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Old 10-12-2008, 05:40 PM   #1
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Cleaning the Awning

What cleaning materials do you clean your awnings with? How often do you clean them?

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Old 10-12-2008, 06:43 PM   #2
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I cleaned mine yesterday with a little dish detergent and water in a bucket with a soft long-handled scrub brush. Worked like a charm, and it was very grungy. Let it dry, then sprayed with 303- looks like new!

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Old 10-12-2008, 08:16 PM   #3
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Thanks for your response, but what is 303?
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Old 10-12-2008, 08:34 PM   #4
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303 Protectant. Great stuff been using it for 20+ years. Ever since a sample came with a tonneau cover I bought for a Toyota Pickup back in the '80s.

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Old 10-12-2008, 09:10 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by willyd View Post
What cleaning materials do you clean your awnings with? How often do you clean them?
willyd..... Zip Dee's brochure cautions you not to use a strong detergent on the awnings as it can destroy the water repellency of the fabric. Zipp Dee makes a powdered cleaner called "Zip Dee Wash Out Acrylic Awning Cleaner" that they recommend. You can buy it directly from Zipp Dee or throgh the Airstream Store. I've used it on the Acrylic covers on my boat and it works great and the fabric looks like its new.
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Old 10-13-2008, 08:00 AM   #6
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If you go to the Sunbrella website they give very good directions on how to clean your awning and what to use and not use. They also tell you what product to use to regain the original water repellancy.
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Old 10-13-2008, 08:09 AM   #7
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Here is the link to the care and cleaning page:
Sunbrella Awning Fabrics


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Old 07-27-2009, 06:22 PM   #8
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Cleaning the awnings, updated

Zip Dee recommends a thorough cleaning every two or three years by scrubbing with a mild soap solution in cold or lukewarm water followed by thorough rinsing to help prevent mildew and to preserve the stain resistance and water repellent quality of the fabric.

See Zip Dee's article, "Zip Dee....Maintenance - What You Should Know About Your Awning".

Earlier this year Zip Dee made several instructional videos in conjunction with Airstream, including "Cleaning Your Zip Dee Awning Fabric". (See Zip Dee's web page for a list of Zip Dee awning instructional videos.)

Last week we gave our three Zip Dee awnings a thorough cleaning using a mild solution of liquid Ivory Snow.

See the full story (with additional links to Airstream related videos), "Trailer awnings", History Safari Express, Airstream Life Online Community.
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Old 07-27-2009, 06:34 PM   #9
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If you have some mold (black spots) on your awning, or a bad smell, add a touch of bleach to your wash water - don't need much ( a couple of tablespoons to a bucket full). Scrub after you spray or brush it on, roll up your awning for a couple of minutes, then unroll, and rinse very well. We've done this for years, with no problems and no damage to the awning. I use dish detergent in small amounts, or buy awning cleaner for our awning cleaning, and do it yearly.
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Old 07-27-2009, 09:26 PM   #10
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A couple of weeks ago I used the 303 Fabric/Vinyl cleaner to clean my Zip Dee that had not been cleaned in I'll bet 10 years. I sprayed it on full strength, and used a long handled soft brush to work it in. The awning looks practically brand new. +
303 Products, Inc.: 303 Fabric/Vinyl Cleaner
The soaps that Sunbrella recommends might be a lower cost alternative that works, and I may try that going forward. But I must say I was very impressed with the 303 product, especially with the very dirty awning that I started with.
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Old 07-27-2009, 10:40 PM   #11
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I have used a tire / care washing brush with an extendable handle to do this in the past - not to hard to do and really brightens up the awning (if that's possible to do to a 30 year old, brown, striped awning...).
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Old 07-27-2009, 11:06 PM   #12
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I have a solid blue awning, if I put bleach in the solution, wouldn't it affect the color? Has anyone else done this or had a problem?

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Old 07-28-2009, 05:30 AM   #13
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We use just a dab of Dawn in warm water, and some Oxyclean to clean the awning on the motorhome and also the awning we have over our patio at the house. Use a soft brush, rinse well and dry in the sun. Looks fantastic. We clean ours whenever it needs it, at least once a year it and the awning frame get a good scrubbing. (Maggie is of the opinion that everything needs a good scrubbing once in a while.) We have had a few mildew areas on the home awning, on the trim area that hangs beneath its' cover when retracted. Used a little bleach in water and a soft toothbrush, let it dry and rinse, takes it all out. As the awnings are 100% synthetic, well-diluted bleach shouldn't harm them, but testing it out first in a hidden spot would always be a good idea.
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Old 07-28-2009, 07:16 PM   #14
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Instead of bleach try vinegar.

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