Plug Roof Holes in Police Interceptor


#1

Just bought a used 2009 P71; mechanic checked it out and it’s great. Mostly minor cosmetic stuff to deal with.
Namely, there are several Quarter-sized holes in the roof. I think they were where transmitter/radio/lights were installed. I need to patch them so it doesn’t rust when it rains, etc. Aside from taking it to a body shop, how can I fix them myself? No, I don’t have access to welding torches or anything like that. I hope to do it with a basic DIY method. Any sort of prefabricated silicon plug, rubber plug, something-plug, etc. In the interim I’ll probably cover them with lame white duct tape. :slight_smile:

Any ideas? This would be a huge help and I have about 8 of these holes I need to fix. The holes are surface only, so it’s not like they extend all the way into the cab or trunk. But it’s obvious allowing water to get in them would be a bad idea.


#2

you can probably buy rubber grommet type plugs at an auto supply place, an electrical supply house or heating and AC supply store and seal them in with a urethane sealant, the kind that wind shields are sealed in with


#3

wesw is correct…You can buy rubber hole plugs in various sizes…You should also visit

http://www.crownvic.net/ubbthreads/ubbthreads.php to tap into all things Ford Panther…If your prize is in “The Dark Mode” (interior lights don’t illuminate when doors are opened) that can be corrected, seat-belt chimes can be silenced, rear door handles restored to operation…Center consoles are available (eBay) to fill that ugly gap between the front seats…


#4

Grainger or McMaster Carr are industrial supply houses that should carry rubber plugs or plastic caps to cover your holes. A little clear silicone on the edge of the hole and pop the plug in. You should be good to go. OR, buy a few antenna to place in the holes and freak out people that blast by you in the left lane realizing they just sped past an unmarked cop. Endless fun on long trips.


#5

not poly urethane, just urethane sealant. my brain was asleep


#6

@wesw, polyurethane and urethane are the same thing.


#7

I thought poly urethane got hard and urethane stayed pliable


#8

yeah I just looked it up , they are not necessarily the same poly urethane is urethane but urethane is not necessarily polyurethane


#9

Body Hole Plugs…Different sizes are available, 3/8" to 3"


#10

I once rented an old police cruiser, and it had rubber plugs. I might also consider having a piece of metal welded over the holes.


#11

I wouldn’t use anything made of rubber or plastic because you don’t know how well it’ll stand up to the UV rays.

Instead I’d use a plug button. It’s made metal, and they come different diameters. Just apply a little silicone sealant around the hole and pop it in.

http://search.aol.com/aol/imageDetails?s_it=imageDetails&q=plug+button&v_t=customfirefoxright-ff&b=image%3F%26q%3Dplug%2Bbutton%26tb_oid%3D18-04-2014%26s_it%3Dcustomfirefoxright-ff%26tb_mrud%3D18-04-2014%26tb_uuid%3D7BA609862F736CEFD1365B26D97CB592%26oreq%3D2a10a31da8f44d3eb698e59858085833&img=http%3A%2F%2Fimg1.fastenal.com%2Fproductimages%2F11120485.jpg&host=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.fastenal.com%2Fweb%2Fproducts%2Fdetails%2F11120474&width=143&height=85&thumbUrl=http%3A%2F%2Ft3.gstatic.com%2Fimages%3Fq%3Dtbn%3AANd9GcRRoUIC41CubQMwMe9JnA2YLVxwD5ZGG4CI-jgwgmogaEAG3JdDH9m3cA&imgWidth=300&imgHeight=178&imgSize=6590&imgTitle=plug+button

Tester


#12

The flat plugs available at hardware stores for plugging holes in electrical junction boxes were the right size for the holes in my last two P-71s. They sit nice and flat. I used a little silicone on the edges.

Tell us more about your car.
How many miles?
How many hours at idle. (Push the trip meter button twice for the number.)
Highway trooper or city police?
Did you get the service records? Most departments have them available, and they are VERY WELL maintained.
I gave $2000 for my '06 and $2500 for my '08. They were both about five years old at the time, and had miles in the 80s. Another town nearby sold an 80K '08 for $4025 on a sealed bid auction last month. I was surprised. Obviously I didn’t bid enough.

There is a website devoted to these cars. I don’t remember, but it may have been www.p71.com. Better google it.


#13

And just so everyone knows:

There is just no way you are going to prevent rust from forming at those holes. Not only were they cut into the roof, thereby exposing bare metal to the outside contaminants, it was done long ago and the rust is already there! All it is going to do is grow. The best one can hope for is to slow it down.


#14

that s why uerathane may work better than silicone, it adheres extremely well, silicone does not evem come close


#15

I’ve heard conflicting opinions about what’s best: metal, rubber, or plastic. But certainly not a consensus, which seems strange to me. Especially when people have been doing this for a while and there are sites like (Caddyman mentioned) www.crownvic.net devoted to these cars. While I continue to search for a good answer, at least it’s July and won’t rain much around here for at least several weeks, if not months. But the sooner I can figure this out the better. Oh yeah, and I’d also like to be able to paint over it and have it try to match the existing white coat.

It’s a 2009 Interceptor, was used by a nearby Sheriff affiliation. Mileage just tipped 180K while test driving it to-from the Goodyear I had it inspected. Not sure about the “idle hours”, I’ll want to check that. Other than the holes on the roof/trunk there are two 3" slits where the push-bar was removed. The inside needs a good vacuuming. The dealer/guy who sold the car (he got it as inventory just last Monday) did some cleaning on the front seats with some nauseating cleaner. So I need to steam clean those seats. The dash is in mostly good shape aside from some left over mounting hardware for some PD equipment.

The transmission needs a full flush, the front brakes are functional but at about 20% stopping power, and I need a new air filter. Parts and labor would be about $350 if I took it to the same shop. The seller agreed to take the cost of repair off the sale price, so – cash in hand – I came away with spending $2,300 for the car.

Anytime I get a car looked at I use my benchmark: I need this to get me across the country and back and keep going, with nothing but a smooth ride. The alternator was recently rebuilt and all the hoses were replaced with “racing grade” components. After looking under the hood I could easily pick them out, but I couldn’t tell you anything about them off hand. Just they’re pretty baby-blue.

Still… I need to get those holes plugged.


#16

the plugs are cheap, just buy some and pop them in until you make up your mind. you ve been given multiple choices according to your own, easy DYI criterion. you can paint metal and platic but probably not rubber. but rubber might fit best.


#17

@wesw, either polyurethane or silicone will work. Surface preparation is the most important part of the problem.


#18

I disagree strongly.

urethane sealant will pull apart plywood and they use URETHANE on windshields and marine applications, not silicone.

urethane is much much stronger and adheres much much better to paint and metal and plastic

butyou are right, surface prep is important.

but you don t need to tell me, I have extensive experience with both materials. the poster is the one asking


#19

I was reading up on poly vs. urethane; it seemed like poly is ‘supposedly’ stronger. But Wesw, you sound like you know what you’re talking about. I guess I’ll just have to read more to figure out what will work best. You’re right I’ve got several viable options laid out. Just gotta figure out which works best for what I want.


#20

poly urethane can take many forms and urethane, can be something totally different. they have urethane sealant that fits in a caulking gun at lowes or home depot or marine stores. don t get hung up on the name. JT is kinda right that its the same thing, but just don t get poly urethane wood finish, that is not what you want. get it in a caulking gun tube.