Double wide mobile homes have a reputation for suffering from roof problems. The homeowner may notice a brown discoloration on the ceiling. The stained area indicates a water issue such as a leak or buildup of condensation in the home's roof. If the leak is caught early and repaired, the damaged ceiling will require only a coating of primer and paint to give it a facelift. A leak allowed to go on for an extended time will cause extensive damage to the ceiling, and an entire drywall panel may need to be replaced.
A double wide mobile home is built in two sections in a factory. It is transported via a truck to the property where it will become a home.The movement of the mobile home to its new location can put stress on the roof and cause it to leak. A leak that is caused from moving the mobile to its final destination often occurs around the flashing that runs along the roof's perimeter.
Once both sections of the double wide arrive at their permanent location, they are affixed to each other. The roofing seam that joins the two sections can leak. If the home develops a leak along the roof seam, the homeowner may detect the water stain quite a distance away from the roof seam because the water will run down the interior of the ceiling. The leak may not become evident until it reaches where the wall joins with the ceiling. The water takes the path of least resistance and follows gravity as it seeps through the roof. It can follow the trusses or run down the underside of the roof.
Water vapor that enters a double wide's roof can mimic a leak. This often occurs in regions that suffer from hot, humid weather. The water vapor seeps into the home's walls and often settles in the attic space. The condensation can become troublesome if the insulation in the roof's attic space becomes compressed. A double wide with poor ventilation or an inadequate heating and cooling system that turns on and off frequently may suffer from condensation problems. Leaky ducts also cause excessive water vapor in the home's voids.
Finding the Leak
Find the leak by evaluating the roof's condition. If it is a metal roof, look for cracks or areas of rust. If the double wide has a shingle roof, look for discolored or loose shingles. Inspect the flashing around the roof's perimeter, around vents, skylights and any pipes that exit the roof. A shingle roof will require new shingles to successfully repair the leak. A metal roof will have to be coated with a rubberized roof coating to seal the troublesome area and keep it from leaking.
- Weatherization Assistance Program: Moisture,Leaks and Pressures in Mobile Homes
- EPDM Coatings: Roof Seam Repair and Roof Seam Maintenance
- U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development: Moisture Problems in Manufactured Homes
- InspectAPedia: How to Inspect & Repair Mobile Home or Trailer Roofs
- InspectAPedia: How to Inspect Mobile Homes, Double wides, Trailers
Based in Oregon, Kimberly Sharpe has been a writer since 2006. She writes for numerous online publications. Her writing has a strong focus on home improvement, gardening, parenting, pets and travel. She has traveled extensively to such places as India and Sri Lanka to widen and enhance her writing and knowledge base.