Why Bottom of Slide Bowing Out in My RV & How to Fix it?


The modern addition of slide outs have become the perfect essential to any RVs or campers at present. These movable pieces of wall gives you more room and floor space to get the ultimate experience inside your RV. Have you been facing issues with your slide bowing out or sagging at the bottom? 

The bottom of the slide bowing out happens due to insufficient power or lubrication, leak or rail system damage. Sometimes, a random object stuck in the mechanism can also lead to the bottom of the slide bow out. 

I have faced this issue with my own RV a few times so I will be sharing my own insight regarding this for your convenience. I will discuss the causes and solutions of this problem in detail.


What Causes RV’s Slide Bottom Bowing Out?

I have figured out a plethora of causes that result in the slider of your RV to sag down horizontally or vertically. 

Sometimes, it is the rather simple things that cause the slide to become like that. So take a look at these possible most common causes for the slide bowing out on your RV.

1. Insufficient Power Supply

Of course, the RV uses the power from the main battery to extend and retract the slide. If the motor and the battery does not supply enough power to do so, the slide will face problems. 

One of those problems is the slide’s excessive sagging down. The reason could be a weak battery without enough charge or a blown fuse inside the battery. 

2. Damaged Rail System

The rail system is the key component for the proper alignment of the slide on the RV floor. If this rail system is damaged, it severely affects the ability to make the slide spread out perfectly. 

The rails can get twisted or the sides can be bent unexpectedly. As a result, the mechanisms required for the slides get affected which causes the slides to bow out.

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3. Lack of Proper Lubrication

The mechanisms for the slides need to be properly lubricated for its smooth and accurate functions. Lack of lubrication and too much lubrication both are detrimental for the slides. It can cause wear and tear, corrosions to the parts and sagging of the slides consequently.

4. Possible Leaks

This issue occurs mainly in the hydraulic slides in your RV. Sometimes, the damaged valves or pumps inside the mechanism cause the bottom to bow out. Leaked sealants are another one of the key reasons for this issue.

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How To Fix The RVs Bottom Of Slide Bowing Out?

Now that you have an idea about the causes of your problem, let me give you the solutions for all of them. 

It is not always possible to prevent all these causes from happening since some of them are eventual and natural. However, follow these solutions I have gathered for you to fix this slide problem for sure.

Reset the Slide System

A lot of times, most of your problems will be solved just by resetting the slide out system entirely. The slight mechanical defects in the system will get resolved just by resetting the system. 

To reset the slide system, first retract the slide inside entirely. Next, extend it fully once again to get rid of the small mechanical issues inside.

Inspect the Slide Thoroughly

Regularly inspecting the slides can be beneficial for the fix of the sagging. Inspect the different components such as the window, sealants, and gears properly to find if anything is wrong with any of them. 

Check if the sealant is leaking or has dried out. If needed, replace the sealant with new and better ones.

Check the brakes to see if the brake arms have slipped out of its place. If it is out of its original position, you need to mechanically fix that brake. It is quite an expensive and time consuming fix.

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Measure the Sag of the Slide

To pinpoint the amount of sag you are dealing with, start with measuring the slide out from several points. From the sides, measure the distance from the sides of the RV wall to the edge of the slide out. 

Take the measurements from the top of the slide out to the bottom. Do evaluate this measurement at several different points vertically. 

If the measurements don’t match, then you can subtract and find the amount of sag the slide out has. Correct the amount of sag manually at those places to fix the bow out of the slide.

Lubricate the Slide Out

In order to function properly, the RV slide out needs a proper amount of lubrication. You should lubricate the gears and the mechanisms of the slide out periodically to operate the slide smoothly. 

It is okay to lubricate the mechanisms every six months and after storing the RV away for a long time.

There are a lot of good lubricants available to apply to your slides. Every RV has one that works the best on it so browse through the options and choose the most suitable one.

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In this section, I will be presenting the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about the RV slide. You will get to know more about this bowing out of the slide issue here.

How Do I Open or Close the Slide Manually?

You can operate the slide manually through a button from the inside of the RV. There will be an in and out button on the RV wall. Press it down and hold this button. The slide will extend and retract manually after this. 

Is It Safe to Manually Correct My RV’s Adjustment Hardware?

No, it is not safe to manually tweak anything in the adjustment hardware of the slide. Once you manually do something on the slide mechanism, it could cause damage or a mess while retracting after that. So, the adjustment hardware might be at risk if you try to correct it on your own manually.

How Can I Align My RV Slide Out?

To align the slide, loosen the bolts on each side of the slide first. Adjust the slide by fixing the levels and alignment properly. You can loosen more bolts in order to get the correct adjustment. Once aligned, tighten the bolts back into place on both sides.


All models and types of RVs and trailers feature their own slide out section at present. Too much sagging or bowing out of this slide can be an alarming thing for your RV health. 

So, it is recommended to take care of the slide mechanisms and health for a better experience overall. Do not try to fix major issues with the slide manually. 

If you run into any problems while fixing it yourself, then the dealership might not give you the privilege of fixing it under the warranty. So, contact the dealership or repair shops for the critical fixes with the slide.

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