Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Our First Mod! A MaxxAir II Vent Cover

We brought our trailer home on on May 13th, and I've been itching to get my hands dirty doing some mods (modifications) and some other things rather than just loading it up with goodies and tinkering with it while Lauren's at work during the day.  I decided I'd take a slow, methodical approach to this and make my first mod a relative easy one.  

We plan to leave our dogs alone for short amounts of time (a controversial topic... I know) and want them to have fresh air and always be comfortable.  It goes without saying that we love our puppies like they were our children and would never leave them alone in the trailer in high heat or extreme cold, so save your emails and outrage.  We'd never do anything to hurt our little pals, but for those nice comfortable Spring or Fall days where we can go out on a hike or grocery shopping or just plain whatever, they'll be getting some comfortable alone time with the Jayco while we're out.

One of the ways to ensure their comfort (and ours!) was to install a vent fan cover so that we can keep our vent fan open and running regardless of the weather.  After careful review online, we decided to go with the extremely popular MaxxAir II Rain Cover for RV Roof Vents.  

(Shameless Cheap Plug:  Feel free to purchase the MaxxAir II through our Amazon link below!)

I apologize, in my excitement to get started, I failed to take a photo of the Cover and it's included contents before I began.  When the kit arrives, you'll receive the MaxxAir Cover, detailed instructions, 4 Aluminum Brackets, 2 Snap Lock Cotter Pins, and an assortment of nuts, washers, and screws.

The only tools required are a power drill gun with Phillips Head drill bit, a 3/16" drill bit, adjustable wrench, and a pencil.  Easy peasy!

MaxxAir provides installation videos at www.maxxair.com and several easy to follow installation videos are available on youTube.

Let's Begin!

This is the factory provided fan vent cover from Jayco before I started with the project.  I shouldn't have to say it, but, be careful on the roof of your trailer or RV.  It's a long drop if you don't watch your step!

Step One required easy attachment of the hinged brackets to one side of the Vent Cover.  The MaxxAir hinges open for easy cleaning or maintenance.  The Cover's vents should face the rear of the trailer.  The hinged brackets can also be placed on either side of the Cover so that you may open it in either direction depending on your roof's configuration.  If you look at the first photo above, you'll see the shower skylight is to the right of the vent fan, so I decided to hinge our cover towards the left so that when it's open for cleaning or maintenance it's not resting on the skylight.

Step Two (but should have been step one!)  I forgot to open the vent fan before climbing up onto the roof, so, down I went to open it before climbing back up onto the roof to finish the project.  Remember to open the vent fan first!

Step Three:  Align the hinged brackets equa-distant from the front and back on the metal side of the vent fan.  Mark your holes with a pencil and drill using your 3/16" drill bit through the side wall.

Step Four:  Using the provided screws, Fender Washer, Lock Washer, and Nuts attach the hinged brackets to the vent fan.

Step Five:  Close the MaxxAir Cover over your vent fan.  Using the high tech writing instrument (Pencil) gently mark where the brackets should go.  Be careful not to puncture your rubber roof coating!

Step Six:  Using your pencil marks, attach the brackets to the side of the vent cover in the same way you attached the other brackets.  

Last step!  Close the vent cover and lock the cotter pins in place!  Vioila!  

Below are a few photos of the finished product:

Final Thoughts:  This was a really easy and simple task that will greatly improve airflow and temperature control inside our RV.  I'd consider this a relatively cheap (last I checked it was 45 bucks on Amazon) and highly recommended mod you can do yourself, as long as you are comfortable being on the roof of your RV.  Don't forget most RV's have rubber roofs, so be careful when placing your sharp tools (drill, screw gun, etc) on the roof.  Any puncture marks will lead to water in your RV... and water is your number one enemy!

Lessons Learned:  D'OH!  I did not realize that the sealant around items on the roof would get soft and putty-like in the heat.  It was 80 degrees out while I was doing this, and my size 11.5 sneaker caused a nice imprint (see below) in the factory placed sealant around the vent fan.  I inspected the damage for any signs that water could get in and found none.  I decided better safe than sorry and added some fresh "Dicor Self Leveling Lap Sealant" over the area just in case.  Lesson learned!

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