Imagine that you are enjoying a beautiful day at an exquisite campsite but unfortunately it starts to rain. You dont want to go inside, rather you would like to stay outside and enjoy the fresh air but you don’t want to be rained on. That’s where an awning could come in to save the day. Many different types of awnings exist but they all intend to satisfy the same goal of protection from the elements and/or maximizing outdoor space to allow you to enjoy your time camping or being outside! There even exists patio awnings that allow you to enjoy your backyard at a cottage or home!
What to consider when purchasing an awning?
If your RV does not come with an awning and you want to purchase one or if you are deciding between which RV to buy and the type/presence or absence of an awning is on your mind there are a few things you may want to consider to make an informed decision. Such factors include type of awning, cost of the awning, maintenance requirements and longevity of the awning as well as the overall aesthetics that awning provides.
Firstly, you may want to consider the type of awning you would like to have as the type of awning will determine alot about how much patio sun shade you may gain as well as how easy it is to maintain and utilize in your daily life as a camper. Specifically, electric awnings may be more convenient to utilize, as it is a matter of a clip of a button and you will gain a carefree awning! However, a manual awning may be harder to put up and therefore be more of a hassle. You may also want to consider if you would like your awning to simply lie horizontally above your head as a cover from the elements or if you want almost a tent-like room to extend from your RV with vertical protection as well!
Cost may also factor into your decision, these costs can be upfront in the form of how much it actually costs to have an awning as a feature to your RV or purchase an awning to add to your RV. There may also be costs associated with maintenance, such as the cost of parts or to replace material that has become aged or torn. For instance if your awning is made of a fabric material as opposed to some sort of more durable material, it may require being replaced every couple years.
Another thing to consider when purchasing an awning may be the aesthetics of the awning, this is something that comes down to a buyer’s personal taste and preferences. However, it can make a big difference and influence purchasing decisions.
Types of Awnings
Now that you have some general ideas about what different things that may factor into your decision to purchase an awning such as type, cost, maintenance, usability, and aesthetics it is time to dive into some of the key differences between different types of awnings.
Electric versus mechanical retractable RV awnings
Traditionally when you think of an RV awning, you think of a protective roof-like extension from your RV that provides you protection from the sun and rain, so you can play a peaceful game of cards outside or spend time talking with friends and family. Now there are two main types of such awnings and they are electric or mechanical/manual and they can be attached to your RV or there also exists camper awnings. Electric awnings require electricity to be powered and thus a requirement of utilizing them would be to have your RV hooked up to a source of electricity, which is sometimes not a viable option at certain campsites so this must be considered when purchasing. Electric awnings also tend to be more expensive as the parts required to build them cost more. However, they can be more convenient in setting up as you simply need to press a button and the awning will extend itself. On the other hand mechanical awnings are typically less expensive and do not require a connection to electricity to operate.
You dont have to own an RV to reap the benefits of an awning! There also exists patio awnings which can extend from your house and provide you shade and protection from the elements to allow you to enjoy being outside. Specifically, patio awnings can extend from your house or mobile home. As patio awnings are often attached to your home and spend the duration of the year in the elements, therefore maintenance of patio awnings are of the utmost importance not only for yourself but also if you intend to sell your house or have people over. Therefore, one may want to factor in the cost of patio awning parts if they are planning on creating a patio awning addition to their home.
Although RV covers are not considered to be an awning, they are in a sense an awning for your RV and thus they deserve an honorable mention! Specifically, when you want to store your RV for long periods of time or protect your RV from the elements, you can use an RV cover and it can help to keep your RV protected from the elements for extended periods of time. We also have a few blogs dedicated to RV covers and also one which specifies quality covers for every type of RV, that will hopefully help you in your selection process! Please feel free to check it out!
How to Maintain an Awning
Maintenance of an awning may include making sure to properly open and close your awning and prepare your awning for travel if it is physically attached to your RV. As well may include replacing the material of your awning due to wear and tear, or getting new parts for your awning if it is for instance electric and a part breaks. All of these responsibilities should be considered and fulfilled in order to ensure the longevity of your awning! For more information on RV awning care please consult one of your previously written blogs on this topic!
Overall, having an awning can be a very nice and useful feature for your RV and can allow you to maximize your time outdoors while camping! You can also enjoy the benefits of an awning in your home or mobile home as patio awnings are also extremely convenient to have at your house. Today, most new RVs come equipped with an electrical retractable RV awning, however if you have an older RV you can still purchase an awning to level up your RV game!