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my 1999 leaks too.

My 1999 with a sunroof started leaking on the drivers side (left side) about a month ago and it leaks a LOT! The windshield has never been replaced. I've cleaned out vents and checked around the sunroof but have had no luck locating the source of the leak.

Has anyone ever found the fix for the fairly common problem?
 

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Source of water leak on front carpet.

Anybody found the source of the water leak that runs down behind the fusebox on the driver's side (US car) and wets the carpet when it rains?
 

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I'd same problem and it was the front windscreen / windshield seal at fault. the glass had been replaced a few years ago.. but I had problems with water coming in so i stripped out all carpets and removed the dashboard/instruments panels. With a hose of water on the car, I found the water entering top of the glass and tracking its way down the pillar and along wires to the fuse box. I tried silicon etc but eventually had the front glass replaced and asked the guy to put extra adhesive around the window - problem solved.

The front windscreen acts as a tensioner for the whole car body and so is susceptible to the body flexing and the seals separating - it seems to be a pretty common problem. If you have it, get the floor pan checked in case like me, I found a bit of rust.
 

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TSB Issued 11/1/06 - Did anyone get it?

Just experienced this problem on my 2007 (though I think it's happened before). Googled "2007 rav4 water leak" and right at the top is a link to a Toyota Technical Service Bulletin that I NEVER received. Now my dealer is saying it's too late, because my warranty expired in March. I'm going to fight this, and would appreciate any suggestions or help from anyone.
 

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This thread is about the 4.1 (94 - 7/2000 models)
Your car is the 4.3 (2006 - present).

On the 4.1 there is no such thing as warranty anymore... Due to age.
And i honestly don't know how you would fight that.
Greetz

Pim
 

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Re: TSB Issued 11/1/06 - Did anyone get it?

HotHawaiian said:
Just experienced this problem on my 2007 (though I think it's happened before). Googled "2007 RAV4 water leak" and right at the top is a link to a Toyota Technical Service Bulletin that I NEVER received. Now my dealer is saying it's too late, because my warranty expired in March. I'm going to fight this, and would appreciate any suggestions or help from anyone.
contact the regional toyota manager.

Explain your situation nicely and make sure to tell him how much you love your Rav but this one thing has you a bit frustrated.

You just might be pleasantly surprised that he/she will help you out.
 

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I have the same problem,traced the leak to the windscreen.
if you remove the plastic panel on the windscreen pillar you will see a small channel at the bottom of windscreen that will be full of water,,it then leaks down over the wires onto the floor
it is caused by a badly sealed windscreeen.
 

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hey try taking a air hose and put it inside the car , then with all the windows up and doors shut.put air into the car. have a spray bottle with dish liquid mixed with water. spray it around your windshield on the outside and other places you think the water is leaking in from.i have done this many times and found the leak every time.make sure to put you vent to recycle .you will need a good supply of air for this to work.just keep looking for air bubbles.i had told one guy about this way to find a water leak. he used blow bubble. the stuff you can buy cheap for kids to make bubbles with.he it worked great. good luck.
 

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HELP! My 1998 RAV4 is leaking on the passenger side. I cannot tolerate mold, so I really need to take care of this if there is any way possible. It's also leaking in the back window, but that can be fixed. I'm concerned about the front leak.
 

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Found "mulch" between front of driver's door and back of left wheelwell (4.2)

So we've been finding water in my girlfriend's 2002 4.2 Rav4 driver's side footwell and left rear passenger's footwell (behind the driver).

I thought I had this licked a while ago when I bought a piece of 1/8" galvanized steel "rope" from Home Depot and pushed debris out of the sunroof drain hole on the driver's side, but two weeks before hurricane Irene made its way to NYC, the problem actually got worse, and we had 2-3" of standing water in the car after not driving it for a few days and having what is the wettest month on record in NYC (18"+ post Irene).

Thankfully we were able to park the car in the garage before the hurricane got here, but the leak persists, and I am *way* tired of pulling carpet padding, rolling down windows, and parking the car facing west when it's sunny to dry it out.

I think we made considerable headway Monday afternoon/evening. After pouring water on the car for a while looking for a leak, and noticing that pulling the bottom drain plug on the underside of the driver's side door sill yields a "gusher", I looked further, and saw little seed pods poking out from seam between the front of the door and the back of the wheelwell.

I pulled the front mud flap, and was able to reach behind the wheelwell piece at the bottom, and started pulling a serious amount of soil-like debris out of that area. I'm going to do a more thorough job of cleaning it out (on both sides) in the next day or so, and probably will do it on my 2005 4.2 as well.

Here is what I think is happening: leaves pile up in the cowl at the top of the windshield. We try to pull most of them out, but over the years, have missed some. Those leaf bits and other debris are pushed back past the hood hinge and *down* into the cavity below the driver's side A-pillar, where it cannot escape. This will happen naturally while we drive as air forces the leaves back into that hole near the hinge and then gravity and precipitation take over and let the debris settle in the bottom of the cavity - RIGHT WHERE THE SUNROOF DRAIN TUBE RUNS.

Then it rains. A lot. The drain tube gets water down out of the sunroof "moat", but it can't fully drain because this mulchy, composty, leafy soil is preventing that, so it travels up the chassis beam running along the driver's side doors, and the water level eventually rises up enough to spill over a fold in the door seam metal and lands in the footwells.

I believe the fix is two-fold. One, pull the bottom back of the wheel well and clear it of debris. Two, once the cavity is cleaned out, to keep it that way, possibly put a piece of mesh around the hood hinge so debris cannot get stuck there and make its way down into that cavity in the chassis. Even if that's not possible, vacuum out the the top of the cowl on a painfully-regular basis.

As a side note, if you discover water in the footwells, I strongly suggest that you pull the carpet padding and let it fully dry while you figure out where the problem is. The padding in the rear footwells is over 3" thick in some places, and my impression is that it would basically *never* dry on its own.

Twice I have pulled the fuse box plate, the door sill covers, the side console cover on the driver's side, and maybe another panel or two, so I can peel the driver's footwell carpet back, pull the carpet padding completely out and fold the carpet itself onto the seat with the seat all the way back. If you have problems with the rear footwell too, dry the front out first, and then move the driver's seat all the way forward, pull the back seat and plastic pieces covering the rear seat latches, peel the carpet forward, pull the unbelievably-thick carpet pad, and wedge something under the carpet so it can dry more easily (first time I used an empty soda can which deformed a bit).

I will try to post some pictures of this before I put the car back together.

Sorry for the long post, hopefully this helps someone - it was driving me/us absolutely crazy.

Vaughan
 

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Excellent post Vaughan

I have an 03 with very similar symptoms. Problem is, I don't understand the parts you are describing. Would you post some pics or I will send you my e-mail address if you would be willing to break-it down for me.
 

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I have a '99 doing this exact thing. Problem is, it's rained every other day here in Ohio, and I haven't got much free time. I'll be pulling the cowl cover next i suppose..
 

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Solved the water leak on my RAV. I experienced the same as all the other comments here. I could not find the source of water getting into the left side front footwell. Tried hose tests etc.
I pulled back the interior trim running down the side of the windscreen to the dashboard. Shone a torch into the corner and could see a gap in the screen adhesive, ( the other side had adhesive clearly squeezed all round ) Squirted sealant in - problem solved. HOWEVER problem returned after a few months and this time from the top left corner of the windscreen. Not so easy I thought. There is a rubber trim around the outside of the screen and the screen is supposed to be bonded to the metal frame and hence not leak, but based on earlier fix I did not now trust that. I forced sealant under the rubber trim, to fill the gap between the glass edge and the body opening. I held the rubber open slightly using a wood stick ( a tongue depressor actually) and pumped sealant along the top edge, cleaning the excess of the bodywork. The idea being to fill the gap between the glass edge and the body UNDER the rubber seal. It has worked ! after spending several frustrating months searching and keeping the carpets out of the car. The car is now 100% dry. I appreciate the windscreen is glued in and it "should not leak" but I know there were small gaps in mine that the water managed to bypass, yet not show up on a quick hose test.
 

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Yea, my '99 leaks water under the driver's side carpet when it rains and I think even when I wash my car. Turns my car into a sauna. I've gotten under the dashboard and taken off all the sound deadener and put silicone sealer on all the metal seams - to no avail. I did the same thing under the car.

Has anyone else themselves or had Toyota find and fix this problem and where did it need to be sealed? For all I know it's coming from the roof rail down the windshield pillar or anything.

Thanks for any advice anyone can give us.
Check the seal around your door. I discovered mine had a little saw toothed wear about 1/4 in long and that's where the water gets in. Try to order a new seal. YOu don't want rusted floorboards or mold.
 

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Thanks to Vaughan Turner's post, I, too, was able to dislodge about a pint of leaf mulch from the bottom of my 2006 Limited's passenger side door hinge (backed out through the wheel well) and am hoping this stops the floorboard swimming pool from appearing ever again. Like ROCKnRider, I wasn't quite sure the exact locations being described but I was able to figure it out by poking around in the door hinge... when I pressed on the bottom of the black plastic hinge cover and heard leaves crunching, I knew I was getting warmer! This is my second go-around with repeated interior flooding. The first time, it was the windshield cowl seal issue - had that replaced and had no further issues until a few months ago. Assumed the cowl seal had failed again and replaced the $15 part myself. Then we had 3" of rain and dagnabbit if the darn thing didn't flood again. I don't have a sun roof and my A/C drain hose was in good condition and clear so I was running out of options. FINGERS CROSSED this is the final fix!
 
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