RV & Trailer Awning Care

With the sun getting brighter and hotter, you’re going to want a place near your RV or Trailer for shade. Not every RV park can give you a big tree next to your site, so take good care of your awning so it’s ready to give you and your fellow campers a break from the blazing heat. Golden Gait Trailers & RVs has provided a list of maintenance tips for your awning, but we can also provide you with the right RV if you’re still looking. Just stop by today and we’ll give you the full tour. 

Awning Material

Before you get started, you’ll want to know what your awning is made of. Different materials require different care methods and supplies and if you’re not careful, you could actually damage your awning.

Odds are, your awning will be made from one of two materials: acrylic or vinyl. Acrylic awnings have a petroleum-based fabric woven into them with a natural resistance to water and mildew. Think of tent fabric, just thicker.

Vinyl awnings, on the other hand, do not contain any materials that have this same kind of natural resistance to mildew. That’s why they’re covered in an anti-fungal coating to make up for this.

All awnings should be cleaned with care and if you scrub too hard in one spot, it can weaken the fabric. However, this will be an especially important rule if you have a vinyl awning, as you can also scrub off the protective coating.

Preventative Care

When you've got the background info you need, you’ll want to set up a plan to keep your awning clean and functional. One of the biggest problems facing you will be mildew. Coming from the same family as mold, mildew requires the same environment as mold to grow--a dark, damp place with little air circulation--although it’s not as dangerous as mold. That doesn’t mean it doesn’t smell.

To avoid mildew problems, make sure your awning is always dry before you roll it up. This could mean either after it rains or after you wash it. To help keep dirt and grime off, you’ll want to wash, your awning fairly regularly, using a mild soap and soft brush. If you find your awning already has mildew, there are commercial cleaners to help you out. Just make sure it’s not a petroleum-based product.

Also be wary of over-exposure to ultraviolet light. When your awning is left open in direct sunlight, the sun’s harsh rays can wear down the strength of the material after a while, making it more vulnerable to tears.

Finally, be mindful of the wind. Pull in your awning when gusts start to exceed 20 mph. Sometimes you’ll be caught off guard, but we highly recommend keeping an eye on the weather to proactively protect your awning if the wind is going to pick up during the day.

Repair and Replacement

No matter how careful you are or how thoroughly you maintain your awning, you’ll probably eventually run into a problem. Either an accident or natural wear and tear may lead to a break in the awning or in its mechanisms. No matter what the issue is, we highly recommend not trying to fix it yourself unless you are an experienced professional. Unlike some of the other repairs your RV may need, awnings are highly specialized and most people don’t have any transferable skills to help with the matter. And, because of how they’re made, awnings can actually seriously injure you if you’re trying to fix them and they break.

If your awning needs repairs, then make sure you call a reliable technician, like the ones we have here at Nores Auto & Trailer Sales LLC. We’ll make sure your RV or Trailer trip stays comfortable and enjoyable, whether you’re from North Dakota, South Dakota or beyond.