Want to spruce up your RV’s or van’s outdoor area? Hang some lights on your awning! We’re going to cover a few of the best ways to attach awning lights to your motorhome without damaging it in this post.
Having an awning on your rig really makes outdoor life that much sweeter when you’re camping. They not only provide a covered and comfortable place to eat and hang out, but they’re a great nighttime gathering place if you have some lights. Along with all the comforts of home, RVs with awnings create shaded spots where you can sit and enjoy a morning cup of coffee and watch nature roll by.
In the evenings, awnings are great for when the weather turns foul and you still want to be outside for a bit. If you are dispersed camping or boondocking somewhere where there is no external light, you can add lights to the awning. The lights are an excellent accessory that make it easier to see in really dark places and help keep prowling animals and mice at bay.
If you don’t know how to attach or hang lights to your RV, there are several ways you can do this. Everyone has their preferred method, but eventually you’ll pick the one that is easiest for you. The following ways will help you get light or lights onto your awning and give you added light while camping.
6 Ways to Attach Awning Lights
Tying Camping Lanterns to the Awning
This is not the typical method of adding light to the camper awning, but one that definitely does work. If you have several battery-operated camping lanterns (we don’t recommend hanging the propane types!), you can loop rope or shower curtain rings around different parts of the awning. Then attach the lanterns via the handles on top by tying the ropes through and around the handles or looping the shower curtain hooks through the handles and the sturdier bars of the awning. Close the loops in the rope or shower curtain hooks to make the lanterns secure.
Loop Rope Lights Around Awning Bars
Rope lights are lights encased in a long clear plastic rope. When lit, they look like a neon sign type of light, except that there’s no neon involved. They can bend and twist a little, allowing you to wrap them around the metal frame of the RV’s awning. You just have to be sure that your awning doesn’t collapse in the wind and you need to remove the lights before you collapse the awning to travel again.
Use RV Awning Light Clips/Hooks
Some RVs have light clips or hooks that come standard on them. For all other RVs, you will need to buy these clips/hooks and attach them yourself into the awning’s railing. Once you have the clips/hooks attached to the flap of the RV awning, hanging lights is really simple. Just hook the tops of each light on the light string over a hook/clip and then plug them in.
Probably the cheapest method of all is to buy a $5 bag of clip-on clothespins. Then just clip the top hanger of each light to the edge of the awning’s canvas. Be sure to point the clipping end of the clothespins upward so that the grip the clothespins have on the lights doesn’t fail and accidentally drop to the ground.
Rubber Slot Fixtures for Instant “Track Lighting”
On the underside of the rollout bars of many RV awnings you will feel a sort of open track area. There is a pull-down strap tucked into this slot leaves plenty of room to insert these unique rubber slot fixtures made just for hanging RV lights. Buy a bag or two of the slot fixtures and then insert them when the awning is fully unfurled.
Now the rubber fixtures act as a means of holding onto strings of lights. The strings of lights, however, have to have little plastic “T” tabs on top for this to work. The result is transforming the rollout bars on the RV’s awning into instant “track lighting.” You will need to remove all of this when it’s time to close the awning again.
Small Binder Clips
Binder clips are also cheap and can be purchased in most office supply stores. The little or medium ones work just as good as wooden clothespins but you can’t see the binder clips. If you don’t like the look of the clothespins, or the clothespins don’t hold well, try the binder clips.