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E46 General discussion and technical help for 1999-2004 3 series cars.

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Old 11-26-2007, 06:24 PM   #1
kentukred

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Water Leak Problem, E46, Please Help!!

I have a reoccurring problem with my 1999 323i leaking water into the front door panels and into the floorboards. A couple of times after hard downpours there has been standing water in the side compartments in the front door panels. Also, after a hard rain, water appears to run down the door, through the weather stripping, down the door sill (at the point where it joins the front trim colum and the seatbelt trim columb) and then depositing into the front floorboards. If anyone has any information about how I can fix this problem, I would greatly appreciate it.
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Old 11-26-2007, 06:38 PM   #2
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Do you have a sun roof? Sometimes the drains can back up and the water runs along the body down to the joint at the door. Other than that it might be something specific to e46's and I can't help you there.
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Old 11-28-2007, 08:49 PM   #3
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Ive seen on a few e39's the vapor barrier behind the door pannel has eather came unglued or someone who did a window regulator didnt seal it properly. Its a black sticky substance that BMW calls Beutal (I think thats the spelling) which glues to foam vapor barrier to the door.
Or like said above your sun roof drains are cloged causing water back up.
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Old 11-29-2007, 12:35 AM   #4
kentukred

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Fixes for Water Leak

I have had some repairs done to both of the doors in the past. One door needed a window motor and the other needed an exterior door handle replaced. So perhaps the door panel wasn't put back on correctly, and perhaps the vapor barrier isn't sealed correctly. Is there anyway to trouble shoot the situation and decide which is the acutal problem, the vapor barrier or the sun roof leaking? Are there any quick fixes for either that wouldn't require me taking it to a repair shop at 60$ an hour?
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Old 11-29-2007, 01:01 AM   #5
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theres a drain on th ebottom of the door, that whould revert to the outside of the car. Check to see if its plugged with leaves?

I read about this on anotehr forum, not from my own experience. But worth a try.

also maybe your door weather stripping is getting old and has started a small leak.
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Old 12-03-2007, 11:39 PM   #6
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I can almost guarantee it's the vapor barriers leaking. Given enough time, even without work being done on it, the glue will seperate and let water in. It happens on E39's too. Pull the panels and look at the bottoms of the black vapor barriers. If it's not obvious, close the doors with the windows up, and run water down the glass for a minute. Open the door and look for a trickle of water getting by the black glue.
I see it all the time.
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