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Old 09-17-2007, 07:09 AM   #1
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Wet again

Folks,

I need your help.

My car was out in a downpour (at my independent Porsche mechanic) Friday afternoon with the top and windows fully up and properly secured, yet the carpet area behind both seats was soaked and I had water under the front carpet on both sides (more on the driver side than the passenger side) which appeared to have migrated from rear to front on either side of the seats. There was no water directly under either seat. The car was parked on a slight grade with the nose a bit lower than the tail.

When I got home into the garage (15-mile drive, still raining), I checked immediately, and there was no water standing in any of the four principal drain areas, front or rear, and no obvious wet path of entry, front, rear or on either side -- no water or dampness at all above the carpet on the floor, except at the base of the rear firewall carpet, where it appeared to have wicked up a quarter of an inch from the floor.

Friday night, I removed the seats and propped the carpet up front and rear. Saturday, I pushed it back into the driveway to bake it dry in the sun -- again. It baked dry over the course of Saturday and Sunday.

On Saturday, with the top in the service position, I removed the rear deck storage box and top carpet. Completely dry.

I removed the upper firewall carpet behind the seats and console. Completely dry.

I removed the carpet covers on each side behind the doors. Completely dry with no apparent moisture behind.

No moisture on the console side carpet. No moisture on any of the side carpets on the doors, under the doors or in the footwells.

No moisture up under the dash.

I didn't remove the carpet at the very base of the firewall in the rear because it's glued in place, but it showed no exterior dampness even when pressed to squeeze the padding beneath -- except at the very base where it meets the floor carpet.

I ran a flexible tube through all four rear drains -- two in the top well and two in the rear deck cover channel. No blockages.

I ran water through all of them, too, and it flowed through and out freely in what appeared to be the same volume I added.

I did the same to the front drains on either side of the battery -- clear and flowing free.

I found the second drain on the driver side under the cowl (it's in the vertical wall of the strut tower, and it doesn't have a drain line, just a rubber flap because it opens directly into the front fender -- visible from the outside behind the strut looking from the rear with the wheels cranked to the right). The rubber flap is in place and functions properly. Look at the diagram in the "inevitable" water thread to find it.

I even ran a tube down into tna water through the drain hole under the fuel filler.

I took out the battery and the battery pan. There are no drains lurking there, but the battery pan gasket is intact and the area under the battery pan was dry as a bone -- looked like it had not been exposed since it was in the factory.

The door, window and top seal are all intact and flexible.

The drains in the bottoms of both doors are clear -- visual and probe check only, I did not run water into the doors to test them.

The inner door seal drains are also clear. I ran the tubing and water down into the door seals both from the top at the windshield header and from the top at each rear door jamb, and both drain holes in each seal ran fine at the door threshold.

Before I put the top in the service position, on Friday night, I checked it. The base skirt of the top was in proper position, with the rear gutter under the trunk wall clips and the front corner elastics clipped at the door jambs. The two side cables were in their loops and fastened at the base. All of the seals appear to be in place, intact and fitting properly on the top and the rear deck lid cover, and the plastic trim on the driver side rear deck support had been replaced to deflect water into the foam well.

With this volume of water coming into the car in one afternoon storm, it almost seems as if there has to be some critical but non-obvious part of the sealing and drainage system which is not in place. But there is no apparent path of entry to the floor.

There was some minor dampness in the indentations of the foam at the very front of the top well on either side behind and inboard of the rear door jambs. Is there supposed to be some sort of deflecting piece at the front of the top well on each side inboard from the door jambs which guides the water back toward the drains -- like the two trim pieces on the rear deck support struts?

Please tell me what I'm missing. Please tell me that this isn't the dirty little secret of the Boxster, that it can't be driven in the rain or washed with water? That doesn't make sense. I've owned and driven convertibles before, including an Austin-Healey 3000 and an MGB, and I've never had this kind of problem. And I'm a former SCCA racer who has maintained all of his cars and motorcycles for years, so I'm aware of how things work.

Any help will be appreciated. The independent Porsche mechanic is mystified. If I can't find help here. The last step before selling it will be to take it to the local Porsche dealer, telling them my story and saying, "Make it seal and drain properly." I might as well paint a target on my bank account.

Thanks.

Bob

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Old 09-17-2007, 08:09 AM   #2
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Bob-

I think I may be in a similar boat (no pun intended) as you are. I don't have buckets of water, but the other day in a hard rain I had some slight moisture on the rear carpet of the driver side, and a bit under the door speakers carpet (which in my case, is very custom audio).

Can you enlighten me on the door drainage system, both within the door and the jambs (since it seems you understand it very well)?

It sounds like you may be scratching your head, or doing the target painting, since from what I understand, it seems you've hit all the points of water intrusion, so if you can't find anything, I'm not sure what's left to miss?

Patrick
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Old 09-17-2007, 08:28 AM   #3
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Excellent, detailed post, Simbob. Somebody else will likely come up with something more Boxster-specific, but I'll offer this.

When I had a similar problem with my VW, it turned out to be the windshield seal. It seems at least possible to me that driving it home in the rain didn't provide it with the same exposure it would have had out overnight, especially with the wipers running. I noticed you checked the door and window seals, but if you had a decent volume of water inside after just one night, the windshield is an excellent place to collect that.

Let us know what you find out?
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Old 09-17-2007, 09:36 AM   #4
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Door and door seal drains

Patrick,

Each door has two drains in the bottom edge. They are slots in the bottom sheet metal: One near the front and one near the rear. The best way to see them is to open the door and slide under it on your back. If you don't want to do that, you can also feel them if you run your finger under the edge of the seal on the door. The seal on the door is indented at the slots to allow the door to drain. The seal on the door also has a small opening near the rear of the door (like the top third of a circle) to let the water escape from the area under the door and between the seals on the door and on the sill.

The inner seal on the sill on each side runs continuously from the windshield header to the top of the rear door jamb. It is hollow. If you feel along the edge of it where it runs flat along the sill, you will find two round holes to allow it to drain onto the door sill and out under the door through the rear scallop in the seal on the door.

The curved rear top support, which mates to the top of the inner door seal when the top is up is also rubber and hollow and appears to seal into the cupped top of the inner door seal. I don't know if it is an intended part of the design for water to enter this support off the top and to drain first into the door seal and then out under the door. It seems to me that if this is the intended design (a kind of hidden internal gutter and downspout system joining the top support and the door seal), and that if this were the source of my water, I would have found water in, on and around the area of the door jambs, the door carpet and the carpeted panels making the transition from the door jambs to the firewall under the seatbelt anchors, but that area was dry.

Good luck with your check of your door drains and your door seal drains.

Bob

PS Jim, I'll post whatever I learn from the dealer -- but they can't see my car until a week from Thursday. It's like getting a medical appointment. The way this is going, I may need to see if our firm's employee benefits coordinator can look into group auto maintenance insurance to go with the medical and dental plans.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmwm750
Bob-

I think I may be in a similar boat (no pun intended) as you are. I don't have buckets of water, but the other day in a hard rain I had some slight moisture on the rear carpet of the driver side, and a bit under the door speakers carpet (which in my case, is very custom audio).

Can you enlighten me on the door drainage system, both within the door and the jambs (since it seems you understand it very well)?

It sounds like you may be scratching your head, or doing the target painting, since from what I understand, it seems you've hit all the points of water intrusion, so if you can't find anything, I'm not sure what's left to miss?

Patrick
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Old 09-18-2007, 12:13 PM   #5
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Try this:

Pull out all your floor mats, lay down multiple towels (especially around your DME) grab a small flashlight and go find a touchless carwash where you can sit inside and witness the problem firsthand. Not a lot of water volume there but enough to give you a good idea where the problem is. This should show you where to look. Preferable to laying yourself down at the mercy of the stealership.
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Last edited by Topless; 09-18-2007 at 12:28 PM.
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Old 09-27-2007, 03:44 PM   #6
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There had been alot of talks about drains and where they are. It would be awesome if someone could take clear digital pictures of these drainages from in-port to out-port to show everyone how they look like and where they are in relation to other parts of the car. And this pictorial post shall be stickied.

I don't have the luxury of having my own car garage where I can spend time taking parts of the car off and study where everything is. I live in a high rise apartment and the car is parked underground. So I rely on gathering all the info on the forum before I head down and check. Reading text description of where something is and how something looks like is sometimes difficult to visualize.
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Old 09-04-2011, 04:04 PM   #7
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I have the same wet behind the seats issue even with the hardtop on. Anyone figure this out?

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