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My BMW is leaking water onto my floor

Discussion in 'E46 (1999-2006)' started by 3seriesbmw, Sep 21, 2009.

    3seriesbmw guest

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    I have a 2002 325I. Whenever it rains really hard my floor get soaked. I ruled out the option of the sunroof drains as I checked them and they work fine. I think it is the firewall has a leak in it, but I need to know how to check this for sure or what I should do. This is a very frustrating problem and I need help.

    Thank you in advance.

    BIMMIR guest

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    Under your hood in the back corners, there are drainage holes to take water from the base of the windshield and hood down to the ground. These should have screens over them. You should check these periodically and remove leaves and whatever else may collect there. Still, stuff does get down in there. When it does, it clogs up the drains and water backs up, causing the issue you are describing.
    Please understand, I'm not saying this is your issue, but it's worth checking because it's pretty common. I've heard of people using compressed air to blow the channels out, or even a wire pushed through to open things up. (though I'd be careful with this one)

    Good Luck - can anyone else who has experienced this help him out?

    • Member


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    The rain/vapor barriers behind the door panels are usually the cause of this. These get removed when a window regulator is replaced....ever had one of those done...? Many times the techs that do them don't take enough care to r&r this barrier when reinstalling and it leaks later.

    SPK323 guest

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    E46 Wet carpets

    The vapor barrier seal is the first, but not the only place to look. There is a specific product sold by BMW for this. I believe they call it rubber butyl ribbon. It is the ONLY product that works. Not every parts person knows about it. It is under $10.00 per roll. Each roll will do probably two doors. Don't use anything else. I have a lot of frustrating experience with using other products.

    The other place is not as obvious, but it happened to me on both sides of my car. Leaves, pine needles, etc. get washed down thru the drains in the engine compartment located about a foot from the base of each lower windshield corner. They get clogged, continue to build up, and compost into very nice top soil. I pulled about two pounds of dirt out of my left side rocker panel this summer and some out of the right two years ago.

    Here is how to check and clean it out. Remove rocker panel plastic covers. There are 10-15 plastic retainers under each one. The top pops out. Remove three fender liner to fender plastic push fasteners. Pull back fender liner and look in . A large amount of debris might be trapped. Remove as much as you can by hand and wash out with hose.
    Run the hose down thru each of the upper drains as noted earlier until all is clear. Reassemble. Save yourself a lot of trouble and buy 6 of the fender liner to fender fasteners. You have to push the center of each one all the way thru to remove them and the little center pieces dissappear fast. You might find them, but don't count on it.

    Be patient and thorough. Good luck.

    Contact me directly at skasarjian@aol.com if you have any trouble.

    Steven Kasarjian

    sgrabina guest

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    it is relatively easy to check to see if the vapor barrier is leaking, just open one of your doors and take a garden hose to the outside of that door and see if water is dripping between your interior door panel and the door itself if this you see water than remove the door panel and inspect the vapor barrier and butyl seal. if you do not see any water than move onto the next door panel.

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