Toyota Solara Convertible Top Problems

tyrabtyrab Member Posts: 5
edited September 2018 in Toyota
"Someone Please Help Me." I purchased a new 2007 convertible SE (white with tan top) in November of 2006 and had it fixed for leaks in December of 2006 after rain entered my vehicle. Once again I am having the same problem in May of 2007. I have a good amount of water leaking into my vehicle underneath both rearview mirrors when there are heavy rain storms and the carpet is getting wet. The first time I had this problem the dealer reaplaced both parts of the rearview mirror that they thought was causing the leak, and now I have to bring it back in for the same problem. I must say that this is definitely not an issue of a few drops of water entering the vehicle when I am washing it, and I am quite upset about the entire matter. I am bringing my car back this week (May 14 2007)to see if the problem can be resolved. I would greately appreciate any feedback on this problem and would like to know if anyone else has experienced it???? Thanks.


  • saxman911saxman911 Member Posts: 9
    Hi all,

    Vehicle is new: 2007 Solara SLE convertible

    anybody having difficulty with the passenger side clip in closing your top? Things are not lining up right and it can only be closed if I sit on the passenger side. The driver's side is fine.

    Alan Russell
  • lovemy2dogslovemy2dogs Member Posts: 2

    I had the same problem with mine...schedule a top adjustment at your service department and the warranty takes care of it. They basically realign the top and you will find it easy as pie to close it after it is done. BE prepared to leave your car for the day. Good Luck! Tonya
  • lovemy2dogslovemy2dogs Member Posts: 2
    I have an 06 and have never had a problem...even drove her through a tropical storm...I would leave it at the dealership and get a loaner until they fix it and replace your carpet!
  • pbesslerpbessler Member Posts: 8
    My 2005 Solara has a wear point under the rear window that can only be seen when the top is retracted. It is being rubbed by the housing for the brake light assembly. Has anyone else experienced this design/manufacturing defect? My car is now out of warranty and Toyota has "declined" to do anything about it.
    Check your top, you may have this problem too.
  • sleeves211sleeves211 Member Posts: 2
    Speaking of rain storms...How is everyone else couping with the streaming water that runs into the car when you have to open the window to pay a toll, or exit the car. During a heavy storm, how can you avoid getting soaked? It seems the design of the weather strip along the roof line invites this problem. :cry:
  • moms_maxmoms_max Member Posts: 62
    Hi there, 'Soaked One'...
    I don't think it's so much a design problem as it is a function of convertibles not having the 'drip moldings' that hard tops have. I have read that all rag tops have the same 'issue', regardless of make. I don't like it any more than you do, but it comes with the territory, I guess! I have started to keep a large towel under my seat.... and have gotten pretty good at opening an umbrella really fast - even before I'm all the way out of the car :P
  • sleeves211sleeves211 Member Posts: 2
    Well, that makes me feel better (I think!). This is my first convertible. Guess I'll just have to practice my umbrella skills. :shades:
  • meegwellmeegwell Member Posts: 67
    Well said.
  • 08090809 Member Posts: 3
    Have you resolved your water leak issue? I am having the same problem; I am talking with the dealership and Toyota headquarters in California, but not getting anywhere productive at this point. Having had four repair attempts already, Toyota has said all they can do is to repair it because it is a warranty issue and the dealership has promised to replace the car but I have yet to receive one. I'm quite frustrated and disappointed by the way everything has been handled. I had just 200 miles when I noticed the leaks. I defintely feel like a David facing a Goliath. Any body else have suggestions for us?
  • jlutin1jlutin1 Member Posts: 4
    I have a '06 Solara SLE convertible. When the top and windows are up, my left rear window makes a knocking noise when the left rear wheel goes over a bump. Does anyone have similar problems?

    Been back to the dealer twice, but they were unable to eliminate the noise and told me it is normal for the convertible.
  • ClairesClaires Member Posts: 1,222
    Hi, garrowhammond,

    Since this discussion's for convertible top issues, I've moved your paint finish post to our existing 2007 Solara discussion, where you're more likely to get the feedback you're looking for.


    Need help getting around? [email protected] - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

    Tell everyone about your buying experience: Write a Dealer Review

  • tyrabtyrab Member Posts: 5

    Thanks for replying to my question. I have not yet resolved the issue with Toyota. I have had my vehicle fixed 3 times for the water leak and I just recently had the regulator in the drivers side door replaced because my automatic window kept tearing the weather stripping around the door off. I could not roll my window up or down without the weather stripping coming off. They finally got that issue resolved, but I am still having water enter my vehicle in heavy rain. I filed a Lemon Lawsuit in June and I am just waiting for my lawyer to be contacted by Toyota. He told me it typically takes about 8 weeks for car company's to respond. Since you have had your vehicle fixed 4 times during 1 year you should look into filing a Lemon Lawsuit. We definitely have to stick together on this issue. I probably had the same amount of miles on my vehicle when I noticed water coming in at the side view mirrors. At least the dealership you purchased your car from offered to give you a new car, I just got the run around from my dealership. Toyota needs to stand behind their product. I am sure the two of us are not the only ones with the same issue. Maybe we can force Toyota into doing what they should have done in the first place, which is fix the problem or give us a new vehicle.
  • dept501dept501 Member Posts: 1
    I had the same problem and have 33K on my car. The dealership has replaced my roof 2-times after the original. The second repair tore in 6-weeks. I was in today for another adjustment.
  • meegwellmeegwell Member Posts: 67
    Horsefeathers! The dealer's just blowing you off. Who would buy a convertible if it started to rattle itself to death with so few miles on it.

    My 2006 has just about 20,000 miles on it. Still tight as a drum.

    Had three other convertables, never had that problem. I bet if you test drove a bunch of used convetables few if any would display that rattle.


  • untzmertz1untzmertz1 Member Posts: 1
    I have a 2006 SLE with a black top. I ordered it brand new and received the car in April of 2005. On both sides in the rear of the top there are what look like faded streaks. The dealership said it was "norman" wear and tear of a convertible top based on two other vehicles he compared mine to. Has anyone else had this issue? I don't believe it is "normal" wear and tear and would like to know if it can be remedied. It is a lease and I love my car but my lease runs out next July and I need to make a decision on what I am going to do from there.

  • tyrabtyrab Member Posts: 5
    Hello All,

    The Problem Is Solved. Toyota purchased my vehicle from me three weeks ago and cut me a check. They tried to fix the leak 4 times and could not resolve the issue, so my car was deemed a Lemon. I have since purchased a 2008 Lexus IS 250, and I am very pleased. :shades: :blush:
  • congaboycongaboy Member Posts: 3
    We have experienced the same water leak problems with my 2007 Solara. The service manager stated that all the convertible Solara's leak. He stated that they come off the truck leaking. A service advisor stated that the Toyota Technical Support stated that a little water inside the car is acceptable. As such, I have filed based on the state lemon law and Toyota has agreed to buy back the vehicle. I can hardly believe that Toyota, the dealership of quality can not build a convertible that doesn't leak. I wanted a replacement but Toyota chose a buy back. Maybe they all do leak. This is unfortunate because we loved the car. However, we also had a rattling window and the car shakes when hitting small bumps. I hope they clear these issues because we loved the look of the vehicle.
  • tyrabtyrab Member Posts: 5
    A little water leaking inside of any convertible is unacceptable. I actually know someone with the same 2007 Toyota Solara Convertible, and they have never had problems with water leaks. I think Toyota needs to go back to the drawing board and design a better convertible top. I have one friend with a BMW Z4 Roadster convertible and another friend with a Mercedes CLK convertible and they have never had a drop of water enter their vehicle. I was told by my service advisor at Toyota that it is probably a design error, but who actually know what the problem is. I also wanted a replacement vehicle, but Toyota decided to do a buy back. I loved the style of my convertible, but I did not want to be stuck with another leaky car, so I took the check and purchased something else. Good luck to you. :)
  • jmartini20jmartini20 Member Posts: 1
    I've read a little about this problem but isn't there anything I can do besides improve my umbrella skills? When it rains and I open my door, waters come pouring into my car from the top. It's like a pour spout! I'm afraid the seat and window controls are going to get so wet, then I'll have a bigger problem. I also keep a towel in my car to wipe it off but I know I can't get all the controls dry! Does anybody know if Toyota has a fix for this?
    Thank you! :confuse:
  • njexpressnjexpress Member Posts: 170
    This is a known issue, unfortunately. all convertibles have this, but the solaras are arguably the worst, in this regard. You are doing the right thing, keeping the towel handy. I do it too. I also use a good quality leather cleaner and conditioner, plus all purpose cleaner / protectant for the panels. Most of all, I also wear my rain coat on rainy days, it is that bad :-( My S2000 was not nearly this bad.
  • katyhykatyhy Member Posts: 13
    My daughter and I had our hearts set on the Solara but after coming here and seeing all the complaints about the leaky convertible top, I'd hate to invest that kind of money only to have these problems. We live in Florida and get a lot of rain. No wonder they're discontinuing the car. Who knows whether my dealership would handle the problem or just blame it on the design of the car and not do anything. Can't risk that. Sorry you guys are all having problems - it is a pretty car! Too bad.
  • wdwfan20000wdwfan20000 Member Posts: 1
    Did they give you a fair price? I have a 2007 with EXCESSIVE wind noise. Bought it new, pins didn't line up so Toyota adjusted the top. Hasn't been the same since. they say there is nothing else they can do. Now they are looking at buying the care back

  • bbossie74bbossie74 Member Posts: 1
    Yeah, I know it sounds ex took my Solara and for some reason when I got it back there was duct tape on my canvas top. Any suggestions on what to use to get the adhesive off?
  • randy51randy51 Member Posts: 1
    I have a 2005 Solara convertable.

    As it's designed when the top is retracted the volume automatically to compensate for the outside noise. When the top goes back the volume reduces back.

    What I have noticed is when the top is up the volume intermittenly blanks out for a second then comes back. When the top is down I have no problems at all.

    Does anyone know where the sensor/contact in the top mechanism that recognizes the top is down? I'm willing to just bypass the sensor.

    Any help would be greatly appreciates.

  • njexpressnjexpress Member Posts: 170
    :mad: Obviously an act of some sick iindividual :mad:
    Anyhow, now that you gotta deal with it, Have you tried any of the convertible top cleaners? I use Wolfstien's Raggtopp and it is pretty good overall. I have never had to deal with any stains, duct tape, gu etc... but I wa always able to notice the difference after the top dried out.
    Good Luck!!
  • tomtedbeartomtedbear Member Posts: 2
    Chrysler fixed this issue, more or less. I had a '97 where water poured inside whenever I opened a window during rain. I then bought a 2003 model and the fabric roof had an extra fold of fabric sewed along the windows which effectively diverted most of the water down the top away from the windows. It worked surprisingly well. However I wouldn't trade my Solara for another Sebring--ever. There's no comparison between the two. ;)
  • itsdeeitsdee Member Posts: 1
    We have a 2003 convertible with a beige top. The fabric on the lower left side is heavily puckered.

    We had to replace a smashed broken rear glass (vandals.) I've noticed, a year later, that there is some black material showing on part of the window.

    I brought it to a different upholstery shop and said there is a hole in the bow for centering the window. He checked the dimensions and said it was about 3 inches off. He redrilled a new hole in order to adjust the window.

    Could this have been a manufacturer problem? Was the original puckering due to shrinkage and the shifting of the bow? The dealer saw it before it was brought to the 2nd upholsterer and was unable to help.

    Is there anyone else with the puckering problem or any problems with the top as I described?
  • sarasotagalsarasotagal Member Posts: 1
    :lemon: Everytime I hand wash my convertible, or drive thru the rain, water comes in the front windows and also had it come in at the area where the side mirrors are. I had one Toyota dealership tell me that all convertibles leak and they couldn't do anything about it. However, they 'water tested' the vehicle and stated that no water leaked - rubbish. I took it to a different dealership to see what they could do. The first two attempts at fixing the leak did not succeed. On the third attempt, they replaced the weather stripping and it still leaks. What do I need to do to get the dealership to buy the car back? Seek legal advise? Help.....
  • bsquared1bsquared1 Member Posts: 1
    We don't have leaks on our 2007 convertible but the dealer has just ordered the 2nd new top under warranty for installation on our car. The defroster quit operating last December and now the window and fabric are separating below the window. We've only got 3,000 miles left on the warranty and don't want to spend our $3,200 next year for another top. Anyone else experiencing the same thing? Thanks.
  • dlcassadaydlcassaday Member Posts: 1
    My wifes '05 does the same thing but all the time. Did you get any answers to disconnect it? The dealer wanted $150 to remove the wire. I can cut it for free!!!!
    Not had a chance to look for it yet.... My radio works just fine.

  • roadrunnerskroadrunnersk Member Posts: 1
    Two questions: 1. 208 Toyota Solara: Is it a vynil or cloth top? Looking for a top cleaner and I dont know what is best... so I am inexprienced! and 2: On the same model, when the top is down, there is no cover or anything on it. When it is up, and it rains, rain pours down the top into the space between the top and plastic backing right above the trunk. I couldn't find where it goes after there... Water doesnt get into the trunk, but there is definite droplets falling into the slit behind the top, i can see them when i take the top down to look inside the space for the top when it is down... Any idea where water goes?
  • needanswers1needanswers1 Member Posts: 3
    Wow! I can't believe you're on your second top. I own a 2007 Convertible Solara and I haven't had any trouble. In fact, I joined this forum because I am not sure if I should buy the extended warranty. I am at 34K miles...and the original warranty expires at 36K.

    What was wrong with your top? Why did you have to replace it twice?

    Thank you!
  • needanswers1needanswers1 Member Posts: 3

    I have a 2007 Solara convertible and never had a single problem. I'm at 34K miles and I don't know if I should buy the extended warranty to cover the electronics and the convertible top. I own the car flat out and plan on keeping it for as long as I can. I'm afraid if I fork out the money for the warranty it will be for nothing.

    On the flip side, I'm so frightened that the second the warranty expires my top windows will break.

    Does anyone have any advice?
  • meegwellmeegwell Member Posts: 67
    My '06 has just passed 50K Miles. The stitching began to wear out @ 36K+ miles. The parts mgr. @ the dealership that sold me the car (Northridge Toyota in Northridge, CA) took a look at the stitching and made a judgement call to have the dealership send over the car for re-stitching.

    We have the extended warranty and while it doesn't cover the fabric of the top, the stitching was a different story.

    The owner of the top repair place told me I'll need a new top this year. The seams are puckering.

    The car is not garaged. Next top gets a little help. A carport if I can or a car cover if that's the best I can do.

  • needanswers1needanswers1 Member Posts: 3

    That's so weird...yesterday I just noticed that the stitching on my top is coming apart. I am at 34K miles. What did the shop do for you ...just replace the entire stiching? I'm not even sure what the stitching is good for it looks rather flimsy.
  • paulcostello2paulcostello2 Member Posts: 1

    I have a 2006 SLE bought new and it's out of warranty. Lots of white streaks and dryrot in many places. I have never run car through a carwash. Roof repair guy said it looks like defective material and to check it out online. Anybody else have this problem?

  • moms_maxmoms_max Member Posts: 62
    You should probably copy this post to another area, since this thread is for convertible tops ~ you may not get an answer to your alignment question!
  • ClairesClaires Member Posts: 1,222
    Thanks, moms_max! Doode, I've moved your post to the Toyota Solara topic, where you'll probably get an answer more quickly. Just click the link to get there.


    Need help getting around? [email protected] - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

    Tell everyone about your buying experience: Write a Dealer Review

  • llivingstonllivingston Member Posts: 1
    I have a 2002 Solara. The canvass is pulling away (shrinking) from the rear window. I took it to Toyota dealership, and they made excuses, that it was weather, humidity, etc. Finally, I agreed that I pay half for a new top. Since the second top was installed, it is doing the same thing as the first top, shrinking up ward, away from the rear window. I have met 17 Solara owners, with different years of cars who are having problems with the top shrinking from the back window. They had the same experience as I did, that it is not a flow in the canvass, but it is the owners problems. Has anyone else had this problem that monitors this web sit?
  • meegwellmeegwell Member Posts: 67
    I'll be installing a new top soon. I'd appreciate seeing an image of the shrinking you're describing. Is it possible to post an image on an Edmonds forum? If not, I'll send you my email address.

    Thanks, Meegwell
  • doodedoode Member Posts: 18
    I am surprised to see so many problems with other owners. I do get some water entering when going thru brushless car wash only. Also the top 2 defroster lines are out. I have some noticeable wrinkles on the black canvass where it folds, though no stitching problems.
  • pberenspberens Member Posts: 1
    I came on the is board to see if anyone else was having a problem with their "defogging" of their rear windows. I purchased a 2006 convertible and after 24 months I noticed a hole in the top under the metal lip. Toyota replaced the top and from that point on the rear window defogging lines didn't work. The dealership then ordered and put on 6 additional tops before working with us on trading in that car for a new 2008 convertible. Now 26 months later the 2008 rear window defogging isn't working. Today they are putting top number 1 on and I'm not sure if this doesn't work how many I'd be willing to go though. The dealership claims I'm the only one with this problem and the "defogging" is meant for ice and snow not dew. I live in florida and don't see snow or ice, but it should be able handle a little dew on the back window.

    Thanks for listening.

  • mike472mike472 Member Posts: 1
    I'm looking at buying a used 2005 Toyota Solara convertible (despite all these posts!). Question -- did the original car come with a boot to cover the top when down? Seller said no, and I can't find the answer in an internet search.
  • doodedoode Member Posts: 18
    yes, but I've never used mine! Other then the rear alignment problem I have no complaints about the car. I have and 06 with 144,000 kms on it. I didn't have any problems until about 120k and I believe the dealer who serviced the vehicle created the problem or has been unable to solve it...I havent had any costly repairs yet, only normal wear and tear items...
  • spenser3spenser3 Member Posts: 1
    Hi! I'm looking at a used Solara convertible. It's in good shape, but when the top is down there is nothing to cover up all the bits and pieces, which are all exposed. Other convertibles have a cover which goes over the fold-down top, is this missing on this car or does it just not have one?
  • sleconvertsleconvert Member Posts: 10
    If you want to keep your Toyota, just get used to the crummy looking top..

    Your problem isn't normal based on my experience with 9 different GM and Chrysler convertibles over 50 years of owning them (except for a 65 XKE with a mohair top). However, those GM and Chrysler tops used less porous, more durable looking fabrics that physically wore much better..

    In the past 50 years, I only replaced 2 tops, but that won't be true with this Toyota.

    Despite the many assurances and lies the Toyota salesman and one of the owners told me before I bought it, the tan top on my nine month old 2008 SLE is not only streaked, but stained and wrinkled like cheap clothes that have been repeatedly laundered.

    Though I would never go back to the selling dealer, the other Toyota dealers who, over it's 15,300 miles service it, are very pleasant ,personable, and seemingly honest.

    However, they continue to spout the Toyota line and insist that every complaint, shortcoming, and dissatisfaction I have with this car, including the top, is completely normal and that no one else ever complained about any of the issues I'm unhappy with.

    In my experience, Toyota is the most overrated car I've ever owned, and the factory is totallly unresponsive.

    But if you are otherwise happy with your car, just try to get used to the crummy looking top.because that's the only top Toyota makes available...
  • sleconvertsleconvert Member Posts: 10
    My 2008 does as do all convertibles I'm familiar with. Talk to a Toyota dealer.
  • sleconvertsleconvert Member Posts: 10
    I have a 2008 and one of the good things about it is that it doesn't leak. Nor did any of the GM and Chrysler convertibles I had in the past.
  • sleconvertsleconvert Member Posts: 10
    The dealer and the book claim the radio will adjust the volume to keep it sounding steady as driving conditions change. That doesn't work on my car, but the volume does change when putting the top up after it goes off momentarily.
  • sleconvertsleconvert Member Posts: 10
    Other cars have drains that capture the water and take it to the ground. Look around under the metal that meets the top below the window with the top down to see if you can locate them.
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