Owning a Jeep Wrangler is a dream come true for adventure enthusiasts who crave the freedom to conquer any terrain. With spring in full swing, it’s finally time to remove the soft top and feel the wind in your hair. But before you do that, it’s crucial to properly maintain and clean your soft top to ensure its longevity.
The Dilemma: Taking Your Soft Top to the Carwash
The question arises: should you take your soft top to the carwash, considering the high-pressure water it uses? Whether it’s a carwash with brushes or a touchless wash, the risks need to be weighed.
Table of Contents
- Can a Jeep Wrangler Soft Top Go Through a Carwash?
- Types of Jeep Wrangler Soft Tops
- Washing Your Soft Top Jeep by Hand is Recommended
- Why You Should Hand Wash Your Soft Top Jeep
- Hard Top Convertible Jeep Car Wash
- Jeep Soft Top Touchless Car Wash Risks
- Jeep Soft Top Car Wash Risks
- Soft Top Jeep Car Wash Tips
- Soft-Top Jeep Wrangler Wax
Can a Jeep Wrangler Soft Top Go Through a Carwash?
No, a Jeep Wrangler should not go through a carwash. If handwashing is not possible for your Wrangler, a touchless carwash is a safer alternative. Traditional carwash brushes can damage the soft top, so it’s best to avoid them.
Types of Jeep Wrangler Soft Tops
Jeep Wrangler soft tops are available in various materials, each offering different benefits:
- Vinyl: This material, commonly found in older YJ Wranglers and CJs, is easy to clean and resistant to different conditions.
- Denim: Resembling denim jeans, denim soft tops offer a classic look and are often found in many TJ and YJ Wranglers.
- Twill: Considered superior to other soft top materials, twill provides a luxury car-like experience with maximum noise reduction.
- Sailcloth: A high-quality material popular among Wrangler owners, sailcloth offers weather control and noise prevention.
Choosing the right material depends on your specific needs. For a quiet ride on long distances, twill or sailcloth is recommended. If budget is a consideration, vinyl is a cost-effective option. Jeep Wranglers are equipped with excellent stock soft tops, making choosing the right one easier.
Washing Your Soft Top Jeep by Hand is Recommended
When it comes to cleaning your Jeep Wrangler soft top, nothing beats handwashing. It allows you to inspect the top thoroughly, ensuring no leaks or worn-out areas. Additionally, high-pressure sprayers can damage seals, so handwashing reduces the risk of tears or seal damage.
Why You Should Hand Wash Your Soft Top Jeep
Handwashing your soft top on a Jeep Wrangler offers several advantages:
- Reduced risk of brushes puncturing the soft top.
- Ability to remove hidden dirt particles.
- Protection of soft top seals from high-pressure sprayers.
- Early detection of tears or holes before rainfall.
Although handwashing might not always be the most convenient option, it significantly reduces the need for premature soft top replacement. Remember to assess your soft top’s condition realistically and avoid any other washing methods if your top is older or has endured harsh conditions.
Hard Top Convertible Jeep Car Wash
For hardtop convertibles, carwashes can be less risky. However, caution is still advised to prevent seal damage or scratches caused by large brushes. It’s important to follow the manufacturer’s maintenance recommendations. Most automated car washes are safe for all vehicle types, including convertibles, but be mindful of high-pressure sprays on the tires.
Jeep Soft Top Touchless Car Wash Risks
While touchless carwashes can be a quick solution for Wrangler owners, it’s best to hand-wash your soft top. Brushes offer a more thorough wash, and unpredictable results can occur at traditional touchless washes. The risk of damaging your top, regardless of the material, is not worth it. However, certain spots might be missed with touchless carwashes, but this is a minor concern.
Jeep Soft Top Car Wash Risks
Taking your Wrangler with a soft top to a traditional carwash can be risky. Avoid the possibility of brushes tearing the top, leading to hot water and wax dripping on the driver and passengers. Although malfunctions are unlikely, it’s not advisable to try a traditional carwash for the first time with an older, worn soft top. Plastic windows can be scratched, and repairing them can be expensive.
Restoring Jeep soft top windows is possible with the Product Plastx by Megulars. It can help make your soft top windows look as good as new.
When washing, use an up-and-down motion rather than a side-to-side motion used for car waxing.
Soft Top Jeep Car Wash Tips
Here are some tips to effectively clean your Jeep Wrangler soft top:
- Allocate sufficient time (around 25 minutes) and avoid shortcuts.
- Use a pressure washer or hose with adequate pressure to remove debris and grime, preparing the fabric for soaping.
- Apply a designated shampoo to cover the entire soft top, depending on the material.
- Prepare a bucket of warm water and detergent mix, adjusting the soap-to-water ratio according to the cleaner’s instructions.
- Brush up and down instead of side to side, using a brush suitable for the level of grime.
- Remove contaminants from threads and seams.
- Rinse the soft top thoroughly to eliminate any remaining soap.
- Use a material-specific towel to dry the top without leaving residue.
- Clean the windows with a different cleaning solution, avoiding alcohol or ammonia.
- Apply a shine solution if desired, following the directions, and wipe it off with a special microfiber towel or soft cloth for maximum shine.
- For scratches, explore suitable solutions, as taking a Jeep with brushes through a carwash can cause numerous scratches.
Maintaining the cleanliness of your Jeep Wrangler is crucial. It’s not just about appearance; it’s also about taking care of your investment. Remember to wash your soft top by hand to ensure a job well done. This process doesn’t take much time with quality cleaners for both the top and the windows/windshield.
Soft-Top Jeep Wrangler Wax
If you want to enhance the water-tightness of your soft top, here are my three favorite car waxes:
Car Wax Option 1 – Last update on 2023-08-31 / If you click this affiliate link and make a purchase, we earn a commission at no additional cost to you.
Car Wax Option 2 – Last update on 2023-08-31 / If you click this affiliate link and make a purchase, we earn a commission at no additional cost to you.
Car Wax Option 3 – Last update on 2023-08-31 / If you click this affiliate link and make a purchase, we earn a commission at no additional cost to you.
Make sure to try these waxes for added protection. Don’t miss out!