- Vac and Blow Machine
- Stiff Bristle Scrub Brush
- Interior Brush
- Microfiber Towel
- Fabric Cleaner
- Fabric Guard
First, rinse the top with a hose or pressure washer. If a pressure washer is used, keep the nozzle at least one foot away from the fabric. Water will help remove 70% of the dust and dirt from the top layer. Dry by blotting with a microfiber towel or vacuum blow and then reassess the material. Be sure to not wash fabric tops with common or typical wash mitts, as they break down, and potentially leave lint embedded in the fabric, which is extremely difficult and annoying to remove.
Next, spray shag fabric cleaner on a small area of the top and use a soft bristle interior detailing brush to agitate the cleaning solution. Use straight line motions up and down and side to side. Avoid circles, as they can encourage older fabric to dreadlock. The brush will lift the dirt and the suds will suspend it until it’s flushed away with water. Stiff bristle brushes can be used if the fabric is extremely dirty, but avoid heavy downward pressure and circles. Next, immediately rinse the cleaning solution with water and repeat the steps until the top is completed.
Now that the fabric is clean, but wet, it’s time to dry the fabric. Avoid using terry towels, as they’ll leave behind lint balls that are a pain in the butt to remove. Stick with compressed air or a Vac ‘N’ Blo, or even a leaf blower, to gently push the remaining water out of the material. Use a dry microfiber towel to then blot any leftover moisture. Once completely dry, add a fresh layer of Fabric Guard to the convertible top. This is a hydrophobic protectant designed to repel moisture and subsequently prevent dirt from penetrating the material. Shake the can for 20 seconds.
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Then spray light, overlapping layers. The goal is to apply two to three thin layers, and avoid single heavy coats that will run and drip, much the same as painting. Follow the directions and allow the appropriate dry time for your product of choice. Avoid introducing water during the curing period. There’s no doubt convertibles are fun, but their material is quite sensitive, and requires extra thought to maintain them properly and to enjoy the view for years to come.