Your automatic RV awning can be one of your most valuable features. There’s nothing more relaxing than sitting outside, kicking up your feet, and watching the sun come up or go down. After all, you live the RV lifestyle to be outside and explore! Your awning provides comfort that extends past your RV’s front door. The downside to your favorite feature? Awnings are one of the most common components to fail. Not only can they be due to electrical failure, but to weather conditions as well. The best way to protect something you value is by taking precautionary measures to prevent failure. Unfortunately, weather conditions like rain and wind are not covered by your extended service contract. That’s why it’s so important to know how to keep your awning safe year-round.
Avoid the Wind at All Costs
In most cases, we welcome the saying, “take me where the wind goes” but in this circumstance, that’s a solid no-go. The wind can be detrimental to your awning and cause major damage. Whether you have an old or new awning, manual or automatic, no RV awning is made to withstand high winds and extreme weather. It’s important to stay on top of weather conditions and keep a close eye on weather apps as well. Being informed on the conditions of your surroundings will save you money in the long run. RV manufacturers, insurance and warranty companies know about such awnings and will not cover the cost if they were to be damaged. Meaning that you are the one that’s stuck with a repair bill.
There are extra precautionary steps that you can take in order to prevent awning failure. Inexpensive add-ons are easily available at your disposal such as, Awning De-Flappers. These “clips” will hold down the extended fabric and prevent it from whipping up and pulling away from the awning mount. Another add-on you can implement is Awning Hold Down Kit’s. You can easily hold down your awning by strapping it down to the ground. These add-ons are great for gentle winds and should not be used during extreme high winds. Its always better to retract your awning and play it safe.
Another Kind of Water Damage
RV’ers usually worry about water damage inside of their rig, but sometimes it can also happen to your awning. If you allow water to pool on top, expect tearing and withering of the fabric. It’s best to lower one end for proper water runoff. This also helps prevent mold. If you are indeed expecting rain, its best to roll away and pull up your awning to avoid further damage. Water can also rust your mount if its constantly collecting water.
Maintaining Your Maintenance Now
The best way to prevent failure is by keeping up with your maintenance. Extending the life of the things you invest in is extremely important. One key point to remember is to keep your awning clean and free from dust. If you store your RV for certain seasons, make sure to dust it off and hose it down. Avoid using abrasive cleaners and go for natural options like Mrs. Meyer’s. Once you have cleaned and hosed down your awning, make sure it’s completely dry before retracting it to prevent mold and mildew.
There a few rules that everyone should follow in order to be able to enjoy the simple pleasures of an awning. The first rule is to only extend the awning when you’re using it. This means when you go to bed, retract it. You never know when the wind will pick up at night. The second rule is to store your awning as tightly as possible when you hit the road. When speed picks up, so does the wind, meaning you could damage your awning while you’re driving! Check out this blog from our friends over at RV Lifestyle for more tips on how to take care of your awning.
If you have any more tips and tricks, leave them in the comment sections below to share with your fellow RV’ers. Remember, being an RV’ers means that you take extra precautionary measures to keep yourself and others safe on the road.
Are you loving our blog? Never miss an article and sign up below!
Marilyn LUPOLD says
When traveling, I have velcro straps that I wrap around the awning arms.
Brian Zwergel says
I use 3 and 1 oil on the metal moving parts…is this OK?