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Old 11-09-2016, 09:24 PM   #41
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Well 23 years without a problem. ..if I make another 23, I'll probably be dead and won't care.
Common sense does prevail when the awning rolls in. I do also use the anti flapper devices on the upper arms as well.
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Old 11-09-2016, 09:50 PM   #42
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ZD Comments

I had a ZipDee representative tell me at an Alumaplooza that "it is an awning not an umbrella. It's purpose is to shade the trailer, not protect it (or you) from rain."
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Old 11-10-2016, 05:50 AM   #43
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I had a ZipDee representative tell me at an Alumaplooza that "it is an awning not an umbrella. It's purpose is to shade the trailer, not protect it (or you) from rain."
Interesting. ....since the material is waterproofed.
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Old 11-10-2016, 06:13 AM   #44
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ZD policy, arguments and emotions aside just use common sense and take the darn thing in when anticipating winds or rain any heavier than a drizzle. It takes less than a minute to roll up and $$$$ to replace or repair.
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Old 11-10-2016, 06:34 AM   #45
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ZD policy, arguments and emotions aside just use common sense and take the darn thing in when anticipating winds or rain any heavier than a drizzle. It takes less than a minute to roll up and $$$$ to replace or repair.
Yup
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Old 11-10-2016, 07:44 AM   #46
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The ZipDee awning is made out of an excellent material (Sunbrella material) and it rolls up in the awesome segmented metal strips when retracted. I love those two features of the awning, but the Airstream awning is much more fragile than most I have seen or dealt with. I am always the first to put my awning away when the wind picks up. I see many newer power awnings that just ride out the wind with spring assisted arms that are designed to give and flex. I am often parked beside people at the beach that leave theirs out the whole trip with no tie downs. I don't dare roll ours out because I know it will be ripped off the side our Airstream in no time. I think one reason is because it is just so huge. Our 30' Airsteam has a much larger awning than any of the large 5th wheels or motorhomes I see. Sure, the large awning is cool in perfectly calm weather, but it is useless in any other situation. I wish Airstream/ZipDee would acknowledge their awnings are more susceptible to wind damage (and rain damage) than most others and work on a way of strengthening them. Sorry, my rant is over, but that has been my only real disappointment with our Airstream.
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Old 11-10-2016, 08:19 AM   #47
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Originally Posted by Echelon73 View Post
The ZipDee awning is made out of an excellent material (Sunbrella material) and it rolls up in the awesome segmented metal strips when retracted. I love those two features of the awning, but the Airstream awning is much more fragile than most I have seen or dealt with. I am always the first to put my awning away when the wind picks up. I see many newer power awnings that just ride out the wind with spring assisted arms that are designed to give and flex. I am often parked beside people at the beach that leave theirs out the whole trip with no tie downs. I don't dare roll ours out because I know it will be ripped off the side our Airstream in no time. I think one reason is because it is just so huge. Our 30' Airsteam has a much larger awning than any of the large 5th wheels or motorhomes I see. Sure, the large awning is cool in perfectly calm weather, but it is useless in any other situation. I wish Airstream/ZipDee would acknowledge their awnings are more susceptible to wind damage (and rain damage) than most others and work on a way of strengthening them. Sorry, my rant is over, but that has been my only real disappointment with our Airstream.
However, one thing I note with OP's picture. The stronger arms resulted in much more damage than the "typical" water collapse with the non power awnings.

I, too, went to bed one night...absolutely sure I had tilted my 22' awning 2 notches down on the aft end. The rain (soft) started and woke me up. I KNEW I was fine. In the morning I found I had NOT tilted the awning. The aft arm bent and collapsed. The roller was only slightly bent and was easily brought back to a functional state. The replacement arm piece was about $25. The fabric and all mounting interfaces were fine. So my point is, having an "appropriate" weak failure point can, many times, be a plus.
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Old 11-10-2016, 11:23 AM   #48
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Several years ago at USAC midget race at Andersonville Ind. it rained hard enough to wash out section of black top race track. I had awning out tilted toward back of AS rain rolled off just fine no damage to awning or AS. Enjoyed sitting out side under awning during rain. So tilting one end really works in rain storm. Heavy wind roll up... Bill
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Old 11-10-2016, 12:32 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by slowmover View Post
. I wouldn't trust tiedowns to keep the awning from disaster.
That was pretty much what I thought; useful in moderate weather but no guarantee of saving your awning when things get rough.

My awning comes in when I have any doubts at all about the weather.
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Old 11-10-2016, 12:44 PM   #50
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[QUOTE=MrUKToad;1874874]That was pretty much what I thought; useful in moderate weather but no guarantee of saving your awning when things get rough.

My awning comes in when I have any doubts at all about the weather.[/QUOTE]

Likewise, I use the tie downs when weather is good, but you have steady fair weather winds....ie. an onshore wind on the nice summer day when the 10 - 15 mph wind"rattles" the brackets and clearances around. That noise bothers me. I use them in other similar situations....NOT as a deterrent to the kind of wind which would take the awning over the top of the trailer.
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Old 11-10-2016, 01:13 PM   #51
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My awning manual not only warns against strong wind, it also cautions to lower one end in the event of rain to provide drainage.

How can deliberately ignoring the operating instructions translate into a mfr'g defect? This is not a house. It's a SHADE-awning.

It's only waterproofed-fabric because it is STORED externally...NOT beneath a soffit or eave. It's exposed to water even if you're driving down the road in the rain. If it weren't waterproof fabric it'd ROT beneath the cover. (And even then, the instructions warn the user to unroll it to dry, and to clean it before storage.)

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Old 11-12-2016, 01:25 PM   #52
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Eh, the cotton thread it's sewn together with rot even if the fabric doesn't...I had to have my 1995 awning restitched last year.
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Old 11-12-2016, 03:30 PM   #53
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Eh, the cotton thread it's sewn together with rot even if the fabric doesn't...I had to have my 1995 awning restitched last year.
Use Gore Tex thread.

https://www.gore.com/products/sewing...r-applications
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Old 11-12-2016, 04:02 PM   #54
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Take it from someone who is on awning number 2, put it up with any wind or rain even if tilted. Our zip-d relax automatic awning besides being the most finicky malfunctioning awning was very expensive to replace when the first one was damaged in a light rain. It also took over six weeks to get everyone on the same page when it came to getting the appropriate parts to our airstream dealer to install.

All that being said we love our airstream and the way the awning looks, it just doesn't get put out much 😉
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Old 11-12-2016, 05:07 PM   #55
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After hearing from all of the owners with Zip Dees I'm sure glad my vintage has the Carefree of Colorado awning. It is tough as nails and has withstood many heavy rain storms, I generally don't stow it unless gust of 20mph+ or thunderstorms are forecasted.
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Old 11-12-2016, 06:17 PM   #56
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Tell Zip Dee that. Not me.
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Old 11-19-2016, 09:42 AM   #57
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We just welcomed ourselves to the club...The Automatic Awning Broken Club.

We've had a light rain all night, just checked all the reporting stations in our area (crowdsourced), and not one reported more than .45 inch all night, and wind on my personal weather station had no more than 4 MPH Peak, average of 1 MPH. We had the awning in the tilt position, woke up around 6am, and the awning looked like 1/2 of May West, The tilt did not help.

We were able to get the rain off with a broom from the underside, but when we tried to retract the awning, it just hit the very bottom of the retracted position and stopped, which would have really been a great position (if it could do that) as the rain would run off no problem..It won't go in, or out, or anything. Just Stuck.

Looked at finding a way to retract it manually, but the owners manual we received is for an older model, not the 30 Classic with the Firefly system. Now just waiting for the dealer (Bay Area Airstream) to open and I'll give them a call. Thankfully they are a really good, all the tech's we've encountered are really patient and helpful.

We've had awnings before that would handle this no problem. I expected this to be able to handle a light rain, but we know better now. I can see 10 other awnings from where i sit right now. (Not Zipdee) and they all seem to be fine. Right now I'm pretty disappointed in the quality, these appear to be way too fragile from my view now. Maybe that will change later!
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Old 11-19-2016, 09:48 AM   #58
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How much tilt did you have in it? A 22' awning needs 2 notches of rear drop to remain fully drained. 2 notches on a manual arm is about 10" of arm length.....so maybe 6" of vertical drop.
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Old 11-19-2016, 10:05 AM   #59
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Surrounding wx reporting stations have little/no relationship to localized rainfall or downbursts. Ask any instrument-rated pilot with any experience flying in wx.

A single shaft of rain, no larger than 500 sq.ft. can drag a 60+ mph gust with it and can rip an opened awning off just like it can roll a sailboat over. If there's any wx in the area...or if you're retiring for the evening... stow the awning unless you want a new one.
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Old 11-19-2016, 10:18 AM   #60
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Our manual awnings on our 2014 31' Classic can hold lots of water even with the dropped end. What saves our unit is the middle support arm to reduce the span by half on the curb side of the trailer. Unfortunately, the power awnings lack that center support for the curb side awning.

Since the power awning just requires a button push, it would make sense to retract it when not actually sitting outside.

We have many older Airstream Classics (both 31' and 34') at Ponderosa Shadows Airstream only RV park at Lakeside, AZ. Most of the trailers have the awnings out for the summer. There are lots of trees to help break up the wind gusts. Others have been really lucky to date. I just retract ours to preclude issues.
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