Sunday, September 11, 2011

Jeep Soft Tops

When it comes to choosing a Jeep soft top, the first step you will always take is determining your hardware situation. Generally, you will fall into one of 3 categories. Once you have determined which category you belong in, you are well on your way to getting the top that is right for you. To help you with this decision, here is an overview of the 3 categories and some Jeep soft tops to consider for each one.

1. You Have No Hardware

The only reason you would have no hardware is if you do not currently have a top (unless you decided to duct tape it to your Jeep). You get the benefit of coming in brand new to the soft top game. Basically, you will be able to choose from a myriad of tops depending on which fits your model.

Recommendation: There are some Jeep soft tops that are sold as a kit. These kits include the top and all of the hardware you need to install it. If you invest in a kit, rather than buying the components separately, it will generally be cheaper. The Bestop Supertop is a great choice.

2. You Have Old, Rusted, Broken Hardware

If your top is worn out and ready to be replaced, there is a good chance your hardware has seen better days too. Jeep soft tops do need to be replaced more often (every 3-5 years) than their hardware, but that does not mean the hardware will last forever.

Recommendation: If you have come to that point of no return with your hardware, it would be fiscally smart to get one of the aforementioned kits that include both the top and the hardware. In this case, we still recommend the Bestop Supertop as a solid choice. If, however, you are looking for some added features after your first go-around, consider the Sunrider and the Tiger Top as well.

3. You Have Hardware That Is in Good Condition

Congratulations! Unlike the previous two categories, you have a chance of saving some money by just purchasing a Jeep soft top and not the corresponding hardware. Of course this is not the only option. If you decide to upgrade, it most likely will not work with your current hardware and you will have to replace it. But if you have been perfectly happy with it, then you can definitely take the easy route.

Recommendation: Did your top come with your vehicle when you purchased it? Then there are plenty of direct replacement Jeep soft tops available to you. You can choose from any number of brands including Bestop, Pavement Ends, and Rugged Ridge. Each one will work with the hardware you already have. If your current top is a Bestop Supertop, you can simple get the Supertop replacement skin and be done with it. For any other Jeep soft tops, you can either replace them with the same one or upgrade to a Sunrider, Tiger Top, or any number of other options.

From here on out, which Jeep soft top you choose is a matter of personal preference. But at least now you know what you need to look for, so you can focus on what you want.


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Monday, July 11, 2011

Tips for Tinted Car Windows

Tinted Windows are easily one of the more controversial modifications that can be made to a vehicle. While they are allowed in some locations, they are not allowed in others. It is important for all to understand exactly why they are allowed or disallowed, and the consequences that may come from these modifications.

While there is plenty to know and understand about them, these are a few pieces of information for you to consider before purchasing a used car with tinted windows of a car you already own.

Laws by State

There are different laws in every state in regards to tinted windows, and for various reasons. Most states that have strict laws state that the laws are in place to help protect police officers and other members of law enforcement. They allow individuals to hide their actions, which may include a gun in some instances. The lack of them, especially in the front, helps to eliminate that risk.

Some states simply dictate how heavy it can be, with some allowing near black-outs and others only allowing a small tint. Other states dictate how it must be applied - some must fade out from one side or from top to bottom. There are some states that simply do not allow you to tint them, or only allow you to have the back of your vehicle completed.

Those who do not follow the laws in their state will find that there are multiple fines that may be assessed. Some states, like the state of Michigan, provide options for those who are caught with them. If the individual who has been given a ticket for tinted windows provides a receipt and proof that they have removed the tints from their windows, the ticket will be thrown out. This is in place to do more than just "deter" individuals for using tints, but to actually get citizens to remove the offending tints.

Those who are lucky enough to be in states that do not have laws regarding tinted windows will find that nearly everyone has some sort of tint on their windows. The tint serves two different purposes - the first purpose is to make the car look cleek and sexy. The other purpose is for privacy, keeping other individuals from looking into the vehicle.

They can help to make a car look more interesting, more sports-like, and sexy. For many, tinted windows put the finishing touch on a car that is all about looks and beauty. While this is allowed in some states, it is not allowed in others. You simply need to work to understand the laws of your area or take on the consequences of having them. For some, the windows are worth the law-breaking consequences. Others will simply wait until the move to a different location before they use tinted windows on a vehicle.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

How to Clean Convertible Tops

Vinyl is composed mostly of polyvinyl chloride and is made flexible with the use of plasticizers. During its normal life span, it is natural for these plasticizers to gradually dry out, causing the vinyl to crack. However, with proper care and cleaning, this process can be slowed significantly. To keep your convertible top looking slick, beautiful, and shiny, check out these easy steps.

Step 1: Wet the wet the vinyl top completely.

Step 2: Use a wet cloth or sponge to spread the vinyl cleaner over the top. If your vinyl convertible top is heavily soiled, you may want to let the cleaner sit on the vinyl for up to 15 minutes to help loosen the debris. You may also need to use a soft nylon brush to gently scrub trouble spots.

Step 3: Clean the top using circular strokes, working in small sections.

Step 4: Rinse the car thoroughly, ensuring all cleanser is gone completely.

Step 5: Using a soft cloth gently dry the vinyl top. Continue drying until top is completely dry.

Step 6: Take the vinyl convertible top protectant and shake it for a few seconds to completely mix the product. Spray the vinyl protectant on a foam applicator. Using the foam applicator, apply the protectant to your top (taking care not to spray the protectant directly onto the vinyl top, as this an uneven look).

Step 7: Allow the protectant to soak in for up to 3 to 5 minutes. Then take a soft, clean towel for buffing dry.

Tips & Warnings:

Some chemical, such as ammonia and alcohol will dry and cloud vinyl convertible tops.
Know the chemicals in the convertible top cleaner, before applying it to your top.
For maximum protection, the vinyl top should be properly cleaned and re-treated every four to six weeks.

Bond Mejeh produces automotive related articles for Quick Cash Auto, a cash for cars service. Quick Cash Auto not only buys pre-owned vehicles of any year, make or model, but they also provide numerous articles about vehicle repair and automotive news.