Caring for a Convertible Top

The Jeep top's always down... and dirty.

The Jeep top’s always down… and dirty.

There are few occasions that warrant putting a convertible Jeep top up.  Temperatures in the 40’s… maybe.  Torrential rain… oh, okay.  Snow… definately.  But that’s about it.  What’s the point of having a convertible if you’re not going to go topless, right?  But because my Jeep top is so infrequently overhead it rarely gets much attention.  Which may explain the painfully poor condition it’s in.

I never considered that the fabric top might need some kind of extra care.  Now that my mistake is blatantly clear, however, I’m in the market for a new one… and reading up on ways to keep it looking new.  Here are a few suggestions to keep in mind, and links to a few articles that expand on the subject even further.

1.  Keep top and the parts of the car it covers/contacts clear of dirt and dust

2.  Use a diluted all-purpose cleanser and brush on the body of the top.  If the top is made of fabric you’ll want to use a softer brush than you would on vinyl.

3.  Avoid using regular cleaners, brushes, or rough fabrics or sponges on plastic windows which can scratch, cloud, and streak easily.  Look for products specifically made to clean clear plastic.

4. Keep moving parts lubricated

5.  Use a tarp or cover to protect top from sun damage.

For more specifics visit these sites:
http://automotivedetailing.com/assets/articles_htm/convert_top_care.htm

http://www.autopia-carcare.com/inf-cabrio.html

http://www.motorweek.org/features/goss_garage/convertible_top_care

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