks, and torn seams in their roof. Keeping water outside your RV can help avoid expensive repairs down the road.
Another use for Eternabond tape is to secure wires. Many RVers are investing in solar power for their RVs, which requires running cables along the roof. However, if these cables aren’t secure, they’ll flap in the wind as you tow your RV down the road. Luckily, Eternabond ensures they stay in place and out of the elements.
We have also used eternal bond to seal up gaps in the underside of the RV, edges of the slides and even entire seams on the roof and around vents.
It has taken years but Eternabond is even finding its way into manufacturing as its such a good sealant. At a recent tour of Brinkley RV we saw boxes and boxes or Eternabond as they were using it on every seam of the RV, even in the walls where you will not see it to form a barrier.
Pro Tip: Repairing or replacing a damaged RV roof may take more than Eternabond. Find out if it’ll cut it here.
What Will Eternabond Stick to?
Eternabond’s patented blend sticks to numerous materials. However, Eternabond won’t stick to everything. One base that Eternabond will not stick to is a silicone-based caulk. You must thoroughly clean the area if applying Eternabond to any surfaces with a layer of silicone-based caulk. Eternabond will also not stick to wet or damp surfaces. If the surface is even remotely wet, water may get under it and cause it to release.
Will Eternabond Stick to Fiberglass?
Eternabond will stick to fiberglass, but you should thoroughly clean the fiberglass’s surface. Ensure you give the surface time to dry after cleaning before applying Eternabond to the fiberglass.
Pro Tip: Check out these 5 Reasons Why People Love Fiberglass RV Campers.
Does Eternabond Stick to Aluminum?
There are many metals that Eternabond will stick to, including aluminum. Clean it thoroughly and let it dry. Take your time applying the layer of Eternabond to the aluminum surface and give it time to cure. It will create a long-lasting bond between the aluminum surface and the Eternabond tape.
How to Apply Eternabond Tape
When applying Eternabond tape, take your time to ensure you get the best results. Store Eternabond at room temperature (70 degrees Fahrenheit) to use it most effectively on a surface. Make sure your surface is clean and dry. Dry is critical; even slight condensation can cause it to fail, so we like to use a hairdryer on the surface to make sure it’s warm and completely dry before adhering to it.
Peel the back layer off the tape and lay the tape down so it forms to the surface. Avoid pulling or stretching it, as it will only reduce its effectiveness. If installing a long section, pull the backing off a small section and stick it down, then pull the backing off 6 inches to a foot at a time and press down as you move along.
Once you have laid the tape, you can go back and apply pressure. It’s best to focus along the edges to ensure a solid seal. If you’re working on a flat surface, use a steel roller to create a stable and even seal. Give it time to cure, and check your final results after letting it sit for 60 to 90 minutes.
How Do You Clean an RV Roof Before Applying Eternabond?
You want the surface to be as clean as possible before applying Eternabond. It must be free of dust, oils, and any contaminants that could hinder the tape’s ability to do its job. EPDM roofs have a mica-dust layer that you must remove before applying Eternabond. Use a “Scotch Brite” abrasive pad on the area, and then rub the area with a clean rag.
You can also use an “EternaPrime” tape primer to help prepare the surface. This aerosol or liquid allows you to coat your roof and create a solid and permanent bond with the tape. If you’re applying the tape in a rather dusty environment, the manufacturer recommends using “EternaPrime.”
- FOR CONTAMINATED SURFACES: EternaPrime also prepares most...
- SUPERIOR PRIMER: EternaPrime doubles as an excellent primer and...
- BONDS TO DIRTY SURFACES: Use EternaPrime when surfaces to be...
Can You Overlap Eternabond Tape?
It is perfectly acceptable to overlap Eternabond tape. However, you’ll want to ensure you use a 1.5-inch steel roller to apply pressure on the Eternabond. This helps create a solid bond between the various layers. It also helps avoid the chances of water penetrating between the layers.
Start with a clean surface and be patient. You don’t want to be in a rush to complete this project. Give it at least 60 to 90 minutes and inspect it to ensure it cures properly.
How Long Does Eternabond Tape Last?
When you apply Eternabond tape to a roof, it’s not necessarily eternal. However, Eternabond tape will typically last between 20 and 35 years if you use it correctly. If you’re applying it to an RV, there’s a chance it will last the remaining life of the RV or until you replace the RV’s roof.
Where Can You Buy Eternabond Tape?
We recommend always having Eternabond tape on hand because you never know when you’ll need it. The fastest way to get Eternabond will likely be through an online retailer like Amazon. Depending on your location, they can often get it to you within a day or two. Most home improvement stores and big-box retailers carry it, but it’s rarely available in stores. If you’re in an area with a high RV presence, there’s a chance that a local home improvement store could have it available.
We like to buy the 4″ wide by 50 foot rolls as it can be cut to size as needed.
- 4" x 50' Foot Contin ROLL of authentic Eternabond repair tape.
- Bonds to surfaces and stops leaks.
- Use on: EPDM, TPO, most PVC, CSPE/Hypalon, CPE, SBS, APP...
How Do You Remove Eternabond Tape?
It is possible to remove Eternabond tape, but it’s not easy. It takes effort to detach the tape and clean any residue that caused it to bond to the surface. First, heat the tape by using a hair dryer or heat gun. This softens the bond between the tape and the surface and allows you to tear the outer coating of the tape away.
You can now use a utility knife to cut away the residue. Watch your fingers and only cut the residue. Once completely removing the tape, use your heat source on the remaining material to soften it. Use a plastic scraper to remove as much sticky material as possible. Grab some gloves, a rag, and turpentine to eliminate any remaining residue from the surface. Even this may not clean it completely, however. Its best to plan to leave it in place if you use it.
Eternabond Tape vs. Flex Seal and Dicor Tape
Eternabond takes the crown as the most recognized name and widely-used product for RVs. It’s been around practically forever, and it does an incredible job. Many RVers refuse to try any other product. As a result, Flex Seal and Dicor Tape often don’t get an opportunity to prove themselves.
Flex Seal is a new player in the game and is earning a reputation through a gimmicky infomercial and going viral on social media. However, it takes upwards of 24 hours to cure, compared to 60 to 90 minutes for Eternabond. While Flex Seal can be a solution and we have used it with success, eternabond still remains the gold standard in our opinion.
Dicor is a well-known name for RV roof products, so it makes sense for them to offer competition to Eternabond. While Eternabond will last for 20+ years, Dicor’s product has a life of four to five years. It’s also a beneficial option for temporary fixes as it’s easier to remove and leaves little mess behind. However, Dicor loses out because it’s not applicable on all surfaces. Dicor offers two types of tape, one for aluminum and steel roofing and a second for steel, EPDM rubber, fiberglass, wood, and plastic surfaces.
The price points are relatively the same. So deciding which tape works best for your roof can be challenging. However, we are fans of Eternabond and its reputation. We wouldn’t take the risk with our RV’s roof and don’t recommend you do so.
- FLEX TAPE is a super strong, rubberized, waterproof tape that can...
- FLEX TAPE is specially formulated with a thick, flexible,...
- FLEX TAPE can be applied hot or cold, wet or dry, even...
Can Eternabond Be Painted?
Eternabond comes in white, gray, black, and tan, but you might want to paint it a different color. Luckily, the manufacturer states that the tape will hold paint fine. However, you’ll want to be extra careful when parking your RV near tree branches. The branches could scrape off paint from the tape. You’ll also want to be careful when scrubbing or using a power washer on your RV.
- Heavy-duty RV wall and ceiling exterior
- Sticks and conforms to any smooth or irregular surface, including...
- Provides an instant and permanent seal underneath the...
Can You Use Eternabond When It’s Wet?
Eternabond will not stick when it is wet. You will have to reasonably dry the surface before applying it in order for it to adhere to what you are fixing. However, it can immediately be used in wet conditions, as you can see in our video below where we repaired a leak while it was raining.
If you decide to go on your roof during the rain, be extremely careful, as the roof and ladder can be very slippery when wet.
Is Eternabond Tape Worth It for RV Roofs and Repairs?
The truth about Eternabond is that it is an extremely sticky tape that can make strong waterproof seals in RV roofs when used properly. We have had great success when applying to flat dry surfaces, but also had it fail when trying to stop a wet rain leak. This tape is not “eternal” as it can be removed, but it probably will leave a mess, so think of it as a permanent piece when deciding to use it.
Regarding products for RV roofs and repairs, it doesn’t get much better than Eternabond. RVers have been using it for decades, and there’s a reason many of them refuse to try anything else. It does what they need it to do and lasts almost forever. If you need to make updates to your seals or repair a hole in your RV’s roof, don’t look any further than Eternabond. Grab some today, so you have it on hand the next time you need to make an unexpected repair!
Have you ever had to use Eternabond on your RV? Tell us in the comments!
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