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Guest Message by DevFuse

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'93 Impreza filling with water...help...gurgle!

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12 replies to this topic

#1 Cryobrain


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Posted 05 April 2004 - 04:04 PM

Whenever I drive my '93 Impreza (not Outback) in rainy/snowy conditions, the spare tire compartment fills with water, which sloshes around for days and rusts the spare. I can't seem to figure out where the water comes from, but I suspect it's from underneath, because the carpet stays mostly dry and the rear door seal seems intact. I've tried spraying with the hose up into the wheel wells and all around the rear, but can't see where the water gets in.

Has anyone else had this problem? Any ideas on how to locate/fix the problem?

#2 kevinsUBARU



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Posted 05 April 2004 - 07:53 PM

I have the same problem in my 95. I THINK I traced it down to the vent on the passenger side behind the crappy trunk lining, but its always dry while my tire compartment is full of mud, gravel, and standing water. I dont know...I gave up and just clean it out periodically.

Kevin :)

#3 gbhrps


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Posted 05 April 2004 - 09:39 PM

This one takes patience. You need to get someone into the trunk with a light. I don't know if your rear seats fold down or not, or if you can remove them from the car and still have access to the trunk, but that's where to start. Then you need someone outside the car to run a garden hose over the rear of the car, starting down low. Start with the tail lights and run the water over just one side for a few minutes while the person inside trains a light on it to watch for the leak. Then do the other tail light, then down low on the trunk seal, then higher up both sides, one at a time, the the rear glass down low then up one side, then the other, then the top of the glass, then down low on the rear quarter glass and up one side, then across the top, and so on. You must take your time and be systematic in order to give the water time to find its way in to where it can be spotted. I'd almost bet its not coming in through the bottom or the wheel wells. I'd put my money on the tail light seals or the glass. Good luck!

#4 Sydfloyd44


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Posted 05 April 2004 - 09:41 PM

One of the most common places I have seen water entering the trunk compartment is thru the seals for the rear lights. (brakes, etc) Pull back the trim on the walls of the trunk (best if you just remove them temporarily) and then start running water. If possible, drop down the back seats and watch with a flashlight inside while someone else runs the hose. Not totally necessary, but will help see anything as it is coming in rather than hosing and then searching for traces. Will be curious to know if you find anything.
P.S. Don't be afraid to push it with the amount/force of the water. If it is going to leak, MAKE IT LEAK!! Seals should be able to take it!! If not, they need some work. Now saying that, don't push it by using a high pressure car wash. A garden hose will work just fine.
Another option is to check with your local auto glass company. We use Ultrasonic Leak Detectors which makes it much easier to locate any breaks in seals or body seams. (car MUST be dry for them to work properly!)
Letting us know your results would be greatly appreciated.

#5 Sydfloyd44


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Posted 05 April 2004 - 09:44 PM

Alright, we must have been typing at the same time gbhrps.

Pretty good advice if I must say so myself!

#6 Cougar


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Posted 06 April 2004 - 12:36 AM

If the rear door seal is intact my next check would be the wheel wells. Water gets forced into them.

#7 Setright


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Posted 06 April 2004 - 04:01 AM

Does the car have a factory sunroof? (aka moonroof)

There's drain pipes in the A and C pillars, these connect up with hoses behind the rear wheel wells...check for unhooked hoses and blockages.

Could be the rearwindow seal. Hope not though!

Electric antenna on the rear flank? This has a drain hose too.

#8 Cryobrain


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Posted 06 April 2004 - 08:01 PM

Thanks for all the advice! I think it might be one of the rear lights; I will post when/if I do find the source(s). And I just might try the local auto glass place...

I don't have a sun/moonroof or a rear electric antenna, could there be any other drain pipes I don't know about?

Also, I don't think I mentioned that my car is a wagon, not a sedan. If it makes any difference.

#9 etlsport


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Posted 06 April 2004 - 09:16 PM

The best way to find a leak that i know of is to clear out the well, dry it off and cover all the surfaces with baby powder which will stick to the walls of the well, then next time it rains you can see the streaks left in the powder and they will lead you to your leak

#10 AaronPDX



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Posted 21 September 2016 - 01:57 PM

@etlsport: Very clever!

#11 brentlysubaru


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Posted 21 September 2016 - 02:22 PM

The 93 impreza wagon I just got rid of had the same problem. It was like a swimming pool in there. I traced it to the right rear strut tower being rusted out. Hated to junk that car it ran real good. Hopefully that's not your problem.

#12 moosens


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Posted 21 September 2016 - 04:27 PM

We had a tail light cause that issue on our 95 Impreza.

Also check the wheel wells especially the passenger side for any holes. Water definitely gets flung up and into any holes in that area.

#13 weber state subaru

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Posted 30 September 2016 - 05:46 PM

Had to deal with this on another vehicle.

1. Remove the wheel.

2. Wrap suspension with plastic wrap(like from your kitchen).

3. Partially unscrew all fasteners holding up your wheel liner.

4. Tape the edge of the wheel well to prevent over spray (don't have to if you don't plan on spraying to the edge).

5. Take a can of under carriage spray and cover it with 1-2 coats.


I did this in our Jeep and it stopped completely. We take it through streams quite often, so it has been tested.

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