Best Jeep Hardtop Hoists – 2020 Buyer’s Guide

Cory
| Last Updated: February 5, 2021

Your Jeep's hardtop is perhaps the most necessary component of your vehicle as it allows you to transform your Jeep between an open and closed space.

Installing and uninstalling your Jeep's hardtop is a headache. It's time-consuming and often requires several hands to install it properly. What's worse, the entire process strains your back muscles as you lift the heavy hardtop on and off of your vehicle.

Thankfully, we live in an age of innovation. Jeep hardtop hoists exist and do the heavy lifting for you. But with such a grand selection, how can you know what's best? 

Our Top Picks for Best Jeep Hardtop Hoists

  • Compatible unit
  • Safe unit
  • Easy to assemble
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  • Versatile hoist
  • Safe to use
  • Strong hoist cable
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  • Best Unlimited Hoist
  • Easy to use
  • Strong hoist
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Comparison of the Best Jeep Hardtop Hoists

IMAGEPRODUCT
  • Hoist is compatible with most Wrangler models
  • Designed with anti-drop system to be safe to use
  • The 4-point hoist system is quite easy to install
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  • Can be used for a wide variety of hoisting applications
  • Comes equipped with an emergency stop switch
  • Very strong hoist wire is used for durability
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  • Best Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Hardtop Hoist
  • Very easy to use on all Wrangler models
  • Very strong hoist wire is used for durability
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  • Comes with a high 1000 pounds maximum hoist capacity
  • Equipped with 200 Amps motor for hoisting
  • Made with quite a heavy-duty construction
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What is a Hardtop Hoist? 

A hardtop hoist is essentially a more efficient system of uninstalling and installing your Jeep's hardtop. The hoist operates by a pulley and works to do the heavy lifting for you. The hoist mounts on the ceiling of your garage to obtain better access to the top of your vehicle.

The best hardtop hoists are durable and capable of lifting the full weight of your Jeep hardtop without strain. These hoists should be easy to install, and you should include a straightforward system for installing and uninstalling your hardtop.

Are All Hardtop Hoists The Same?

The type of Jeep you have will determine the hoist best for you since each hardtop is different in size, weight, and shape. A compatible hardtop hoist for your Jeep should be something to keep in mind when making your selection.

Additionally, hardtop hoists operate in one of two ways. Manual hoists require a person to operate the controls when removing and installing the hardtop. Conversely, electric hoists do that work for you to allow for more ease and efficiency.

Harken 7803B.12

How to Choose a Hardtop Hoist 

When choosing a hardtop hoist for your Jeep, there are some crucial factors you need to consider. 

Operational Clearance

First, you must acknowledge the minimum and maximum operational clearance. Operational clearance is the space required between your garage's floor and ceiling for the hoist to function properly. Measure your space and compare your measurements with the clearance space required for each hoist before making a final decision.

Installation

Another thing to note before selecting your Jeep hardtop hoist is installation. Some hoists come with minimal installation requirements and thorough directions. Of course, this is not the case for all hoists. Depending on your expertise in installing hoists or other mechanical components, you may want to consider ease of installation when choosing a hoist.

Weight Capacity

Weight capacity is another factor to consider. While most hoists can handle your hardtop load, you should be sure to compare your hardtop’s weight with the hoist's capabilities to prevent injury or damage.

Compatibility

Lastly, you need to consider compatibility. As mentioned above, certain Jeep models are incompatible with some of the hardtop hoists on this list. Be sure to reference your model and its potential to suit any of the hardtop hoists below.

Quick Take - Best Jeep Hardtop Hoists

Before you get too far, here's a quick take of the best Jeep Hardtop hoists:

  1. Harken 7803B.12
  2. Partsam Electric Hoist
  3. Lange Originals Hoist A Top Simple

Review of the Best Jeep Hardtop Hoists 

To save you the time and stress of searching for the best hardtop hoists for your Jeep, we decided to look into the features and capabilities that make these hardtop hoists stand out among the rest.

We've gathered some of the best builds on the market and have reviewed them thoroughly to make your decision process simpler and more enjoyable.

Best Overall:
Harken 7803B.12

HARKEN - Hardtop Overhead Garage Storage Hoist for Jeep Wrangler and Ford Bronco, Self-Leveling, Safe Anti-Drop System, Easy One-Person Operation, (Bonus T Knobs for Quick Hard Top Removal)

PROS

  • Includes easy removal bolts
  • Compatible with all Jeep models
  • Suits operational clearance as low as eight feet
  • Includes all necessary components for installation
  • Comes with clear instructions and installation video

CONS

  • Difficulty to lower hardtop using hoist
  • Mechanical system tends to lock itself

What Recent Buyers Report

What stands out to most buyers is the durability and strength of the Harken 7803B.12 hardtop hoist. The hoist includes a weight capacity of 145lbs, but many Jeep owners have found that this is not an issue as the hoist can hold a hardtop for extended periods without issue. 

Why it Stands Out to Us

We liked the ease of installation and the versatility of this hoist. There is ample room for operational clearance, whether your space is eight feet tall or more. Additionally, the installation video and instructions are quite clear. The hoist does require an hour or more for installation, but all knots and bolts arrive in the box, which saves you time from venturing to a hardware store.

Bottom Line

The Harken 7803B.12 is one of the best hardtop hoists for any Jeep. It is compatible with all models, including two-door Jeeps. The weight capacity is outstanding, and installation is straightforward. It lacks only in its tendency to lock itself as a prevention of the hardtop falling. This locking mechanism can make installing your hardtop to your Jeep a little tricky. 

Partsam 440 lbs Lift Electric Hoist Crane Remote Control Power System, Zinc-Plated Steel Wire Overhead Crane Garage Ceiling Pulley Winch w/Straps (w/Emergency Stop Switch)

PROS

  • Has a quick pulley system
  • Electric hoist with remote control
  • With a double line, it can lift 440lbs
  • Can be installed vertically or horizontally
  • Made for versatility and can lift a diverse range of objects

CONS

  • Requires a beam for installation
  • Not compatible for all Jeep models

What Recent Buyers Report

Many buyers were impressed by the strength of this hoist. It is capable of lifting at least 220lbs with a single cable. This hoist can be placed horizontally or vertically, depending on the needs of your space. However, you will have to purchase a support beam separately.

Why it Stands Out to Us

We loved the adaptability of this hoist. It can lift more than just a Jeep hardtop, which is favorable for people who may be looking to use their hoist to its fullest potential. While it may not be an ideal hoist for all Jeep models, it certainly packs a lot of strength and makes the processing of installing and uninstalling your Jeep's hardtop quick and easy.

Bottom Line

It's a great hoist system for people looking to utilize their hoist for more purposes than just hardtop removal and installation. It's also a wonderful choice for Jeep hardtops despite not suiting every model.

Best Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Hardtop Hoist:
Lange Originals Hoist A Top Simple

Lange Originals | Hoist-A-Top Simple JL | Lift and Store Your Hardtop | Compatible with Jeep Wrangler JL, 2 and 4 Door | Single Person Operation

PROS

  • Durable and sturdy hoist
  • Fantastic customer support
  • Includes ample cable length for clearance
  • Can hold the hardtop for extended periods
  • Great for a single person to use by themselves

CONS

  • Instructions are challenging to understand
  • Only compatible with Jeep Wrangler, Unlimited, Sahara, 2-door, Sport, and JL

What Recent Buyers Report

Recent buyers appreciated the durability and strength of this hoist. It's reliable and holds hardtops without any worry, meaning you can leave your hardtop there for a quick drive or a week around town. While instructions were difficult to decipher, customer support was quick and friendly, which helped the entire installation process.

Why it Stands Out to Us

We liked that there was ample cable length for storing this hardtop. It's suitable for single or two-car garage spaces and includes optimal clearance as low as eight feet. We also enjoyed Lange's fantastic customer support as well as the hoist's strength.

Bottom Line

It's a great hoist for owners of a Jeep Wrangler or other models listed above. While it may not be compatible with other Jeep models, this hoist proved to be a reliable choice for many Jeep owners.

Editor's Pick:
Smittybilt 510001

Smittybilt 510001 Hard Top Hoist for Jeep CJ/YJ/TJ/JK,Black

PROS

  • Simple to operate
  • Easy and quick to install
  • Easy for a single person to operate
  • Can hold suspended hardtop for long periods
  • Includes a winch system that is strong and durable

CONS

  • The hoist can be jerky
  • The frame is not compatible with all Jeep models

What Recent Buyers Report

Buyers of this hoist on the ease of installation and operation. The instructions were fairly clear, and people enjoyed the simplicity of installing the hoist. The winch provides enough strength and support to hold the hardtop suspended for quite some time.

Why it Stands Out to Us

We appreciated the ease of operation that this hoist provided to single users. While at times the entire system can be jerky, it is easy to understand and operate. The frame is not compatible with all Jeep models but is adjustable to suit nearly all your needs.

Bottom Line

It's a great choice for people looking for a hoist that is quick and straightforward. Operation and installation are fast, and the entire system offers amazing durability. We would recommend that you check to ensure this hoist is compatible with your Jeep's hardtop.

PROS

  • Holds a Jeep hardtop without strain
  • Straightforward manual hoisting mechanism
  • Inexpensive with comparable quality to a Harken hoist
  • Easy for a single person to install and uninstall a hardtop on their own
  • Can be mounted nearly anywhere without the need to buy more hardware

CONS

  • Non-electric hoist system
  • Can take half a day or more to install

What Recent Buyers Report

Buyers admired the simplicity of this hoist. While it's non-electric, the pulley system is simple and straightforward and makes hoisting your Jeep's hardtop an easy task for a single person to perform. People also liked that the entire system was inexpensive in comparison to other brands on the market.

Why it Stands Out to Us

We liked that it is suitable for nearly all Jeep models. It makes the process of elimination easier, knowing this hoist is likely compatible with your Jeep. Another feature we appreciated was that you could mount this hoist nearly anywhere. 

Bottom Line

It's a simple, straightforward hoist for people who aren't looking for anything fancy. It's easy to use and holds a hardtop without much effort. However, this hoist is manual and will likely require at least half a day to install.

Perks of Getting a Hardtop Hoist

Hardtop hoists are a wonderful solution for many Jeep owners. If you're still debating whether a hardtop hoist is right for you, we'll cover some of the key benefits below.

Easy Installation

The most challenging part of owning a Jeep is the installation and removal of the hardtop. It's heavy and often requires multiple people to remove it safely and securely. 

Removing a hardtop on your own can strain the muscles in your back. Additionally, going about it by yourself runs the risk of damaging your hardtop and then having to pay for repairs.

Hardtop hoists remove these dangers. Not only do they make installation easy on you and your peers, but they remove the threat of back injury or damaging your vehicle.

Save Time

One of the main reasons many Jeep owners love having a hardtop hoist is that it saves time. Saving time allows you to enjoy your experience with your Jeep and go on longer joyrides. Hoists make removal and installation a breeze. 

Store Your Hardtop

You can use the hoist as a storage solution for your Jeep hardtop. Many Jeep lovers have stated that their hardtops were perfectly fine resting on the hoist for extended periods.

Safety Considerations For Hardtop Hoists 

You want to preserve the integrity of your Jeep's hardtop once it's removed. It can be difficult to know the best place to store the hardtop during nicer weather where it won't become filthy or ruined. We've gathered some useful tips on storing your Jeep's hardtop to make reinstallation a breeze.

How to Store Jeep Hardtop

The best way to store a Jeep hardtop long term is to use a hardtop cover. The covers prevent bugs, dirt, and grime from finding its way onto your hardtop. You can store your hardtop upright to save space and lean it against a wall to prevent it from falling over.

Some hoists also allow you to store your hardtop on them. It's important to verify the weight capacity of your hoist before using it for storage.

Where to Store Jeep Hardtop 

When storing your Jeep hardtop, aim to keep it in the garage. Garages offer shelter and security from outside forces. Rain, mud, animals, and insects can ruin your hardtop if exposed to the elements. 

If you choose to keep it in the garage, aim to store it at the back or above using a hoist, allowing you to keep it well out of harm's way and be less susceptible to falling over or becoming damaged.

How Heavy is a Jeep Hardtop?

Most Jeep hardtops are around 140lbs. The hoist you use for your hardtop should never dip below this amount as a safety precaution. You can also refer to online resources to provide the exact item weight for your Jeep's hardtop as different models tend to vary.

How to Remove Jeep Hardtop 

Below is a guide for removing your Jeep hardtop. We recommend that you also take the time to watch the below video to help you better understand this process.

First, you'll need to gather your tools. A T40 Torx socket set, socket wrench, and a friend or hoist will be all you need.

Now, it's important to understand that two-door and four-door Jeep differ when it comes to hardtop removal. This is in regards to removing the freedom panels, which is the first step for removing your hardtop. After the freedom panels are removed, the process is the same for both Jeep types.

For four-door Jeeps, there are two bolts underneath the freedom panels that you need to remove. Two-door Jeeps don't have these bolts.

Next, lift your back window and begin removing the three bolts on either side of the hardtop. You can locate them near the back windows of the Jeep.

Following this step, you'll need to remove the wire harness connections and the washer fluid hose. You can refer to the video below if you're unsure how to do this step.

Lastly, you'll remove your hardtop. If you have a hoist, you can hook up the cables to your hardtop to aid in easy removal. If you don't have a joist, a friend will have to help you to remove the hardtop safely. 

And there you have it! Your hardtop has been removed! Check out this video for a visual demonstration. 

Conclusion 

Hoists are a great way to safely remove, install, and store your Jeep's hardtop. They allow you the freedom and flexibility to remove the hardtop by yourself and on your terms. Not only do they speed up the process of hardtop removal and installation, but they also allow you to do so in a safe manner.

People Also Ask

Below are some common questions in regards to using a hoist for your Jeep's hardtop. It's important to keep in mind that many models are different in size and weight from one another, and this should be taken into consideration when purchasing a hardtop hoist.

How Much Does a Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Hardtop Weigh?

The Jeep Wrangler Unlimited hardtop weighs approximately 140lbs.

How Much Does a Jeep Wrangler Hardtop Weigh?

Most Jeep Wrangler hardtops weigh between 140 and 150 pounds. You should always double-check the weight of your model's hardtop with its manufacturer.

Cory

Cory epitomizes the 'function over form' debate. His XJ Cherokee has taken many a beating due to his lust for climbing the tallest ledges he can find and is armored to the max. Welded on sliders, tube fenders, and no bumpers allow him to achieve some pretty crazy approaches. We regularly tease him that there's more rust than paint on his rig, but that’s his style. Cory's favorite new mod is a larger winch he bought off a buddy after his Smitty cooked itself, trying to yank his buddy out of a ravine.