Need a Roof?  We've Got RV Armor!

Last week, I promised more info on RV Armor, the new business Bill has decided to try to help earn money and help keep us more flexible in our lifestyle.  So far, our Workamper experiences have been good, but we’ve only had 2 – Amazon and Renfros.

Both positions were exactly what we were told they were going to be from an “experience” perspective, and we were grateful for that, as we know others who’ve not been so lucky in that regard. Both our employers gave a lot of good info on what the jobs would look like day to day; not all employers are so truthfully forthcoming – which makes one a bit nervous when signing up for another position.

Looking at the jobs from a financial viewpoint – at Amazon, we knew our exact hourly rate, knew there would be OT, and we earned exactly that.   Renfros was a bit more open, we knew the hourly rate we were quoted, and we knew our schedule, but the exact amount of hours were not as clearly defined, as they were dependent on how busy the cabins and campground were.   We went into the job knowing that, and I estimated a low amount of hours, based on what Gary told us previous years had been.   We ended up earning more than my estimated amount, which was awesome, but it could have just as easily been less, had Renfros not had as many bookings.

Having said all that, our current job situation is this:  we are committed to a CG for the summer on the Jersey Shore, Country Oaks.  We’ve been told the hourly rate, $10 per hour, and we’ve been told it would be 25-30 hours per week.  We’ve been told I would be working in the office doing reservations, checking people in to their sites and checking out people making purchases in the camp store.  Bill will be outside, helping the owner with maintenance, projects and landscaping.  Sounds awesome “on paper”, but time will tell how it is in reality.  We have met the husband and seen the place and he seemed like a nice guy, so we are encouraged that things will be great.  Bill and I both can get along with just about anyone.  We are excited that we found somewhere in our desired location.

After Labor Day, we will leave NJ and spend the rest of September and first week of October in PA getting ready for our daughters wedding!  How exciting is that?

Our current plan after the wedding is to return to Amazon for another peak season.  We’ve already applied and are waiting to be contacted.

So, you may be asking “Why look for something else?”  We’ve always wanted something that offered more flexibility, so we didn’t necessarily have to be in one place for months at a time, if we didn’t want to be.   We’ve read quite a few blogs, and not all Workamper jobs work out as well as ours have.   Sometimes there are volunteer positions that are only a month or 6 weeks long, and not as many hours, but just for an exchange for a site, which is good, but isn’t enough for us financially.  So the thought is maybe I could fulfill the volunteer hours and Bill could install a roof or two and then we’d move on.

What exactly is RV Armor?  It is a multi layer coating that provides a seamless roof that is guaranteed for life and is transferable. The system can go over an existing rubber or fiberglass roof. It also makes repairs easier as the system can be installed directly to the wood deck. I personally found the lifetime transferable warranty to be a huge selling point. The basic system with no repairs costs $130/ft and is less expensive than a traditional roof replacement that does come with a lifetime warranty. If any of my readers is interested you can receive a $100 discount by using Bill’s name and referral/installer number which is 17051.

We found this opportunity in an ad in Workamper News, back in the fall.  They were offering classes in FL in January, not far from my parents.  The cost for the 4/5 day class is $500.  We will get that $500 back after the 6th install, which is awesome.  The process of putting the new roof on takes about 3 days, without any repairs.  The minimum Bill will earn per job is $1000, but if repairs are needed – it goes up from there, but so would time.   The company supplies the roof material, but not things like the rollers, brushes, gloves, rags, etc.  Those items Bill will have to purchase, keeping receipts for tax purposes.   The largest purchase he will have to make is a sturdy ladder, he is looking at a “Little Giant” type, Werner makes one also.

Here are some pics from his time learning how to become an RV Armor installer:

This is a 12 year old Dutchstar that a RV Armor tech with the company one year was working on. 8 sheets of plywood needed replacing. This was right next to the rig Bill was working on. The owner of this rig had no idea the extent of the damage to his roof. He recently lost his awning that flipped over and punched a hole in his roof. The roof obviously was leaking for some time due to other known Dutchstar design issues.
This is what it looked like 3 days later. Entire roof complete with one guy doing the work. This was an insurance company job and the Geico rep that came out was really impressed. Insurance work is becoming a bigger part of their work because they save the insurance company at least 40% and the customer gets a transferable lifetime warranty!
This is the roof Bill and the class was working on. 10 year old class A. Notice the small bubble in the left. There was slight deflection in that area that calls for further investigation. The first thing they do at a job is a through roof inspection for any damage and leaks. Pictures and a change order must be completed if any are noted. After the roof is inspected the roof is throughly washed with Amor clean and a deck brush. Any loose caulking or multiple layers will need to be removed. Any silicone will also need to be removed.
This is the same section of roof with the EDPM rubber removed. 2 sheets of plywood would need to be replaced.
This is the inside of the AC unit taken from inside the rig. The wire running under the AC gasket was improperly installed from the factory. The wire allowed water to get sucked under the gasket and into plywood. Fast forward 10 years and you can see the damage. The owner had no idea there was damage!
This is after the 2 sheets have been replace. Next we tape the seams with aluminum tape. After that we use a special Armor bonding tape to attach the old membrane cut back from the sides to the roof deck.
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Next we primed the repair section so the roof would be water tight for the night.  We also covered the A/C hole with a piece of plywood and caulked around it.  The primer is a proprietary epoxy primer the is necessary when going over rubber roofs.
After the cutting in is complete the rest can be rolled on. The AC covers have been removed so we didn’t get anything on them. This customer also wanted new AC gaskets installed.

 

Primed and ready for the next step. Next we applied a thick bed of Armor flashing to better allow water to run away from the roof penetrations.
The entire repair area was covered in multiple layers of their Armorcoat.
The first coating is gray and the top coat is white. This is so you can better control the product coverage. 3 to 4 hours of drying time are required between steps. This can be reduced by placing a fan on the roof.
We also had a mock roof deck on the ground to practice on.
Here we are learning how to rebuild the radius of the roof should it be damaged.

Bill wants me to also mention that this is not particularly hard, however you (obviously) can’t mind being up on the roof for extended periods of time, and you have to have a pretty strong back, as you are bending, etc. quite a bit.  I’d imagine on hot days, it will be HOT up on a roof, which is a consideration.   Also of note, it needs to be a minimum of 60°F to use the product, or it doesn’t lay right.

So, there you have it!  Our new business!

Bill is not an employee, but rather a subcontractor.  He will receive a 1099 at the end of the year. The one thing we aren’t exactly sure how it will work out is scheduling.  We have to give the company our itinerary and how flexible we are in keeping to it.  The company sells the work, then finds the installer(s) within 300 miles radius (that’s the furthest they want you to have to travel to get to a job) and offers it to the installer first in the rotation, if there is more than one in that area.  If the first one doesn’t take it, the next guy in the rotation gets offered it – and so on.  This system could work against us if we are moving with any kind of time restraints and are unable or even unwilling to go out of our way.   I’ll keep you in the loop how it works out.

Another aspect of this is Bill could get called to do warranty work – if a previously done job has any kind of problem or some damage happened (tree limb or similar poked a hole in roof) and needs attention.

Bill also gets referral fees, even if he doesn’t actually do the work.  He needs to clarify how it works if someone specifically asks for him to do the work.

We’ve been telling people we are spending time with about it and he’s already gotten a call with questions.  Perhaps it will lead to his first install!  I’ll let you know!

If any of you out there in blog land have any questions – please don’t hesitate to reach out!

0 thoughts on “Need a Roof?  We've Got RV Armor!

  1. Good luck on your new venture! For lack of a better slogan, “We’ve got you covered” HA!

    1. Bill believes it’s as easy as the new owner calling the company with the former owners name and the rig info and having the names switched out, since it’s the rig that has the warranty, not the person.

    1. Thanks for reading! The cost is $400 per full sheet of plywood that is replaced. They only replace full sheets, which maintains the structure of the roof.

      1. Why do you charge 400 for a 25 sheet of wood and maybe an hour labor per sheet? Rv dealerships charge 99 an hour.

        1. Great question! There are a lot of things that go into that number. The installer has to take a core sample from the roof to determine what kind of wood was used and how thick. Next the job site needs to be secured and leaves the job and purchases the sheet. The old rubber roof needs to be cut off and disposed of; depending on how this is done it could take awhile. Some roof systems have the wood and ridged insulation bonded together. This takes quite a while to remove while preserving the insulation. The wood is also usually glued to the radius and that glue is also difficult to remove and a heat gun is generally required. A thorough prep job results in a factory appearance when complete. We also use stainless steel screws when attaching the roof deck. Part of the old roof is retained to go over the deck by several inches. This seam is covered by our proprietary sealing tape to keep it leak free for life. Next there is an additional coating required over the sheet. That requires 3 hrs to dry. Once all this is complete the rest of the roof can be completed as usual.

    1. Obviously you can’t apply in the rain, if there is dew on the roof, it would have to be dried, doesn’t need to be sunny, just above 60. I’d imagine being up on a roof when it’s HOT would be uncomfortable, but don’t think there’s a max temp.

      1. Then how are you taking off a.c. s to do the roof and inspect for damage?

        1. The A/C units are only removed if the gasket is bad or the customer requests that it be replaced; in this case the damage was

          1. discovered during the inspection. The A/C unit was only removed to replace the wood underneath it.

  2. Your first picture shows a Newmar roof and your fixed ones show something like a Fleetwood. Why? Did you actually do this roof?

    1. Thanks for reading!
      The Dutch Star was having its roof replaced by an experienced RV Armor tech right next to the Fleetwood, which is the one the class was working on. The class learned a lot by watching the major repairs being completed.

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