If you have the luxury of owning a vehicle with a convertible top, you most likely enjoy taking it out with the top down during warmer months. If your top is made of canvas and you notice a small tear within the material, it will need to be repaired promptly to avoid damage to the interior of your vehicle during bad weather. Here are some steps you can follow to patch a canvas convertible top by yourself.
Assess The Extent Of The Damage
Check the entire convertible top for other spots of wear in addition to the one you had already noticed. If there are several smaller spots in need of attention, it may be beneficial to bring the vehicle to a specialist for repair work rather than undertaking the project yourself. This is because when you tend to the known tear, other worn spots will be likely to be pulled during the process, possibly leading to further damage. If the damage is limited to the one location, you may be able to effectively patch it on your own.
Stitch The Canvas Back Together
If you are confident with your sewing skills, use a whipstitch to adhere the edges of the torn area back together. Make sure the convertible top is up when you do this process. This way the material will be taut and stretched to the fullest capacity during the repair job. If you sew it when the top is down, you risk the convertible top ripping further when you put it in an upright position. Take your time to use even stitches and make sure to have plenty of upholstery thread and canvas needles on hand.
Add Protective Layers To The Seam Area
After the canvas is stitched back together, a sealant should be applied to help keep moisture from making its way through the needle holes. Apply a piece of duct tape to the interior of the canvas where the seam is located. On the exterior, dab some polyurethane sealant over the seam. Make sure the packaging says this sealant is waterproof. When it dries, remove the duct tape.
A patch should also be applied to the exterior of the canvas top. While this will alter the convertible top's appearance slightly, it is best as it will ensure moisture does not make its way inside the vehicle. Glue a piece of marine canvas in the same color as your convertible top directly over the stitchery. Waterproof glue should be used. After it dries, use the polyurethane sealant once again around the edges of the cloth.
For more information, contact local professionals like Westside Upholstery.