Jeeps have been popular in Australia since the 1980s. From lush jungles to the wide-open Outback, the country has a wide range of biomes to test the capabilities of these rugged off-roaders.
Out of all the versions to date, the Jeep Wrangler undoubtedly belongs among the most popular trims. Still, there are models in Australia that date back to the 1990s. Getting spare parts for regular functioning is hard enough, let alone specific augmentations like windshield channels.
By the conclusion of this piece, you'll learn what a windshield channel is, why it matters for a Jeep Wrangler, and which professional service can help you install and buy Jeep Wrangler windshield channel in Australia.
Jeep Wrangler Windshield Frame
The Jeep Wrangler has a sturdy chassis that gets it through the most tenacious terrain and unforgiving weather conditions. Part of that includes the reinforced windshield frame that holds the front glass in place. In addition to the commonplace road hazards, it can resist impacts from thick bushes and sandstorms.
However, it can lose some of its integrity in the case of soft-top variants. If you leave the header of the frame exposed, it can compromise the integrity of the car's front portion. It makes the windshield susceptible to leakage and increases the risk of injury during heavy impacts. It is where a windshield channel can help you out.
What is a Windshield Channel?
A windshield channel is part of the Jeep's frame assembly. You can attach it to the windshield header to secure the roof of a soft-top Jeep Wrangler. Since the frames vary with the chassis and not the model/year, you can easily find one to install for your Wrangler. Most convertibles already come with one pre-installed from the factory. But, if you had your Wrangler converted from a hard-top to a soft-top, you may require an aftermarket part.
Benefits of Using a Windshield Channel
It may seem like a small and simple part, but using a windshield channel on your soft-top Jeep Wrangler has numerous benefits:
Eases the process of latching and dislocating the top from the frame
Improves the aerodynamics of the car by deflecting wind and small debris
Reduces rusting on the edges by minimising exposure to external elements such as water and mud
Prevents damage to the top and frame by absorbing shocks and vibrations
Adds a subtle style statement to the front of the SUV
Types of Windshield Channels Available for the Jeep Wrangler
While earlier and contemporary versions of the Jeep Wrangler look pretty much the same, they had differences in their chassis design. Thus, depending on the year your Jeep Wrangler was manufactured, it may fit one of two types of windshield channels.
Drill-In Windshield Channels
If your car has a Bikini top, it most likely houses a drill-in windshield channel. This type of windshield channel was popular up until 2002. Many convertible Wranglers of that time had them installed from the factory floor. In those cars, the channel stuck on the top of the windshield frame and secured by drilling in bolts.
These windshield channels are hard to remove but less expensive. They are also much more robust than no-drill windshield channels. So, a drill-in windshield channel is an excellent choice if you don't plan to modify the top of your Jeep Wrangler too often.
No-Drill Windshield Channels
Over time, people started to notice that Jeeps last much longer when you can replace parts every so often. These included the elements on the frame, which is why no-drill windshield channels are prevalent nowadays. Also called bolt-on windshield channels, you can easily install them onto your Wrangler without any tools. You can remove them every few months for cleaning or repairs.
No-drill windshield channels can fit all JK and later series. The best part? You can switch them easily if you wish for a different soft top for your car. Although, you should note that no-drill windshield channels are more expensive than their drill-in counterparts.
Installing a Windshield Channel on a Jeep Wrangler
Bolt-on windshield channels are relatively straightforward to install. You secure them in place using the clips on either side. For drill-in windshield channels, the process is a bit more complicated:
Roll the top of your Jeep back, completely removing it from the front of the car.
Use a WD-40 rust remover on the windshield channel. Make sure to clean the areas around the screws.
Place a drill with a loosening configuration (anti-clockwise spin) to unscrew the bolts from the top of the windshield channel. You may need to modify the process depending on the exact trim of your Jeep Wrangler.
Use a plier or a screwdriver to loosen the rubber contacts. If you have used the same windshield channel for years, it would be best to heat it using a blowtorch. That ensures minimal damage to the frame during removal.
Gently pull out the old windshield channel from the SUV.
Place the new windshield channel over the edge and use the required bolts to secure it. Ensure that they line up with the holes from the previous channel.
Why Choose Just Jeeps to Buy Jeep Wrangler Windshield Channel in Australia
Finding the correct windshield channels for your Jeep Wrangler is hard. Looking for the ideal place to install them is even more challenging. Thankfully, no matter which soft-top you have, Just Jeeps is your one-stop shop to buy Jeep Wrangler windshield channels in Australia.
You can order the perfect piece for your SUV online or browse through them at any of our store locations. With the legacy of catering to Jeeps for more than 30 years, we know how to install the perfect windshield channel for your Jeep safely and swiftly.