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Water Intrusion in TR - yes, I have driven in the rain

Discussion in 'Boxers/TR/M' started by curtisc63, Aug 14, 2008.

  1. curtisc63

    curtisc63 Formula 3
    Silver Subscribed Owner

    Dec 13, 2005
    2,267
    Maryland
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    Curtis Campbell
    #1 curtisc63, Aug 14, 2008
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2008
    I know that I have killed the value of my car by admitting that it has been exposed to rain, but...

    Some of you may have seen that I am up to my elbows in dashboard on my 88.5 US TR. One of the reasons was to try and find the source of a leak. Coming back to MD from the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix last month (a GREAT event by the way) I got caught in a tremendous torrential rainstorm - probably 40 minutes of very strong rains. Upon getting home I began to unload the car - trunk contents were fine. However, approaching the car from the passenger side I noticed a wet spot under the A-pillar area. Strange, as I had driven another 2 hours after the rain had stopped. I opened the door and picked up a couple CD cases from the passenger foot well - yes the flat 12 makes its own music; but almost four hours of the same tune gets monotonous - especially driving across the PA turnpike. Anyway, the CDs were soaked! I pulled the mat out and it was dripping - same for the carpet and underlying padding, leaving a pool when removed. I thought about throwing a goldfish or two in there and having the world's fastest aquarium... But, I digress.

    In doing the other work and pulling bits off, I can find no evidence of where the water was coming in. I ran the AC the whole way home in both flow through (while moving, no fan) and re-circ (when slow or sitting, full fan - AC power transistor is also getting replaced) modes and ran it in de-fog mode during parts of the rain storm. The floor seams seem OK as do the plugs. No discolorations on/around the bulkhead area. I am at a loss. Tonight I will douse the font cowl area with a hose and see if I can see anything actively coming in. But i thought in the mean time I would see if anyone else wants to admit they drive in the rain (or wash their cars a lot) and has had the same problem.

    Shamille - living in FL and using the TR as a DD, have you ever had any problems? Anyone else?

    Thanks for any input,

    Curtis
     
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  3. testarob

    testarob F1 Rookie

    May 13, 2006
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    #2 testarob, Aug 14, 2008
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2008
    Mine is a FL DD too. I have also had some leaking on the passenger side during torrential downpours. It happens so infrequently that I have not investigated the source. The boot is bone dry, as is the driver's side carpet.
     
  4. Mr.Chairman

    Mr.Chairman F1 Rookie

    Mar 21, 2008
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    Robbie
    Usually this sort of thing happens when the drain pipes clog located at the croenr of the cowl. Debris and sometime leaf material get stuck in that drain and causes water to not drain properly. It is very common with the German cars M.B., Audi, BMW etc. I would check those drains for clogging.

    R
     
  5. curtisc63

    curtisc63 Formula 3
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    Testarob - agreed, Driver's side is dry as is the front boot/trunk. I did have a passenger say one other time that they got "dripped on" during a drive but it never amounted to much. I lived in FL for 12 years and through two tropical storms (Tampa area) and I never saw as much rain for as long as I did driving back that day.

    Mr. Chaiman - Funny you should mention that - the cowl drain on the Driver's side was clogged when I bought the car but has long since been cleared. If it did clog it still begs the question of where the water finds it way into the passenger compartment...
     
  6. Mr.Chairman

    Mr.Chairman F1 Rookie

    Mar 21, 2008
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    #5 Mr.Chairman, Aug 14, 2008
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2008
    There is a drain on the passenger side as well. I am pretty sure of that. The drip is probably from a bad weatherstrip on the upper door seal area. That would not lead to serious water saturation.


    R
     
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  8. curtisc63

    curtisc63 Formula 3
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    Sorry should have been more clear - both drains are clear and run free. The passenger reported a drip on her foot after leaving a party during which it has rained heavily.

    CC
     
  9. Shamile

    Shamile F1 Veteran

    Dec 31, 2002
    6,563
    Lakeland FL
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    Shamile
    Dear Ferraristi,

    Yes, I drive my TR as a daily driver in all weather....heavy FL rain.

    Here is a few things I would check out. Since your problem is on the passenger side, we'll concentrate on that.

    -The HVAC drains are on the passenger side. Are you sure you don't have the drain blocked and the condensation from the evap is dripping on the passenger side?

    -The front cowl drains drain to the wheelwell by a tube. Check to see if the tube has come off the drain hole in the cowl....check if the rubber seal is broken and leaking at the tube seal.

    -Check for holes in wheel well to passenger side. You may laugh but the screw that holds the passenger side speaker housing has been screwed down straight (should be at an angle ) and right though the wheel well. Have a speaker shop do it a few times and you have a few holes.

    - Check the fresh air vent in the front hood. If you look on the backside, there is a plastic shield covering the vent. See if the panel isn't leaking or cracked. It will leak to its side over the fuse box ! ....and into the passenger or driver compartment

    - Check the fresh air intake drain hose. Make sure the rubber drain hose hasn't come off under the intake .

    - Make sure it's water and not coolant. The coolant lines come to the mixing valve for the heater core in the passenger side foot well. ( near speaker )

    - Check water seal for AC line coming into front trunk. Look just behind the battery box underneath the carpet. If the rubber deteriorates, water will enter the trunk in the bottom ( spare tire area ) and can come into the passenger side footwell....if the splash is great enough.


    Let us know what you find.

    BTW,

    what did you find hanging you up on the knee bolster removal? I saw in Carguy's thread you got it off. You should update your post...so we all may learn. :)


    Shamile

    Freeze....Miami Vice !
     
  10. curtisc63

    curtisc63 Formula 3
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    Thanks Shamille. I did not get a chance to run water tonight as the AC power transistor is giving me fits. New transistor - same performance. Eergh. Here I am about to search for voltages to check.

    Yes, I will post about getting the Knee pad off. I will post a pic with bolt locations noted. Short story - there are 4 bolts in the steering column area, not just the 2 obvious ones.

    I will post any and all results.

    Curtis
     
  11. GregTe

    GregTe Formula Junior

    May 3, 2004
    526
    Maine
    One of my TRs had water leaking onto the the carpets. It ended up being the windshield leaking near the bottom. We removed the w/s and replaced it with new urethane sealant and it solved the problem.
     
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  13. ASG 86TR

    ASG 86TR Formula 3

    Aug 23, 2001
    1,473
    New Jersey
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    Adam G
    Mine leaked after running the AC for a bit, the A/C drain was clogged under the car. Cleaned it out and zero probs...The hose is tapered so it is almost closed so road dirt does not get up and in, but it clogs very easily.
     
  14. jselevan

    jselevan Formula 3

    Nov 2, 2003
    1,858
    A/C condensation is the culprit, I suspect. I had similar problems with clogged drain pan under dash. Humid weather with A/C running at max efficiency (compressor at highway speed) will result in a great deal of water dripping off of the evaporator.

    Jim S.
     
  15. testarob

    testarob F1 Rookie

    May 13, 2006
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    Not in my case. Run the A/C all day long and no problems. Drive in the pouring rain however...
     
  16. jselevan

    jselevan Formula 3

    Nov 2, 2003
    1,858
    Rob - if one suffers flakey debris in the A/C catch basin, or a clogged drain tube leading out of the passenger area, it will overflow. I have experienced this wet-foot pleasure. Windscreen seal could be to blame, but this should be more easily identified.

    Jim S.
     
  17. khayes

    khayes Formula Junior

    Nov 1, 2003
    591
    Austin, TX
    Full Name:
    Kelly Hayes
    I had this problem once and solved it without it reoccuring since. I was driving from Houston to Austin and ran into a rain storm about half way home. After about 20 minutes of driving in the rain water began to splash on my shoes and into the passenger footwell when I would make turns. After getting home I had a mildew smell in the car for a few days even though I had removed the carpets and dried everything up. I took the car to my mechanic in Austin (Moorespeed) and as soon as the car was up in the air the problem was spotted underneath. The rubber drain tube from the fresh air pickup on the front hood cowl was kinked ever so slightly and couldn't open in a normal fashion. It was holding water inside the tube and as soon as we touched it the rubber hose opened and drained itself of about a pint of smelly water.

    Running water into the front hood fresh air cowl with a waterhose had enough pressure that the tube would open and drain properly but the slight buildup of rain didn't have enough pressure to force the tube open so it wouldn't drain. We rerouted the drain hose to remove the kink and the problem hasn't returned. I've driven in the rain several times since then with no problems. I hope this helps you locate your problem.

    I live in Austin but I work in Pittsburgh. It rains too much there for me. Same goes for Houston. I like it nice and hot and dry in Austin.
     

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