What happens if you’re on holiday with your caravan, especially if it’s in a foreign country, and you find one window has delaminated? What’s the best thing to do? Is there such a thing as caravan window repair glue?
What Is Delamination?
Delamination is where the two parts of the double glazing separate at the edge. This will allow rain to get in between the panes, which is not ideal. If you need to get the caravan home before you can fix it, then you should seal up the window temporarily to prevent the window blowing out, when towing your van at speed.
How To Fix A Caravan Window With Repair Glue
Caravan windows are acrylic, at least the majority are. It’s safe to assume your windows will also be acrylic. Double-glazed windows are created by bonding two acrylic plastic panels together, often with a shaped outer and flat inner pane. As we mentioned delamination is when the two panes separate. If the window has a crack somewhere, it’s not possible to effect repairs.
Just on a side note while we are talking about acrylic windows, if you choose the wrong cleaner you can cause crazing (similar to scratches) on the windows, and this cannot be reversed.
Glueing two pieces of acrylic together is not really glueing in the normal sense. You will need to use acrylic cement. This is a water-like substance and has no adhesive capabilities. It will not work on any other materials, either.
When you apply acrylic cement, it softens the two plastic surfaces so they merge. The cement has made them as one piece now. As the cement dries, it evaporates, leaving a behind a strong glue-free join. Another name for this is ‘solvent welding’.
How To Apply Acrylic Cement
You apply acrylic cement via a hypo applicator. The cement goes into the applicator, taking care not to overfill. Acrylic cement is a chemical solvent, so it’s imperative you protect your hands and eyes.
The two pieces that you are bonding together need to be clean and flat. Your window panes should be ideal to create a good bond. You need to be careful, you don’t want any solvent to drip anywhere else on your windows.
Before using the hypo squeeze the air out of it gently. Then release the pressure on the hypo, which will allow air back in and help prevent drips. If it drips on the window, don’t wipe it off, let it evaporate.
Aim the nozzle at the join of the two pieces and gently squeeze the cement out. After a few minutes, the bond is sufficient for you to let go of both pieces of the window. It will take about another 24-48 hours for it to bond completely.
It is very expensive to buy new windows for caravans. I’ve seen quotes in the £450+ region (depending on window size). Even if you send it away to for repairs that can still run to £300. If you feel confident that you can do some DIY repairs, then it will save you more money. Acrylic adhesive will cost about £15-£16. As long as you are careful, it should be a piece of cake.