Running a soft top all winter?

Rufus

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On my first TJ I had a soft top only and it saw some pretty significant snow fall. Before I'd drive it, I'd brush the snow off the roof (not the windows, I was always worried about scratching the plastic) and never had a problem. I'm not sure if Colorado snow fall is comparable to east coast snowfall, but I wouldn't worry about it.
Thank you that is very helpful. I’d surmise that the snow in snowy parts of CO is more significant on average than the places that I’m likely to go in upstate NY or New England. Here we are also more likely to experience freezing rain/ice than proper snow I would guess.





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anotherWS6

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Dude. Bro. DudeBro. Brospeh. BroHammer. Broseph Goebbels. Soft top is 100% fine in the winter. Not once last year did I wish I had something better. Water tight, minimal wind noise, cab gets warm and cozy quick and stays that way. Added bonus? If/when you get water that then freezes and your whole vehicle is covered in a sheet of ice like happens here a few times per year - you can gently push up on the roof from inside a few times and it breaks that solid sheet up into nice sized chunks that brush or fall off easily. Much better than waiting for it to start to melt on a hardtop and then have it fly off in front of some poor soul on the highway.

This aint your grand-daddies Jeep. The soft top is great. Pulleys, multiple people, storage, bolts, planning, seasons, no instant change on a sunny late fall day with a hard top. F a hard top, F it right in its ear.
 

Rufus

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People tell lies about Colorado, well Denver specifically. It doesn't really snow much here and in the winter it tends to be a dry light snow that is gone in the next day or two. It can snow quite a bit here, but that's pretty rare. In the spring we get some heavy wet snow, but it's all melted off very quickly. Up the mountains though, they get some real snow fall that can build over time.

As far as the freezing rain and such goes, really just brush off what you can from the roof, don't scrub at it or work at it. Then let the heater do it's thing. Ice starts to break up pretty quick from the heat and vibrations then falls off in little chunks. I wouldn't be opening the top with ice on it, but once it has melted off and the heater has been running for awhile the top can be worked as well. If you get stuck with the top down and the temps get cold on you, start the jeep setting the heater full blast and on the dash vents directed to toward the top back. Be gentle and put the top up but don't latch it or anything, just let it slowly warm up. The top will get loose with a bit of time then you can latch it and get the windows in without too much of a fight or risk of damage. on my TJ I would but the windows on the hood to get some engine heat to them as I waited for the top to warm up. Eventually I put the windows in but if I couldn't get the zippers I'd just let it sit longer. Of course without zippers maybe all this is easier now, but as long as you can get the top warmed up via the heater or sun its perfectly fine to not only have up, but also put it down in winter. My only real concern would be if you let it sit for a few days where snow can build up on it or if someone tries to be helpful and hits your plastic window to knock the snow off.
Thank you, very helpful. From the manual and other comments I understood to not actuate the soft top in the winter, but what you wrote makes sense.
 

flipboltz

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I know in the Midwest scraping is an issue. I lived in Iowa for 2 winters with my TJ and a soft top and never really had an issue. Jeep heaters are amazing things and heat up the cab pretty fast. Not sure about the unlimited's as I have never owned one of those. The new non-premium soft top for the JL is amazing. I would not have paid more more for the premium when the standard top is so damn nice. Just did winter in Colorado and with the Jeep being outside all of the time had zero issues. Again, it heats up so fast and so hot the back window defrosts in no time.
 

Ksvette

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I cannot answer this as I have always run dual tops swapping twice a year. My main reason for doing this is so that I can run the Jeep through a car wash a few times during the winter to get the salt off.

Just something else to consider.
Or just use the soft top in a car wash.....I know it is controversial. I have ran mine through a soft touch (not high pressure, that is supposed to be bad) probably 30 to 50 times by now. Zero issues.
 

Rufus

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Just work with it now, in the heat, so you know what it should feel like. When winter comes and you get that one nice day of sun, take it slow... you'll feel if it's too cold/tight to work with.
Thanks, I find it very pliable now but of course we’ve had a sunny and very warm summer so far.
 

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Or just use the soft top in a car wash.....I know it is controversial. I have ran mine through a soft touch (not high pressure, that is supposed to be bad) probably 30 to 50 times by now. Zero issues.
That doesn't scratch the shit out of the windows? All the soft touch ones around here have high pressure rinse anyway.
 

S2k Chris

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Being new to Jeep, having had my JL for a year now, the biggest adjustment to me with the soft top is that it's a relative PITA to put big stuff in the trunk, as you have to pop the rear window off the side/bottom and then I flip it up onto the roof. And I would worry about doing that in the cold with a brittle window. I think that alone would cause me to continue with the Dual Top group when I buy another Jeep. Also, I don't love that the Jeep is essentially unlocked with the soft top, because anyone can pull a window off. I don't keep stuff in it over night, but it does always make me pause that my work laptop is in the Jeep if I stop at a store after work or something.
 

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I happen to be a Dual Top Owner but for those who live in 4 seasons and run soft tops year round, is there any like, spray you can put on the plastic windows to melt the snow/ice over the physical abrasion suggested above to avoid for fear of scratching the windows?

On other vehicles I own, at home and after a winter storm, I've been known to put an electric space heater in the vehicle for a few minutes to make window snow removal easier, but of course when on the road, there may be no outlet for the electric heater: not one at least that can provide the wattage most of these appliances need.

Or maybe there's something one can pretreat the windows with prior to a snow storm--I ask mid summer, as it's about 100 degrees F on the heat index where I am right now.:)

Thanks.
 

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I had an 08 Jk and never had an issue with the roof. Bought zipper wax and kept them lubricated. The rear window never really need to be scraped since it is plastic and never really frosted up on me. We had 3 feet of snow one time and the rigidity of the top was fine. Just brushed it off and was perfect. I would only use a soft top on my jeep. All 4 seasons and no issues.
 

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Buffalo. No issues. And when you strip it off for the summer, makes you wonder why anyone would bother with a hard top.
 

beammmer

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New Orleans winters are best with the soft top folded down. Even with the top up and the rear widow frosted over, my heated outside mirrors will allow a view behind. :)

Don
 

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