Part of the convenience of having an RV is the ability to enjoy the outdoors anytime you wish. Adding an awning to your RV will allow you to relax outdoors without worrying about the harmful effects of being exposed to direct sunlight.
However, constant use can lead to its wear and tear and one of the parts that experience this the most is your awning’s roller tube due to the constant movement it goes through. The good news is that replacing your RV awning roller tube can be done as long as you know what you’re doing.
With that said, here’s a step-by-step guide on how to replace the RV awning roller tube. Check out the steps below.
What You Will Need for This Tutorial
Before we start with the process, here’s a list of all the tools you will need to replace your RV awning roller tube. Prepare the following before we proceed with the actual tutorial.
- Rivet gun
- Vice grips
- Drill extensions
- Razor knife
- Tape measure
- Socket wrench
- Open-end wrench
- Allen wrenches
- Masking tape
- Silicone spray lubricant
- A waterproof sealant
- Replacement awning fabric
Step-by-Step Guide on How to Replace Your RV Awning Roller Tube
Once you have gathered all your tools and supplies, you can now begin the process of replacing your RV awning roller tube. However, remember that each awning roller tube has its differences, depending on the brand and other factors. Nevertheless, here are some of the most basic steps you can follow to replace your RV awning roller tube.
- Locate and remove all the bolts and screws that keep the awning in place.
Don’t forget to use the legs to support and keep the awning in place. That way you don’t have to worry about it falling during the process.
- Pull and/or undo the clips keeping the awning attached.
Pull the awning rod as well to slightly move the awning itself forward. It’s advisable to use masking tape to avoid damaging the sides of your RV. Moreover, older awnings may require cutting away the sealants keeping everything in place.
- Detach the awning fabric.
To do this, loosen the track slightly with a screwdriver then pull the fabric. After removing it, place it somewhere stable and secure to avoid damage to the roller tube. Locate the spring mechanism as well at the side of the awning and lock in place with a metal rod or screwdriver. After which release the tension on the other spring by locating and removing the bolt holding both the roller and arm together. This entails removing the bolts and arms on both sides.
- Clamp the bracket with your vice grip and remove the tension on the lever by lifting the vice grip.
You can do this by turning the lever up to roll-up and gently unrolling the spring. You may use some masking tape to avoid damages and use a marker to mark the control level for easier reassembly.
- Remove the roller tube.
To remove the roller tube, you need to remove one rivet from the tube. For the rest of the rivets, you may use a hammer. Repeat this on the other side as well and this will make detaching the spring assembly from the roller tube easier.
- Remove the fabric.
This should now be easy to remove. You can slice it with a cutter for easier removal.
Installation of a New Rolling Tube
- Clean and lubricate the new rolling tube.
This will make the reassembly easier and less of a hassle.
- Attach the fabric properly.
Remember to align it properly and carefully roll it up the roller tube to avoid potential issues.
- Place the spring mechanism back in place.
Using the marker used during the disassembly, line up the control level and line up the rivet holes. Replace the rivets using a pop riveter. Repeat this on the other side.
- Tighten the spring mechanism.
You can do this by placing vice grips on the tube and brackets and moving the control level to “roll down.” After this, turn the spring counter-clockwise to tighten it.
- Attach the awning arm on both ends.
Remove the metal rod or screwdriver you used as a makeshift lock on one side of the awning and reattach all parts properly.
- Reattach the fabric to the RV.
To ensure smoother operation, you may use lubricants. You can also use the legs as additional support. Just make sure to line up the edge of the rolling tube’s fabric with the RV track and reattach the fabric properly.
- Reattach all screws, brackets, and bolts.
To prevent rusting, you can use waterproof sealants after carefully and properly replacing all the bolts and screws. Remember to attach the brackets and legs as well.
- Check the awning alignment.
Lastly, check your awning if it rolls up and down properly. If it requires adjustments, make sure to be careful when making modifications. Once everything is working properly, you can now lock the fabric in place with screws on either side of the track.
Did you find this tutorial useful? Hopefully, you managed to find everything you need to replace your RV awning roller tube yourself so you can once again enjoy relaxing outside your RV without worrying about the harmful UV rays.
If you enjoyed this tutorial, feel free to share it and let me know in the comments what you think.