If you want more privacy, security and less noise than your soft top can provide, you might want to consider swapping out to one of the many Jeep TJ hardtops on the market.
You like to take your Jeep out to the boondocks, right?! That’s what a Jeep is for after all, and the Wrangler TJ is one of the most iconic Jeeps used for adventuring. A TJ hardtop is one of the best investments you can add to keep you and your passengers protected from the elements, whether it’s a crazy monsoon storm or muddy rock climb. A hardtop also eases the summer heat and winter cold by allowing you to use your ventilation systems more efficiently. In this article we take a look at the best Jeep TJ hardtops available to arm you with information before you buy.
1. Editor’s Pick: Smittybilt TJ Hardtop
When it comes to finding good Jeep TJ hardtops, you know that Smittybilt is bound to be in the in that list. Smittybilt has an entire lineup of TJ products, and one of those is their textured black 1-piece hardtop. For those off-roaders who don’t care about retaining and “open air” feeling in their Jeep, this TJ hardtop is the answer for you. It is a one-piece fiberglass top that is gel coated for UV protection. The hard top is said to conform to military specs, and it has DOT approved safety glass (31% tint) and a carpeted headliner. One of our favorite features is that this particular top has roof rack mounting points included, meaning you can still have your roof rack without the hassle of finding other mounting options. All of the listed features made it a no brainer for our staff to pick this as our favorite Jeep TJ hardtop.
2. Best Alternate Hardtop: DV8 Square Back Jeep TJ Hardtop
Like many of the TJ hardtop options, the DV8 Jeep TJ hardtop comes standard in a 2-piece configuration, so that you can enjoy the full enclosure when the weather gets rough and open air driving when the sun is out and the trail is dry. Made in the USA, the DV8 top features honeycomb fiberglass construction, carpeted interior for less road and outside noise while driving down the highway, and an easily accessible rear window that is shock assisted for simple lowering and closing. The DV8 does cost a bit more than some others on this list, but the quality is high and it gives your TJ a great look and more protection making it one of the best Jeep TJ hardtop options available.
3. Rally Tops 1-Piece Hardtop
Designed to fit all 1997-2006 TJ models, the Rally Tops Jeep TJ hardtop one-piece design is one of the best TJ hardtops you can buy. Features include DOT-approved tempered safety glass with 31% tint, carpeted interior to help keep vibration and noise down, and rear hatch struts that allows easy access to the cargo area.
The Rally Tops one-piece Jeep TJ hardtop comes standard in black, but both white and tan are available for a small upcharge. All three are painted with a single stage UV-resistant paint.
And if you need more than just the basic hardtop, Rally Tops has a host of available upgrades, including roof racks, side sliding windows, brake light, and battery-powered dome light.
4. STO-R-Tops Hardtop Storage Rack
While Jeep TJ hardtops are great when you need some protection from the elements, you still want to be able to take them off and hit the trails in the open air like a Jeep is supposed to be. High Driven Products makes storing your hardtop easier when not in use with the STO-R-Tops hardtop storage rack. This rack can fit in the back of your Jeep TJ, or it can be mounted to your garage wall. It is designed to prevent rubbing and scratching to your panels and is made of powder coated steel. When you’re looking for accessories to go with your Jeep TJ hardtop, this should be high on your list.
5. Lange Originals Power Hoist-A-Top Hardtop Removal System
Unless you’ve got friends around to help you, removing or installing Jeep TJ hardtops is going to be tricky. One product designed to make the process a whole lot easier is the Lane Originals Jeep Hoist-A-Top. The Hoist-A-Top is designed to support your TJ hardtop using Lange’s new Balance Blade. Rubber coated hooks and foam-covered hardware should keep you from scratching up your paint, while the rear Smart Hook allows you to lift and store your hardtop with the rear window closed.
Basically, the Hoist-A-Top kit lets one person remove or install a hardtop without getting a really sore back afterwards. Sounds like a win to us.
What is the advantage of having a hardtop vs. a softtop?
First and foremost, the cab of your Jeep TJ will be more secure with a hard top. Softtop’s make it easy for criminal element to gain access to your interior by simply slicing through the vinyl windows or softtop material. When you have a hardtop installed, you’ve eliminated the easy access. Additionally, many of the hardtops you can buy have pre-tinted windows, so people can’t see into your Jeep as easily.
Furthermore, having a hard top will help minimize road noise and keep the climate of your Jeep’s interior more easily controlled because of the solid construction and insulating materials used.
How hard is it to remove/install a hard top?
The hardest part of the remove/install process for a hardtop is lifting and storing. If you’ve got a few friends, this is easy to lift off of your Jeep and stow it in the garage. If you need a one man operation, the listed options above make the job simple once you remove the mounting hardware.
- Best Jeep TJ Soft Top and Sunshade Options
- Review Bestop Supertop NX for a Jeep Wrangler TJ
- Gear Up With These Best Jeep TJ Roof Rack Options
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Updated: 7/26/2021: Updated product descriptions, removed discontinued product, added FAQ, added additional resources, ranked product.