Rain leak 98 Suburban-windshield wiper

Discussion in 'GM' started by phoebeisis, Jun 20, 2012.

  1. phoebeisis

    phoebeisis Well-Known Member

    Lotta GM owners here-and many somewhat reformed motorheads-so help GMers

    My 98 Suburban has been leaking into the drivers side of a cabin-pooling just inside the door -making the carpet wet-for the last 3 or so years.I have been on and off half ass searching for the leak-putting down newspaper-pulling up carpet etc

    I finally got out the water hose-taped newspaper in varoius places to "find" the leak-and went at it with the hose-putting hose in various places(taping it in place and letting it run for 10-20 minutes per place) on the outside-looking for wet newspaper.
    I expected it to be leaking at the door seals- it wasn't.

    It leaks when I put the hose right on where the driver side windshield wiper spindle disappears into the vehicle
    The water comes in a the left side wall just behind the emergency brake mechanism-soaks carpet pools by the door jam.

    So just where is it leaking? Seems to be under the black plastic grate that is just forward of the windshield behind the hood.
    Is there some plugged up drain under that black plastic grate(lotta leaves twigs flowers drop on it around here)-there must be a drain under that grating, right?
    Or is there some seal-that is bad-seal around the windshield wiper spindle ?

  2. 08EscapeHybrid

    08EscapeHybrid Moderator

    I don't think the spindle goes thru the firewall, at least not on a GM vehicle. Take off the wiper cowl trim, and clean it out. If there's a drain hole in there plugged up with dead leaves then the water will find another way out. It also would not hurt to take some silicone caulk and go over any panel seams in there to make sure its water tight.
  3. phoebeisis

    phoebeisis Well-Known Member

    I'll pull that grate cowling-see what I find.
    I park under crepe myrtle trees-wife loves them so aggressive trimming is out of the question.They rain all kinds of "stuff' on my truck
  4. ItsNotAboutTheMoney

    ItsNotAboutTheMoney Super Moderator Staff Member

    There's a house we often walk past who have a pine tree in their front yard. They have a covered metal frame under the tree to keep the needles off the car parked under it.
  5. phoebeisis

    phoebeisis Well-Known Member

    ItsNot About
    Not a bad idea!
    My solution would be to have wife/son park the Prius on the street under the trees-the Suburban in the driveway-no tree debris.
    But no way will they go for that.
    True the 2006 Prius would sell for $10,000 vs maybe $2000(on a good day) for the Suburban-
    but it is worlds easier to clean the roof/hood of the Prius that that big flat 6.5 ft tall roof of the Suburban-junk just stays on it- never blowing off!
    Of well-pull that cowling today-let you guys know what I find.
    PS Odd but I get better"general" GM truck info here than on the truck forum I frequent.
  6. 08EscapeHybrid

    08EscapeHybrid Moderator

    I know my way around full size GM trucks. When in high school I worked for an a/c company and the owner bought nothing but ragged out GM trucks. He had an attitude that if a truck didn't have a/c it wasn't worth more than $500, if it had a/c it wasn't worth more than $1,000. Most the trucks I drove were purchased for about $200. When I bought my first truck, it fit his formula. I purchased a 74 Chevy C10 for $1,000 (It had a/c). I also currently own an 86 Chevy C10 and a 98 GMC K1500. I can deal with just about anything these trucks can throw at you.
  7. phoebeisis

    phoebeisis Well-Known Member

    Great-that sure explains the good info I get here.
    The GM truck forum has nice folks- but many are young and are still in the
    " What is the best/cheapest Best bolt on to get more low end torque-and best/loudest sound system" phase.
    Until 2007 I had zero experience with GM trucks!

    I loosened that cowl-lifted it-the little depression where the wiper comes thru was filled with debris-the drain hole plugged.
    After cleaning the hole-dribble hose in it I still get the leak.It looks the drain can be overwhelmed even at kinda low flow-there are 3 bolts that hold the pod of the wind shield wiper to the depression-+ the spindle itself.
    I'm thinking whatever seals they have aren't working-water gets in-somehow makes it was between panels-planning to silicone them-see what happens.
    When I run the hose directly into the big opening under the pod where most water ends up once it goes thru grating- no leaks

    Hoping it is the seals around bolts and spindle-somehow water makes its way in??

    What do you think-siliconing them worth a shot?
  8. 08EscapeHybrid

    08EscapeHybrid Moderator

    Silicone certainly won't hurt. I siliconed everything on the firewall in my 81 Buick because I was getting a mystery leak dripping into the passenger floorpan from the firewall. When vehicles get old, the seals dry out/crack. I would liberally smear silicone caulk around all the bolts and anything that remotely looks like a panel seam under that cowl trim. Also, its remotely possible that somewhere along the bottom of the windshield, the urethane seal has given out and its the glass itself leaking. I've seen this before too, especially if a vehicle was hit in the rear.
  9. phoebeisis

    phoebeisis Well-Known Member

    I'll give that a try!

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