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Caring for your Pop Top

An on-line owners manual

Tent Care

If properly cared for, your tent should last 10 years or more.  Treat the tent as you would treat any high-end tent.  Keep it             clean and free from dirt, soils and stains.   

Clean with a mild cleaner and warm water.   Keep clear when handling sharp objects, overly hot items and other things than can harm the tent. 


You can lubricate the zippers with Vaseline or other zipper wax periodically to keep them functioning smoothly. 

ALWAYS  zipper all three parts of the windows prior to lowering the top.  If the zippers are left open there is a risk that a zipper pull could puncture the screen.   It is best to have zippers positioned in the upper center of the window. 

Should you get caught in the rain or snow and need to close the top to continue your adventure, the moisture trapped in the folds of the tent may mildew.  Should you put the top down when the tent is wet, open it and dry things out as soon as possible.  Standing water has no place to drain as the tent is water tigth.


Bed Pads

 You can clean the pad covers with a sponge or and a mild detergent.  If you need to wash the pads, wash on the gentle cycle with a gentle detergent in cold or warm water.  Hand wash if possible.  Wash the pad covers when fully zippered, never un-zippered.


The Mechanicals

 If the lifters rarely fail, and will do so within our testing period.  If you notice something is out of the ordinary, give us a call.  Over several years of use, lifters may go a bit out of synch.  This is normally not a problem if the variation is subtle.


The Fan

The fan remote requires line of site to the fan to operate.  The button works more like an iPad, that you touch, rather than a button that you press. If you hold a button down rather than pressing it, you may not get a response.  You do need to point it at the fan for it to work as it uses an IR signal.  If you find the remote is not working properly, it most likely needs new batteries.  We have noticed that in instances where the fan is wired into the van primary battery, when the battery is very low (or in need of replacement or a jump start), the fan will act oddly.  In some cases it will not shut off once turned on (in which case you can pull the fan fuse in our fuse panel),  in another case the indicator light on the fan began blinking. 

NOTE careful not to leave the fan and the thermostat on when you are not using the van for a while.  If it is on, the fan will operate when the interior temperature exceeds the setting, and over the course of time it will drain your primary battery  as it runs during the daytime.


Loads, Rooftop Cargo

It is highly recommended to have Colorado Campervan install roof rails rather than DIY. 

Our fiberglass top is the strongest in the industry, our lift mechanism the most powerful.  However, do not lift the top with a rooftop load in excess of 100 pounds.  If you think you may be close to that limit (or if there is a snow load on the roof),  use your hand to help the top rise the first foot or so, where the mechanical advantage of the lift systems is at its lowest, and the lifters are under the most stress. 

When down and for transport, the top can carry a distributed load of not more than 400 pounds.  If you need to walk on the top, stay near the perimeter- that is where the fiberglass is reinforced and is strongest.  If you wake up while camping to find out it snowed a few feet, don’t worry, the top will not come down on you.  But try to remove as much snow as possible before lowering the top.


Tips & Tricks


  1. Opening the top when it is latched will blow out the latches and may damage the lifting mechanism.  It is a good idea to only use the provided pop top remote control for putting it up or down.  Use Velcro or a carabiner to attach the remote to the latch mechanism to remind you to unlatch.  One of our customers put a small label on the manual switch reading, “Unlatched?” (brilliant idea). If you damage or destroy the latches, we do sell replacements.

  2. Put the top down with the remote and walk around the van to make sure the tent folds into place properly.  If it looks like it may not fold in, it will be easier to pull the tent from the inside than to push the tent from the outside.  New tent material is stiff, thus it sometimes does not fall into place properly when closing the top, it will loosen up over time.

  3. Always have the windows completely zippered when closing the top or you will risk tearing a screen.  It is best to have the zipper pulls at the top of the windows, located centrally.

  4. If you notice any small gaps between the roof line and the rubber pop top seal, make sure your pads are centered, and ensure no other items (pillows, bedding) are preventing the top from coming all the way down.

  5. If you must put the top down when the tent is wet, lift the top as soon as possible to dry it out.  This will prevent mold or foul smells from developing on the tent.

  6. The switches for our lights are wireless.  If the lights stop working, and the fuses are good, the switch may need to be reset, give us a call (this is rare).

  7. A fan is highly recommended, if the fan remote is performing oddly, it is likely in need of new batteries. 

  8. The sealant where the tent meets the van roof should be inspected annually for cracks or other issues.  We do sell tubes of sealant.

Pop Top Electrical Panel

Your panel may differ slightly, but the components are the same

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