Restringing RV Shades


By on Sunday, March 27, 2011

I recently repaired two sets of day/night shades in my RV. Over the past year or so these two shades have been slowly wearing out. Once wearing starts, one side can start to droop or not stay up at all. What happens next is that one of the strings inside finally snaps. So what do you do when this happens? The solution is to restring the blinds.

Of course, you could find a window covering store to repair the shades, or you can restring the blinds yourself. As it turns out, this is a pretty low-cost repair should you attempt this yourself. But don't be afraid. I put together this video to show you that this is certainly something you can do yourself. Just be sure to check the string configuration before you disassemble your shades, and just take your time.


Before you start here's what you'll need

1. About 20 yards of 1.2mm or 1.4mm string (you can get it from your craft or fabric store or order online from fixmyblinds.com). The length you'll need will vary depend on the size of your window. So it's better to get more than you need. I got about 25 yards for around $7.
2. A flat head screw driver (to remove the plastic end caps)
3. Scissors (to cut the string)
4. Thin gauge wire or large fabric needle (for feeding the string through the blinds)

The diagram below (from fixmyblinds.com) illustrates the typical 4 string configuration that you'll probably find in your typical day/night shade.

When I took apart the wide upper bunk window shade, however, I discovered that the configuration was a little different from the standard size window I did first. On the wider window, there were two springs (one per side) and the 4 string threading was different. So be sure to inspect the string configuration to make sure you reassemble it correctly.

Standard Window (after)
Bunk Window (after)
So go ahead and give this project a shot. You'll be happy with the result and you're shades will operate just like new.

Good luck!

12 comments :

  1. As usual, great tip! I probably would have just thought a replacement was in order. I'm not the most handy person but you make it seem simple enough. Thanks.

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  2. YES our bunk is finally fixed!

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  3. Hi Tito,
    We found your video on restringing our "aggravating" day/night shades! We were worried about trying to redo them ourselves but thanks to you they actually work! We noticed that ours were not criss-crossed so needless to say they were ALWAYS slanted one way or another - ugly! Thanks Again!
    Steven N "Z" in San Antonio, Texas

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  4. Worked great, Better than $180.00 for a new blind...Dave..Taylor, Michigan..

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    1. Great! Glad you found this helpful.

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  5. Thanks for the video. When installing the repaired blind, how do you correctly set the tension on both strings right/left? I think mine are off because the right side is lower then my left side. Is there a trick for getting these level?

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    1. No trick that I can remember. I've got mine pretty tight on both sides.

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  6. I recognize your opening,,,, Going east on I90 at bottom of Homestake pass leaving Butte, Mt. on the Continental divide. Kewl.

    I too am not sure how tight the strings should be. Seems like one side is very tight and other is fairly loose to the point one side wont raise.

    Thanks

    John

    Butte, Mt

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  7. Tito - thanks for the awesome video! Saved me a ton of hassle. You're right, take your time, double and triple check. Works perfectly now.

    @Paul - I have mine pretty tight too. Almost can play a tune on the strings they are so taut. the spring in the header needs some tension on it or it won't be able to maintain good enough tension to hold everything in place, especially as the string stretches over time. You may have to tighten again in a month or two until the string finally sets in place.

    I had a lot of trouble finding some decent string - braided line that small is hard to find. Finally ended up with "Mason Line" from Lowe's. I didn't want to use twisted string (there's tons of that around) figuring it wouldn't last as long. The trick with a piece of wire as a "needle" also worked like a charm! Thanks for the tips.

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  8. I'm glad everything worked out well for you Greg. You're right. Good quality string is the key. When I did mine, I went with a slightly heavier string than the original. Hopefully it lasts longer.

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  9. Just watched your video as our string just broke while I was cleaning it this morning. It looks simple enough, but our question is "How do we get the valance off?" Can't seem to find the screws attaching it at the top! Great video! Thanks!

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  10. Thanks guys. Its good to see how someone else does things. I hope these video tutorials are an ongoing feature.

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Let me know what you're thinking. I welcome your comments. Thanks -Tito

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