How to Open an RV Awning

RVing is a wonderful and relaxing way to spend time with loved ones while enjoying the great outdoors. A major benefit of camping in an RV is it typically has many of the features found at home, but one of the best things about RVing is enjoying nature. Most RV's come equipped with outdoor features that keep outdoor elements from hampering your comfort. An awning is one such feature. It keeps you protected from the sun and rain while providing an outdoor living space at your campsite.

Squeeze the release tabs on the travel locks located on the awning arms.

Loosen the rafter knobs.

Reverse the ratchet mechanism from the roll into the roll-out position. This will allow you to pull the awning out.

Locate the pull strap on the awning. Attach the pull hook to the loop and pull the awning out until it is fully extended.

Slide the rafters out onto the awning arms and lock in position.

Firmly tighten the turn knobs on both rafters to keep it safely locked in place.

Adjust the height of the awning to suit your needs. Do this by lifting the handle to release the lock, move the awning to the preferred height and relock the arm.


  • Never open the RV door before the awning is fully in position. You could tear the awning fabric with the corner of the door.


  • On some RV models, the awning travel locks can be released by swinging them outward. When traveling, the rafter knobs should be firmly tightened to prevent them from vibrating loose. Traveling with the awning ratchet switch in the roll-up position helps to keep tension in the awning fabric, thereby keeping it in place. Spray WD-40 on rafters if they move stiffly.

About the Author

Shelly Schumacher has a diverse writing background that includes work in print as well as electronic publications. She has been writing for over 18 years and enjoys working with a variety of different clients on both writing projects and as a marketing and public relations consultant. Schumacher holds a Bachelor of Science in journalism from the University of Wisconsin.