How does water get under the carpet???
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RWD 19xx-1984 DeVille and Fleetwood,
1985-1996 Fleetwood and Brougham Forum Discussion, How does water get under the carpet??? in Past Cadillac Vehicle Discussion; The car is an 84 fleetwood Formal, ie. Limo. It has 16k. Pretty much flawless. I bought it last Sept. ...
  1. #1
    captainfrank51 is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    How does water get under the carpet???

    The car is an 84 fleetwood Formal, ie. Limo. It has 16k. Pretty much flawless. I bought it last Sept. (6 months)
    There is water, a lot of water, under the rugs, front and back, on the driver's side. The passenger side is dry. So is the rug on the driver"s side. I only found the water because I took the driver"s seat out to work on it. I have no idea how long the water has been there. The car is Never out in the rain and hasn't even been washed since last fall.
    It is plain, clear, water. Not even smelly.
    I have removed the rugs and layers of padding and allowed the car to dry out. There is minimal surface rust under the brake pedal. No where else. Already been sanded and painted, by me. Looks like water could flow down into the rear foot well. Padding along the door sill is dry.
    So I'm guessing water came down the inside of the fire wall. The million dollar question, is how? from where.
    Has Anybody had a similar experience? Positive outcome?

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    jayoldschool's Avatar
    jayoldschool is offline GM RWD V8 addict
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    Re: How does water get under the carpet???

    Likely the seam where the firewall meets the windshield frame. Sometimes GM was skimpy on the seam sealer on there. One of the wagon guys dealt with this recently. Get your head up under the dash, and have someone run the hose outside. See what happens...

  4. #3
    csbuckn is offline Cadillac Owners Master
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    Mine is leaking from the top of the windshield. Both sides.

  5. #4
    Highway Star is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: How does water get under the carpet???

    The heater/AC housing housing is a possible source. Remove the cowl vent below the windshield on passenger side (I'm assuming the '84 is same or similar to the '79 models). Check for stress cracks in the heater-a/c housing, especially where it's bolted to the firewall. Here's a pic from my '79 where I had to epoxy a stress crack that was causing a leak when I washed the car. Yours could be something else, but who knows until you start checking out the possibilities.


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    DouglasJRizzo is offline Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    Re: How does water get under the carpet???

    Bad windshields often cause mysterious leaks that dribble behind the dash and wind up on the floors.

  7. #6
    Angry Matt's Avatar
    Angry Matt is offline Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    Re: How does water get under the carpet???

    One more vote for the windows. I've had a few of these that did that. I tried using a caulk gun on mine, lol. Try to fix it before it rots the floorpans. I don't think it's that expensive to have a windshield guy reseal it.

  8. #7
    cadillac kevin's Avatar
    cadillac kevin is online now Cadillac Owners Master
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    Re: How does water get under the carpet???

    my lesabre has that problem (I have to change the newspaper every once in a while)
    I think mines the heater/ AC housing on the firewall though. my mechanic cleared out all the leaves and debris out of it and the problem became alot less severe.

  9. #8
    The Ape Man's Avatar
    The Ape Man is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: How does water get under the carpet???

    I've owned two 1980 cars which leaked where the HVAC box bolted to the firewall. Those were both passenger side problems though.

    The door drains can get clogged. Make sure water drains out freely from the holes at the bottom away from the hinge side of the doors.

    Bad windshield replacement could do it.

    Get someone to spray water with a garden hose while looking everywhere with the carpet out.

    Good luck.

  10. #9
    carnut is offline Cadillac Owners Master
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    Re: How does water get under the carpet???

    Check the small slit at the bottom of the heater, A/C box. its the A/C condensation drain. If plugged, normal condensation turns back into water, fills the heater box and spills over onto the floor. You can find it with the car up in the air on a hoist or jack stands and look for it on the bottom of the air box, engine side of firewall. Stick a screwdriver in the opening and retract it to see if water flows out.

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    jayoldschool is offline GM RWD V8 addict
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    Re: How does water get under the carpet???

    That puts water on the passenger side, though.

  12. #11
    captainfrank51 is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: How does water get under the carpet???

    Hey guys thanks for all your help. Tomorrow is supposed to be sunny (Rained all day today) and I plan to do the garden hose thing as scientifically as I can. Starting low and close to the rear of the engine and working my way up and closer to the windshield. With some help I can be inside watching while the water is running.
    I like the part about sticking my head up in there.LOL I can't even get my hand in there. But he makes a good point. I'll have to look very closely. There was A LOT OF WATER so I think it has to be in a place where the water is channeled. It's too much to be just what, say, runs over the edge of the windshield. But the corner would collect extra. So thanks I'll let you know how I make out.

  13. #12
    captainfrank51 is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: How does water get under the carpet???

    So I did find a leak around the gas pedal cable. The caulking was gone on the top half, leaving the bottom half to collect water and funnel it right down under the gas pedal, blow the carpet where it could just accumulate with little chance of evaporation to dry it. A little flow from the garden hose, with no pressure behind it, yielded a steady trickle of water in side. The cable comes through the fire wall under the wiper motor, which I took out so I could clean and recaulk the cable.
    How much water could get sprayed up there even on the high way in the rain?
    It is not at all what I expected to find. There are no other leaks on the fire wall or windshield. I even took off the screen and recaulked the spot that Highway Star pointed out in the photo.( No crack, But loose caulk)( Thanks Highway Star)
    Any way thank all of you for your input.

  14. #13
    The Ape Man's Avatar
    The Ape Man is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: How does water get under the carpet???

    Take it to a bikini car wash and post pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by captainfrank51 View Post
    Hey guys thanks for all your help. Tomorrow is supposed to be sunny (Rained all day today) and I plan to do the garden hose thing as scientifically as I can. Starting low and close to the rear of the engine and working my way up and closer to the windshield. With some help I can be inside watching while the water is running.
    I like the part about sticking my head up in there.LOL I can't even get my hand in there. But he makes a good point. I'll have to look very closely. There was A LOT OF WATER so I think it has to be in a place where the water is channeled. It's too much to be just what, say, runs over the edge of the windshield. But the corner would collect extra. So thanks I'll let you know how I make out.

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