Blogs Car Info Our Show Deals Mechanics Files Vehicle Donation

It Rains - Van Leaks

My 1999 Express High-top Conversion van Geneva SVS REALLY leaks when it rains. Here in Seattle that’s a lot! Water stains the fabric panel at the very back of the van, flush with the driver’s side, with similar but lesser problem on other side. Mechanics found some opening around wiring but that hasn’t fixed the problem. Van bought second-hand and problem started several years after we purchased. Mechanics found some indication back panel may have been replaced after undisclosed accident, but we had no knowledge of that. They power spray with hoses but can’t seem to find source. Any ideas? Corgis ride on back bench seat and love the van but it’s going to be mold on wheels unless we can find/fix problem!

Normally I would start by asking if you have  sun roof, as leaks often = sunroof.  Here I suspect it is accident damage.  You may want to wait for a few additional suggestions, but I suspect you will need a body shop to do some hunting.

Thanks. No sun roof, but it does have that high top addition. I asked the mechanics (it’s been to two different shops so far) to check but they claim no leaks coming in from the top. When they took off the inside back fabric panel, they found some open areas around the wiring and that’s when they found indication it had been in an accident. We thought that was the leaking area, but it’s getting wet again and they told me they’d have to progressively remove more inside panels working up toward the driver’s side to see where water is coming in. At this rate, I will have spent more in diagnostics than the van is worth, which wouldn’t be so bad if we can find/fix problem. But those Corgis sure like to ride on the bench seat and look out the picture windows, so we keep looking for a way to repair their van.

This sounds like water is being thrown up from the tires into the wheel well. If rearended, or backed into a lightpost etc. that could cause seperation of a weld or other internal damage. have it up on a lift, and try the pressure hose again.

Could it be leaking around your windows? I assume this has the large side windows most conversion vans have? Check caulking & weatherstriping around them.

It leaks when it’s sitting in front of my house, especially when the driver’s side is exposed to the wind-driven rain. I back it into the driveway so it’s the front of the van that’s exposed to the wind, but it still gets wet in the same spot on the side back. You guys that are responding really rock and I will ask the mechanics to get it on a lift and turn on that hose.

Oops! Thought I responded to this one. We’ve checked around the windows and supposedly found no leaks, although did replace the gasket all around the back doors because there was water getting in there too. Now all the wetness is mostly on the left back side perpendicular to the back end with a little dampness on the right side. Didn’t know there was caulk as well as weatherstripping so I’ll have them check the windows back there again.