7 Major Mobile Home Repairs You Can Do Yourself

Mobile home repair doesn’t have to be hard. With the right parts, a little knowledge, and good old-fashioned elbow grease, you can do a lot of repairs yourself—which will save you money. But whether you hire a mobile home contractor or decide to get your hands dirty, it’s much easier than you might think to keep your home in tip-top shape.

In this article, we’ll discuss some of the most common mobile home repairs and how you can undertake them. We’ll give you insider tips and tricks, and we’ll help you avoid common pitfalls. If you’re ready to get your home in great shape again, read on!

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Click on the chapter that you need:

  1. Mobile Home Skirting Repair
  2. Mobile Home Roof Repair
  3. Mobile Home Door Repair
  4. Mobile Home Window Repair
  5. Mobile Home Floor Repair
  6. Mobile Home Shower Repair
  7. Mobile Home Furnace Replacement

Mobile Home Skirting Repair

Image courtesy of Patricia Pacheco, winner of the 2016 Mobile Home Makeover Contest.

We often focus on interior repairs, since that’s where we spend the most time. However, you shouldn’t overlook exterior repairs, especially in the skirting department. Mobile Home skirting protects your home’s underside from the elements and keeps pests away. It’s pretty important.

Replace or repair?

Repair or replace? Patching holes in your vinyl skirting is a must before winter. Your plumbing runs underneath your mobile home. If you don’t protect it properly, your pipes could freeze in the winter. Repair those cracks immediately!

Vinyl skirting can be damaged easily by string trimmers and weed whackers. It just can’t stand up to that spinning string on its own. You can fix this problem by installing skirt guards on the bottom of your vinyl skirting. This skirt guard can withstand weed whackers, and other hazards that could damage vinyl skirting.

Vinyl skirting can be replaced with something stronger if it’s really damaged. Vinyl can be a little flimsy—but luckily, it isn’t the only option. Stronger mobile home skirting like Reil Rock and Novik Stone generally won’t blow out in a storm. They are also resistant to weed whacking.

How to measure your home for skirting needs

(*7*) First, you need to measure the linear footage of your home. This is the length of skirting you will need to cover your entire home. For a rectangular floorplan without porches or additions, multiply 2x your home’s length by 2x your home’s width. This will cover all areas that need skirting.

Consider a single-wide home that is 16 feet wide by 70 feet long.

16 + 16 + 70 + 70 = 172ft

You would need 170ft of skirting for this home.

If you have a porch or other addition that also needs skirting, you’ll want to include those figures in your total. Crystal Adkins explains that you don’t need to include the width and length of the addition visible sides.

Imagine a 16x70ft single wide with a porch that extends out 6 feet beyond the main floorplan. You You would also include the porch depth of 6ft twice. But you wouldn’t include the width of the porch, since that is already covered in the total length of the home.

16 + 16 + 70 + 70 + 6 + 6 = 184ft

You also need to calculate the average height of your home off the ground. Crystal shares the best method to calculate this height in her post. She says to measure from the ground to 2” above your siding at all four corners. Next, measure from the ground to 2″ above your siding at all four corners. Add all these numbers and divide them by 6. You will get your average height.

Leaving ventilation

It’s critical that you leave the underside of your home well-ventilated. Yes, you want skirting to block wind and keep critters out—but you shouldn’t attempt to seal the underside completely. This will cause mold growth.

If you’re using vinyl skirting, you can purchase a mix of vented panels and solid panels. Some building codes may not allow vented panels.

You Automatic foundation vents can be purchased that open at 70 degrees F, and close at 40 degrees F. This will keep your home’s foundation cool in the summer and warm in the winter.

Installing mobile home skirting

Each type of mobile home skirting has its own unique installation method. These instructions will cover the most popular types of skirting.

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Installing Reil Rock Skirting

Installing Novik Skirting (all types)

Installing Vinyl Skirting

Mobile Home Roof Repair

You should never wait to repair a mobile home roof. Even a small water leak can cause irreparable damage in a very short time. You should immediately repair any roof leaks.

Water can quickly spread. If you find water damage in one place, that doesn’t necessarily mean that the leak is directly overhead. You might find water in your home from another source, such as a beam or surface.

Replace or repair?

The state of your roof will determine the answer. If you have one small leak, and you’re able to locate it, it’s highly unlikely that you need to replace the whole roof.

Our techniques will help you fix any small leaks. If your roof is showing signs of deformation and leaking, or if it’s leaking in multiple places, you might want to replace it.

If you are unsure, get a professional to inspect your roof. Many will provide estimates at no cost.

Rubber roofs: repairs made easy with peel-and-seal tape

For rubber EPDM roofs, peel-and-seal tape is perfect. You It can be cut to the exact shape and size you require to fit around hatches and vents. Weatherbond primer must be used first. This will allow the tape to stick fully.

Repairing shingle roofs

If you have a missing shingle or two, you can generally make this repair yourself. You simply need to insert the new one under the existing one, aligning it all around the pattern. You can then nail it in position.

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If your shingle roof needs a repair more complex than this, it’s best to call in the professionals.

Mobile Home Door Repair

Photo courtesy of Carrie Savage, finalist in the 2016 Mobile Home Makeover Contest.

The exterior door of your mobile home is one the most important protections against the elements. If it isn’t in tip-top shape, you’ll lose heat in the winter and AC in the summer. It will also mean higher energy costs.

It is much easier to replace or repair your door than you might think.

Signs that you need to repair your door

It’s fairly easy to tell if your door needs some love. If it doesn’t fit into the door jamb like it used to, then something has probably shifted. It is possible that the hinges no longer hold the door at the correct angle. You can simply tighten the hinge screws that are starting to pull away from your wall or door. Alternately you might need to replace your hinges.

If you adjust and/or replace your hinges, and the door still doesn’t fit, you may have a more serious problem with your wall shifting. This is where door repair will not help.

If your knob is getting stuck, or if you’re having trouble unlocking and locking your door, try lubricating it first. A few drops of WD-40 can usually bring an old lock back into life. If this fails to solve the problem, it might be time for a new knob and lock assembly.

Also, take a look at the weather stripping. This gets so much wear, it’s often the first thing to go on a mobile home door. Luckily, it’s easy to replace.

Signs that you should replace your door

Mobile home doors wear out fast. Sometimes none of these remedies will work. If the screw holes in your door are stripped, for example, you won’t be able to tighten them to bring the door back up to the proper angle. If that happens, you will need to replace your door.

If your door is bulging or warped, it’s time to replace it. If any of the door’s components or moldings are pulling apart, you should replace it as soon as possible.

You will need to replace the door if the knob assembly is deteriorating and the knob’s area is also worn.

Getting the right door

NOTE: Mobile home doors are NOT the same size as doors for site-built homes! In other words, that beautiful door at Lowe’s probably won’t fit your doorway without modification.

The simplest thing is to buy a door that’s designed specifically for a mobile home.

How to measure your door

Measure the width of the door from the inside of one jamb to the inside of the other jamb. Do Measure the width of your door, not the width of its frame.

Measure the height of your door from the floor to its top.

Choose the closest size. E.g., for a rough opening that measures 33 ½” wide and 75 ½” tall, you would select a 34”x76” door.

Installing your new door

For most mobile home doors, installation will be similar to the instructions here. You should always follow the instructions provided with your door.

You will need a roll or putty to seal the door. If your deadbolt hole is not already predrilled, you will need it.

Mobile Home Window Repair

Photo courtesy of Marian Frey, finalist in the 2016 Mobile Home Makeover Contest.

Problems with mobile home windows generally fall into two categories:

  1. 1. Broken glass
  2. 2. Window frame problems

If you have broken glass, you can choose to replace the glass, or you can replace the whole window. (Learn more below.) You will need to replace your entire window if you have a problem in the frame.

Window pane replacement

If you have one broken pane in your window, it may be cheaper to replace the glass only. However, note that this is far more difficult than replacing the entire window—and it will only be cheaper if you have the skills to do this yourself. If you do, you know what you’re doing. If you do not, it is time to replace the whole unit.

Window frame replacement

First off, you need to measure your existing window. This video will show you how. If the video doesn’t work, see step 3 below.

Mobile It is very simple to replace your home windows. The exact instructions will vary depending on which window you choose. The video below provides a basic overview of the process.

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Basic procedure for replacing a mobile home window:

  1. Remove the old window. Remove the window frame and unscrew the screws.
  2. Take out any caulking from the frame.
  3. The hole will be measured in inches. Do Measure the old window frame.
  4. Your new window should be ¼” greater in height and width than the part of the window that fits into the hole.
  5. Note: if the existing window hole is not square to the floor, or if it is more than 1/8” out of square, the new window will not fit properly. You This problem will need to be addressed before the window can be replaced.
  6. The window’s fit should be checked on the exterior. You should ensure that the frame is flush with the material the window will be contacting once it is installed. You must ensure that the wall is strong enough to support a new window.
  7. If there are gaps, it’s possible the flange was damaged in shipping. You can straighten the mounting bracket flange before you install the window. You must fix gaps in your walls before you install the window. Gaps allow water and air into your home.
  8. Before installing the window unit, close it.
  9. Apply a ¼” continuous strip of sealant caulk to the backside of the mounting flange. If you’re using a caulk that dries, make sure you get the window installed before the caulk sets up.
  10. To get a square fit, shim only the bottom of the window. Do not place shims on the top of the window. This could place unnecessary building loads on the window and cause it to crack. If necessary, place shims below the windows’ corners. Also place shims every 12” on center to support the weight of the window. The window will warp if you don’t follow the shim procedure.
  11. Install the screws to hold the window in place. Install the screws by starting at the center of each side. Next, place a screw into the center on the opposite side. Next, insert a screw into the center in the head. Finally, insert a screw into the center at the sill. This is like installing a wheel on a car; you want to distribute the pressure evenly so the window doesn’t get deformed.
  12. Once you have screwed down each side of your window, make sure it opens and closes smoothly. If the window does not work, you can remove it and adjust the shims to make sure that it opens and closes freely. If the window opens freely and all sides appear square, then you can proceed with the rest of the screws. From the center, move to each corner. Do Do not tighten the screws too much, as this will cause the window to crack.

Mobile Home Floor Repair

Photo courtesy of Carrie Savage, finalist in the 2016 Mobile Home Makeover Contest.

Many older mobile homes have particle board flooring under carpet or other materials. This flooring can be easily damaged by moisture. It will retain water if it is wet. The water can then spread easily through it.

Sometimes life happens. Sometimes a pipe can burst under the sink or a dog can cause water problems while nobody is home. Even small accidents can cause serious damage to your mobile home flooring.

It’s easier than you think to replace your flooring. You It is possible to lay plywood over the damaged piece of particle board and then install the tile or carpet you choose. As thegoneapp.com suggests, you can even reuse your carpet if you want—just be careful when pulling it up. It’s easy to rip. As that same article suggests, you should use 0.75” plywood rated for outdoor use.

NOTE: Placing plywood on top of low-quality flooring can raise the floor’s height. This should not be a problem. If you’re concerned, you can cover your new flooring with linoleum, which will create a thinner overall impression than carpet.

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If you decide to cut out the damaged patches and fill them with plywood, take note: you MUST ensure you don’t cut the underlying joists when cutting out the damaged flooring. This could impair your home’s structural integrity.

Check adjacent rooms for any flooring damage. The moisture can spread through flooring and even into walls. You cannot remove moisture-damaged flooring that’s between rooms or under walls that are not supported by a joint. As the Mobile Home Doctor explains, doing so will impair your home’s structural integrity.

Mobile Home Shower and Tub Repair

Photo courtesy of Carrie Savage, finalist in the 2016 Mobile Home Makeover Contest.

If you have any kind of leak in your shower, tub, or associated plumbing, it’s essential to repair it as soon as possible. Leaks can travel quickly through walls and floors. Even a small amount of water can cause major damage to your home.

Handyman mobile shower repair is possible. You You can perform many repairs on your own.

Repairing a cracked bathtub or shower pan

A cracked tub or shower pan can cause severe water damage to any wood below or nearby. Leaks can travel in unpredictable directions. That means the area directly under the leak might not be the only area that’s affected. It’s crucial to repair a cracked tub or shower pan right away.

Bathroom repair epoxy kits are quick and simple to fix cracks. It can be used on ceramic, fiberglass, and plastic. Once dried, it is waterproof and sealable. It sets up in 20 minutes, and you can use it on cracks that are less than 5” long. You can purchase multiple kits for larger repairs.

Replacing a bathtub faucet

You can usually replace your bathtub faucet yourself, though be advised, you may take the fixture off and find damage which you didn’t know existed. That said, here are the basics of replacing your mobile home bathtub faucet:

  1. Shut off the water.
  2. The old faucet should be taken off. Loosen nuts by hand or use pliers if they’re too tight.
  3. If needed, clean the area behind your old faucet.
  4. Put plumber’s putty around the inside edge of the new faucet.
  5. Mount the faucet on the wall. Before tightening the nuts, check for alignment.
  6. The water should be connected to the faucet. Fittings should be used as necessary.
  7. Turn on the water and let it run for a few minutes. Check for leaks.
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Replacing a bathtub or shower pan

Eventually, your bathtub or shower pan will give up the ghost. It could be cracked beyond repair, deformed and leaking at the caulking, or so filthy that you just can’t clean it anymore. All of these problems are signs that it’s time for a new tub or pan.

Generally, it’s best to leave this kind of repair to a professional. Hire a contractor to install the tub in your bathroom.

Mobile Home Furnace Replacement

What size of furnace do you need?

First of all, you can’t replace your mobile home gas furnace by a furnace for a house-built home. This could put your family at risk for carbon monoxide poisoning. Both furnace types have different ducting and venting requirements. You A furnace for mobile homes or manufactured homes is required.

Your mobile home furnace might not be strong enough to heat your home. The furnace power you need depends on two factors: your home’s square footage, and the climate where you live.

In warm climates, you can generally estimate that you’ll need 25-35 BTUs per square foot. You should expect 45-60 BTUs per sq foot in cold climates.

Multiply these figures by your home’s square footage. This will give you the minimum BTU rating that your furnace should have. Your furnace will not heat your home efficiently if it has a lower BTU rating. The furnace will have to be run continuously, which will end up costing you more long-term than purchasing the furnace that you truly need.

It is important to know whether your furnace is an electric furnace or a gas furnace. Though you can switch from one to the other, it’s far less work (and much cheaper) to replace your furnace with a new one that uses the same power source. Then you don’t have to run new electrical lines or new gas lines.

Replacing a gas furnace in your mobile home

Unfortunately, unless you are a licensed gas technician, you can’t replace a gas furnace yourself. But, you can get the right furnace for your mobile home. You just need to do some research and prepare the work area for your contractor.

Find HVAC contractors in your area that specialize in mobile homes. Mobile home furnaces are very different from site-built furnaces. They’re smaller, they’re designed to sit safely up against walls, and they connect to smaller ducts. Mobile home heating is a specialty of your contractor.

It’s a good idea to get several estimates. However, don’t base your final choice on price alone. If you can, try to get a sense of the contractor’s reputation and quality of work. You can check out their Google reviews if the contractor has a site. Ask your friend who replaced their furnace recently if they have any recommendations.

Bottom line, you want to take the contractor who offers a good price—as long as he or she is reputable and trustworthy.

You should prepare your home to allow your contractor in. Make sure that there is a clear pathway from the front door to your furnace room. Anything that could hinder the work should be removed. Make arrangements to keep your pets and children away from the work area.

Being friendly is a good idea. You It’s a good idea to offer your contractor a snack and / or a drink. Good will goes a long way, and it’s the right thing to do.

Replacing an electric furnace in your mobile home

If you have an electric furnace that needs to be replaced, you’re in luck: you can do this repair yourself. If you don’t want to bother with all the technical details, you can also hire a contractor.

Selecting the right electric furnace is the first step. Two popular choices in mobile home electric heating are the Nordyne and Coleman/Revolv models. You can use the diagram to determine how many BTUs are needed to heat your house.

After you’ve selected the right furnace, it’s time to prepare your home.

Look at the furnace you have. You You may need to replace a few or all the hoses that are connected to your furnace. You A new return grill assembly or duct connector may be required.

Turn off the furnace’s electricity. Turn off the electricity in your whole home. This is double security. To double check that the voltage is off, you can use a voltmeter.

The electric cords and circulation hoses must be removed from the furnace. The old furnace should be removed and the new furnace placed in its place. The tubing and the electric connections should be reattached. Install the screws if the furnace is to be attached to the wall. After everything is done, turn the electricity off.

As a last step, test your furnace. Turn it on, and allow it to run for some time. You should check that the heat is being produced as it should.

The Bottom Line

Mobile home repair is easier than you might think. It’s possible to keep your home in great shape for many years by using a little knowledge, elbow grease, and the right tools. There’s a certain satisfaction that comes with doing things yourself. Now get out there and tackle that repair that you’ve been dreading. Here’s to the DIY spirit!

This entry was posted on Wednesday, November 16th, 2016 at 2:21 pm and is filed under DIY Instructional Videos, DIY Project Center, Mobile Home Roof Repair. You You can follow any responses through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.

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