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Thread: after market sunroofs

  1. #1
    Senior Member bikerlbf406's Avatar
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    Question after market sunroofs

    I'm wanting to get a sliding sunroof installed in my Cherokee. Any suggestions where I can find a reliable professional to install one?
    Tim, proud owner of 2001 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 & 2007 Honda CMX250C Rebel


  2. #2
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikerlbf406 View Post
    I'm wanting to get a sliding sunroof installed in my Cherokee. Any suggestions where I can find a reliable professional to install one?
    Do you like leaks? Rust? Mold?

    Don't do this!

    Aftermarket sunroofs almost always leak, rattle and squeak. They can also fuck up the structure of your vehicle.

    Factory sunroofs are not just holes cut in the roof. The roof is re-engineered to compensate for the loss of structure and will have internal braces and other differences to accommodate the glass frame, etc.

    If you wanted a sunroof, you would have been better advised to buy a vehicle with a factory-installed sunroof.

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    Forget about it,roll down the windows and enjoy the breezes. Why waste money?

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    Administrator Ken's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eric View Post
    Do you like leaks? Rust? Mold?

    Don't do this!

    Aftermarket sunroofs almost always leak, rattle and squeak. They can also fuck up the structure of your vehicle.

    Factory sunroofs are not just holes cut in the roof. The roof is re-engineered to compensate for the loss of structure and will have internal braces and other differences to accommodate the glass frame, etc.

    If you wanted a sunroof, you would have been better advised to buy a vehicle with a factory-installed sunroof.
    Listen to the wise, Tim. Eric and Adam have got it right. In all the years I ran my sideline car business I never found an aftermarket sunroof that was 100% watertight under all conditions (and 100% is the minimum acceptable standard). Soggy head-linings, mold, trunks that filled up with water every time it rained, rust - I've seen it all dude.

    Ken.
    Last edited by Ken; 01-30-2011 at 01:35 PM.
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    Senior Member bikerlbf406's Avatar
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    I did not know all of this. I think I'm going to put some more consideration in to this before making a decision to have one installed. Thanks for the advice.
    Tim, proud owner of 2001 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 & 2007 Honda CMX250C Rebel


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    Ridin Dirty dom's Avatar
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    I miss those little triangle windows take could fold in and direct air on you! Ya'll remember those?

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    I remember vent windows with great fondness.
    Also cowl vents.
    I especially remember them when the air conditioner is not working.

  8. #8
    Ridin Dirty dom's Avatar
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    Yeah, I didn't even think about cowl vents. Makes me want to buy an older style truck just to have the vent windows!

    "Tutto nello Stato, niente al di fuori dello Stato, nulla contro lo Stato "
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    All within the state, nothing outside the state, nothing against the state.

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    Senior Member bikerlbf406's Avatar
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    That's the one thing I miss about trading my '96 F-150 in for the Jeep is having the vent windows.
    Tim, proud owner of 2001 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 & 2007 Honda CMX250C Rebel


  10. #10
    Senior Member grouch's Avatar
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    Putting an aftermarket sunroof into a roof not engineered for it will weaken the structure quite a bit. When I ran a salvage yard, I got quite a few that looked okay otherwise but were no longer driveable due to eithyer poor installation cutting critical members or rust eating them away. This is especially a problem on unibody vehicles, like your Cherokee. I got one S-3 Laguna that looked like new. After a bump on the road though, the owner could no longer open the doors. When he did, they wouldn't shut because the car started to fold a bit in the middle. There was a noticable wrinkle in the roof right at the hole for the sun roof.
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikerlbf406 View Post
    I did not know all of this. I think I'm going to put some more consideration in to this before making a decision to have one installed. Thanks for the advice.
    I've had quite a few cars that have come standard with factory sunroofs. I can't recall how many years it's been since I've used one.

    Just a waste of money IMO.

  12. #12
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikerlbf406 View Post
    I did not know all of this. I think I'm going to put some more consideration in to this before making a decision to have one installed. Thanks for the advice.
    Np - glad we got you in time!

    Many people don't realize that a vehicle's roof is a critical structural element in a car's design and that cutting a sunroof into it can cause major problems with body integrity that can lead to all kinds of problems that literally can't be fixed without cutting off the entire roof section and replacing it with a new one - without a sunroof cut into it!

    Back in the mid '70s, many cars (especially Chevy Camaros and Pontiac Firebirds) could be found with aftermarket T-tops cut into the roof. They always leaked and the cars that had them had all kinds of other problems, too.

    GM eventually offered factory-installed T-tops and these were much better but they still leaked, too!

    I had an '87 Lincoln Mark VII a few years back; it had a factory sunroof. It did not leak, but by circa 2000 you could see corrosion around the periphery of the mechanism and there was likely corrosion inside the roof, where you could not see it. Yet.

    Sunroofs are not unlike putting skylights in your house's roof. Eventually, the seals will degrade and the thing will leak.

    A sunroof is ok in a brand-new or near-new car that you're not going to keep for more than say 8-10 years. But if you plan on keeping it for more than 10 years, you do not want a sunroof - factory installed or aftermarket!

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    Administrator Ken's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dBrong View Post
    I've had quite a few cars that have come standard with factory sunroofs. I can't recall how many years it's been since I've used one.

    Just a waste of money IMO.
    Good comment dB. My Carina has a factory sunroof, I know that it was demonstrated when I bought the car - I don't think I have ever used it.

    Ken.
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  14. #14
    Senior Member bikerlbf406's Avatar
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    Well after some more consideration & reading all the comments on here I decided to not go for a sunroof. Thanks for all info.
    Tim, proud owner of 2001 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 & 2007 Honda CMX250C Rebel


  15. #15
    Administrator Ken's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikerlbf406 View Post
    Well after some more consideration & reading all the comments on here I decided to not go for a sunroof. Thanks for all info.
    Now that is good thinking, Tim, which will get sighs of relief all round. You will get more words of wisdom, on our website, in one post that you will get from a dozen manufacturers self serving blurbs. 'Listen to the voices of truth, Grasshopper.'

    Ken.
    Die dulci fruimini!
    Ken.
    Wolds Bikers, Lincolnshire, England.

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    Smile

    Quote Originally Posted by dom View Post
    I miss those little triangle windows take could fold in and direct air on you! Ya'll remember those?
    Hey Dom, I remember those vent windows also. My present car's A/C don't work so when I need wind to enter the cab, I keep a stiff cardboard measuring about 12 inch square and I use my left hand to hold the cardboard at the correct angle to direct the rushing air inside. Works great. Larry.

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    Me too,I remember very well. Like bugs getting sqished and the wind whistling noises that came from them windows when slightly ajar. Yesterday I saw an old Studebaker with those windows. Something about those old cars makes me all fuzzy and warm when I seem them in drivable condition rambling down the road out of the blue.

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