Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Hacienda Heights, CA
Car: 90 RS 'Vert, 88 IROC-Z, 88 Firebird
Engine: 305 ci tbi, 305 ci tpi, 350 ci tpi
Transmission: WC-T5, WC-T5, 700R4
Axle/Gears: 3.45, 3.27, 3.27
Re: How to open top
Roll down the windows at least a few inched. Reach inside on the drivers side of the toneau and pull the tonneau pin release hendle. The #5 bow will pop up a little from the tonneau, lift it straight up and forward. Now duck your head and reach inside and push the tonneau solenoid release button (On Camaro: located on the center console between the pw switches through model year 90. Mid year 91 they moved it to just in front of the tonneau pin release handle). When you press the switch you should hear a POP as the solenoids on either side un-latch the J-hooks holding down the tonneau. The tonneau should spring up, if not go ahead and raise it all the way up. Now release the two latches on the windshield header that secure the top. Yours will turn 180 degrees to release them. 1987-88 has a different style handle to unlatch. At this point, lower the rear portion of the convertible top back down. You're now ready to lift up the front of the convertible top. It will fold up and the rear will drop down into the storage area. CAUTION: If the top folds up short and wants to hit the rear seatbacks (if they are up) then a part on the top that I call the "flip rod" is either broken or missing. This part is on both sides of the 89-92 convertible frame and raises up the #2 bow as you fold down the top. If yours is broken or missing you'll need to manually raise up the #2 bow as you fold down the top or it won't fold up properly and you won't be able to close the tonneau. Your top should fold into the space made for it and the tonneau should easily close over it. Back to folding the top instructions. Now push the tonneau down so the J-hooks latch.
One thing to add, on manual cars the e-brake must be pulled up if the ingition is on. On autocars the car must be in P or N if the engine is on. Also the trunk pull-down unit must be working properly. There is a switch on it that will prevent the tonneau release solenoids from popping. Also there is an emergency manual tonneau release cable on each side in case the solenoids don't work for some reason. They are a black cable with a loop on the end and are found next to the seat back latches if you lower the seat back.
The entire process can be done in as few as 20 seconds or less once you're in practice.
PS: I forgot to add, if your rear seat belt shoulder belts are attached to the lap belt you'll need to unlatch them before opening the tonneau. I rarely ever have rear passengers, so I forgot to add that. In 1992 they changed the seatbelt design eliminating the need to unlatch it.
Last edited by lonsal; 08-20-2007 at 12:14 AM.