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Awning Unrolling

Jun 1st 7:53 AM

I have just returned from a 2500 mi. trip battling the Wyoming winds most of the way. About 200 mis. from home, I noticed when stopped at a rest stop that my 20 ft. awning had partially unrolled, causing the fabric to droop.Also the loop that you grab to pull it down has "dissapeared". I had visions of it totally unrolling at about 60 mph. You can imagine what fun that would be! I was reluctant to try and extend it and recycle it so it would re-roll in case the spring was broken and I could not retract it, so I continued on and it did not unravel further. What would cause this? There is a small lever you turn one way or the other to extend or retract it. Could this have vibrated to the unroll position? If the main spring is broken, would extending it be a disaster? It is only 2 years old. Would appreciate anyone who has had a similar problem resonding...Bob

Jun 1st 11:07 AM

The strap is not lost, it's rolled up in the awning. When rolling back up, make sure the strap is centered and hanging down. I think you answered your problem regaurding the lever...Keith

Jun 1st 12:13 PM

I think the Wyoming winds are behind your problems. I had problems with my awning over the slide coming back from Denver (heading north thru Wyoming)the weekend before last. The wind would get under the awning and completely unroll it and flap like H... When I would slow down to keep it from shredding in the wind, it would roll back up with a bang. I'm sure this must have happened a dozen times on my trip home. In my case no damage was done, except to my nerves every time it happened, it made quite a racket...David

Jun 1st 3:54 PM

Keith, my 1994 awning has a lock system when it is rolled up. Seems like maybe you and maybe Mike have lost or did not have such a thing. Maybe a rope around the legs in the rolled up position would be a sound idea if no lock.

Jun 1st 4:28 PM

David, My main awning does have a lock on it and I had no problem with it. My problem was with the awning that pulls out with the slide-out room, and it does not have a lock. I doubt this will be an ongoing problem, this was in 35 to 55MPH winds and under normal circumstances I would not have been driving in such weather...Greg H.

Jun 1st 7:42 PM

Speaking of awning problems . . . Recently, I made my first "major" RVing mistake (that I know of, anyway!).

I made a sharp right turn into a kiosk! I now have a nice four foot scrape just above the awning. No big deal as most of it can probably be rubbed out. My concern is the awning, which is a newer A&E Horizon case model (crank out type).

The cover on top of the awning is a little bowed out now so that when the awning is rolled up, there is about a 3/4" wide by 6-8" long gap between the front metal piece (the piece that rolls out with the awning) and the cover. By design, the front metal piece should completely "snuggle" under the top cover. It then locks in place when the red tabs disappear.

The awning does lock in place on each end, and I was able to drive it home, but I'm concerned about the wind catching in this gap between the front metal piece and the top cover.

Any thoughts or experiences with this? The awning does seem to work okay.

Well, the reason I bought an older RV was so I could make all my newbie maistakes with it. Glad I'm not wasting my money, LOL. Thanks to all who respond.

Jun 1st 9:24 PM

Thanks for the input, folks. David, my awning supports have positive locks, I am not concerned that they will come loose. When the awning is properly stowed, it has a hard cover consisting of aluminum slats that contain the bulk of the fabric. It has come unrolled exposing the fabric. Bob thinks as I do that the lever vibrated to the unroll position. If I am lucky, all I have to do is go on the roof and get ahold of the loop and go through the unroll procedure, then retract it and it should be ok. It will be a few days before I can get to it, shall report what happens. Gee, if it won't roll back up, it's only 17 miles to the dealer, could have my wife ride on roof and hold it up with a bungee cord? ... Ken

Jun 2nd 8:08 AM

When I bought my used 95 5th wheel trailer, the PO showed me his method of ensuring that the canopy stays put. He always secured a black nylon locking strap around the upper arm and the top mounting bracket. Said that it was cheap insurance. That man appears to be a wise one and now I will definitely continue the practice...Steve E.

Jun 5th 8:51 PM

Buy yourself some cable ties and after you put the awning up, put them around the arms to help keep it secure in the retracted position... Dave A.

Jun 6th 7:51 AM

Another suggestion....... My son is a Wisconsin State Trooper. On one of his tours, he found (along side of the highway) a complete 18 ft awning with all brackets, poles, etc. Apparently, the screws which mounted the awning had vibrated loose. Evidently the wind worked everything loose enough to pull the awning completely away from and off of rig. Expensive loss to say the least.

After he told me of his finding, I checked the mounting bolts on my awning. Sure enough, the two front bolts which mount the awning to the 5'r were loose. They are now secure!

Additionally, the locking lugs that are supposed to keep the awning from un-rolling on occasions, will break. To remedy that possibility, like Steve E. advises, I use heavy plastic cable ties. They are re-useable and do an excellent job of keeping the entire awning and bracket assembly tightly secured. Indeed, some cheap insurance!

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