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Old 03-02-2021, 03:59 PM   #1
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: ACE 30.1
State: West Virginia
Posts: 61
THOR #21234
Another leaky tail light victim...

So I go out to leave this morning, and happen to see what appears to be wavy reflections in the area above my drivers side tail light. Sure enough, you can press in on the fiberglass right above the tail light, and below it. Went ahead and pulled the tail light, and everything behind there is wet. The plywood surrounding the area is soaked, and delaminating so much, that there is nothing for the screws to grab onto. I can't see any damage inside the RV, but that area is mostly covered by a closet area.

I did order new lights to install, which may be an issue as there is nothing there for the screws to screw into. My main concern is how in the world does this ever dry out? Also, would the water wick up the side like that? I checked the roof, and the sealant looks fine.
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Old 03-02-2021, 04:24 PM   #2
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THOR #13362
I had a similar issue & just ordered these from Amazon, they arrive today.
Iím being proactive & donít have the damage you do
Hopefully after your cavity dries out you can modify the area to accept 4 screws.
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Old 03-02-2021, 04:44 PM   #3
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THOR #21234
Quote:
Originally Posted by taylorbob1 View Post
I had a similar issue & just ordered these from Amazon, they arrive today.
Iím being proactive & donít have the damage you do
Hopefully after your cavity dries out you can modify the area to accept 4 screws.
I ordered th same ones!
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Old 03-02-2021, 05:45 PM   #4
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THOR #6826
During a stretch of nice weather just leave them open for a couple of days and maybe facing into the sun if you can. A big box store will carry a wood restoration product that you can use. Itís basically just epoxy that saturates the bad wood to strengthen it. You can inject some of it into the screw holes or use wooden matchsticks soaked in the stuff to fill the holes before redrilling for new screws. Not sure thereís a lot you can do about wavy fiberglass. Good luck.
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Old 03-02-2021, 05:48 PM   #5
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THOR #21234
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Originally Posted by Pete'sMH View Post
During a stretch of nice weather just leave them open for a couple of days and maybe facing into the sun if you can. A big box store will carry a wood restoration product that you can use. Itís basically just epoxy that saturates the bad wood to strengthen it. You can inject some of it into the screw holes or use wooden matchsticks soaked in the stuff to fill the holes before redrilling for new screws. Not sure thereís a lot you can do about wavy fiberglass. Good luck.
It's funny you mention the sun. I've had the light open all morning in the sun, and the waves are gone.
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Old 03-02-2021, 06:16 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by AxialFlux View Post
It's funny you mention the sun. I've had the light open all morning in the sun, and the waves are gone.


Well THATS cool. Looks like youíre golden!
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Old 03-02-2021, 06:55 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Pete'sMH View Post
Well THATS cool. Looks like you’re golden!
Maybe, but at least that might explain why I didn't see this before I bought it, otherwise, it might've been a good negotiation point. As it is now, you cannot tell there is delamination now. Knocking on it sounds and feels solid.
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Old 03-02-2021, 07:59 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by AxialFlux View Post
Maybe, but at least that might explain why I didn't see this before I bought it, otherwise, it might've been a good negotiation point. As it is now, you cannot tell there is delamination now. Knocking on it sounds and feels solid.


I think if it was mine Iíd just be happy.... enjoy your coach.
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Old 03-02-2021, 09:20 PM   #9
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THOR #8180
This is what I did after I dried mine out and repaired the small amount of delam I had. Glued the plywood and sealed with marine paint, calked the corners in the cavity, installed new LED tail lights and sealed with dicor.
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Old 03-02-2021, 10:55 PM   #10
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THOR #22342
So i realize that the manufacturers do not seal any of there lights or covers. I typically put a bead of clear silicone around the lights, and covers when i have some spare time. For example, i replaced the cable union last week, when i re-install, put a small bead of silicone around the gasket. the new THOR products have LED tail lights, a nice upgrade.
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Old 03-03-2021, 12:55 AM   #11
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Same lights from Amazon on our Vegas!Click image for larger version

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Old 03-03-2021, 01:51 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete'sMH View Post
During a stretch of nice weather just leave them open for a couple of days and maybe facing into the sun if you can. A big box store will carry a wood restoration product that you can use. It’s basically just epoxy that saturates the bad wood to strengthen it. You can inject some of it into the screw holes or use wooden matchsticks soaked in the stuff to fill the holes before redrilling for new screws. Not sure there’s a lot you can do about wavy fiberglass. Good luck.
Matchsticks and toothpicks are soft wood and will not hold up. Go to a hobby store a get a thin Burch or Maple dowel. Drill out to the exact size and epoxy them in. Then drill a pilot hole. You may want to add some butyl rubber around the inner edge to make sure that the light assembly is water tight. You can use a flush cutting saw to trim the dowel.
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Old 03-03-2021, 03:16 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MLP View Post
Matchsticks and toothpicks are soft wood and will not hold up. Go to a hobby store a get a thin Burch or Maple dowel. Drill out to the exact size and epoxy them in. Then drill a pilot hole. You may want to add some butyl rubber around the inner edge to make sure that the light assembly is water tight. You can use a flush cutting saw to trim the dowel.

Matchsticks will work just fine if they are soaked in epoxy. Being softer wood, as you note, itíll soak up the epoxy more easily. It will be stronger than just wood. But either approach will certainly be strong enough to hold in a light assembly.
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Old 03-03-2021, 11:24 AM   #14
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THOR #22388
Quote:
Originally Posted by taylorbob1 View Post
I had a similar issue & just ordered these from Amazon, they arrive today.
Iím being proactive & donít have the damage you do
Hopefully after your cavity dries out you can modify the area to accept 4 screws.
Besides them being LED, what is the difference in the sealing ability between the OEM original and the new lights from Amazon?
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Old 03-03-2021, 01:31 PM   #15
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THOR #20441
The aftermarket lenses are one piece, sealed and rear wire housing in sealed as well. With proper installation the aftermarket lights should provide more reliable moisture resistance.
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Old 03-03-2021, 03:14 PM   #16
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Good idea to replace the rusty Thor screws with stainless steel screws. I do this anytime I remove an original screw.
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Old 03-03-2021, 03:49 PM   #17
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THOR #13505
Nice Craft!!

Our old vegas leaked like that also.
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Old 03-03-2021, 11:58 PM   #18
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Just ordered

Quote:
Originally Posted by taylorbob1 View Post
I had a similar issue & just ordered these from Amazon, they arrive today.
I’m being proactive & don’t have the damage you do
Hopefully after your cavity dries out you can modify the area to accept 4 screws.
Based on your post, I inspected my lights today. No moisture on the left, but a small amount on the right. I let it dry, sprayed with Flex Seal, and willl install the new Partsam lights in two days.

Thanks for taking the time to post. It prompted me to be proactive as well!
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Old 03-04-2021, 12:38 AM   #19
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THOR #17456
Rusted screws

I should have noted some of the screws on the right side were so rusted the threads were gone. This is on a 2019 model! I will add silicone caulk in all of the holes when I install the new lights.
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Old 03-04-2021, 04:20 AM   #20
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Same. Our 2019 Vegas OEM tail light hardware (screws) completely rusted. On aftermarket LED light install, holes filled with silicone prior to stainless steel hardware install then screw tops covered in silicone. PNW tends to offer a significant amount of moisture (rain).
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