Use, packing and storage
Packing up your awning
Many caravanners feel that folding their awnings is a laborious job, but help is at hand and there are a many solutions. Some people prefer to remove all the panels and store them separately.
Here we describe our favourite system for folding. The majority of Ventura awnings can be packed up with all the panels zipped in. It is essential that the awning is as clean as possible and COMPLETELY DRY before it is folded. The roof is spread out on the carpet/underlay - inside out, in order to protect the roof coating. The side panels are pulled out to the left and right, in a triangular shape and then folded into the middle. The awning is folded another few times – until it is an appropriate width for the awning bag. The awning is rolled from the front and towards the back edge so that the bead, which may be a little dirty from the rail, is on the outside, and then the awning fits nicely into the bag. Porch/Part awnings are folded in the same way.
The poles should be cleaned and dried thoroughly, and it is also important to remember to clean the movable parts - to avoid trapping any dirt. The poles are then ready to be stored in the pole bag, and it is generally easier to put in angled and cross poles first and leave the straight poles till last.
This is our way of packing up an awning, but we often see other creative solutions, and we have the greatest respect for caravanners who fold the roof and panels separately. Then protect the windows in the panels by folding them with cotton sheets between. Another excellent way of protecting the windows is to roll the zip out panels loosely in between sheets and store in a cardboard tube.
The awning should be stored in a dry, well aired place.
Holes in the awning
To achieve the perfect assembling of the awning it is neccessary to create pattern holes. The marks are drilled through the canvas with a hot needle, other kinds of marking have the tendency to move, or in the case of chalk smudge.The pattern holes are more frequent in the canopy, at the channels, and around the zips. On new awnings they can be quite visible, but when the awning is standing in the wind and weather the fabric will work which make the marks contract a little. These marks are not detrimental to the awning performance or value.
PVC awnings: small scars can appear, which occur at production and packing/shipping. They look like small holes, but are often only superficial scratches, where the light penetrates. At the packing stage there are sometimes “double folds”, which then cause the coating to appear to have a hole. Normally, this does not affect waterproofing or lifespan, and is inevitable when it comes to PVC and coated materials.
Often this is caused by insufficient tensioning of the ridge poles and is best corrected by rolling down the front panels and tensioning the ridge poles again . After that check that the canopy poles are completely stretched, and that the front legs are tensioned upwards from the ground.
Awning ventilation is more important than is generally realised - particularly in synthetic awnings. Under extreme conditions, condensation within the awning cannot be completely avoided. Condensation nearly always occurs on the roof poles and therefore it is often confused with leaks. Leave the ventilation panel open as much as possible, especially when the awning is erected for some time as this will minimize condensation. Wherever possible it is recommended that the draught skirt is drawn aside slightly so that extra air circulation can take place. To prevent ground moisture rising inside the awning, a plastic underlay can be placed underneath your "Bolon" carpet, but this will cause the grass to die and may contravene some caravan sites rules.
Draught skirt / Pocket piece / Wheel arch cover
All the Ventura awnings are supplied with a draught skirt and a wheel arch cover, which shelters from draught. A full pocket piece can be supplied as an optional extra. Both draught skirt and mudflap are made with peg poles for the threadpegs. In certain cases, particularly in the corners, it may not be possible to place the holes on top of one another, then it will be necessary to peg through the mudflap. You can also peg outside the mudflap as the specially shaped hooks can easily keep the mudflap down without damaging it.
All Ventura standard awnings have front and side panels which can be drawn or removed. It is possible to roll down the front and side panels verandah-style by using the verandah pole which is to be placed in the small piece of cloth that has been sewn into the side canvas towards the caravan. It is important to draw the curtains so that the window plastic will not come into contact with the verandah pole. Also, please ensure the connector does not rub against the material. This will damage the awning. A cotton cover for the verandah pole can also be used (available as an optional extra as are extra verandah poles).