Awning won't retract properly

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New member
Jan 5, 2015
Dover, DE
I have a 20' awning on my fifth wheel that will not retract properly.  From researching this forum and the web in general, it sounds like the awning is misaligned so that when it rerolls, the top outer rail is skewed to the right by about 3/4" and the inner rails won't fit inside the outer rails.  When extended, the top left is 3-1/2" from the locking screw and the top right is 1-5/8" from the screw.  The bottom left is 3-1/4" from the inner edge of the cap and the bottom right is 2-5/8" from the cap.  When I take the tension off the awning, the awning will slide fairly easily in the top groove.  Interestingly, the rubber piece that is inside the awning is not moving, just the fabric.  It seems like the solution is to manually pull the top of the awning to the left by 3/4" and then put in new stop screws so it doesn't wander.  Before I make matters worse, I'd like either confirmation or correction on my plan.  Thanks!


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Well-known member
Nov 1, 2017
I'm not saying that you don't have adjustment issues, but just a quick observation is, the black strap you hold onto, If it's not fairly in the center of the awning, it might put a slight bind on it.  Just a slight bind can compound over 20 rolls, to make a dilemma.

And, all the manual ones usually need a wiggle and a jiggle to seat well.  Personally I prefer the manual type. 


Well-known member
Aug 12, 2012
This looks like a problem that I help people with often at our winter location.  When you leave your awning out for a long time, or if you have a lot of wind over just a weekend, the awning fabric can migrate to the right or left on the roller tube.  If the fabric moves to the right on the tube it moves the tube and the rails to the left.  Not only does that put wrinkles in the fabric, but when you try to close the awning the rails will not mate together.  The fix is to reposition the awning fabrick on the roller.  I do this by deciding which way the roller needs to go.  If the outer rails are off to the left then the roller and the rails need to go to the right.  Facing the RV, I get at the left end of the awning.  I grab the awning fabric with my right hand, close to the roller, and gently hit the end of the roller with my left palm.  the fabric usually moves fairly easily and you can usually see the marking on the roller where the awning is usually positioned when it is closed.  To make it easier, when I get the awning to where it closes smoothly and properly I take a felt pen and mark the edge of the awning fabric on the roller.  That makes it easier to see where the fabric needs to be without having to roll it up and bring it back down.

I guess it can migrate at the top also but I have not seen that.  The top fabric groove normally has a stop screw.  If your fabric moves at the top also I would play with repositioning both the top and bottom ends of the fabric then when you get it where it should be put a stop strew at the top and mark the bottom.  I guess you could figure several ways to stop the bottom from migrating but I just tap it back to my mark on the roller.
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