Edmunds Answers



  • magnum10 08/12/08 10:08 pm PST

    I would check if there is a hole under the carpet if not then I would check the rubber on the door it could be bad and be letting water in the car when it rains.

  • subearu 08/12/08 10:59 pm PST

    Do you have a moonroof? If you do, they typically have drains that run down the A pillar and can easily get clogged and cause a leak like you have.

    Cleaning out the drain tube can be tricky, but doable. May want to take off the pillar trim to see the affected area too.


  • spartans1988 08/13/08 9:44 am PST

    We do not have a moon roof and also hubby already pulled back the carpet and all the plugs are there.

  • spartans1988 08/13/08 9:47 am PST

    In addition it seems to be running down. so not coming in from door either. We pulled the carpet back and watched it coming in while driving in the rain. When weather is dry and we have the air on it never gets wet either. We can run our ac for weeks with dry weather it remains dry and then when it rains then it gets wet. It also seems to get wet just sitting in the drive as well when it rains. I may not drive it for a week and its dry as its not rained get in day after rain and boom its wet.

  • spartans1988 08/13/08 10:04 am PST

    I was just reading someone else having water come in thru their blower motor behind the dash board. Has anyone had this problem??? I am just looking for suggestions and ideas to try to figure where in the world this is coming from as I van is getting stinky from mildew and I would like to resolve it before it causes more damage.

  • hh2k1 08/30/08 6:14 pm PST

    I'm also have the same exact problem. 1999 Plymouth Voyager
    Only when it rains .... YES
    Dripping from around the glove box .... YES
    Even in driveway .... YES

    I estimate at least 1 cup of water at times.

    Q: Do you hear a slooshing sound when you turn as if some area is very full with water and then lots of water leaks out? I've looked around and I cannot find any "pocket" of water. (short of tearing my whole dash off.)

    If you find an answer to this please PLEASE let me know, I'll be sure to do the same... I'll keep checking this forum.


  • langtree 10/02/08 6:17 pm PST

    I had the same problem with my 1997 Caravann.
    Here is how I fixed it.

    The two drain holes in the compartment beneath the wipers are plugged with debris.
    1. Take off wipers.
    2. Take of plastic panel under wipers. (mine required a star shaped allen wrench.)
    3. Clear crud away from drain holes. Pour water in there afterward to make sure it drains properly..You will see it come out the bottom under the car.
    4. Clean out any other leaves..in my case it was pine needles.

    And you're done...It took me about 15 minutes to fix and now...no more water coming in from behind the glovebox when it rains.

  • tcontic 10/13/08 9:42 am PST

    I just solved this problem on my 1999 Dodge Grande Caravan; it drove me crazy and started to make the car smell really bad.

    After running a garden hose over the passenger side windshield and door I noticed that I could see water dripping inside when the hose was placed over the cowl air intakes. I removed the black cowl cover under the wipers and the area was completely clean, no leaves or other debris. So I continued with the garden hose and noticed that if I directed the water into the drain hole the water entered the vehicle. I could see the route the drain hose was taking and it was dumping the majority of the water under the car, the hose was directed at the firewall. So I pulled the hose and redirected it repeated my test, no more water. Somehow the water splashing against the firewall was entering the vehicle. I could not see and rust holes, but I did notice that the water was splashing against a seam between to metal panels. My solution, not sure it's complete, was to re-route the drain hose to avoid the firewall. So far so good, no more water. Hope this helps.



  • danny55 10/21/08 8:43 pm PST

    Check the area underneath the windshield wipers for leaves or other trash blocking the drains for the water that is channeld through the area.

  • lacrossesoaked 12/01/08 7:52 am PST

    If all of the suggestions regarding blocked drain holes don't solve your problem, I suggest you go back to the answer which stated removal of the the pillar trim (that support which runs from your dashboard to your roof (interior)) to inspect for leaks in the metal seam. A leak from a faulty seam in this area would produce the results you describe.

    Further, you should be able to do some testing with a garden hose to isolate the area causing the problem.

    If all else fails, you may need to bite the bullet and take your vehicle to a shop which specializes in water leak detection. OUCH !

  • diywannabe 12/02/08 4:03 pm PST

    We just took our caravan in to body shop - we thought water was coming in to vehicle because of missing rubber seam around windshield.  We had years of acorns and rotten leaves clogging the drains so water would splash into the vehicle on pass side.  Our radio is shot - also our windshield wipers randomly turn on (and thankfully off) when driving.  This has to all be related -- wiring / electrical gone bad?  I'd like to try to take off the dash and check things out.  This car is headed for the junk yard so I am willing to experiment w/ a do-it-yourself project.  Now when I turn the stereo on there is just a VERY loud radio/static noise coming from a rear speaker.  None of the radio dials or controls light up or work.  Should I replace the whole radio or check something else??

  • WesternWilson 01/11/09 9:05 pm PST

    I have noticed over the last couple of years that my 2001 Dodge Grand Caravan is always stinky. No surprise as my kids spill things constantly. I sent it to be cleaned by a professional carpet service and they said they got a lot of orange stuff out of the carpets. I assumed it was orange pop my children had spilt and thought nothing more of it. Today, I decided to clean the carpets myself to improve the smell in the car...to my horror, the steam cleaner sucked up tons and tons of orange stuff...I am quite sure the orange stuff is not pop but RUST. Since we always have the carpet protectors in the car, we would never have noticed any leaking that left the carpets or floor under them slightly damp. I suspect if we take up the carpets, we will find the whole floor is rusty. The carpets are ruined. I am mad. This should not happen, even in a car that is 6-8 years old.

    The dealer does all our servicing and has never once mentioned that the windshield drains may be or were clogged. As we live in a rainy climate with lots of evergreens around, I suspect they have been clogged forever. Anyway, too late, but I will check that.

  • wetfoot 10/25/10 10:35 am PST

    My '96 Dodge Grand Caravan had the same problem...water entered the HVAC system when it rained (whether being driven or parked) then dripped onto the passenger side front carpet, thoroughly soaking it. This occurred even when the two drain holes were clear. With the cowl cover removed, I slowly poured water from a watering can on the center of the windshield. The water ran down the windshield and onto the 1" horizontal sheetmetal lip (that is just an inch or two below the windshield bottom seal and extends from left to right across the entire firewall). While most of the water drips from this lip like a waterfall, a fair amount adheres to the underside of the lip, running back to and then down the firewall! I liken this to those gutter guard systems that attempt to shed leaves past the edge of the gutter, but allow the water to follow the lip of the guard and drip back into the gutter. In the firewall there are six openings (sort of rounded-corner rectangles) that serve as air intakes for the HVAC system. The water that makes it around the lip runs down the firewall about an inch or two and then into these vent openings, which allows the water into the vehicle. My solution was to fasten 1" plastic angle (I used plastic drywall corner bead, which is only $1.38 or so for an 8' strip) to the lip in order to make a vertical drop of about 1", so the water cannot go back uphill. I fastened the plastic angle using silicone adhesive and no longer have any water on the firewall. Note: the plastic angle needs to be cut with tin snips or scissors in certain places to avoid the movement of the windshield wiper linkages. You have to measure this for you particular vehicle. I also adhered 1/8" x 1/4" foam house weatherstripping to the underside of the cowl cover where it rests on the windshield. This prevents wet, flattened leaves and other debris from slipping under the cowl cover and ultimately clogging those two drains at the bottom of the cowl basin. Good luck!

  • polycarp 11/29/10 2:24 pm PST

    I own a 1998 Dodge caravan. I had the same problem until I did my water test. I removed the wipers, then the black cover. I took my water hose and sprayed water on the wind shield. To my amazement i notices that when the water leaves the wind shield it runs on a metal lip just passed the edge of the wind shield. Upon falling from the metal lip some of the water would run backwards under the metal lip and enter the vent. Thats how it enters the blower motor.
    Solution: I took a 2 inch pvc trunking, cut off the two sides and use the base. I placed the pvc on the metal lip to lengthen it and silicone the edge near the wind shield so now the water falls further from the vent.The hose does not have to be cloged for it to happen.

    I'm curious to know whether that happened when the vehicle was new since i did'nt own mine from new and what has changed.

  • virginiagfsih 01/16/11 4:28 pm PST

    Yes I had this problem with rainwater. It would leak a lot from behind the blower motor which is behind the glove box. The fix is to lift the hood and take off the wiper blades then take off the black plastic the runs across the entire hood (dont know proper name) after that unclog the acorns and branches and whatever is clogging those drains then flush with water and watch under car to make sure the water drains behind wheel. Then put back all parts and no more water leaks!!!!!!!

    Source: My head and this forum

  • lihe 04/26/11 10:04 am PST

    ** Ultimate solution **

    I have had this problem for a few years. Water leaks on the passenger side behind the glove compartmental after it rained. I have to take it to the mechanics when the fan and the electric system were damaged by the water. I was told it took them a lot of trouble to get rid of the water. However, the water problem started again soon after. It rained pretty hard yesterday and a lot of water poured in after a loud splashing sound when I first drove the car. Finally I had enough and fixed it today after reading the posts on this site. I am posting it now since I believe I found the root of the problem and the solution to eliminate the problem.

    When I opened the cowl panel, the black plastic panel, between the hood and the windshield, I see a pool of water. There are big rectangle vent openings on the back wall for air intake of the fan. There are a lot of leaves and the drains were clogged solid. Water accumulated and flooded into the van via the vent openings during the night of strong rain. I cleaned the leaves and drained water and tested running the water from the windshield. Sure enough water flowed down onto the back wall and got into the car through the vent openings. I really could not believe Chrysler could have such a stupid design. Now, I not only need to build something to keep the water from flowing into the vent but also find a way to keep the leaves from clogging the drains. Why the heck did all these leaves get in here? How the heck could I keep the drains from clogging?

    To make the story short, the real culprit of the problem is the missing weather strip between the windshield and the cowl panel. No water from the windshield was supposed to go down there at all say nothing about running down the firewall. Very little leave should be able to get in from the tiny holes of the screen on the panel and the drain should never been clogged. The solution is to seal the space between the windshield and the panel.

    Follow the instruction in the previous posts to remove the cowl panel. It’

    Clean the leaves and make sure the drains are clear. There are two plastic drain holes under the drains. You can easily pull them out and flush them with water holes if they are clogged.

    I did not call the dealer to get the original part since the van is 10 years old. The weather strip from Pepboys was very chunky. I found the Windo-Weld Ribbon Sealer from 3M at Strauss. It’s very easy to use. It’s a strip of robber like chalk that can be rolled out on the windshield easily. Use a marker to help you to line it up. It works beautifully.

    If you have the water problem, fix it now. It will not only get your wet and rusty but also destroy your electric system and the fan.

    So check your weather strip between the windshield and the panel. If it’s missing or broken you must fix it. No leaves or water should be able to get in from there. I would use silicon if I have to. I will also make an effort to keep the leaves and pine needles off the cowl panel.

    One mystery still remains. I never figured out how to get the water out of the enclosed box behind the glove compartment. That’s where the water eventually gets to before dripping out. I was told that’s where the fan and electric systems are. I really wanted to drill a hole but worried about damaging anything. Hopefully, it will dry out soon before any damage occurs.


  • wblackmon 05/08/11 1:13 pm PST

    To get the "sloshing water" out from "behind the glove box" I probably did more than I needed to, - I took off the lower dashboard, the glovebox,
    the bracing bar beneath the dash... Then lowered the plastic pan cover
    from the housing enclosing the heater blowe motor. (see it down behind glovebox up underneath - 4 or 5 screw/bolts -
    it comes off, revealing the bottom of the blower fan, - a good bit of water was there, - then, snake your hand up over the inner lip behind
    the blower motor area, - there was 1 1/2 inches of water there.. I put
    a rubber hose in there with my hand, - up and over the baffel starting from
    under the fan moter, - and then sucked it out, - I used a shop vac, but any pump, siphon, or sucking will do it, - I vac'd it dry, -

    I say I took too much of the front dashboard off while finding this answer, - I think you could do the same thing a lo0t easier by just dropping the plastic pan from under the heater blower fan... good luck!

    Thanks for all the tips on the window gasket!


  • bjudad 06/21/11 12:39 am PST

    I have had the same problem with a 1997 Caravan and was getting totally frustrated. I consulted some of the answers given in the forum above and decided to start with the easiest things, first. I took the windshield wipers off and was going to remove the black cowl located at the base of the windshield, but noticed that there are two drain hoses connected to a collection compartment under the cowl (under the hood). I decided to remove those (they just pull off at the base) and I found both sides to be clogged. I flushed both tubes with water from a hose and then ran water into the reservoir to flush it out. I did not have to remove the cowl or the reservoir. I reattached the hoses and ran water in the reservoir again to be sure it did the trick, watching to be sure water was draining out underneath the van. I did not get any water inside, so I am hoping that solved the problem. As it turns out, I would not have had to remove the wipers. It was an easy fix. I hope this is a help. I sure appreciate the other posts that gave me this idea.

  • js54 10/14/11 10:33 am PST


    After paying a mechanic twice over the years to fix this problem, I finally decided to look into it myself. The answer was here... but the simplest method worked, and it took all of 5 minutes!

    Open the hood. Locate the rubber drain hose that is attached, without fasteners, to the pan that sits under hood vents (under the wipers, passenger side, near the firewall). Pull it down, clear it out, put it back. Problem solved! I was prepared with a long brush to clear the hose, but just a quick poke with a screwdriver, and all the rotten debris immediately flushed out by itself.


  • lihe 10/30/11 5:03 pm PST

    Feed back: The water problem has been completely gone. Please note. If you have a rain water leak problem and the weather strip is wissing, you must re-seal it. Just unclogging the drain will only temporarily fix the flood problem. Rain will continue leaking into your van and clogging and flood will occur soon. Here is a photo of the van showing the three big vent oppennings.

  • Stever@Edmunds 10/30/11 11:07 pm PST

    Your photo is hard to view, even when I right click and save it, and then blow it up. If you have a bigger copy, you may be able to upload it to tinypic.com or a similar web hosting site, and link to it. Then we might be able to see it better.


    And congrats on the fix!


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