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General E46 Forum
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Old 07-13-2006, 11:07 AM   #1
mbhupatrai
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Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Cincinnati, OH
Posts: 30
My Ride: 1999 328i (E46)
Exclamation Leak: Front Passenger Footwell SOAKED!

Firstly, mine's a 99 328i E46.

My front passenger footwell is completely soaked (it's been raining the past few days). Don't have a garage.

The door seals seem fine, and I'm inclined to think it's got something to do with the front windshield.

Please review the pictures and let me know your thoughts and suggestions and your estimates (or knowledge) of how much a fix it would be. Also would like to know if there is something I can do myself (not too good with tools, but if it's easy, I can give it a shot).

Live in Cincinnati and driving to NYC this weekend and would like to have at least a temporary fix till I return from NYC next week.

Otherwise, despite other problems, I do love my car and do NOT wish to part with it.

Please give me any input you have and I appreciate it!

Manoj
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Old 07-13-2006, 11:12 AM   #2
dave12345
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Join Date: Apr 2005
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Posts: 4,141
My Ride: 2003 ///M3 6MT
dam man put a tarp over the car to contain it until u can get it fixed.... that carpet def gotta be replaced

good luck iwth that man
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Old 07-13-2006, 11:20 AM   #3
idoc330ci
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try this...

http://www.bmpdesign.com/technical/t..._seal_leak.php
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Old 07-13-2006, 12:00 PM   #4
mbhupatrai
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Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Cincinnati, OH
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My Ride: 1999 328i (E46)
Thanks for your quick and very detailed reply! I appreciate the help!

Where can I order this part. If I were to have this done at the dealership, any ideas what it'll cost? Just so I have a 'comeback' number if the dealership gives me a fishy quote.

M

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Old 07-13-2006, 12:11 PM   #5
idoc330ci
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seems like a fairly easy diy to me. you'll save a lot of $$ if you can diy. i've ordered parts from PacificBMW and they have much better prices than from the local BMW stealership. you can also try here....http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthr...rder+oem+parts
good luck.
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Old 07-13-2006, 12:21 PM   #6
galveston328i
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My Ride: 99 328i (RIP) 03 ZHP
You definitely need to replace your cowl seal, but that may not solve your leak problem - at least it didn't for me on the same car with the same symptoms (including totally degraded cowl seal). I suspect the cause of your leak is probably the weatherseal inside your door. Had any work done inside the door recently? You can search and find a fair amount of information about such leaks on this site, as well as detailed instructions for fixing. As for the cowl seal, I picked mine up from the dealer for less than $60, and replacing it is a pretty simple project. Good luck.
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Old 07-13-2006, 12:27 PM   #7
mbhupatrai
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Join Date: Dec 2005
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My Ride: 1999 328i (E46)
You guys are fantastic!

I did ask my local shop to see how much it would cost to (1) have the job done there OR (2) buy the part from them. I should hear from him shortly after which I'll determine which route to take.

I have examined the door and there seems to be no moisture in that area. This is not to say the problem might not be originating there, but nothing visible to my (totally unexpert) eyes or touch.

I guess I have no choice but to do this by process of elimination or pay the shop to locate the problem. For 60-70 bucks, I'll try it myself.

Yesterday (before I discovered the cowl seal issue), I did ask my service advisor how much it would cost to fix the seal around the windshield (but I don't know if he was referring to the cowl) and he estimated about $150, which I'm willing to do if it can be done before Saturday's New York trip. Wonder if I can convince him to use the BMW Wet Vac on my thoroughly wet carpet.

Also, after having read that diy, I have to say, there always has been an 'interesting' odor in my car after it's been closed for a while. Now that this has opened my eyes, I suspect that has, an almost definite relationship to this issue.

God, I take the damn thing to the car wash once a week!!!

M
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Old 07-13-2006, 12:32 PM   #8
UnBreakable
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Holy crap, I was just gonna start a thread on this. I have the same problem but the leak is not as bad and its on the Driver's side .. Defenitally good info
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Old 07-13-2006, 02:12 PM   #9
Tknojnky
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My Ride: 99 323i, K1200S, R71
Some people have said to check your door seals, but what I think they mean is "Vapor Barriers". There is a sheet of foam just behind the door panel on each door that keeps rain/moister out of the passenger cabin. If these seals are not replaced PERFECTLY after any work is done, you will have a leak. I fought with two of these for about a year and a half before pinpointing the exact leak. If you bought your car used from a dealership, ask them if they did any work on the doors. (speakers, window regulators, ect) Chances are someone didn't replace the vapor barrier properly. Easy fix, but can cause you a lot of trouble in the mean time.

Shop vac your carpet NOW.. the longer that water sits in there the worse the smell will be. I actually removed the carpet from my car and dried it with heaters before putting everything back together.

Good luck, let us know how it goes.
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Old 07-13-2006, 02:27 PM   #10
mbhupatrai
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Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Cincinnati, OH
Posts: 30
My Ride: 1999 328i (E46)
I have a great Service Advisor at the dealership.

I emailed him the same pictures and a bit of question and answer and ... well read this:

"HEY BUDDY,

That problem is one of two possibilities:
1. Its the vapor seal, located
within the passenger door and wrapping around into the firewall on the
passenger side.
-Approx. $30.00-40.00 for
the part/ $150.00/labor

2. Its the cowl seal. Judging
from the pictures you supplied, the likelihood of this is almost certain.
-Approx $60.00 for the
part/ $55.0/labor

OR

you can buy it online or somewhere cheaper

and you and I can put it on ourselves, I ll help you.



Let me know my friend,...."

So I'm doing the cowl seal. It's going to cost me $60 minus the Car Club Discount (hopefully) and get his help. Of course, he's a good chap and I shan't forget him for helping me, if you know what I mean.

My experience at this forum, thus far, as been exemplary and further to this, I have had excellent experiences at the local dealership as well. My guy seems to always be looking out for me, which is more than I can say for any Nissan or Mitsubishi experience I've had before.

Of course, idoc330ci is right. I would save a nice chunk of change by not paying for service, but it's a willing wave-off since the person helping me is going to be someone that knows what's he's doing better than me.

I'd have tried to do it myself if he hadn't offered but since he has...

Of course, the problem could be the vapour seal in the door, but I guess we'll play it by ear.

Do car washes have Shop-Vacs or do I need to buy one of these damn things?

I am going to take her to the detailing shop after I get back from NYC but I want to get her as dry as possible until then.

And also, I shall keep you posted as to the results!

Thanks again lads!

Manoj
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