FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS FROM TOUGH TOP CUSTOMERS
Can I schedule an awning install with Tough Top Awnings if I'm coming through town?
We are currently NOT doing awning installations at our home facility, sorry for the inconvenience! See our installers page HERE to find an installer or feel free to email us and we will do our best to help.
WHAT KIND OF MATERIAL DOES TOUGH TOP AWNINGS USE?
Our proprietary 18oz industrial grade coated vinyl material is designed for long term outdoor use. Used heavily in the trucking industry, we as a manufacturer like the fact that it is water proof, UV resistant and mildew resistant and all our products are made here in the United States.
Our proprietary vinyl is specifically designed for life on the pacific coast. It is a marine grade stitching that is also, UV resistant and mildew resistant and is a waxed thread. That means it is designed for life near salt water environments but will also thrive in Arizona or Florida.
WHAT IS PIGMENT DISPLACEMENT?
Pigment displacement happens sometimes in shipping, it gives the allusion of pin holes but is not. What you are seeing is the clear scrim that the vinyl is then laid over. What happened was the pigment moved during shipping, given those allusions on the folds. It will correct itself over a couple of weeks, especially if you can get it in the sun. We usually recommend you install and use this in the sun if possible, keep an eye on it and 99% of the time it will correct itself but let us know if it does not.
**Important: Don’t leave folded in the box for more than 90 days
AFTER BEING IN THE BOX FOR 2 WEEKS
AFTER BEING IN THE SUN FOR 2 WEEKS
Does your new Tough Top awning arrive with new beading / binding / plastic cords that attach the material to the coach and roller tube?
They sure do!
All our replacement fabrics come with new beading install and double stitched in place with marine grade stitching. So, when you pull our replacement out of the box it is ready to go immediately.
Do you have any Carefree of Colorado patio awning models you can't make?
We actually do!! These models (Paramount, Mirage, Freedom, Apex and Freestyle) WHY? The only reason is our material is too heavy for those specific hardware styles.
Why are my seams leaking on my new replacement patio awning? My old awning never leaked??
Well new awnings all leak. An awning fresh from the sewing table has holes in it where it was sewn together.
Over time debris will fill these holes and make it so water doesn’t drain through them.
If this is a problem for you and can’t wait for mother nature to do her job then applying a small amount of super glue to the stitching to fill the holes.
Does Tough Top Awnings make awnings out of Acrylic Canvas?NO! We don’t work with materials that are NOT water proof.
We only use high quality vinyls that are waterproof, UV resistant, mildew resistant and designed for high wind and rain.
Our products come with a 5 year warranty and should last around 10 to 15 years.
Why when I call is Tough Top Awnings does it always go to voicemail?
Tyler is the primary person that answers the phones and returns calls. On average we get over a 100 calls a day and while on phone calls we will get 3 to 5 more calls, we return calls in the order that messages are left.
I want to add a Flexible weather guard to my existing awning. Is this possible?The short answer is no.
You would have to order a whole new system with new fabric and the guard built into the fabric and wrapped around a new roller tube from A&E Dometic or Carefree of Colorado.
Questions we get all the time is about the springs and spring tension in either a main pull-down patio awning or an electric patio awning.
On a main manual pull down patio awning you have 2 springs. A free spinning spring on the left-hand side and a locking spring on the right-hand side. Each spring has 8 rotations turned away from the coach when it is upright and all rolled up.
Each spring has 14 rotations turned away from the coach when it is deployed and all the way unrolled. An A&E Dometic electric main patio awning has a free spinning spring on the left-hand side and a motor on the right-hand side.
The spring tension is the same as a manual awning with 8 rotation all rolled up and 14 when its rollout out, and nothing on the right side except a motor. A typical Carefree of Colorado electric patio awning has no springs in the roller tubes and the end caps are just screwed on with no springs to deal with.
Are there 2 types of end caps that require pinning in different spots? The answer is YES.The different style end caps as seen in these photos has a small hole in the very end and not the outside.
Using a backwards rivet and getting the small hole at 12 o'clock you can insert the backwards rivet into the hole and lock that spring in place before proceeding with removing the bolts to unroll the fabric.
The end cap on our SOK 3 doesn’t look like the one in your video. Where do you take out the screws in order to remove the cover over the roller tube?
This end cap without the screws is secured with a push pin system. Instead of removing screws you just push the pins in with a straight pick and while it's in, pull the cover clear of the end cap. Click to see photos. PHOTO 1 PHOTO 2 PHOTO 3 PHOTO 4 PHOTO 5
My end cap doesn’t look like the one in your video for replacing the fabric on a Carefree of Colorado Kover 3?
You have the Ascent package. This type of end cap doesn’t have screws to remove. It has push pins.
SEE PHOTO HERE
The red arrows indicates where you will use a straight pick to push the spring loaded pin in. While it's pushed in, rotate the cover away from the end cap.
Why is water pooling happening to me?
This is a design flaw many coach owners share and a fix isn’t always easy. The first thing is check to see if your roller tube has a bend in it by measuring the distance of the roller tube from the edge of the slide to the center of the roller tube at the ends and the middle. Even a quarter inch bend can cause sagging.
This picture (CLICK HERE) confirms that the water is pooling right next to the roller tube. It shows where water is collecting on the topper and putting downward pressure on the fabric causing the roller tube to bend in the direction the red arrow is pointing, causing your water back up.
The white arrow shows the water staining deeper in the center where the roller tube is at its weakest point.
This has more than likely developed over the years and put a permanent bend in your roller tube making this that much easier with a better fabric.
Increasing spring tension should alleviate some of this but not all, as your only solution would be to replace the roller tube. And what is to say with such a deep and long slide out, that it wouldn’t happen again?
The only way to fix this is to raise the channel on the coach side and this isn’t really a good option for most RVers.
Why does every supplier of Main Pull Down Patio Awnings ask me to measure inside center pole to center pole when Tough Top Awnings does not?
Everyone else has their products pre-made overseas and they are made to a 6 inch increment. If you tell them you have an 18 foot awning they will give you 17' 6". We are not going to tell you what you need as all awnings differ in size. Instead, you tell us what you need and we will make it here in the United States to the size you need, in just a couple of days, out of quality USA parts and labor.
Oh No!!! I have lost the spring tension in my slide toppers. Now what?
With your slide all the way out, add 13 to 15 full rotations to the roller tube before installing your new fabric as you can’t add spring tension to it after you install the fabric. Note that you want the spring tension in the roller tube to be tight but not so tight that it feels like you could lose control of it with 2 hands on the roller tube.
Why don’t we sew the edges of our exposed fabric?
#1 We don’t need to. The only reason someone would sew the edges is if they are afraid their fabric will come apart or rip.
#2 You don’t want the edges of your fabric to be rigid on the side. This allows the middle of the fabric to billow in the wind, causing unnecessary noise. You want your fabric to move unilaterally with the wind.
How do I measure for slide out toppers? Or can I just give you the model numbers?
Unfortunately, model numbers would only help us if we needed to order new hardware. When measuring the roller tube that the fabric can lay on from one side to the other, either inside the end caps or from the inside of the black cap, make sure to subtract 1.5” to give you a 3/4” clearance on each side. This will be the measurement we will need to know to cut your new fabric custom for your slide topper. When it comes to the depth of the fabric, measure the depth of the room from the side of the coach to the outside of the slide, or if the slide is in just measure how deep it comes out from the inside. This is the only measurement we will mess with. We will add on extra fabric depending on how wide it is versus the depth to give you maximum spring tension with the appropriate amount for wrap around. All other fabrics are cut to the same depth and this consideration is not given, it is just a practice of mass producers that we avoid.
On our patio awning, we don't have the small hole in the left side to stick a screwdriver in like the videos show. What do we do?
If you don’t have the small hole you will have a channel that runs the length of the roller tube on the side of the end cap that is also used to install a new pull strap. I stick a long thin screwdriver in this channel to act the same as a stick in the wheels of a tire to prevent the assist spring on the left side of a patio awning from unwinding before I remove the fabric and hardware from the side of the coach.