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 > Wind damage to slide topper

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msmith1199

Reno, NV

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Posted: 02/12/18 11:37am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My RV is getting up in age, about 14 years now, and yesterday I moved it to a new storage place and got caught in some real heavy winds. The winds were at about 90 degrees to the direction of travel on the left side. I've driven in stronger winds before but they were from the right side before and I know they were stronger because in those previous winds I ended up having to get off the freeway and wait them out once I figured out I couldn't even keep the RV in the lane at 25 mph. Yesterday's winds I was able to keep in the lane.

So to the point, as I was driving in the wind I heard some very loud banging coming from the left side of the roof. I pulled over and looked but couldn't see anything loose or wrong. Back on the road and it started again and this time I was able to see through the mirror that is was the slide topper. I couldn't see the topper well so I don't know exactly what it was doing, but I did see a part fly off of it. The part that flew off was the anti-billowing device.

Anyway, I was close to getting to the storage location so I slowed way down and there were no problems getting it put away. I looked at the slide topper from the ground and other than the anti-billowing device missing you can't see any damage or anything wrong with it. When the weather gets warmer I'll take a ladder there and get a closer look, but I was wonder if this problem could be related to age? Are the springs that hold it closed just getting loose and this allows the wind to catch it? Anybody else had this issue?


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Janss

Sedona, AZ

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Posted: 02/12/18 11:50am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I've had the exact same experience with the loud banging noise on the left side near the roof. I pulled over and looked. Fortunately nothing missing or damaged. I just figured the hardware at that end of the slide topper was lifting and banging on the side of the motorhome with the high winds.

So I'll be watching this thread to see any other comments.


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ScottG

Bothell Wa.

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Posted: 02/12/18 12:07pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Never had that problem with our last TT which we used for 13 years. I had installed the lowest level of Carefree awning on it.
But there are some junk slide toppers out there. If you buy it yourself and install, it's probably decent but there are super low quality units that only manufacturers can buy (cough* Northwood) and I can see how they will probably come loose with a good sneeze.


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rgatijnet1

Florida

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Posted: 02/12/18 01:21pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I had a single spring go out at 11 years old. I replaced both topper springs and the topper material at the same time. I took the material off, which is not a big deal once you have it apart to change the springs, and took it to a marine cover shop where they duplicated my existing topper fabric for $150.
Tensioning the topper springs can be a challange so you may want to get a mobile mechanic to do that part of the project.

ArchHoagland

Clovis, CA, USA

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Posted: 02/12/18 06:31pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

During a storm my main slideout topper pulled the anchoring base away from the top edge of the roofline while I was in a RV park.

I contacted AAA insurance and they checked the weather for that day in the area and saw that there was a "Strong weather event."

So they paid about $600 to have it repaired.


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msmith1199

Reno, NV

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Posted: 02/12/18 07:10pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

ScottG wrote:

Never had that problem with our last TT which we used for 13 years. I had installed the lowest level of Carefree awning on it.
But there are some junk slide toppers out there. If you buy it yourself and install, it's probably decent but there are super low quality units that only manufacturers can buy (cough* Northwood) and I can see how they will probably come loose with a good sneeze.


Mine are Dometic and looking at the current Dometic slidetoppers, they have three categories. The one I have is the cheapest of the three. So if I do end up having to do some repair work, I may end up just buying the top end unit and having it installed.

msmith1199

Reno, NV

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Posted: 02/12/18 07:12pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

ArchHoagland wrote:

During a storm my main slideout topper pulled the anchoring base away from the top edge of the roofline while I was in a RV park.

I contacted AAA insurance and they checked the weather for that day in the area and saw that there was a "Strong weather event."

So they paid about $600 to have it repaired.


I did some google searches and I found a lot of different links talking about wind damage and banging around while the slide was open and at an RV park. I couldn't find any info on the slide toppers while on the road. I've seen regular awnings get damaged on the road and know that happens, but not the slide toppers.

msmith1199

Reno, NV

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Posted: 02/12/18 07:14pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

rgatijnet1 wrote:

I had a single spring go out at 11 years old. I replaced both topper springs and the topper material at the same time. I took the material off, which is not a big deal once you have it apart to change the springs, and took it to a marine cover shop where they duplicated my existing topper fabric for $150.
Tensioning the topper springs can be a challange so you may want to get a mobile mechanic to do that part of the project.


When the spring went out did that enable the topper to blow more while on the road? What I was thinking is maybe the springs are getting old and loose and that is what allowed the wind to catch it and cause the problems.

ArchHoagland

Clovis, CA, USA

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Posted: 02/12/18 09:48pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I still think I'd check with the insurance company. Can't hurt.

doxiemom11

New Mexico

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Posted: 02/12/18 09:52pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We had that, and you couldn't see anything from the ground other than it appeared to sag a little in the middle. Upon checking, we found the the thread in the seam at the top had given away and the top of the awning was only fastened towards each end. We took the awning off and resewed that seam, ged the plastic things thru and re- fed it thru the track on the top edge of the motorhome.

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