How do you fix a broken zipper on a pop-up camper?

In this blog post, we will answer the following question: How do you fix a broken zipper on a pop-up camper? We will share with you a few simple ways to fix a broken zipper on a pop-up camper, but also explain how to fix other small issues with the pop-up canvas. 

How do you fix a broken zipper on a pop-up camper?

Fixing a broken zipper on a pop-up camper can be done in just a few simple steps. Having a broken zipper on your pop-up camper is one of the most frustrating accidents on a camping trip because the zippers on your canvas are the one thing that keeps the outside world and all its bugs, animals and wind out of your haven’s security.

Repairing broken zippers on your pop-up canvas quickly and efficiently can help make your camping trip enjoyable. The many pop-up designs are available with a variety of zipper styles and sizes, but the repair methods for the different types do not vary much.

  • Secure the pop-up against insects by tying up the canvas if the damage is on the tent itself. If the camper zipper is damaged, close the tent door and cover the canvas with a tarp to ensure that no rain can enter the tent during the repair process.
  • If the fabric is torn along the zipper, secure it with tape, making sure the seam is even and there is tape only on one side of the fabric (where the tearing is). Clean and dry the unsealed surface and apply a thin coat of sealant to the tear, covering the tear with an additional 1/2 inch of sealant on each side. Let the seam dry overnight, then peel off the tape and apply a sealant to the other side.
  • Use a needle clamp to adjust the zipper puller if there is a problem with the zipper feed. The zipper feeder has probably been bent and can be adjusted to the correct position using a needle clamp on the various metal pins of the zipper head. 
  • If possible, adjust the teeth of the zipper using a pair of pliers. If the teeth themselves are torn or broken, or there is another irreparable damage, close the canvas as tightly as possible and apply duct tape to seal the area. When the trip is over, take the pop-up camper to a mechanic and they should be able to fix the problem inexpensively.

What to do if the zipper broke the pop-up canvas? 

Truth is, in some cases, the zipper can break along the pop-up canvas and thus create an unwelcomed tear.  A pop-up camper can help provide an easy and fun camping experience. They are often durable and easy to set up and clean. 

However, there’s nothing funny about a pop-up camper with a tear in the canvas. A tear in your pop-up camper leaves you vulnerable to bugs and rainwater. To avoid sleeping in wet conditions with lots of mosquitoes, keep your RV in good condition. Fortunately, fixing a tear in the canvas of a pop-up camper is a simple process. All you need is a tent repair kit and two hours.

  1. Remove the canvas and place it on a work table. Spread the canvas so that it extends across the surface of the table. You want to place the tear so that it can be easily sewn together. Clean the area with a damp cloth and allow it to dry.
  1. Sew the tear in the canvas with the needle and thread from the repair kit. Start at the top of the tear and sew the flaps together as you move down. Keep your points no more than 1/3 of an inch apart.
  1. Cut a patch large enough to cover the tear from the nylon material in the repair kit. The nylon patch should cover the sewn tear at least 1 1/2 inches on all sides.
  1. Apply the canvas adhesive from the repair kit to the nylon patch. Distribute the cement evenly over the entire surface of the patch.
  1. Place the patch directly over the sewn tear. Apply pressure to the patch for about 30 seconds.
  1. Allow the canvas to sit on the work table for at least two hours while the concrete canvas.

How to fix a small crack in a pop-up camper?

If while trying to repair the zipper, or due to some other unfortunate circumstances you found yourself with a small crack in the pop-up camper, do not despair.  A small crack in a pop-up style camper may seem minor, but it can still allow water to seep into the camping cabin.

 It is important to seal and repair the crack to prevent moisture from entering the camper as well as to prevent the crack from getting bigger. After the repair is complete, take some time to investigate the cause of the crack. Cracks can be indicative of a bent ceiling.

  1. Dust the crack and scrape off excess dirt. Fill the crack from the inside with the silicone caulk.
  1. Spread the putty along the crack line so it is smooth and even. Go outside and add caulk to the crack from the outside of the motorhome. Stain the putty so it is smooth against the ceiling.
  1. Let the putty dry overnight. Once dry, add a piece of micro-sealant repair tape (available at camping stores) over the sealed crack. Add another piece of ribbon to the outside.
  1. Scrape off excess caulk that sticks out of the tape for aesthetics.

More about repairing the canvas of your pop-up camper 

Camping is a great way for a family to spend quality time together and take in all that nature has to offer. Pop-up canvas tent trailers are widely used by families because they provide good sleeping space, are relatively easy to tow behind the family car, and are less expensive than full-size trailers. 

Over time, you may need to repair the canvas part of the trailer. If you take the time to get it right, the trailer will stay in good shape for years to come.

Measure the length or dimensions of the tear, tear or hole that exists in the canvas portion of the trailer. Add 2.5 to 5 cm (1 to 2 inches) to the measurement to allow good coverage with the patch.

Cut two pieces of canvas or fabric from a repair kit to match the measurements you took.

Apply adhesive to one side of one of the stamps and place that stamp inside the tent trailer. If the damage is due to mould, rot, or fire, clean the area first and allow it to dry before applying the patches.

Apply adhesive to the second piece and place it in the same position as the first piece, but on the outside of the trailer. Leave the trailer in an upright position and allow the plates to dry for 24 hours.

Apply a waterproofing silicone spray, or waterproofing wax, to the fabric inserts, working it into the edges of the patch. Let dry according to product instructions, then close the lift-up part of your tent trailer.

FAQ on How do you fix a broken zipper on a pop-up camper?

How much does it cost to replace a zipper?

Replacing a zipper usually costs between $8-$75. The price for the zipper and the work done will depend on the item, the kind of zipper that needs to be replaced and its length.

How to replace a zipper?

To replace a zipper by yourself you will first have to remove the broken zipper. Measure it and sew in a new zipper of the same size. Sew one side first, then the other side of the new zipper.

How do you repair a tear in a pop-up canvas?

To repair a tear in a pop-up canvas, you can use a simple repair kit. Please review our article for more information and a step-by-step guide. 

Other FAQs about Pop up campers  that you may be interested in.

Are pop-up truck campers any good?

Are pop-up gizmos waterproof?

What size hitch do I need for a pop-up camper?


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