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Just talked to a pro vert top repair guy, thought I would share

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Just talked to a pro vert top repair guy, thought I would share

Old 04-09-2008, 08:40 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 137
Default Just talked to a pro vert top repair guy, thought I would share

I have a problem with my vert top leaking at the rer window. He gave me some advice on how to fix it myself, and a qoute for replacement. Here's what he said.

He said that from 1998 - 2001 lots of manufacturers had problems with the fit of the rear window glass, as they had not perfected it yet. the problem isn't with the glue, it's with the cloth tops shrinking with age. He said to garage or cover it wenever possible to kep it dry.

What happens is the material shrinks from getting wet and drying, and from changes in temperature. Once it shrinks you can either replace that section of your top or try to fix it yourself. If you replace that section it will cost $450 - $500 depending on the material and color.

Here's how to try to fi it yourself:

1. test to see if you can pull the material back over the window by hand, if you cannot do this you will have to repace it. The windows come pressed and heat sealed into the tops, so windows can't be reused.

If you can pull it back to were it should be, then move to step 2

2. Pull the cloth back to were it should be and mask off any areas above the line. (this will keep you from damaging the area, and from gettiing epoxy there). Then take an emory cloth or other fine abrasive to mar up the surfaceof the glass so it will hold glue better.

3. Put the vehicle in the sun or run the car with the defrester on high with all windows rolled up, or do both. This will heat up the top and cause it to expand and be more plyable.

4. Next clean the glass with acetone or rubbing alcohol to get all contamanates of of it. repalce any tape thet you may have damaged.

5. use an industrial grade glue or epoxy. You can get these from Home Depot, and some auto parts stores. Tape over the cloth to keep it in place. Follow the individual manufacturers instructions.

6. Place sonthing heavy onto the location being glued to apply presure, and leave it there for around 12 hours. Do not drive the car or put the op down for at least 24 hours. If you can don't drive it or put the top down for 48 hours.

This will fix the top, but he said that it's hard to say how long it will last. That will depend on how you drive, were you live, if it is garage kept or not, and most importantly, how often you put the to down. Putting the top up and down put the more stress on that seam than anything else..

He said that the fix could last 3 months or maybe as long as 3 years. If you are going to use this as a long term fix, check it regularly to make sure the glue is holding and isn't pulling away. If it is, reglue that section.

This will at least fix it long enouph for ou to fin a good upolstry shop and get a few quotes so you don't have to jump on the first one you can find.

Definately shop around, I got quotes from $300 all the way up to $600, and some told me I would have to replace the entire top, not just that section. This guy was in the middle as far as price goes, but he really seemed to know what he was talking about, and seemed to care about his customers. He spent 30 minutes on the phone with me so I could understand how to do this fix on my own so I could still drive it while I wait for the part to come in and get my appointment. So, I am going whit this guy, even though he isn't the lowest bidder.

That's another point I would like to bring up. Spend some time talking to a mechanic, and not just about price, sometimes you get what you pay for.

The guy is in Largo, FL Dave's Auto Tops - HOME

I will repost and tell you how it turned out once I get it fixed.[/align][/align]P.S. I did not mention above that the prices listed for replacment included labor. So the $450 - $500 price I was given was out the door price with a 3 year warranty.[/align]
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