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Old 05-31-2018, 01:46 AM   #1
JimQ
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Awning Modification

I really dislike the newer type awnings as they are quite flimsy in any type of wind. This past weekend while camping in wet weather, I decided to anchor the awning and utilized screw anchors into the ground, lashing straps with D rings, and stainless steel screw eyes installed on the upright arms, about 5" down from the top. This setup allowed me to leave the awning out overnight without worry and kept the area dry. There was enough room for screw eye anchor nut to be installed on the inside of the upright without interfering with the awnings fully closed position. I am also installing a wheel on the top of the door to protect the awning. I'll use this setup as needed. I would prefer the older manual type awning as they are sturdy .
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Old 05-31-2018, 03:59 AM   #2
MandJ
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How about some pictures of the modification?
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Old 05-31-2018, 04:27 AM   #3
Dave W
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A bit more permanent then how I do ours. For ours, I just use a couple ratchet straps around the end of roller tube down to the screw in dog tie out anchors.

As far as the quality as well as strength of the new electric awnings - not there IMHO. At least my wife can extend and retract this new one whch she couldn't having a back problem, with the heavy manual versions
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Old 05-31-2018, 05:40 AM   #4
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Using straps to tie down an awning will help stabilize it "somewhat" but won't stop the fabric from billowing and it won't stop the awning rail (the part screwed to the trailer sidewall) from being pulled away from the trailer. There is a "modification kit" available that uses two tent poles inserted into holes in the awning tube and straps to "tie down and stabilize" the awning. That system is much more stabile than just using two straps to pull the awning tight. Even with that system, the awning rail will be subjected to significant "pulling stress" and eventually will cause the awning rail to loosen from the sidewall of the trailer. That will allow leakage into the trailer wall. Eventually rot and water damage will occur.

Don't think that tying down an awning will prevent damage from happening. It saves the awning, but moves the place of probable damage from the awning to the "more expensive" component, the trailer sidewall.
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Old 05-31-2018, 05:51 AM   #5
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I guess I had better look at our Dometic again - just haven't seen any holes for the tent poles I have left from a long ago TT.

As far as expecting to 'save' the awning - if the wind makes it flap pretty hard or steady, it gets retracted as soon as I can get it loose and then to the switch
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Old 05-31-2018, 06:42 AM   #6
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Dometic awnings don't have the holes "already in them" for that modification kit. It's an "aftermarket kit" put out by a "mom and pop" business. They provide 2 tent poles, 4 awning guy lines and 4 stakes. Instructions that come with their kit (which costs about 5 times what the poles, nylon line and stakes cost at WalMart) tell you where to drill the two holes in the awning tube ends, how to insert the "skinny end" of the tent poles, and how to make a loop in the nylon string so it will "loop over the awning tube". They even have a diagram on how to position the 4 stakes so they pull the awing tightly down onto the tent pole.

Honestly, they did come up with a good idea. Using tent poles, the wind is less likely to push down on the awning causing it to flap (the problem with just using straps to pull it down a little so it won't billow up) while at the same time, maintaining maximum headroom so the door won't rub the awning fabric when it's opened.

The point I was trying to make is that by tying down the awning tube so it won't billow will remove the "flapping and the popping" that goes along with the awning getting "whipped by the wind" but it doesn't eliminate the potential for the awning rail to be pulled away from the trailer, setting up a potential for water leakage and water intrusion into the trailer wall. That unseen damage gets to be very expensive in a couple of years, when it's finally discovered.

Using anything to help stabilize the awning is a "good thing" but it doesn't eliminate the possibility for unseen damage "on the trailer sidewall".....
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Old 05-31-2018, 06:56 AM   #7
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A good gust of wind will turn any awning into a sail, doesn't matter what you tie it down with.
Jus sayin
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Old 05-31-2018, 07:01 AM   #8
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Thanks for the feedback. I will only use this method when the winds are less than moderate so as not to strain the rails mounted to the coach. The awning seems to want to fly even in a slight breeze. I think there useless. Like I said, I really like the old type. I'll post some pics when I can.
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Old 05-31-2018, 07:02 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Northofu1 View Post
A good gust of wind will turn any awning into a sail, doesn't matter what you tie it down with.
Jus sayin
yup, Yup, YUP.....

And tying it down doesn't mean you can (or should) leave the campsite with it deployed and tied down. Doing so puts you in the realm of returning to find the awning repositioned to the roadside of your trailer.

Plus, all that extra stuff has to be removed at "0-dark 30" when the wind picks up, before you can retract the awning..... BTDT
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Old 05-31-2018, 07:25 AM   #10
Mikendebbie
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electric awnings

The electric awnings are nice and convenient - but I don't trust these things to withstand much wind at all.

I have had several of the the manual Dometics and Carefree of Colorado awnings on my previous RVs for years. Those awnings felt like they had a bit more rigid structure to resist wind gusts, especially when tied down. I used de-flappers to tie the fabric to the side rails. Those awnings seemed to be able to handle a trip to the Texas coast where the wind clips along at a constant 20 MPH all day long. But I have plenty of experience putting those things up quickly at 2:00 am when a sudden rain storm or high wind comes out of nowhere. I was lucky enough to never loose an awning (knock on wood).

The "new" (well - new to me!) electric awnings are all hinged everywhere with (seemingly) no rigidity or ability to withstand wind gusts. Even if you tie them down to the ground - the hinged structure looks like to me that it is more of a "98 pound weakling" as compared to the structure of the manual awnings i have had in the past.

I never leave mine out overnight. If I see those things flapping, bucking and jumping in the breeze - I put them up. I just don't trust them.
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