Driving down the open road with the wind blowing through your hair is a privilege that convertible owners can enjoy. Access to a convertible can make driving more exciting, but the soft top used to protect your car's interior during inclement weather can quickly become a source of stress when tears occur. If you notice a tear in your soft top while you are driving down the open road, there are some simple steps that you can take to prevent the tear from leaking.
Here are three things you need to do to keep your convertible top's tear from leaking in the future.
1. Sew the tear.
Sewing the edges of the tear back together should be the first step in preventing water from leaking through your convertible top. Invest in some heavy-duty upholstery thread in a color that matches your convertible top, and buy a curved needle to make the sewing process easier.
Close and latch your car's top to keep the fabric taut while you sew, and work slowly to ensure that you create a durable seam. It can be beneficial to make small stitches that are close together to help eliminate any holes between your stitches.
2. Glue the tear.
Once you have completely sewn the edges of the tear together, you should apply some glue to the seam to prevent the thread from coming loose over time. Start by applying some masking tape to the underside of the seam (the side facing the interior of your vehicle). This tape will catch any glue that drips through the seam and prevents it from damaging your convertible's interior.
Use a heavy-duty, waterproof glue and apply a generous amount to the seam. Be sure to overlap the edges slightly to prevent water from seeping underneath the glue shield and into the seam below.
3. Add a patch.
To further prevent water from coming through your newly-repaired tear, you can apply a marine canvas patch over the seam. Cut a piece of marine canvas that is large enough to cover your seam, but small enough to prevent significant overlap.
Work slowly to sew around the edges of the canvas using your upholstery thread, taking caution to use small stitches that are close together. Once the patch is sewn in place, use a seam sealer to secure the edges in place.
Repairing tears in your convertible's top is critical when it comes to protecting your vehicle's interior in the future. Be familiar with sewing, gluing, and patching techniques to better care for your convertible.
For assistance, talk to a professional like Fred's Auto Interiors.