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Cleaning clogged VW Golf sunroof drains

I have had recurring problems with clogged sunroof drains on my 2001 VW Golf. It results in a lot of standing water inside the car and electrical problems. Is there any way to clean these drains myself, or must I visit a mechanic periodically to clean the drains for me? Also, I did some online research and there seems to be quite a bit of this happening with 2001 VWs, and I’m wondering if there is anything that can be done to fix the problem permanently? (Short of trading it in for a Honda?)

Yes, you can do this yourself.

Go to the hardware store and get some fine steel wire (usually found with picture hanging supplies). You then carefully push the wire down the drains, which breaks up the junk in them so water can flow again. Usually these drains are in the sunroof area on each corner, and in the cowl (area between the firewall and the windshield).

Good luck.

Do NOT use wire to clean these drains as most are made of rubber tubing and wire could puncture the sides.

Use a heavy gauge plastic weed trimmer string.

Never had this. It sounds too easy but would a blast of compressed air do the job?

Yes compressed air can also be used, but like string trimmer cord, you need to be careful to don't overdo it.  You can damage the drains or pull them apart and make an easy fix an expensive hard one.

Thanks to everyone who replied. My next question is, is this what the mechanics are doing when I bring it in? Seems like a fairly low tech solution. I guess I’ve been paying too much.

For them time is money, my bet is using compressed air to blow the dirt out.

They charge by the hour. You are paying for their time. That time includes doing the paper work talking to you etc.

I would suggest considering where you park. Parking under trees or where something may fall on your car and clog the drains may be the real problem and only you can fix that.

I have this same problem, every time it rains water pools in the rear passenger seat floor. I’ve read this solution in a dozen web sites but I’m not convinced this is correct. I took a water bottle and poured water directly into the sunroof drain hole and watched the water fall to the ground just behind the front wheel. Doesn’t this tell me the drain hole is clear?

In your case yes, the drain is clear.

However, your leak may be attributed to deteriorated weather-stripping around windows, doors and/or a bad seal around the rear window or trunk/hatch(?).

do as we do at the dealer.

open the front doors look in between the hinges and find the small rubber hose and cut the end off,thats it,problem solved forever.

the drain end was a poor design.

hope that helps

There is a class-action lawsuit being settled by VW fixing what is a defect. If you own a VW that has this problem, (Water Ingress) you may be reimbursed for the repairs, and VW is supposed to fix the problem.