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Fabric Hood Care Guide

About once or twice a year (less, if your car never sees the great outdoors), you should thoroughly clean and then protect the top. In my humble opinion, the best time to do this is the beginning of Spring and start of Autumn. This way the top is prepared for the harsh sun of summer and the ravages of winter. The simple method to determine the condition of the existing top protectant is the “water bead” test. If the top “beads water” evenly when wet, then the existing protectant is in good condition. If water does not bead evenly or it soaks into the top material, then it’s time to apply a coat of Renovo Fabric Soft Top Ultra Proofer. To clean your top, use the specifically formulated fabric top cleaner, Renovo Fabric Soft Top Cleaner. Park your car in a shady area and insure that the surface is relatively cool to the touch. Do not clean in direct sun. Gently brush the dry top with a soft brush to remove any loose dirt.

Renovo Fabric Soft Top Cleaner
Shake the bottle well, pour into a suitable container and spread a thin, even coat over the surface with a sponge, clean 2” inch nylon paint brush, disposable foam brush or small foam paint roller. Gently agitate the cleaner with a soft bristle brush, sponge or cloth. Stained areas may require the cleaner to remain on the top for approximately 30 minutes and gentle scrubbing with a soft bristle brush. Really stubborn stains may require an additional application of Renovo Fabric Soft Top Cleaner and additional gentle brushing. Be careful not to allow the brush to come in contact with the rear plastic window, as it may scratch the window. To remove the cleaner, either hose off or wipe off with a wet sponge, continually rinsing the sponge in clean water.

I find that using a hose without a nozzle, allows the gentle flow of water to rinse out the cleaner, as I gently brush the surface. Continue rinsing until the top stops sudsing and the rinse water runs clear. Once the top is thoroughly rinsed, I like to take a soft brush and “brush” the nap of the top in one direction.

Lint Removal
Once the top is completely dry, remove any lint or brush fibers with a lint roller or the sticky side of plastic packing tape. Any lint left on the top will ruin the appearance of your coat of protectant or dye.

Protecting Fabric Tops
The fabric needs a coat of Renovo Fabric Soft Top Ultra Proofer (top protectant) to remain waterproof, provide UV protection and increase longevity. The Ultra Proofer should be applied immediately after cleaning, when the top is just dry. I use the top drying time to mask off all the glass, paint and the rear plastic window. This masking process is an important one. The Renovo Fabric Soft Top Ultra Proofer will not harm the paint but may be difficult to remove once it has dried. If you use a brush or small foam paint roller to apply the Renovo Fabric Soft Top Ultra Proofer, then you may use minimal masking. If you apply it with an air brush, then use lots of masking. Mask off the paint where it meets the top with a quality, paint type masking tape. (I use 3M Blue Masking Tape). Apply the tape to butt up to, but not over the top fabric. DO NOT use scotch tape, electrical tape or duct tape, etc., as these products may develop a lifelong affinity for your paint. When you try to remove these types of tapes, some of your paint may choose to join its new found friend. Mask off the rear plastic window with the masking tape or newspaper.

If you apply the Renovo Ultra Proofer with an air brush, then you should mask the entire car. You may use either two thin plastic drop cloths (the thinner the better) or newspapers to cover the paint. I prefer the plastic drop cloths as one will cover from the front of the car to the back edge of the doors and the other will cover the rear half. You may also use lots of newspaper taped together. Tape the plastic/newspaper to butt up to, but not over the top fabric. Loosen the windshield catches, lift up the top and slide the thin plastic drop cloth or newspaper over the windshield frame and the top of the windows as far back as possible. Lower the top to hold the plastic/paper in place. Open the doors and slip the drop cloth/newspaper between the top and the glass. Close the doors to hold the plastic/newspaper in place. All this is time consuming and tedious but well worth the time. Use additional plastic/newspaper and tape to cover any other areas of the glass and paint that remain exposed. If you use plastic drop cloths, they will cover the entire car. Just use masking tape to hold them down. If you use newspaper and it is a windy day, you may consider masking the entire hood and trunk, as the over spray travels quite far. There is no such thing as over masking! Once the masking process is completed, the top will probably be dry and ready for the Ultra Proofer.

Renovo Fabric Soft Top Ultra Proofer
Remove all traces of lint with a lint roller or the sticky side of plastic packing tape. Pour the Renovo Soft Top Ultra Proofer into a clean plastic cup or other suitable container and stir well. Apply the Ultra Proofer with either a 2” wide nylon paint brush, a disposable foam brush, a small foam paint roller or an air brush. Brush, roll or spray on a thin, even coat along each of the seams. Then, starting at the center of the front edge of the top, apply a thin, even coat to the entire top working from side to side towards the rear of the top. Immediately remove any drips on the paint, glass or trim with a wet cloth. Older or neglected tops may require a second coat after the first coat has completely dried. Remove all masking and allow the Ultra Proofer to dry for 24 hours before folding the top. Your top is now ready to endure the elements.

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