Over My Head

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Painting the Roof

With winter fast approaching, I decided to take advantage of the favourable weather and attempt to repaint the roof of the bus. I popped open the emergency exit hatch and climbed up on top to survey the task ahead.

Shining right back at me – more reflective tape. I thought I had removed the last of it, but more keeps popping up. I pulled out the trusty eraser wheel and made quick work of it.

Despite the clear skies, it was barely 8°C (45°F) outside. I sprayed the roof off with a pressure washer, managing to soak myself in the process. After scrubbing the stubborn dirt with TSP cleaner the roof was spotless, and I considered whether fresh paint was necessary.

The pressure wash had revealed a few minor leaks around the roof hatches. I patched up the holes with Polyurethane Sealant and was finally ready to paint.

Given my plans to drive through Central America, I opted for Henry Tropicool roofing paint on the advice of other Skoolie converters. The silicone paint not only helps to seal holes, it also helping to keep the roof cool in hot climates. It has an added advantage of providing a little grip making it safer if I needed to climb on the roof to clean solar panels.

Standing on top of the bus, I applied a thick coat of paint. Though not afraid of heights, the experience of painting the roof was terrifying. I couldn’t help but worry about falling and being bankrupted by the US healthcare system. Although I have travel insurance, I was not sure it would cover bus related injuries. I promptly applied the first coat before allowing it to dry overnight.

Painting the Roof

The following day, after waiting for the dew to dry, I applied the second coat. The second coat was a little easier to apply, due to the necessary change of direction.

After a few touch ups around the edges, the roof was complete and ready for the solar panels to be installed.


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