The best soft-top cleaner

Keep that soft-top waterproof and looking good with our guide.

A convertible car's canvas roof is cleaned

by Ryan Gilmore |

A soft-top car is ideal for the summer months but it does require some extra maintenance to keep your roof in good order. Using a proper soft-top cleaner is integral to keeping your soft-top looking clean and remaining waterproof.

RELATED: The best convertible cars for 2021

Note that we're not covering folding metal roofs here, these can be cleaned like the rest of the bodywork, so long as you make sure it's closed first.

If on the other hand your roof is made from canvas, vinyl, PVC, mohair or even woven fabrics then these cleaners will help your car look like new again and ensure they remain waterproof.

The best soft top cleaners

Autoglym Convertible Soft Top Clean & Protect Complete Kit

Editoru2019s pick
Autoglym Convertible Soft Top Clean & Protect Complete Kit
Amazon

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Our top pick for cleaning a soft top, this kit from Autoglym will clean and protect your soft-top. Suitable for use on mohair, double duck, fabric or canvas the kit contains a cleaner and protector as well as an applicator sponge. It's a very effective choice and will keep your soft-top in the best condition possible.

Renovo International Fabric Soft Top Cleaner

The best soft top cleaner for general use
Renovo RFC1126 International Fabric Soft Top Cleaner
Amazon

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A legendary soft-top cleaner, Renovo International Fabric Soft Top Cleaner is fantastic for removing grime, salt, bird poo and foliage from the soft top without damaging the fabric. It's great for general maintenance and can help preserve your roof too.

Meguiar's Convertible Top Cleaner

Best soft top cleaner for quick cleaning
Meguiar's ME G2016 Convertible Top Cleaner 473ml
Amazon

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If you're not too worried about your roof's waterproofing and only want to give it a clean we recommend this spray from Meguiar's. It's a simple spray that is effective on oil, bird dirt and stains without stripping that all-important waterproofing. It's also a biodegradable formula meaning it's a safe choice for the planet.

Carbusonic Convertible Roof Cleaner Kit

Best soft top cleaner for neglected soft tops
Carbusonic Convertible roof cleaner kit
Amazon

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The perfect kit for a soft top that's been left exposed to the elements for too long, this triple pack will be useful for restoring the roof to its former glory. It contains a mould remover, black for dye and a silicone waterproofer. It's all water-based and lacks any nasty chemicals or solvents making it an environmentally sound choice too.

Turtle Wax All In One Soft Top Soft Top Convertible Protection & Cleaning

Best budget soft top cleaner
Turtle Wax 51772 All In One Soft Top Soft Top Convertible Protection & Cleaning
Amazon

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A good budget choice for cleaning and protecting a soft top, this kit from Turtle Wax contains a soft top cleaner and a conditioner. The cleaner contains active detergents and Turtle Wax claim it removes dirt, mould, stains and bird droppings. The conditioner works by enhancing the waterproofing and offering better stain protection. It's also suitable for all types of fabric roof.

E-Tech Clear Vision

Best soft top cleaner for restoring PVC
E-Tech Clear Vision
Amazon

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PVC windows can lose their lustre over time and begin to cloud and look murky. Instead of paying for an expensive replacement give this PVC restorer a go. Designed to restore clarity and make sure that the window is clear it's a great way to avoid big bills in the future.

303 Products Tonneau Cover & Convertible Top Cleaner

Best soft top cleaner for tonneau covers
303 Products 30571 Tonneau Cover & Convertible Top Cleaner
Amazon

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303 is an American company and this spray is designed for both soft tops and tonneau covers for pickups. This spray claims to remove stains and protect the fabrics from oil and water. Ideal if you own both a pickup and a soft-top car.

What you need to know about soft top cleaners

Why should I care?

Leaving your roof to the elements can cause a worrying number of issues over time. Not only can neglect cause the roof to deteriorate and fail, but harmful mould can begin to form too. If left long enough it can cause knock-on damage to your car's interior leading to very expensive cleaning bills and the cost of a new soft top. A well-maintained roof will also help you sell your car for more money too.

Can I use a regular fabric cleaner?

These soft top cleaners are specially formulated to protect the waterproofing elements of a soft-top which normal fabric sprays will not do. Like how you shouldn't wash a waxed jacket because it will strip the waterproofing away, you need to use a proper soft top cleaner so that it remains waterproof.

How often should I do it?

This depends on how you store your car and what the weather is like but the general rule of thumb is three to four times a year will keep your roof looking it's best and protected. If you live in an area with above average rain or snow it's a good idea to clean your soft top more regularly.

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