One of the best things about the Wrangler is flexibility. The two-door model is one of the most versatile and easily customizable SUVs on the planet. And, a soft top will be a perfect accessory for it. When it’s hot outside, you can ride into the sunset with the top off. And when it starts to rain or the sun rays come up, the top will turn it into a convertible.
Yep, it’s pretty cool. Won’t it take a mechanic to install it, though? Don’t you need special equipment for that? No, it’s gonna be a lot easier! In this step-by-step guide, I’ll teach you how to install a soft top on Jeep Wrangler 2 door. It will only take +/- one hour and some patience on your side. So, let’s get this done!
As I always like to say, before you do any installing, don’t forget to park the Jeep in a safe spot. Some people like to do this in their garages, but there might not be enough light or space there. That’s why I prefer to do this outside, where you can approach the SUV from all four sides. Make sure the engine is off and you’ve got wheel blockers placed. Otherwise, the Wrangler may just roll away while you’re busy with the soft top!
For this job, you won’t need any protection for the eyes (like a mask or goggles). However, a pair of gloves for the hands won’t hurt. And what about the toolset? Well, an impact driver and a screwdriver is pretty much all you’ll need for this job. Drivers are available for $50-60 and will be a reasonable investment. A ratchet + sockets will also do, of course, but they’ll take a bit more effort to use.
#2: Starting with the Frame
Ok, let’s get to it! If you have a friend that can help out, that’d be great. But, in all fairness, the installation routine can be handled manually. So, go ahead and put the frame where it belongs. It’s a standard-issue metallic plate, and it’s the only thing that’s gonna be holding the soft top in place. On the 2-door Wrangler, the frame needs to be locked at two separate spots – the rear runner and the windshield (the front side).
If you can’t locate the runner, look for it along the sides of the SUV. This is important: depending on the design of the soft top, you might not need any tools or equipment to secure the frame. As long as you bought the right soft top for the Wrangler (it must be 100% compatible with it), the frame will easily “slip” into the mounting spots. In other cases, a screwdriver/ratchet will be necessary to complete the installation.
#3: Installing the Top
The next step in this how to put soft top on Jeep Wrangler 2 door guide is…the actual soft top! It’s not super heavy, but will still have a “kick”. Just grab it and put it over the frame. Leave the windows alone for now – just focus on the main body of the top. Do you see a runner in the front (made of plastic)? It goes into the windshield’s retainer.
Great, now it’s time to stretch the top. What we’re doing here is making sure the top reaches all four corners so that we can put the retainers in the back into the retainers. That’s not it yet! Crawl into the Jeep, find the snaps/latches, and, well, snap the top onto the frame. Don’t be too hard on it, though; otherwise, you might crack the snaps or the retainers.
#4: Handling the Windows
Last, but not least, zip the windows to the top. I recommend starting with the rear passenger windows. It’s the same routine: once the windows are in place, use the retainers to secure them (put them into the runners). The rear window has three zippers. And, there’s a retainer bar – it should “climb” right onto the window and lock it. Finishing up, install the front windows. They come with three pins that need to go into the grommets (you’ll find them on the doors).
Carefully put the corner of each window onto the respective door. Next, use the snaps and place the retainers into the runners. That’s actually all there is to it!
#5: Don’t Forget About Maintenance!
Alright, now that we learned how to install a soft top on the legendary Wrangler, it’s up to you to take care of it. Without proper maintenance, the top will be ruined in a couple of months. So, don’t leave it under the scorching sun (UV rays), rain, snow, dust, or strong wind. That’s the first step. The next would be to use specific formulas to clean your Jeep’s soft top.
When speaking of formulas, any tonneau cover, convertible, or soft top cleaner will do. These are available for a very reasonable price ($15-20) and do an excellent job. If you’re on a tight budget, a dish detergent will work as well. Do this at least once in six months, or, better yet, once a season. In between applying the solution, make a habit of cleaning the top with a soft cloth.