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How To Postpone Convertible Top Replacement

By Krystal Branch

Owning and driving a convertible can seriously drain your bank account. No matter. It's worth it. Cabriolets are more expensive than their fixed-roof counterparts for two reasons. One is the eventual need to get a convertible top replacement. The other reason is higher insurance premiums. This is because a car with a soft top is easily broken into.

One way to extend the time required before you have to get a new top is to keep it under cover when you are not behind the wheel. If you haven't got a full garage, then a covered car port will do. Otherwise, it is well worth investing in a good, sturdy car cover. The important thing is to make sure the top you buy is specially designed for outdoor use.

Another thing you can do to preserve your soft top is to keep it free from the algae that can take hold in damp conditions. Just give it a gentle scrub when you are washing your car. There are two reasons for this. One, the car will look better with a clean top. The other reason is in some ways more important; algae are plant-like organisms that can secrete acids. These acids will damage your cabriolet soft top.

If you own cats, or there are cats in your neighborhood, these can be a problem for a soft top cabriolet. They provide a nice, elevated vantage point from where a cat can survey its territory without having to do anything strenuous, like get up and walk around. They are also nice and soft. Soft black tops soak up heat, which cats also love. Unless you have a fully enclosed garage, and you can keep cats out of it, the only way you can protect it from the furry beasts is with a sturdy car cover.

Repeatedly putting the top down and up again will also cause wear and tear on your cabriolet's roof. This is true whether you have to do it manually or whether it is powered by electricity. That's the price of doing business when you are crazy enough to invest in a convertible. Accept it cheerfully. You don't want to leave the top down when you are not actually inside driving it. It is too great a temptation for thieves and vandals.

The metal parts of your soft top can wear out or get rusty. Wipe them completely dry if they get wet. Another component of a soft top that can wear out is the electric motor, if your car has one.

The day will ultimately arrive when you have to get a new top for your precious cabriolet. This can be a fun opportunity to get cute with the color of the top. There are as many as 130 different colors of canvas from which to choose. This is also a good time to upgrade the rear window from plastic to a glass one. The advantages of a glass rear window are the ability to have heating built into it. You will appreciate this when the weather turns cold.

Try to go for a convertible top replacement before it starts to detract from your car's appearance and lower its value should you decide to sell it. If you follow the guidance given above, you should be able to get years of service out of the top.

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