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Mustang Convertible Top Replacement Costs 2023: The Ultimate Guide


If the convertible top on your Ford Mustang is ripped, torn, or not closing properly, there’s not a lot you can do.

However, you can fairly easily choose to replace the unit – which ensures the interior of your car stays clean and dry. That will involve buying a replacement convertible top and paying for installation. 

Here, you can expect the Mustang convertible top replacement to cost $285 to $850 for an aftermarket solution. You can also opt to pay around $950 if you have a current generation Ford Mustang and want it OEM. However, you’ll also have to pay for 4-7 hours of work, which costs an average of $450. 

The table below shows a quick price comparison of Mustang convertible top replacement cost estimates from reputable suppliers: 

SupplierLabor Convertible Top 
CarID NA$30-$380
NAPA $70-$350$40-$350
Firestones $45-$260$53-$260
Pep Boys $45-$380$35-$380
Amazon NA$16-$1,000

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How Much Does Mustang Convertible Top Replacement Cost?*

The cost of replacing a Mustang convertible top normally depends on the cost of labor and the cost of the top itself. Otherwise, there aren’t too many differences between models.

For example, you can fit the same convertible top onto a Ford Mustang from 2005-2015 and also from 2015 to present. This means it’s unlikely you’ll ever have to pay more per year model. 

However, you can also pay for replacing the specific part of the convertible top that isn’t working. For example: 

Part Cost of Part 
Switches $80-$500
Top Cylinder $119 – $179.99
Tension Cables $39.99-$86.99
Top Latch $77.22-$179
Motor $149-$239
Hoses $79-$167
Molding/Weather Strips $50.31-$131 
Rear Window $179-$389
Top Kit/Full Top $250-$960

*Note: Prices are estimates and were correct at the time of writing June 2023. Cost estimates may have changed since, our figures should be used as a starting point for your own research.  

What Is A Convertible Top? 

Convertible tops are typically made up of a soft top (cloth or vinyl) with a hydraulic motor, hydraulic hoses, tension lines, and a roller. The switch can be remote or not, but it should automatically roll up the soft top, so you can drive with the roof down.

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If something goes wrong, you can likely repair the affected part of the convertible top. 

Mustang Convertible Top Replacement Price Factors 

The cost of your new convertible top will depend on a lot of different factors.

For example, the age of your vehicle, the electronics at the top, and where you get the top. And, of course, the cost of labor will always be a major pricing factor. 


There are three primary models for the Ford Mustang Convertible. 

  • 1964-1973
  • 1974-2004 
  • 2005-2015
  • 2015-2024

The newer the model, the more expensive you should expect the convertible cover to be. That’s mostly because it’s equipped with more electronics. So, if you want the same functionality, you’ll have to spend more. 

Of course, if you replace a convertible top on an older car, there’s no reason why you can’t install extra electronics to have an automatic cover top. However, that will cost a great deal more. 

Cost of Labor 

Installing a top on a car might seem simple but most of them require a lot of tuning. Not doing so can mean gaps between the convertible and the cover.

It can also mean the top doesn’t roll up smoothly, that it doesn’t roll out flat, and that you have issues with the latch lining up. Properly tuning and adjusting your convertible top after installing it is critical to a good user experience. 

Unfortunately, that usually means the job will take 4-8 hours for a professional. At standard labor rates for body shops, that means you’ll pay an average of $300-$600 for your top.

If you live in an urban area, where costs can go as high as $200 per hour, you can pay almost double that. 

Labor costs vary per region, per technician, and by brand. For example, if you have a dealer do the work, you’ll almost always pay the maximum amount for the work to be done. 


You can buy replacement convertible tops for your Mustang from an entire range of different brands.

For example, you could go on eBay or to your local scrapyard and probably pay around $900 for a secondhand original soft top cover for your convertible.

On the other hand, you could pay about $950+ for a new one from Ford itself, although you can’t get parts for older generations of vehicles. 

Most replacements are aftermarket parts, which range in cost from about $250 to over $950 for a kit.

However, you’ll have to pay close attention, because a lot of these don’t include the motor or the hydraulic pump, which means you could be buying a cover you don’t need when you just need the pump. 

Extent of Repairs/Replacements 

The cost of replacing a convertible cover will depend on which parts you want to replace.

On average, you can expect to pay about $100-$200 for the cover, the pump, the motor, and the cylinder.

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Costs can go lower or higher, but if you have to replace everything, you’ll either want a kit that includes everything (usually from about $900-$1,500) or make sure you buy everything.

You can also expect a bit of additional labor if you have to replace the motor as well. 

5 Signs You Need A New Convertible Top For Your Mustang 

Chances are, if you want to replace your Mustang convertible top, it’s because you want to.

However, there are plenty of signs that should tell you it’s actually time to pay to have the replacement done. 

1. Damage 

If your cover is damaged, it’s not protecting your car anymore. Pulling at the seams, sagging, rips, and tears are all damage that let in the elements – and anyone who wants to take something in your car.

You might also want to replace it for aesthetic reasons, such as discoloration, mold or mildew, etc. 

2. Not Closing Properly 

If your convertible cover isn’t sealing properly to the car anymore, it’s not protecting your car. That means you’ll have to either re-tune it or replace it.

However, once it stops sealing, it usually means the material is failing, so you’ll have to replace it. 

3. Leaking 

If your top is leaking it will damage the inside of your car. It may also result in the convertible frame rusting, which can cost thousands to fix.

So, if your convertible top is letting in water, the faster you act, the cheaper the total job will be. 

4. Sound in the Car

A convertible top in good condition will keep out most of the sound of the road. But, if you hear a loud roaring or rushing sound it might be time to replace the cover.

Of course, that’s up to you and if you mostly drive with it down anyway; it doesn’t matter. However, if your cover is letting in sound, it’s probably letting in water as well. 

5. Not Rolling Up 

If your cover isn’t easily rolling up, it’s time for a new one. A bad cylinder can even damage the motor by putting too much pressure on it.

So, if you act fast and replace the top or the cylinder before it stresses the motor too much, you can save money on the full job. 

How Do You Replace A Mustang Convertible Top? (Video) 

If you have time and a little bit of familiarity with DIY projects, you can replace a Mustang convertible top yourself.

This guide assumes that you’re just replacing the top and not the motor or the hydraulics. 

Things You’ll Need

  • Utility knife 
  • Heavy duty staple gun 
  • Replacement cover for your vehicle 
  • Staples (heavy duty) 
  • Needle nose pliers
  • Flathead screwdriver
  • Phillips Screwdriver


  1. Remove the headliner from vehicle, being careful not to damage it if you’re reusing it.
  2. Remove the exterior trim rings and hardware. Most can be pried off. Some use screws or small clips and bolts. Feel and check for attachment points. 
  3. Unscrew and remove the rear paneling.
  4. Remove the rear seat.
  5. Use a flathead screwdriver and needle nose pliers to remove the staples holding the vinyl in place. There should be several hundred of them. Be careful not to damage the plastic retaining strip underneath.
  6. Unscrew the press fittings.
  7. Remove the plastic strips and make sure there are no staples remaining.
  8. If you’re replacing the window, take the old window out. Mustang windows are not sold separately from the back panel of glass, so you’ll have to buy a back window kit to replace this. 
  9. Install the headliner.
  10. Run the guide loops from the new cover over the frame and let them hang freely. Lay the cover over the rear window and ensure the fit is good. 
  11. Make sure the entire thing is straight.
  12. Staple the front lip of the top to the front of the frame.
  13. Stape the rear window into place, starting from the top. Use ½ inch staples so they don’t go through the material. Make sure the window is well-fitted and snugly in place. 
  14. Then, use the top seams as a reference point to center the cover on the frame and pull them down and tightly around the car and frame. Get the full thing smooth and tight, without snags or pulls, before you start installing staples or the retaining clips that come with your car.
  15. Staple the frame into place, being sure to put the plastic back into place, and use any retaining clips.
  16. Reinstall the rear panels and rear seat. 
  17. Allow the fabric to conform to the car for at least two weeks before operating the mechanism. 
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Related Questions

Can you replace a convertible top by yourself? 

You can replace a Mustang convertible top by yourself. Unlike many other brands, Ford doesn’t use too many custom tools for its convertible tops. This means you can opt to replace the vinyl or replace the full top – and largely without too much hassle.

However, it’s still going to take about half your day. And, a second pair of hands will make the final job a lot easier. 

How do you take the top off a Mustang convertible? 

Unscrew the rear paneling and remove the rear seat. Then, remove the press fittings and staples from the old top.

Once you do, you can directly remove the old top. If you’re detaching the motor, cylinder, and frame, you’ll want to undo those by detaching the bolts. 

Can you replace a Mustang convertible top with a hardtop?

There is no standard hard top cover for the Mustang convertible. However, you could have one custom-made for your vehicle. That will be expensive.

As long as it fits, though, there’s no reason not to use it.


If your Mustang’s convertible top is damaged, you can replace it. However, that will cost around $1,000, or $285-$950 for the top, plus $350-$450 for labor. Of course, you can always do the work yourself, but getting a top on is finicky work. And, if you want to replace or re-tune the frame, it can require specialist tools.

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