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veg hed 06-05-2015 07:47 AM

Who has a Zip Dee Relax 12v Automatic Awning?
Does anybody have one of these? If so do you like it and how much was it? I'm also looking at the retrofit.

Relax 12v Automatic Awning

AWCHIEF 06-05-2015 07:49 AM

Do a google search on issues. There have been some reported.

ghaynes755 06-05-2015 08:08 AM

So far works great on my new Classic. You can stop it at any point as it extends and the ends will tilt so that you have a natural runoff in case of rain.

One caution I got was making sure that your batteries, if you have stock batteries, have a good charge. I haven't checked to see what the amp draw is but guessing somewhat significant. I was told you don't want it to stop from lack of power.

jcanavera 06-05-2015 08:24 AM

Is there a manual crank method available as a back up?


DeltaRon 06-05-2015 10:06 AM

Automatic awning
Jackson Center wants $5,500 to install on our new 2015 FC 28. Think I'll stay with manual for now.

ghaynes755 06-05-2015 11:29 AM

Checked mine this morning. Looks like it draws 7-8amps when operating.

There is a manual crank process. They give you a flex shank with a nut driver on the end. it would need to be used in an electric drill. Also included is a 12V cable so that you can run it from a car battery.

TCAS 06-05-2015 11:39 AM

Works great. When closing after being somewhere a few days you'll need to stop it periodically to sweep it clean. You can't drop the whole thing to sweep like a manual awning you'll only be able to sweep the exposed end. Still it is convenient.

veg hed 06-05-2015 12:22 PM


Originally Posted by DeltaRon (Post 1632645)
Jackson Center wants $5,500 to install on our new 2015 FC 28. Think I'll stay with manual for now.

Ouch...That's a little out of my price range.

I have a 19' Bambi and I would try to do the retro fit. So probably a little cheaper.

Has anybody done the retrofit using the existing awning?

Jaxon 06-05-2015 01:30 PM


Originally Posted by veg hed (Post 1632592)
Does anybody have one of these? If so do you like it and how much was it? I'm also looking at the retrofit.

Relax 12v Automatic Awning

Just another motorized gadget to break and require expensive repair... and drain your battery. My experience with auto-awnings with my Foretravel wasn’t good, especially when the “wind guard” function malfunctioned (sucker was extending/retracting every 5 minutes). Then after a couple of years, had to replace the motor. Don’t know about Zip Dee but Girard was extremely proud of their motors!

Extending the awning manually has never been a difficult chore nor problematic. I try to keep things simple with minimal maintainence.

Rocinante 06-05-2015 01:41 PM

Ours came with this awning. It's quite nice and we've been very happy with it so far. Given the price tag, I might also look twice, because the manual awnings I've seen have their charm as well.

lsbrodsky 06-05-2015 01:57 PM

I am with Jaxon. Just on this forum there have been failures. Even if that is only a small percentage of the installed awnings, when you want the awning to move, you want it to move, especially if it is stuck deployed. I doubt I would ever be near a dealer or ZipDee when it failed. I do not think the manual awning was ever a problem looking for a solution.


JaynEss 06-05-2015 03:57 PM

We have backpacked and tent camped for most of our lives. We have also had a small camper and then one larger, now our Sovereign. We do not mind putting out our Zip Dee awnings as long as we are able. No problems with what others prefer.

overlander63 06-05-2015 04:32 PM


Originally Posted by veg hed (Post 1632730)
Ouch...That's a little out of my price range.

I have a 19' Bambi and I would try to do the retro fit. So probably a little cheaper.

Has anybody done the retrofit using the existing awning?

One of our customers had us install a Relax on a then-new 2014 25' Flying Cloud. They liked it enough to order a new 28' with the power awning.

LOGRIDER 06-07-2015 06:04 PM

We have one, wish we didn't, although the electronics are pretty cool (when they work). It is not a good thing to wonder each time you want to deploy the awning if it will work, it is even worse worrying on the morning you are set to pull out, if the thing will retract...both have happened to us, although now with the "new and improved" motor and brain Zip Dee has replaced twice, they say they have the bugs worked out.
I, like others, have become a firm believer in the old tried and true awnings.

mstrtek 06-10-2015 05:47 PM

zipdee nightmare
We have a 2014 27 ft fb with a auto awning .Never has worked correctly .On our second trip awning was stuck open on a Saturday read directions to manually closethe awning, Directions did not specify the arm to to insert tool to manually roll it up.After removing screw and inserting tool the spring that holds tension let loose.Arm flew off and awning came down and scratched door .Had to tie it up and travel 150 miles to a zipdee. dealer.It is now at colonial airstream.Zipdee said they would replace bad board and motor only. Airstream said they would goodwill door This has been a nightmare.The instructions to close a fully extended awning are poor and not accurate.I share this to warn other owners that you must only remove thru bolt and insert tool on front arm only.I would also like to say Tony at colonial airstream and his staff have been excellent in helping me resolve this concern.Thank you colonial airstream

guskmg 06-21-2015 09:00 PM

I retrofitted a Relax Kit on my 2006 34' Classic SOD at Jackson Center last November. It was Zip Dee's latest kit that was so new the wiring diagram in the instruction manual had not been updated. After an afternoon of talk between Airstream an ZipDee they got got everything working good. The mechanism is clever and works good. Several tips:
1. Depending on the awning length you have, the new rear support may not be over a rib at the lower end. The retrofit arms are shorter then the originals. This entails a scab reinforcement plate of equal skin thickness between the mount and the trailer. No biggie, but just be aware that if you want the rear awning arm to line up with a rib you will need the a whole awning rather than the retro kit.
2. The factory recommends a separate power switch for the awning 10 amp circuit. I added one as Airstream just wired the fused line direct to the battery. There is a 7-8 amp draw when operating and a significant residual drain when in standby. I used a 15 amp switch inside the door where the control panels are located under the front edge of the sink. The panel LEDs (6) are enough pilot lights to know power is on.
3. Any time there is power interruption, the the awning control should be placed in "Closed", before selecting any other function. This resets the motor controller computer so the arms will operate in sync. Keep the remote control in your pocket, turn on the power switch, press closed then open, and say "Abracabra, Open Ole Sesame." You will really impress you audience. My wife is still scratching her head.
I like no effort awning deployment while I do other things. Beside,s new toys are fun.

lbdesign 10-17-2016 07:47 PM

I've operated mine about 6 times during the first year of ownership (in month 13 of ownership now). It just ground to a halt and froze up while trying to close it. ZipDee's web site has no troubleshooting documents. It's after dark now and no one to call for support. I can open the main door about 1/4 of the way and squeeze through it, so I'll just wait 'til morning and then start working the phones for help.
I assumed something like this would happen, but didn't think it would be so soon. At least i'm within the 2 year original warranty period...

Any advice from experienced "Relax" owners?

Montanadoc 10-17-2016 08:17 PM

I'm on our second relax awning on my Pendleton. The first never seemed to retract or extend right and then had an unfortunate experience with a thunderstorm. When we replaced it I thought about replacing it with a manual zipdee but stuck with the relax for ease of putting out. Still always worry about it retracting fully as there's no good way to manually retract. Difficult to find any help on the internet and zip dee support is not available on the weekend when these things always happen.

rmkrum 10-17-2016 09:08 PM

The more I read about this issue, the happier I am that my awnings are manually operated.

Not to be a Luddite, but the electrical ones seem to be full of parts that can go out at an inopportune time.

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lbdesign 10-18-2016 02:14 AM

I agree. I would not have chosen this Relax, but it came bundled on an otherwise perfect-for-me model. The manuals may be a pain in other respects, but they don't get stuck half-in and half-out.
Especially since retraction is often done right before vacating a space.

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