Hints and Tips
Our hints and tips section provides advice on general maintenance and day-to-day care of your soft-top and plastic windows. We have also provided a little information regarding the choice of materials in which our soft-tops are now available.
1. Choice of Materials
Most modern soft-tops are available in either vinyl or cloth material. These days there is little to choose between different manufacturers - the main difference is in the finished fitted appearance.
There are various different types of cloth material available, the most commonly used being Stayfast® or Twillfast®. Both are three ply composites, and are produced by the HAARTZ corporation which specialises in producing engineered coated fabrics.
Stayfast® is supplied as original equipment on many European models of car, such as the Alfa Romeo Spider, Lotus Elise, Rover MGF, Peugeot 306, RP Bentley Azure and others.
Twillfast® is supplied as original equipment on the Aston Martin DB7, Audi 80 Cabriolet, Jaguar XK8, BMW Z3 and Z8 Roadsters, Opel Astra and the VW Golf.
More information regarding these materials can be found at the HAARTZ company website - www.haartz.com. Remember that we can send you a physical sample of the colour in which you are interested if required.
2. Soft-Top Care and Maintenance
There follows a brief section of do's and don'ts that should always be followed in order to keep your soft-top in excellent condition:
ALWAYS follow the instructions in your owners manual or the manufacturers supplement for raising and lowering your top.
ALWAYS try to leave your top in the up position overnight, or whenever else you will not be driving. This will help retain the original shape of your top, resist shrinkage and avoid crease marks where the top folds when in the down position.
ALWAYS try to keep your top, boot, tonneau cover, glass or plastic window clean.
ALWAYS use the tonneau cover when the top is folded down to prevent sun damage.
DO NOT use penetrating vinyl preservatives, dressings or conditioners.
DO NOT use dry-cleaning solvents etc.
DO NOT use harsh cleansers, bleaches or abrasives.
DO NOT use hot water.
DO NOT allow a car wash to apply spray wax to your convertible top.
3. Care and Cleaning
Plastic windows should be cleaned frequently. Hose or blow off loose dirt particles then use a soft cloth or tissue and either plain water or a mild soap and water solution. Wipe in a top to bottom or side to side motion. NEVER use a circular motion. Rinse thoroughly with clear water and remove droplets with damp tissue or soft damp cloth.
If fitted with a zip, it is usually best to unzip the window before lowering the top in order to prevent scratching and creasing.
Glass windows should be cleaned with water based glass cleaners only.