Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Know Your Convertible Top Fabrics: Canvas vs. Vinyl

Canvas Convertible Topping Material
At Auto Tops Direct, our commitment is to customer satisfaction and high-quality products. That is why we provide you with numerous material options for replacement convertible tops to fit every style – and price point. Thanks to our relationship with top industry supplier Haartz, the leading manufacturer of fabric to automakers, we confidently stand behind the quality and durability of each of our fabric options. However, we know that sometimes all of those choices can be overwhelming and it is hard to know which choice to make. Today, we will break down a few of our premium topping material choices and highlight their features and benefits!


  • Appearance: Most convertibles originally were manufactured with canvas soft tops, so canvas options like Haartz Stayfast cloth topping material will more closely resemble that classic look convertible drivers love.
  • Durability: Although canvas is the more delicate of fabric choices, with proper covered storage during harsh winter months, it can be kept looking its best despite the elements.
  • Noise: Although convertible drivers typically prefer to drive with the top down and the wind in their hair, we know that sometimes this is not an option. For those concerned with a quiet ride, canvas is the preferred material, as the wind tends to bounce more noisily off of a vinyl roof.
  • Cleaning: As convertible drivers ourselves, we have experienced first-hand the groans that tend to come out when we see that bird droppings or tree berries have stained our canvas soft tops. While it is easier to wipe away such stains from vinyl tops, with the proper upkeep and help from products like our Raggtopp Fabric Cleaner and Protectant Kits, even canvas tops can look their best for years to come.
  • Price: There is no way around this sometimes-sensitive subject – canvas convertible replacements are more expensive than their vinyl equivalents. However, many drivers are willing to pay the extra $100+ to achieve the look that they want for their car.


  • Appearance: Although vinyl material doesn’t have that classic look of many vintage cars, it was the original topping for many American convertible models from the 1950s all the way into the 1990s. For those drivers looking to restore their beloved cars to an original look and feel, vinyl is a great choice.
  • Durability: In this competition, vinyl takes the prize and can withstand significantly more wear and tear from Mother Nature than canvas can.
  • Noise: Vinyl tends to be a noisier fabric than canvas, but with the roof down and the wind in your hair, that should be of no concern!
  • Cleaning: For convertible owners that hate cleaning up pesky stains and spills from their soft tops, vinyl is the perfect choice. Wiping away debris and droppings is a breeze with a simple cleanser product, especially if you use a good protectant as a precaution
  • Price: Vinyl is a great choice for car owners looking to revive the look and feel of their convertible without breaking the bank, and can be significantly cheaper than premium canvas options.

We understand that replacing your soft top on your convertible is a significant investment, and ideally you should be getting 7-10 years of use out of that replacement convertible top. Sometimes, cheaper alternatives make claims of premium quality at a low price point, and then do not deliver. We believe that choosing the proven, trusted material is your best bet. Don’t take our word for it, though – visit our website to read all of our 5-star product reviews from shoppers like you!

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