How to Install an Awning Motor

What You'll Need
Awning drive motor
Electric drill
Drill bits
Wire for the motors, switches and transformers
Wire nuts
Installation kit containing all mounting hardware

Learning to install an awning motor doesn’t require any special skills. It can be accomplished by the average do-it-yourselfer. Find out how to work with one below.

Step 1 – Choose a Motor

Motorized awnings are really convenient. Make sure that you get one that has a manual override – this is an emergency mechanism that allows you to retract the awning by hand when the electricity is shut off. Many motors have a built-in receiver, and are operated by remote control. The arms open and close the awning at the touch of a wall-mounted control switch, or remote control device. They optionally come with a sun and wind sensor, that can automatically operate your awning. For proper installation, motor instructions and a wiring sheet are supplied. Motors can generally be plugged into a standard outlet.

Step 2 – Prepare the Awning

Remove the awning from the mounting bracket and lay it safely on the ground. This should be done in a retracted position. After your awning is safely on the ground, remove the end cap. Loosen the roller end bracket securing bolts, and remove the bracket from the torsion bar, by sliding it to the left end of the bar. Remove the gear. Remove the square toe, as you’ll no longer need it – the motor will replace it.

Step 3 – Install the Motor

Install the motor, by sliding it all the way into the end of the roller tube. Attach the hardware one by one. Refer to the owner’s manual, as the parts included can be slightly different from manufacture to manufacturer. Reinstall the gear for the manual handle. Also, reinstall the roller end bracket by sliding the bracket onto the end of the torsion bar. Tighten the nuts on the securing bolts of the roller end bracket. Install the end cap. Safely reinstall and secure the awning to the mounting brackets. Hook up the motor cable to the wall control panel, which may be connected to an optional wind, rain or sun sensor. If provided, install the wireless control bracket in a covered area and plug the wall control panel cable to the electrical wall receptacle. Check all the buttons on the switch and remote, to ensure that they’re working properly. For further instructions regarding specific adjustments, refer to the wiring diagram.

Step 3 – Precautions

If the motor runs excessively, its temperature limit switch will overheat and prevent the motor from continuing to run. (Tubular motors have a built-in thermal overload device, which limits their operation). If this occurs, wait for the motor to cool down. At least once a year, or at the beginning of each season, if the awning is used all year, check all exposed bolts to ensure that they’re tight and lightly oil all joints.