When you buy an RV, it is important to buy the best RV awning available. Without a reliable RV awning, you won’t get the protection from the elements that you need for the RV lifestyle.
In this article, we will review some of the best RV awnings available on the market. After that, we will discuss what you should look for when searching for the right RV awning for you.
Without further ado, let’s take a look at our top picks!
Find Some Shade with These RV Awnings
|Best RV Awning||Best For:|
|Solera V000168106 Black 8’||Overall Value|
|Dometic 98000EX SlideTopper||Most Durable|
|Carefree LH0890042 Slideout Cover||Most Affordable|
|Universal Slide Out Awning Fabric||Awning Replacement Fabric|
|Solera V000168109 Black 13’6”||Large Awning|
Our RV Awning Reviews
Let’s take a deeper look at each of our recommendations and what we liked and didn’t like.
Best Overall Awning
Solera V000168106 Black 8’
Although somewhat pricey, the Solera V000168106 Black 8’ is definitely a return for your investment, as it is not only sturdy and durable, but also offers reliable protection.
We like how it is capable of fitting slide-outs ranging from 66 to 192 inches and comes with an awning rail, topper, and all mounting brackets. Unfortunately, the instructions can be clearer and the awning fabric is only water-resistant, not waterproof.
- RELIABLE PROTECTION — Slide Toppers help prevent dirt, bird droppings, debris and more from...
- MULTIPLE SIZING & COLOR OPTIONS — Fitting slide-outs ranging from 66” to 192” and available in...
- Created with heavy-duty vinyl fabrics
- Automatically retracts and extends with the slide-out
- Can extend up to 50 inches, which is eight more inches than most other brands out there
- Universal fit for slide-outs ranging from 66 to 192 inches
- Can be installed up to 5 inches above the slide box trim, so it is very flexible
- The awning fabric is not waterproof, but is water-resistant
- The awning cannot provide adequate protection in heavy rainfall or snowfall
- Sometimes ships with missing or damaged parts
- Instructions could be clearer, particularly for newcomers to installing RV awnings
Dometic 98000EX SlideTopper
Affordable and durable, the Dometic 98000EX SlideTopper is made of durable vinyl. Dometic is well-known for its compact and lightweight yet durable awnings. Like our other picks, we love that this awning is easy to install. We also like how it is durable and can withstand long winter trips. It will be able to provide you the shade and protection you need from the elements.
There were some things we didn’t like about this product. Dometic’s customer service leaves a lot to be desired, since they do not provide a lot of guidance about how to install and use this product. Further, this slide topper does not ship with all of the parts you need to install the product, so if you are a newcomer to installing RV awnings, this may not be for you.
- Product Type:Auto Accessory
- Item Package Weight:2.631 Kilograms
- Durable – will last you many trips
- Compact, lightweight
- Easy to install
- Not the best customer service
- Does not come with instructions
- Need to buy fabric separately
Carefree LH0890042 Slideout Cover
This product is our pick for most affordable. We like how despite its size and large range of capabilities, this slide-out awning is quite affordable. It automatically extends with your slide room and has a built-in automatic roller lock that prevents billowing, making it flexible and easy-to-use.
However, we did not like how there were no instructions provided, making it hard to install for those who have never installed an RV awning before. Like the Dometic 98000EX SlideTopper, this product also does not come with everything you need to install it properly.
- Carefree Slide out Cover Roller
- The Slide out Cover combines worry-free, dependable protection, easy installation, dependable...
- Keeps your slide room cool and clean
- Roller lock prevents billowing when traveling
- 42-inch extension
- Locks automatically when the slide room is closed and automatically unlocks when the slide room is used
- Dimensions are as follows: the roof size range: 82 inches to 89 inches; flange size range: 87 inches to 94 inches; fabric width: 93 inches.
- There are no instructions provided
- Does not include mounting brackets, contrary to what the company claims in its Q&A
Best Awning Replacement Fabric
Universal Slide Out Awning Fabric
This vinyl awning is easy to cut to fit and install and comes with cords pre-installed at both ends of the fabric.
We like how easy it is to install and how the cording is secured with a welded seam on both sides, so it will not easily slip out when you are cutting the vinyl. This product is our pick for best replacement fabric because it is made of sturdy, tough vinyl and is easy to set up on any kind of RV. Unfortunately, this product only comes in white and may not be the most durable.
- Universal, Cut to fit-No specialty ordering required
- Fits slide outs with a Fabric that measures 200" or less with an extension of 30" or less
- It is made of vinyl, making it perfect for winter trips
- Weighs 12 oz. per square yard, so it is quite durable
- Great replacement fabric due to durability
- Easy to install – comes with instructions
- Only comes in white
- May not be the most durable type of fabric out there
- Does not come with its own instructions – you should follow the instructions from your awning manufacturer
Best Large Awning
Solera V000168109 Black 13’6”
This product, also from Solera, is a great option for RVers with larger areas to cover. At 162 inches wide with a box with a range of 152 to 157.75 inches, the Solera V000168109 Black 13’6” comes in two colors: black and white.
We really like how flexible this awning is and how suited it is to larger RVs. Like the other Solera awning above, this awning also can extend up to 50 inches, which is 8 more inches than competitive brands. However, the fabric quality could be better.
- Select the size that extends a minimum of 2 ½" beyond each side of your slide box width
- Features solid black awning fabric and black hardware
- Perfect for larger RVs
- Created with heavy-duty vinyl fabrics
- Tested for durability – can withstand -25 degrees Fahrenheit, so it is perfect for winter camping trips
- Comes with everything you need to set it up – awning rail, topper, and mounting brackets
- Leak-resistant seams
- Fabric could be more durable
- Lock mechanism could be stronger
Recap: The Best RV Awnings
- Solera V000168106 Black 8’ – Overall Value
- Dometic 98000EX SlideTopper – Most Durable
- Carefree LH0890042 Slideout Cover – Most Affordable
- Universal Slide Out Awning Fabric – Awning Replacement Fabric
- Solera V000168109 Black 13’6” – Large Awning
Factors to Consider When Buying RV Awnings
In this buying guide, you will learn about what you need to look for when buying an RV awning. You should consider all of the factors below before deciding which awning is the best bang for your buck, since there are so many choices out there.
First of all, you need to pick the right kind of RV awning fabric for the kind of road trip you’re planning to have with your vehicle.
For example, if you are planning a summer trip, you should get a breathable acrylic fabric, so you get the shade that you need during hot sunny days.
However, if you plan to go on winter trips, you will need an awning that is made of durable vinyl fabric, such as the Solera or Dometic awnings listed above.
Your awning fabric should also be durable enough and have a protectant to protect against UV rays that can wear it out and fade the color over time.
You should also look at whether the RV awning material is waterproof or just water-resistant. For longer trips, you should look into getting an RV awning that is waterproof, so it can withstand heavy rainfall and snowfall. Most vinyl fabrics are waterproof (since vinyl is a laminated fabric), but some are more waterproof than others.
Your RV Dimensions
Secondly, you should look at what your RV’s dimensions are. After all, you wouldn’t want to purchase an RV awning that does not fit your RV. You need to know the exact measurements of your RV or your existing awning.
If you already have an awning that just needs to be replaced, use that awning to guide your next purchase. On the other hand, if you have never had an awning before, you can measure ⅓ to ½ of your vehicle’s length to determine the size of the RV awning you should get. Usually, RV awnings range from 2 to 5 meters.
You can also ask your RV’s manufacturers about what the size of the RV awning you should get.
Ease of Installation
You should also look at whether your RV awning is easy to install. Is it easy to wrap the fabric around the roller tube? Does it come with the correct mounting hardware? Are the instructions easy to follow?
If you have never installed RV awnings before, you should look into getting an RV awning that comes with easy-to-understand instructions.
Another factor to consider is whether the RV awning is retractable. Can it be placed above the slide box trim? Does it automatically retract and extend with the slide-out?
Having a retractable awning that is flexible and can automatically retract and extend with the slide-out will make your life much easier, particularly when you are moving from one camping site to another.
Last but not least, you should consider your budget when buying an RV awning. You should not look at the price to determine the quality of your RV awning – not all affordable RV awnings are poor choices. Similarly, not all pricey RV awnings are best suited to your needs.
You deserve a great RV awning so you can have enjoyable camping experiences in your RV. A good RV awning will provide you with a comfortable area to relax and enjoy nature, as well as protect you from harsh weather conditions.
We hope this review and guide has helped you to locate the right awning for your needs. For more reading on awnings, check out the articles below.
- Installing an after-market awning
- How to clean an RV awning
- Best RV awning lights
- Best RV slide topper
- Best RV screen room
Frequently Asked Questions
Which Is Better Vinyl Or Acrylic Awning?
There are benefits and drawbacks to both. Acrylic awnings are great for the summer because they “breathe” and won’t hold in that heat. They also hold color better than vinyl awnings. However, acrylic awnings can not be repaired if they are torn. Vinyl awnings don’t breathe so they are better if you know that you will be somewhere where it could rain frequently. They also have a tendency to attract mildew more than acrylic awnings.
How Much Does It Cost To Fit A New RV Awning?
The cost of fitting a new awning generally depends on the size of your RV. A small RV might cost you around $250 and a larger RV can cost up to $2500 so be sure you absolutely need a new awning before going to get it replaced, and check out our article to see the best fabrics for your awning. You can also check out DIY guides on the best way to install an awning.
How Long Does An RV Awning Last?
Generally speaking, RV awnings will last between 5 and 15 years depending on use and care. Taking care of your awning is absolutely necessary to prolonging its life. Cleaning regularly will help keep your awning clean and free of mold and mildew. Also continuing to lubricate your awning arms will keep your awning working like new.