Slideout awning puddles

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Ian H

Well-known member
Mar 23, 2005
Probably an age old problem
Sitting here at Myrtle Beach watching the rain come down (just like home) i can see a flood of water blowing off the slideout awnings knowing that the splashes put sand over the side of the RV.Has anyone got a quick fix to stop the puddles in the first place.Being a mechanic i have a few ideas but will have to wait until i get back to the UK and my tools ,might even produce something i could make some money from (looking around most motorhomes have the same problem) and with our climate it would have a good testing ground

I'll be interested in the responses you get and any ideas you come up with yourself. Our rig definitely wouldn't survive in (not so) sunny South Wales  ;D
If the canopy is tight enough, the water will drain continuously (like the roof) rather than puddle. However, they sometimes are not tight to begin with and usually stretch over time anyway.  Some rigs have a hard, curved surface designed into the top of the slideout and do not use slide toppers.  They are essentially a semi-circle that channels the water  just like a drooping canopy - kind of making a feature out of a problem.

As long as the water runs off in some direction, I'm not convinced there is a problem that needs solving. But if it puddles in the topper and does not run off, there can be some sudden and totally unexpected  deluges when you bring the slide in. 

Smoky havent you seen the motorhome that goes in the water,complete with swim or fishing platform at the rear.But if i dont get this awning problem sorted i am afraid it might get top heavy and topple over on the way home.

Actually i bought it new from Lazydays in Florida and i am now getting quotes for shipping to the UK by RO-RO ship.

mine seem to be tight enough but the angle is not as steep as others i have seen,overnight the puddles have blown off and the awning is tight ,i just thought it might be better to have a constant trickle rather that a bucket full at a time coming off the awning when the wind blows
Lol Ian!

Yup I have seen that amphibious home on RV Today!  In fact they showed it again about a week ago.  I didn't realize that was you fishing from the back!


The slideout awnings aren't really designed to keep water from puddling. Too much tension would be required on many rigs which will then cause problems when moving the slideout. Many rigs don't have the height between the awning rail and the slideout roof to give enough pitch for good runoff. The water will run off when the awning stretches to the roof. Too much tension could cause the puddle to bend the tube. I wouldn't worry about the puddling as long as it isn't leaking into the coach. The big reason for the awning is to keep debris off the roof so it doesn't tear the seal when bringing it in.

As Jim says, the basic problem is lack of pitch. The slide roof is as close as possible to the RV roof height to give max ceiling room inside and that results in an almost flat topper. When properly tensioned, water will drain continually but once it starts to sag a bit in the center it can fill quickly and give the buckers of water you allude to. I had one of those on our previous coach!  A trough in the topper is fine but a low spot in the center is bad. And once the awning gets stretched a bit by a puddle, it will continually form puddles in that same place and no amount of tension will fix it. If you came up with a solution that prevents that spot from forming - or lifts the low spot after - yu might be on to something.  I have seen inflatable balls placed between topper and slide roof, usually just a child's beach ball.  It raises the topper enough in the center to assure runoff to either end.  Not convenient fo travelers but practical enough for those who stay parked for a weeks a ta time.

Another solution is to "level" the rig with either front or rear slightly high, perhaps just an inch. That helps water drain continuously in one direction from both roof and slide toppers.

My Zip Dee slide awning has grommets near the top that allows water to drain & then the wiper pushes the water off top when retracting...The awnings? are generally used to keep twigs & debris off the slide.

At Moab, UT

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