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Old 06-06-2015, 07:34 PM   #1
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Awning Question

We have been enjoying our 2002 DSDP awning this year.

A couple weekends ago while camping, the wind picked up and we retracted the awning.

It is a manual, A&E Industries, by Dominic awning. After 13 years, the awning is pristine, in great shape. The only thing I see out of the way are the top screws holding the awning frame to the coach - they are rusted.

As we retracted the awning it did not roll back on straight. It rolled with the material favoring the right side of the roller. We extended the awning multiple times and it just kept getting worse.

We finally got it rolled up and secured, but even the frame was "off-center".

Back home on a calm day, we extended and retracted the awning again, although it re-wound better, it still seems to roll the material uneven, favoring the right.

What am I missing? I do not believe the wind caught the awning enough to do damage.

Is it just old?

Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks,

Glenn
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Old 06-07-2015, 05:28 AM   #2
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You probably have a broken torsion spring causing the uneven fabric.
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Old 06-07-2015, 07:23 PM   #3
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Indy,
You just need to slide the awning a little bit to the left in the roller. This used to happen frequently on my previous coach with the same awning. Just open the awning fully lift
the roller and pull the material to the left. After a few times doing this, I got it lined up so it rolled up correctly and put marks with a Sharpie on the roller.
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Old 06-07-2015, 08:36 PM   #4
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Awning Question

Open the awning without raising the arms or engaging the tension arms. Look at the fabric distance side to side along the arms. The fabric has probably slid either in the top or roller grove. Just raise the roller with your hand and slide the fabric back straight.
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Old 06-08-2015, 05:23 AM   #5
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Sorry I messed the word straight the first time I read your post. Others are correct but you need to seat the beads with screws in the awning rail and roller tube. That way the bead should never shift and cause this problem.
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Old 06-08-2015, 11:11 AM   #6
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I found that I have to have the awning strap close to dead center on the tube when I start retracting it. I made a mark on the tube with a marker and slide the strap to that position and let it retract.
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Old 06-14-2015, 05:10 PM   #7
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If any of you are not aware of these awnings sometimes blowing open on the road, BEWARE. We were on a trip heading west on I-90 in SD and in bad weather and heavy winds. We passed a Motorhome on side of road with awning open and half ripped off and later an obvious twisted RV awning just laying on side of the road.


We pulled into Badlands National Park and were just cruising around 30 mph and got a severe side gust and our manual awning unfurled, pulling it away from the coach... my wife leaned out of the passenger window and held the support until I could find a place to pull off.


A local rancher who turned out to be a fellow RV'r stopped to assist. He said it happened often out there with the winds. He pulled his truck alongside, and climbed into the bed and tied the awning in place and we slowly followed him a couple of miles to his place. He then got a ladder and brought the awning out and then rewound and then placed a couple of heavy cable ties on the arms and also around the awning housing so it would not happen again.


What apparently happens is you get a broadside gust that goes up under the awning and if strong enough it begins unrolling the awning causing it to become a parachute and then pulls the arms away from the RV and if you are traveling at 65-70 would rip the awning off. There are a number of ways of securing these when driving, but the easiest way I found was to always carry a collapsible ladder and heavy duty cable ties and place a tie near the top of each arm before traveling, then cutting them off when I want to use the awning.


I just updated my manual awning on current RV to power and it came with two Velcro ties you wrap around the arms (supports) of the awning.


Scott
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Old 06-15-2015, 11:39 AM   #8
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I don't know about the power units but with manual ones the arms have nothing to do with unfurling due to a strong side wind. I saw one completely unfurled that had pushed the awning fabric up and over the top of the motor home and the arms were still securely held in place by the arm latches.
The wind gets under the awning and has enough force to strip the ratchet mechanism which then lets the awning unfurl.
The only awning locks that work are the ones that prevent the roller from turning. There are a bunch of them on the market that should work.
I use a homemade one that I have never heard anyone say has failed.
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Old 06-16-2015, 12:43 PM   #9
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If your awning material is not even, it's an easy repair. Fully open the awning. If there is too much material toward the front of the awning (front of RV) then have someone push the front awning arm (moderate pressure) toward the rear of the coach as you roll the awning back up. You may need to do this a couple of times. Once the material is centered, open the awning up and let the arms go back in as you normally would, so they line up in the correct position. This will put your material back on the roller straight.
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Old 06-17-2015, 11:45 AM   #10
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I'm going with the first response. Torsion spring gone on they left side. Does the awning roll as hard coming out and as EZ rolling back. If not most likely left torsion spring. There are threads on replacement, but be careful. Replacement is a two person job and can be a finger hand arm banger ifyou slip a hold.

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Old 06-17-2015, 11:55 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clay L View Post
I don't know about the power units but with manual ones the arms have nothing to do with unfurling due to a strong side wind. I saw one completely unfurled that had pushed the awning fabric up and over the top of the motor home and the arms were still securely held in place by the arm latches.
The wind gets under the awning and has enough force to strip the ratchet mechanism which then lets the awning unfurl.
The only awning locks that work are the ones that prevent the roller from turning. There are a bunch of them on the market that should work.
I use a homemade one that I have never heard anyone say has failed.
Exactly right! Tieing the arms will not stop the awning from unfurling.
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Old 06-17-2015, 09:38 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sky Pilot View Post
If any of you are not aware of these awnings sometimes blowing open on the road, BEWARE. We were on a trip heading west on I-90 in SD and in bad weather and heavy winds. We passed a Motorhome on side of road with awning open and half ripped off and later an obvious twisted RV awning just laying on side of the road.


We pulled into Badlands National Park and were just cruising around 30 mph and got a severe side gust and our manual awning unfurled, pulling it away from the coach... my wife leaned out of the passenger window and held the support until I could find a place to pull off.


A local rancher who turned out to be a fellow RV'r stopped to assist. He said it happened often out there with the winds. He pulled his truck alongside, and climbed into the bed and tied the awning in place and we slowly followed him a couple of miles to his place. He then got a ladder and brought the awning out and then rewound and then placed a couple of heavy cable ties on the arms and also around the awning housing so it would not happen again.


What apparently happens is you get a broadside gust that goes up under the awning and if strong enough it begins unrolling the awning causing it to become a parachute and then pulls the arms away from the RV and if you are traveling at 65-70 would rip the awning off. There are a number of ways of securing these when driving, but the easiest way I found was to always carry a collapsible ladder and heavy duty cable ties and place a tie near the top of each arm before traveling, then cutting them off when I want to use the awning.


I just updated my manual awning on current RV to power and it came with two Velcro ties you wrap around the arms (supports) of the awning.


Scott
The only way this can happen is if the extend/retract lever, ratchet lock is broken, or the owner moved the lever to the extend position after retracting the awning.

Back to the topic; Our main awning get crooked too. All that is required to straighten it is to shove/push the awning tube sideways a bit,which moves the awning sideways in it's "C" channel on the MH. It should have a screw in one end to hold the awning bead in place. Gotta do that some day_.
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Old 06-18-2015, 03:33 PM   #13
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I have a lock on the awning tube so it can't turn until I unlock it. There's a hole drilled in the tube and a pin that is attached to the bar. Web site is ModMyRv.com There are many other versions to lock the tube, some you can make from hardware store parts. Locking the arms won't prevent wind problems.
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Old 06-20-2015, 11:06 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Ray,IN View Post
The only way this can happen is if the extend/retract lever, ratchet lock is broken, or the owner moved the lever to the extend position after retracting the awning.
Totally disagree, this has been mentioned over the years on numerous sites. This was a discussion on a minor problem on awnings, just thought it would be good to mention what could be a very very major problem while on topic of awnings as I assumed many people like yourself did not realize this can happen to a perfectly good awning that is properly stowed. A very heavy side gust can overcome the perfectly good locking mechanism and open the awning at highway speeds causing catastrophic damage. it can happen on both the shade awnings and the slide awnings. Here is just one of numerous posts on this. It happens a lot particularly on the older manual awnings even when new. Read this, not written by me:


I have a Windsport 34B model and during two separate trips I had the same
problem. During some strong crosswinds the living room slide out awning blew open and snapped the stop lever on the outside. I had to tie it down manually so I could keep driving. This has happened twice on separate trips.


Any suggestions to keep this from happening again? It is only the large living room slide out awning that has this problem. I see other motorhomes driving down the road with the same cross wind but yet not having any problems. Is there a cover plate or other mechanism that will prevent this from happening?

Answer: Greetings Doug thanks for asking your question on our Ask An RV Question Page.

Unfortunately a lot of people go through the same problem you are having with your awning. Awnings have built in brakes that are suppose to stop the awning from opening up while going down the road. These brakes do not always work or they get worn out over time. Once the air catches a corner of the awning with a weak brake; the awning fabric starts to billow up and catch the wind. Now the awning has basically turned into a giant sail and can exert enough pressure on the awning hardware to cause it to fail. If the problem is not caught in time the awning can rip itself and it's mounting hardware right off of the RV. This can cause severe damage to your RV and other vehicles on the road.

There are locks available to prevent the awning from opening up while going down the road. Pictured at the left is the Coil n' Wrap RV Awning LockThis lock is easy to install and works on most RV awnings. The Coil n' Wrap Awning Lock will prevent both the canopy from unrolling and the arms from coming open as you travel down the road. The #1 cause of insurance claims on RV's is awning
damage. This is caused by the failure of the awning roller tube locking mechanism. Often this is due to vibration, wind or operator error.

According to FMCA, wind will always win out over the friction lock that awnings employ. The lock is comprised of two parts, the Lock Assembly and the Roller Tube Stop. This superior made Awning Lock is simple to install and simple to use. Using an awning lock will give you added peace of mind as you travel safely down the road.

The package comes complete with full instructions and all parts including two drill bits, a metal center punch, screws and the necessary parts to install the Awning Lock. You open and close the lock using your awning wand. There is a groove in the rod and a spring loaded plunger in the metal block. When the lock is closed the plunger drops into the groove preventing the lock from opening while you are traveling down the road. Only one lock is required for an awning. The lock fits Carefree and A&E awnings, with the exception of the A&E 2 Step.

I suggest you get some Camco RV Awning Straps. The awning straps are used to secure the arms on the awnings while traveling. Even though the awning arms have locks on them, the straps act as a fail safe to prevent the arms from coming loose and damaging your RV.
I would also

Hopefully once you start using these items you won't have to worry about about looking in your side view mirror and seeing your RV awning billowing in the wind. If any of our visitors have tips for you they can add them by clicking on the add a comment link located near the bottom of this page.

Happy RVing
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