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Old 03-07-2012, 08:18 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Big Dawg View Post
I learned the hard way a few years ago about not using tie downs. We had just setup the camper the first time, put the awning up, and then a big blast of wind sent it over the top of the camper. Both arms broke, we had to replace them that day. Lucky there was a store 6 miles down the road that had them. We NEVER use the awning without tie downs now.
We were discussing the 9100 power awning. I am reasonably sure the shocks would prevent this as they are designed to buffer those gusts.

Any gust large enough can damage any awning, regardless of designed safeguards. I have to admit the awning bouncing around in a wind is unnerving, but the shocks seem to do their job.

Once I see the thing bouncing we roll it up. We also never leave it out when we are away from the campground for any length of time.
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Old 03-07-2012, 09:35 AM   #12
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I tie mine down (9100) also when needed. I don't pull very tight on the lines, just snug, and I use springs on the stakes.
It's a judgement thing with me. If I think it's too windy even for the tie downs, I'll put the awning away. Also depends on where we are camped. Out in the open the wind will be stronger than if we are in the woods. We have been camped in heavy tree cover with the wind at 25mph. The tops of the trees were bouncing pretty good, yet the air at ground level was calm.

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Old 03-07-2012, 10:44 AM   #13
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The strong arm shocks do a very good job in a moderate breeze. I do tie it loosely also - keeps it from flapping and lifting too far in a slight breeze. But, if it really starts gyrating, I'll roll it up. It's the constant flapping and pulling against the channel that the material is attached to at the top side of the trailer that concerns me. Happened to a fellow camper once. Found him and his son in the morning trying to roll up the awning on the ground then with more help, lifted the whole thing back up and secured it in place. The roller and arms never got damaged, it just pulled away from the top of his TT.
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Old 03-07-2012, 11:02 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by herk7769 View Post
Older 9100 awnings shipped without the adjustable arms.
A mod is available from the manufacturer to add it.

IMO, the adjustable arms are not worth much. Mine won't hold in a light breeze without inviting King Kong to the camp to do the honors; then we need vice-grips to break camp.

As to tie downs with this awning:

Guy next to me in Key West last year tied down his 9100 and a gust of wind caught the awning causing the braces that the sping shocks pivot on to bend. IMO, had the awning been free to move, it would have flapped without damage; bouncing on the shocks.
Yes... leave the knobs loose and use springs on the end where your screw in dog leash anchor has the loop
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Old 03-07-2012, 12:41 PM   #15
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Yes... leave the knobs loose and use springs on the end where your screw in dog leash anchor has the loop
That's what I do.
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Old 03-18-2012, 07:29 AM   #16
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So the concensus is to tie it down loosely?

Our new Puma has the power awning, it is very different then we are used to so I am not sure what to do.
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Old 03-18-2012, 07:56 AM   #17
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So the consensus is to tie it down loosely?

Our new Puma has the power awning, it is very different then we are used to so I am not sure what to do.
I got the idea that the majority do not tie it down.
Majority means 51 out of a hundred, BTW.
So it is mostly your call.

My experience with both ways (used a slip on sun screen in Tampa last year held down with bungee cords) was that once you went through the trouble of tying it down; human nature prevents (or slows the decision) taking it down if it looks like rain.

I still use the sun screen and bungees if that side is in the sun.
I just have to remind myself to take it down when we are not using it.
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Old 04-15-2012, 02:33 PM   #18
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So it appears there are two different opinions expressed here. Using tie downs on an automatic awning can cause the arms to bend with a big wind. Not using tie downs on an automatic awning can cause the entire awning to flip, again bending or breaking the arms. When my pop-up's awning, with legs on the ground was set up, I always secured it with tie-downs. My new travel trailer power awning creates some concerns--last year, I made sure to roll up the awning whenever I left the campsite. Also, there were one or two nights when the wind picked up just enough to concern me, so I would step outside, loosen the arms, and roll it up. But, having to roll the awning in all the time limits the 'dry' outside storage, expecially for chairs/tables/bikes. With the pop-up, I was able to store lots of things under the beds. What do most of you do to keep your outdoor things dry if you can't leave your awning out when it gets a bit breezey?
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Old 04-15-2012, 04:01 PM   #19
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I tie mine down until it REALLY becomes windy

I tie mine down loosely, I use screw in the ground anchors from the flea market. It is the same you attache your dog to in the yard. I installed stainless eye bolts which are 1/4 X 20 " threads with a stainless washer and jam nut.

If it rains the awning is designed (ele roll up type) to dump the water automatic if you do not tighten the adjustable arms. The awning will dump when around 2 1/2 - 3 gallons of water become trapped on the top.
You can test your awning by using a garden hose, run water on it until it dumps. Make sure you do not have the adjustable knobs tight.

I use a ratchet tie down strap with a hook in each end.
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Old 04-15-2012, 05:03 PM   #20
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I always tie my awning down. I have been doing it for 15 years now and never have I had the arms bend. That does not mean that have not for someone else though.

I like the tie down because it gives me a peace of mind knowing that the awning will be okay when I leave. I find it a bit annoying that without the tie downs I would have to roll it up all the time when leaving. Especially if its raining and everything under the awning then would be getting wet including the patio mat.

Ultimately it is your choice and either way you will have pros and cons. I can only base my opinion on past experience.

Good luck and happy camping. We love the camping community and all the help of everyone.
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