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FAQ for Convertible Soft tops for Cars


The information below is valuable for any soft top on a car and can also be applied to SUV tops- such as Tracker soft tops, Sidekick soft tops, Vitara soft tops. While most information is directed at tops with the ACH prefix, the answers are very similar for other brands and models, especially in the cleaning details. Please refer to your specific brand/manufacturer warranty details for specifics or further information.

Q.Can I install my replacement soft top on my car?
A. It is STRONGLY Recommended that Soft top replacements for Cars be installed by a professional. Many tops require special tools, stretching and in a very few cases actual sewing. Wranglers, Trackers, Amigoís Etc can easily be done by a vehicle owner.

Q.Are installation instructions provided?
A. No. Because these tops should be installed by a professional, instructions are not included- with the exception of the Mazda Miata.

Q.What are Cables?
A. Cables are what support the side and sometimes rear of a soft top. They provide needed tension to the top.

Q.Are the Cables universal or vehicle specific?
A. The cables are VERY vehicle specific and are typically unique to each make, model and year of vehicle.

Q.How often do i replace my Cables?
A. It is recommended that you replace your cables if the old ones are suspect.Old cables can be stretched beyond their original effective length. They may have snapped or are about to snap. Old cables can be reused in almost half of all "second tops"- that is cars that are less then 10 years old and with the factory original top still installed.

Q.What materials are used to manufacturer cables?
A. Cables are made of Nylon coated galvanized wire rope. They also have various original equipment materials such as fittings and springs.

Q.What is the Difference between Side cables and Rear cables?
A. Side cables are threaded through the side seams and their purpose is to provide tension to the side of the top. Some cars, such as the Beetle, VW Cabrioles, some Jaguars, etc, use a different kind of tensioning cable- Rear Cables- they hold the top down tight to the body of the car along itís rear belt line. Such cables are more problematic and should be replaced with a new top in most cases. Some cars, such as the Capri, Cavaliers and Sunbirds have two pairs of side cables.

Q.What are Pads?
A. Pads are used to protect the top from rubbing against the metal frame when the top is raised or lowered.

Q.Do all Cars require Pads?
A. Most American Cars starting in 1940 through present day use Pads.
Some cars that do not require pads are: Triumphs, Fiats, Alfa Romeo, Austin Healy, Miata, SUVís like Tracker, Wranglers, Amigos, etc.

Q.What materials are used to manufacturer Pads?
A. Most pads are made of cloth, vinyl or convertible top materials with a foam insert.

Q.How Often Should My Pads be Replaced?
A. It is HIGHLY recommended that you replace your Pads each time you replace your top. This provides your new top with the best protection.

Q.Do I need to replace my Headliner?
A. Replacing the headliner is a personal preference. The headliner may be reusable but may show its age once a new top is installed on the vehicle. Check for deterioration of fabrics and stitches.

Q.Can I Replace the Glass Only in my Soft top?
A. If your original window is Glass, you can often times replace the Rear Curtain - it will have the glass sewn or sealed into fabric. This would apply if you have a 2-piece top. Then you could re-install the top over the rear curtain. Be cautious, as colors may not match due to sunfade.

Q. Can I replace my Glass window with a Plastic window?
A. Yes, in some cases, if Glass is the original type of rear window, you can replace it with a non-original plastic / clear vinyl window. If a Plastic window option is available for your vehicle make/model/year it will be listed with the accessories and noted that it is non-original.

Q.Do you have Replacement hardware for my top?
A. No, we do not carry any replacement hardware for Convertible Cars. In most cases you can phone your local dealership or try a salvage/junk yard or do an internet search for a car owners' club for your make and model - they are often great resources for misc. parts.

Q.I need a part for my convertible top and I canít find it on your site?
A. In most cases if you donít see the specific part we probably donít carry it. Check to make sure youíre under the correct make, model and year of your vehicle. If we donít carry the item, often times your local dealer will have the piece.

Q.How long should a new top last?
A. It is impossible to answer this question exactly. It will depend on a number of factors such as climate, sun exposure, number of times the top is put up or down, cleanliness and dryness when folded etc. Generally speaking - Vinyl tops, given normal care should last between 3 and 5 years. Canvas tops, given normal care should last between 7 and 10 years.

Q.What is the best way to clean my Top and Windows?
A. Please visit our Care and Cleaning Guide

Q.What is the Warranty period for convertible soft tops for cars?
A. The Convertible Soft tops for Cars have a 5 Year Warranty from the Manufacturer. This warranty also applies to the SUV tops with the 5 year manufacturer warranty. (they all have the ACH prefix in the part number)
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