How to Clean Your Soft Top Jeep Windows And Vinyl Roof
There’s no better evidence of a great off-road adventure than having a messy, muddy, Jeep. However, this usually ends with cloudy and muddy windows too. The good news is that it’s relatively easy to get your soft top Jeep windows looking as clean as new.
Table of Contents
- Cleaning Soft Top Jeep Windows
- Cleaning Your Jeep’s Soft Top
Cleaning Soft Top Jeep Windows
It’s important to have the right kind of cloth when cleaning your Jeep’s soft top windows.
Paper towels are a big no-no. Paper produces marks and scratches on plastic. So, leave the paper towels in the kitchen and grab a good set of microfiber cloths.
Microfiber is gentle on plastic surfaces, and it is easily washable in between uses. It is also affordable and easy to find.
Note: Always use clean microfiber cloths. Mucky ones with dry dirt residue from previous cleaning sessions can also damage the plastic. Microfiber is easily washable in the washing machine or by hand. Our suggestion is always to have a set of several clean microfiber cloths in your trunk or glove compartment.
Now, let’s get into the nitty-gritty details, shall we?
Step 1: Remove the Dirt
The first thing you have to do is remove any large chunks of dirt from your windows. Removing larger pieces first will make the cleaning process easier and it will also prevent damage.
You can remove excess grime with a cotton ball or microfiber cloth dipped in clean water. Be gentle and don’t wipe in a circular motion, it can cause the debris to rub against the window and lead to scratches. Opt for light up-down brushing movements instead.
Change to the other side of the cloth or use a clean cloth when the one you’re using starts to get dirty.
Repeat it as long as necessary. Now that you have removed any excess dirt, you can move on to the next step.
Step 2: Clean the Windows
You have two options:
- You can wash your windows with a solution made specifically for plastic windows like this Mopar cleaning solution.
- You can clean the windows with a mild generic detergent and lukewarm water.
Step 3: Dry the Windows
Use a new, soft microfiber cloth to dry your windows and their edges. If you don’t dry them properly, you risk getting dust on your windows before sealing them.
Step 4: Protect your Windows
To thoroughly protect the windows, you can apply a water-repelling spray like the Plexus Plastic Cleaner and Protectant.
After drying the surface, apply the sealing spray and let it sit for about 10 minutes. The sealing spray will protect your windows and give them a fantastic shine. You’ll notice dirt and rain just slide right off the plastic windows as you drive and they’ll stay clean for longer.
Things to Avoid
When cleaning your Jeep’s plastic windows there are several things to avoid and keep in mind.
- Washing the surface with paper towels is a big no-no. They will almost always leave tiny scratches on your window that are visible when the light hits them.
- Wiping the surface in circular motions can also lead to micro scratches as it may cause you to rub small pieces of debris around the window. Use up and down motions instead.
- Applying intense pressure when cleaning will also damage the plastic.
- Using products that contain ammonia or alcohol can cause permanent damage..
- Trying to wipe the windows when they are dry is a bad idea. You won’t only damage the surface, but you will be left with dirty windows. You can’t wash something without water and some soapy product or specialized sprays.
There are other tips you should keep in mind before cleaning your plastic windows.
- Try not to clean your windows in hot weather. The liquids that you apply may evaporate and leave you with stains or streaks.
- Don’t clean your windows in windy weather. The wind can thrust dust and small particles onto your windows as you clean them.
- Clean your windows after you clean the rest of your car, including your soft top vinyl roof in order to prevent debris from dripping onto your clean windows.
Cleaning Your Jeep’s Soft Top
When washing your plastic windows, you may also want to wash your Jeep’s soft vinyl top as well. Here are some tips to help you do so. Just remember, you should probably wash your soft top first so that the debris and dirt don’t drip onto freshly cleaned windows.
Step 1: Rinse Off the Soft Top
Dry dirt will always be harder to remove and can damage the surface. So grab a bucket of water or a hose and make sure to wet the surface of the vinyl top.
Note: Before starting, make sure that all the zippers are tights and the windows are closed.
Step 2: Clean the Soft Top
You can use home liquid detergent to clean the soft top. However, we suggest you use specific products that clean and protect it simultaneously like this Raggtop Vinyl Cleaner and Protectant.
Cleaning your vinyl roof by applying the detergent or cleaning solution to your microfiber cloth or cleaning mitt. Do not apply it to the soft top directly. Wipe in straight lines instead of circular motions, to avoid leaving scratches or circular marks.
Note: Avoid the plastic windows when using a vinyl cleaner. Most cleaning solutions for the vinyl roof have harsher chemicals that aren’t meant for plastic. Also, try to prevent the solution from falling on your Jeep’s finish since it creates stains on hard surfaces when dry.
Step 3: Rinse Again
Now that you have applied the cleaning solution to your vinyl roof and let it sit according to the solution’s instructions, it’s time to rinse it off! Just take your clean water bucket or hose and get to it.
Step 4: Zipper Clean
You can use a product like this Bestrop Zipper Cleaner and Lubricant to clean off your soft top’s zippers as a finishing touch.
Cleaning your Jeep’s plastic windows and soft top can be a chore for some and therapy for others. Using the tips described here you can get your soft top Jeep looking as clean as new, even after the muddiest off-road excursions.