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Discussion Starter #1
Like the title states. Car has been sitting while I restore it. It has a black top that I need to pay more attention to. I cleaned it with the intention of waterproofing it again before winter. There was some lichen growing on the top, I scrubbed with Simple Green and Tough Stuff. When done I still have very small green spots that didn't come off. Any advice?
 

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I can only tell you what an experienced detailer told me: you really shouldn't use anything but water to clean a convertible top. That said, I have seen products that are specifically designed for cleaning cloth tops. Have you tried any of them? You can find kits that have the cleaner and sealer together.
 

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I think the small green spots will clean out in due course - but:
I have an odd perspective answer on this: surely yachts/ boats that have been stored will have the same issue - so maybe there is a maritime solution worth looking at.
also:
 

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Lots of folks recommend 303 for cleaning the top. I used a product called RaggTopp on several convertibles and had good results. I'd second dnd and avoid using any chemicals not expressly for cleaning canvas tops.... It's probably fine, but you don't want to do anything that could cause damage.
 

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my most recent vert had a ton of green and lichen on it, it had been sitting for years, I scrubbed it with simple green same as you then did the 303 treatment to it and the 303 seemed to get rid of the remaining green. If your really concerned you could use "wet and forget" ,I use it on the roof and siding.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I'll try the nautical route tomorrow and report back. Thank you.
 

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In the previous link (posted above) - they also say '303' worked well. So that and based on the comments from Multisaab & Jvan - I think you would be wise to go with that solution.
With regards to the maritime/nautical - that was just lateral thinking on my part.
A clean Saab is also a happy Saab!!
 

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I would try a specialty cleaner first. Starbrite has a marine product that's good. Get a soft brush... the long poly bristle ones used for cleaning wheels are good. Scrub. Rinse. Repeat. Let dry, see how you did.

If that doesn't go it (Been there, done that) then use dishwashing liquid and a 5% bleach mix. Scrub with the brush in any area with mildew (green). Rinse and rinse again. Wait a couple days and all the mildew should be gone. Retreat small areas as needed. I know that bleach sounds aggressive, but it's the only thing that will remove it if it's stubborn. It won't hurt your roof - just keep the ratio down to 5% or so.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
That sounds good Bob. I Amazon'ed some 303 cleaner that should be here tomorrow. If that doesn't work I'll go the bleach route. I'll post results.
 

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Strong second on the poly bristle wheel cleaning brush. Guessing 303 goes like other similar cleaners - spray on, brush in, rinse off. Probably you need to follow this with a waterproofing of some type as removing the contaminants will probably remove whatever remaining waterproofing is there. Hell, maybe the contaminants are the waterproofing at this point!
 

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I wouldn't go the bleach route unless you were looking for a white top.
 

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I can only tell you what an experienced detailer told me: you really shouldn't use anything but water to clean a convertible top.
I'd say that's so that you don't wash off or deplete the waterproofing.
Not an issue if you're going to reapply the water proofing.
 

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+1 Bob's suggestion of using Star Brite and the brush.
I haven't used their cleaner but the waterproofer is excellent and I recommend it.

I know that sometimes a copper wire is strung around a house roof to keep lichen and or mould down.
See if you can get some copper oxide or something like it to add to the wash.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I got the 303 cleaner today. I'll see what it does tomorrow and let everyone know. Thank you!
 

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I wouldn't go the bleach route unless you were looking for a white top.
Fully tested :) No worries. I got the tip from someone else and was reluctant too... but I could not get the mildew out of the fabric on my ng900 that had been sitting a while. Cleaned it a couple times using my usual soap-and-brush method with no luck.

So, I went with the 5% bleach. I saw no lightening of the top. I did do the whole top for insurance in case it lightened, but it did not appear to change.
 
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