How to Change an RV Awning

How to Change an RV Awning
RV awnings reduce the temperature inside the trailer, provide outdoor living space and protect the interior from UV rays. Changing an RV awning is a job best done by a professional. A serious injury like a broken wrist is a real possibility when working with the springs. This is also not a one-person job. You will need at least one helper, and preferably two or three. These instructions are for replacing the awning itself, not the entire awning assembly.


Difficulty: Challenging

Things You’ll Need:
  • Utility knife Vise grips
  • Utility knife
  • Vise grips
Step 1
Open the awning. If the fabric is torn or jammed, cut it free with a utility knife. Don't cut the fabric unless you absolutely must, as the job is easier to do with the fabric intact.
Step 2
Have someone hold the rear end of the awning tube. While she holds the tube, release the upright that supports the awning from the vehicle and swing it all the way around. Check for an arrow on the upright and swing the upright in the opposite direction.
Step 3
While holding the spring with vise grips, check for a cotter pin and remove it very carefully. Rotate one turn for each foot of the awning's opened length. Keep track of how many turns you make, because you'll need to reverse the process to rewind the spring.
Step 4
Repeat the process with the front spring. Check for a latch or cotter pin at the top of the spring and undo it if it's present.
Step 5
Remove the rear end cap and slide the awning fabric out of the tube. Replace it with new fabric by lining up the slots in the tube with the inside end of the awning. Clean out debris in the tube while you have the awning out.
Step 6
Rewind the springs by turning them -- in the opposite direction -- the number of turns you counted in step 3. Reattach the supports to the trailer and the tube.

Tips & Warnings

Wear safety gear. Do not attempt this unless you are absolutely confident about your skills.
Wear safety gear.
Do not attempt this unless you are absolutely confident about your skills.

Article Written By Meg Jernigan

Meg Jernigan has been writing for more than 30 years. She specializes in travel, cooking and interior decorating. Her offline credits include copy editing full-length books and creating marketing copy for nonprofit organizations. Jernigan attended George Washington University, majoring in speech and drama.

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