The Jeep Gladiator is arguably the most unique off-roading pickup truck in the current automotive market. While vehicles such as the Ford Ranger, Honda Ridgeline, and Ram 1500 have comparable performance capabilities and price tags as the Gladiator, very few offer removable doors and hardtops roofs. This special feature made popular by the Jeep Wrangler provides Gladiator drivers with a truly special off-roading experience. Put simply, there aren’t many work-capable pickup trucks with this much flair and personality!
However, too many Gladiator owners skip using this exhilarating feature for fear of damaging expensive Jeep components, such as the roof, doors, or vehicle itself. If you’re interested in experiencing a top-down drive, read on to learn the dos and don’ts of storing your Jeep Gladiator hardtop.
The Three Dos
Jeep Gladiator hardtops consist of over 20 components. Some of these parts, such as the left and right freedom panels and rear section, cost well over 1000 dollars to replace! And ordering an entirely new hardtop carries an even heftier bill. To avoid shelling out your hard-earned savings on replacement parts, here are the tips and tricks you should always follow when storing your Jeep Gladiator hardtop.
DO Store Your Hardtop Inside
While designed to withstand harsh environments and weather conditions, your hardtop should always remain inside when not in use. A garage or backyard shed is the ideal location for safely storing valuable automotive parts and components. The lack of UV and weather exposure, combined with better temperature control, helps your hardtop resist corrosion and general wear and tear. Plus, these indoor settings are more likely to protect your roof from human and animal interactions, which can cause significant damage.
The one exception to this rule is if you are away from your garage or shed, such as on a multi-day camping trip. In these scenarios, it’s recommended you use a portable hoist and storage system for more robust on-the-go safeguarding.
DO Cover Your Hardtop
If possible, you should throw a tarp or similar cover over your hardtop when it’s not in use. Despite being indoors, your roof and its many components are still vulnerable to dust and other airborne contaminants. These foreign bodies can then accumulate on or within the hardtop and cause mechanical issues, expedited corrosion, and other complications.
We recommend using a weatherproof tarp that’s large enough to completely cover the hardtop, especially if your garage or shed is poorly ventilated and prone to dust. This tarp will also protect your hardtop from moisture damage in case of a ceiling leak.
DO Use a Mobile Storage System
Shelves and other stationary storage methods are perfectly suitable for safely holding your Gladiator hardtop. However, there are plenty of more benefits to investing in a storage system with superior mobility. More specifically, it’s recommended that you find a hoist and storage device with a lightweight design and rolling wheels. This affords you increased flexibility regardless of the surrounding space, eliminates lifting-related labor, and provides suitable storage when on the go.
The Three Don’ts
Often, vehicle owners make various mistakes—usually cost- and time-saving alternatives—that result in unnecessary damages and expensive replacements. Here are three temptations you should avoid when storing your Jeep roof component.
DON’T Use a DIY Hoist System
If you’re a longtime member of the Jeep community, chances are you know some individuals with DIY hardtop hoist contraptions jerry-rigged in their garage or shed. Often, the proud inventors of these homemade systems claim their hoists are just as effective as more expensive pre-designed products.
While it’s true that DIY projects are significantly more affordable upfront, the risk of malfunctioning is too great to ignore. At-home hoist systems are untested and ill-suited for storing valuable parts and sometimes cause bodily harm due to loose or improper mechanical designs. Instead, invest in a quality Jeep Gladiator top hoist and storage device that will protect your hardtop for years to come.
DON’T Overload Your Storage Method
Whether your chosen storage method is stationary or mobile, you should avoid overloading the system. For example, if you use a mounted shelf to store your Jeep Gladiator hardtop, ensure you keep unrelated objects off the surface. Dedicating specific areas for hardtop storage reduces the chances of overloading.
If you utilize a mobile hoist and storage system, such as the TopLift Pro, you should only ever use it for hardtop applications. These devices are not designed to manage additional weight from supplementary objects. Follow this tip when stashing your Jeep doors, as well.
DON’T Store on the Ground
Some Jeep Gladiator owners are hesitant to hang their valuable hardtop above the floor and, instead, opt to rest the top on the ground. However, even with a cushioned base to protect the hardtop, ground storage is not recommended in almost any situation. An object left on the floor is far more likely to accrue damages, whether by someone tripping over it or water-related issues stemming from a flood. If you’re nervous that your elevated surface cannot support your Jeep parts, it might be worth investing in a dedicated hoist and storage system.
Best Storage Options for You
As you can clearly see by now, hoist systems designed specifically for the Jeep Gladiator are the most dependable and practical storage method. Unlike shelves and other elevated surfaces, these devices boast superior mobility, flexibility, and versatility—you can even take them on camping trips for suitable portable storage! And while more expensive than DIY contraptions, a trusted hoist and storage device guarantees improved protection for your valuable parts over a longer period. Ultimately, these systems save you money and heartache down the road.
Understanding the dos and don’ts of storing your Jeep Gladiator hardtop ensures you don’t waste hard-earned cash on replacement parts. Luckily, you can provide your Jeep doors and roof with superior protection, whether at home or on the go, with the TopLift Pro top removal and storage system. Browse our devices today or contact us to find the optimal storage method for your vehicle.