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Old 04-04-2021, 08:56 PM   #1
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Awning Won't Retract, Carefree of Colorado

The rear awning above the swing down ramp on a toy hauler... a 2019 DRV FullHouse LX455, won't retract completely. This is not my rig, I'm helping a friend (Marine vet); And, they have already postponed their departure by 2 days while trying fix this problem. It's problems like these that the friends of iRV2 are so willing to share their vast experience and knowledge simply to help fellow RVers move on down the road!

The rear awning is made by Carefree of Colorado and my best guess is that it is a Mirage model. He doesn't have a manual, but we've been reading a PDF document that seems to contain the appropriate instructions. We are able to control the extension by turning the trim pots as indicated. However, the retraction seems to be unaffected when turning the trim pot for that effect. The instructions indicate that turning the trim pot changes the runtime of the motor... Apparently it is not a limit switch - it is a factor of timing. This seems strange to me, if you manually extend the awning just 25%, how would the retract feature know to run the motor only 25% of the full retract time?

Does anybody have experience with this issue? I know he would really appreciate any/all input. Thank you!

It's a 2019 DRV FullHouse LX455
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Old 04-04-2021, 09:33 PM   #2
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Mine is manual only, so no help from me other than to ask if this ie where you downloaded the service manual? https://www.carefreeofcolorado.com/products/mirage.html
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Old 04-05-2021, 03:08 AM   #3
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Actually, I hadn't found the link for the Mirage model... Thank you very much! Hopefully my guess is correct - I will find out tomorrow morning if it is actually the Mirage. From what I see there are only two models with the folding lateral arms, and the other one (Apex) looks like the end caps are different. So unless there are more than two models with folding lateral arms, I believe it must be the Mirage.

My own coach has Girard awnings, and I can almost service those in my sleep. From what I can tell, the Carefree Mirage is a knock-off of Girard's folding arm design. (I've been told Girard's patents have expired) However, Carefree drives & logic are totally different than what I'm used to.

Thanks again for pointing me to the exact website for the Mirage model!
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Old 04-05-2021, 09:48 AM   #4
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i assume there's a way to manually crank it in to get on with the trip. sounds like that limit swith is bad on the motor.
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Old 04-05-2021, 09:51 AM   #5
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i assume there is a manual crank for the awning? just crank it shut and enjoy the trip. sounds like the limit switch is bad and if that is a knock off of girard then its prob an even cheaper made in south china switch. i have dealt with carefree before.....always positive results.
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Old 04-11-2021, 11:44 PM   #6
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Ultimately Mirage was not the correct model. Regardless, the owner (my new friend) was adamant that there was no manual method of cranking in the awning. To me that just seemed ridiculously false... I couldn't imagine ANY awning manufacturer, specifically for an RV, that wouldn't provide the ability to manually retract the awning for just such an occasion (mechanical/electronic failure). The Girard awnings with which I am familiar, have a crank bell hanging from one end or the other which the Auxiliary Crank can engage with from standing on the ground. There is no doubt that this CareFree brand had no such hardware/mechanism that was visible. We were working on the left end, it was apparent that there was not much room for similar access on the right end... even if removing the end cap. I kept asking him if he had ever had the right end cap off, and I continued to get vague answers. Ultimately, I grabbed his ladder and crawled up to remove the right-side end cap... And at the very end of the roller tube there was a square hole that appeared to be the exact size for a 3/8 inch ratchet! I did what anybody would do, placed a ratchet into the square hole and cranked the awning in until it was (nearly) tight. Actually it wouldn't quite draw in tight enough, but only left about 1/2 in of wiggle room. With that, this family boogie down down the road! Thank you both for your attention and help with this matter.

(I still don't understand how the owner of a 18-month-old RV does not have manuals! Did they quit providing hard copy manuals for all the accessories installed into new RVs?)
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