Tuesday, March 21, 2023


Has your awning/slide-out topper rail pulled loose?

Has your awning or slide-out topper rail pulled loose from the wall? This piece of aluminum is mounted to an RV wall before the awning or slide-out topper fabric has been installed. There is a poly cord sewn into the awning fabric that fits a channel in the awning/slide-out topper rail to retain and support the fabric connection to the coach side wall.

These rails take a lot of abuse from travel, vibration, wind and rain.

Examples of loose railings

Here are a few examples of loose awning rails. As part of your regular preventive maintenance, make sure to add this to your inspection list. If the rail is loose, you risk having the awning parachute open while in travel.

How to repair a loose railing

If your awning rail has come loose, you’ll need to remove your insert molding in order to check and tighten the screws. Should the screw hole be stripped, then you will need to install a trim-fold rivet. If needed, you can pre-drill 3/16″ additional holes every 6 inches and add some additional fasteners in place.

These are the tools you’ll need for the repairs:

More from Dustin

Read more of Dustin’s articles here.

Dustin owns and operates California RV Specialists, an independent RV repair shop located in Lodi, CA. He thrives on sharing his knowledge and enthusiasm of RV repair and maintenance with his team, customers, and virtual friends.

Be sure to check out his YouTube channel where he shares what’s going on in the shop and the product offerings in the store. Dustin is also very active on Facebook. Join his group, RV Repairs and Tips – What’s in the shop!

Dustin proudly operates the business alongside his wife, Ashley; but the true pair that run the show are their Boston Terriers, Arvie and Hitch.



5 2 votes
Article Rating
Subscribe to comments
Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
22 days ago

Hey Dustin
Live & learn, never heard of a “Trim Fold Rivet” I’ve been using POP rivets for over 50 years! There were times when I could have used something like that, especially if its a blind hole & you need a washer behind it.
Thanks for the tip

Neal Davis
22 days ago

Thanks, Dustin!

22 days ago

I’ve not had the rail come loose but had the awning start to tear right at the rail. I pulled the awning off, took it to an awning shop and they cut the edge back a few inches, sewed the cord back in, I reinstalled the awning and all is well.

22 days ago

The tri-fold rivets are not available on Amazon as linked to. Good idea though. I’ll have to look around for other resources!

22 days ago
Reply to  Ran

EBAY has them

Sign up for the

RVtravel Newsletter

Sign up and receive 3 FREE RV Checklists: Set-Up, Take-Down and Packing List.