Welcome to the Corvette Forums at the Corvette Action Center!

convertable top



OK, I am an old man, and never clean my own car. Have always taken through carwash. Friday I purchased a new red w/black top C5 (convertable) and wonder if any one has any idea if it is ok to take it throught the commercial car washes. Will they in someway damage the cloth top? Does anyone know or have opinions on this? I know most of you wash your own, but quite honestly, I can't because of physical condition. Thanks for any info you can give on this. Charlie:confused :confused
charlie said:
...Friday I purchased a new red w/black top C5 (convertable)

Congrats Charlie! Great color combo:D
Unfortunately I don't know anything about ragtops but I'm sure somebody with one will chime in....

Congratulations, Charlie!! Great color choice. :) I'm new to owning a convertible and read not to use a high pressure hose on the convertible top, as it could leak. I'm going to wash my convertible top by hand, with a soft brush and mild soap and use a lint wheel on it at other times.. My convertible top is black too. I also read there is a Hartz cleaner and conditioner that is good to use. Will be interesting to find out how other convertible owners take care of their tops...good question. :)

Congrats on your purchase! Great color combo. We are also owners of a C5 convertible (2000, navy with lt. oak top). We were told NEVER to use a pressure-washer around the top or to go through a pressure-washer-based car wash. The reason is the same that Patti mentioned -- water can leak between the top seal and tonneau cover, thereby getting inside the car.

We use a soft, wheel brush from PepBoys with the Haartz cleaner and waterproofer recommended by the National Corvette Museum. You can also order through MidAmerica or Eckler's. Combo pricing is around $30 for a can of each.

Good choice getting the black top -- something I'd do for the next 'vette. The light oak doesn't seem to come very clean, but maybe I'm too afraid to rub very hard.

Good luck and enjoy the topless rides!
Convert top

Thanks everyone for the advice. :) It seems like the answer is to NEVER go through a commercial car wash w/the converable.:(
Guess I would be crazy :crazy to take a chance of screwing something up like the interior. Again, thanks everybody. charlie:w
VRUMMM, Thanks for the info. Even though I never wash the car my self, sounds like something I will look into for who ever I get to do the washing. :cool

This is one of many Vettes i have had over the years. But first convertable since 60's. Used to wash all them myself, but in last few years have not been able to. Lucky just to be able to drive.

Hope you have as much fun in yours as i do in mine. charlie :beer
Hand Wash


I would think Peoria, IL USA is big enough for corner car wash money makers.. Out here we have everything from Cheerleaders to Car Clubs sponsoring local car wash at gas stations, mall parking lots, super market parking lots.. I think you get the picture. They usually ask for a donation, or charge between $5~$10 for a hand wash and towel dry.

They will fight over washing a new C5 Convert.. :D

Corvettes and the words "taken through carwash" should not even go anywhere near one another in the same sentence.

And anyways...isn't it illegal to take a corvette through a carwash? I think the Corvette Protection Agency can take your vette away for that...

Rare 81

You know, your right. I just never thought about it b/4, corner carwash that is. Of course there seems to one every weekend around here in good weather. Think will give that a try and see how works out. Thanks.:t :t :L :w :Twist

us old farts, got to stick together ;)

Now my secret is out... :D

Old fart

OK people, this old fart is heading for bed. Now almost 10 and at my age i need my beauty sleep. Yeah, right! Have fun all and don't for get, "WAVE" Charlie
Hi Charlie

I have a reccomendation for you if you plan on using a public, promotional, club oriented car wash...take your own towels for washing and drying. You may also want to bring your own clean bucket for them to use and you to take home the soiled towels for laundering.

A friend of mine was going to take her new truck to a club-wash and she saw a kid drop a towel and pick it up and head towards her truck with it. She asked for him to replace the towel with a clean one, and he didn't seem to understand what she was objecting to.

These are the same kids that put the cantaloupe on top of my bread at the grocery store. They just don't 'get it' sometimes. Good kids, but they just haven't had enough life experiences for them to learn the high cost of damaged items, and I'm sure your new toy cost a pretty penny!

I also paid the neighbor's two boys to wash my car this weekend.(they didn't know I was paying them until I gave them the money) They did a good job and we had a fine waterhose fight! I assisted them with the top, since it leaks unless you wash/rinse it carefully, and they washed/dried everything from the windows down! They even washed the tires and rims.
Re: Hi Charlie

78SilvAnniv said:
These are the same kids that put the cantaloupe on top of my bread at the grocery store.

Or the potato chips. :L
78 anni

Thanks for another great suggestion. I am looking to get it cleaned up today, so will let you know what happens. have a great day everyone. Talk at you later. charlie
Re: Hi Charlie

78SilvAnniv said:
I have a reccomendation for you if you plan on using a public, promotional, club oriented car wash...

When my wife or I come across a worthy group holding a car wash, we pay them the going rate ($5-10 up here) NOT to wash our car. That way both parties benefit! I would never allow anyone but a professional detailer whose work I know to wash our cars.

I'm sort of old, too, but I actually enjoy washing and waxing the cars myself. I figure that's what I worked all those years to earn the time to do.

Concerning the convertible top question, I avoid washing ours unless they are truly dirty. Most of the time I just brush or vacuum the dust out of the fabric. If your top is in good shape, most of the overspray from washing the body will bead up and can be absorbed by a light pass of a chamois.
Re: Re: Hi Charlie

OldManC5 said:
...we pay them the going rate ($5-10 up here) NOT to wash our car.

:L ROTFL :L THAT'S a unique approach! ;)


Thanks for the input. It is not that I am too old, I am actually physically unable. Bad heart, legs, and etc. I am just a mess. But at least I can drive. :J
Hi Charlie!

A Corvette in a car wash?
Unless my top is really dirty, I won't even touch it. And if it does need a cleaning, I use a soft brush and mild soap. The extra care is well worth it cause they are a pain to replace.

Convertible top cleaning tips...

I was reading my Old Cars Weekly News and Marketplace and happened to notice this tip for cleaning convertible tops in the "Old Cars Technician" tip section:
After ruining a cloth top by washing it with soap and water and a brush, I started using duct tape, sticky side out, to blot dust and dirt off the tan Hartz cloth top on my '54 Chevy Corvette Roadster.

The top is nine years old and still looks new.

~ An Old Cars Technician badge goes to Keith Troutwine of Arcanum, Ohio.

Maybe this will come in handy for some of you. ;)


Corvette Forums

Not a member of the Corvette Action Center?  Join now!  It's free!

Help support the Corvette Action Center!

Supporting Vendors


MacMulkin Chevrolet - The Second Largest Corvette Dealer in the Country!

Advertise with the Corvette Action Center!

Double Your Chances!

Our Partners

Top Bottom