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Water getting in passenger side through air blower box

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Water getting in passenger side through air blower box
Old October 23rd, 2020, 02:28 PM   #1
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Water getting in passenger side through air blower box

The car is a 2004 Gen III. I've read similar threads discussing what looks like my issue, but none of them had a resolution. When my car sits out in a heavy rain water gets in to the air blower box above the passenger side footwell, the box that houses the HVAC blower motor. It then drips down on to the carpet below. I am assuming it is coming in through the fresh air intake and that it should be safely routed out of the car, but for some reason it is getting stored in the air box and not draining. Is there some sort of drain tube or drain flap that is supposed to handle this task? And if so where is it located so that I can clear it? I can see the AC drain tube under the box but I don't see how that could be the culprit, but I could obviously be wrong about that.

Any and all replies will be greatly appreciated!!!
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Old October 23rd, 2020, 03:19 PM   #2
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If the gen 3 is anything like the gen 2, there is indeed drain tubes that will exit the water from the HVAC blower system/Plenum. On the gen 2, they look like pinched rubber hoses or maybe I'm thinking of the intake water evacuation hoses, in any even, there is a drain hose and when enough water pressure builds, the water will evacuate. Regardless, They will often get plugged and require maintenance.

I'm sure some gen 3 guys will chime in shortly, good luck.
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Old October 24th, 2020, 09:42 AM   #3
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At the base of the windshield under the hood on the passenger side remove the plastic air box and you will see where air is drawn in for the hvac system. You will need to build a ridge of silicone to prevent water from flowing into the air box...once you see how it is set up it will make sense.
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Old October 24th, 2020, 11:13 AM   #4
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I had the same problem with my 03 Mach 1. Turned out the drain line was plugged by crud and slimy algae looking stuff (found after running a coat hanger up the drain tube). I took my blow gun, turned the regulator down as low as I could, and very gently blew from the bottom through the drain tube and it opened up and started draining. Never had a problem again with it. I also remember trying to access the internal box where the water accumulated with the idea of pouring bleach in to kill the algae, but it never happened again so I let it be. Worth a try, but be careful not to blow too hard. Not sure what it would do, just seems like you wouldn't want to blast it to backflush it.
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Old October 27th, 2020, 03:30 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Cdover73 View Post
I had the same problem with my 03 Mach 1. Turned out the drain line was plugged by crud and slimy algae looking stuff (found after running a coat hanger up the drain tube). I took my blow gun, turned the regulator down as low as I could, and very gently blew from the bottom through the drain tube and it opened up and started draining. Never had a problem again with it. I also remember trying to access the internal box where the water accumulated with the idea of pouring bleach in to kill the algae, but it never happened again so I let it be. Worth a try, but be careful not to blow too hard. Not sure what it would do, just seems like you wouldn't want to blast it to backflush it.
There is a drain tube under the blower box in the passenger footwell, it exits to the right side of the footwell; it is just pressed on at either end and easy to remove and but back in place. I was able to disconnect it from the blower box and blow it out, but there was no resistance at all. I have to believe it is not clogged as it exits the car. The opening it connects to in the blower box is quite large; although I could not see in to it it seems free also just by my gentle probing.
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Old October 27th, 2020, 03:46 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by BRENT View Post
At the base of the windshield under the hood on the passenger side remove the plastic air box and you will see where air is drawn in for the hvac system. You will need to build a ridge of silicone to prevent water from flowing into the air box...once you see how it is set up it will make sense.
I took a look on Sunday afternoon, but I can't work on the car again until Thursday. Would you mind describing to me what I will see when the black box, in the engine compartment - at the firewall, is removed?

Separately, there is a large vent opening right at the passenger side of the base of the windshield that looks like it would be where fresh air is drawn in from, it is covered by a plastic shield with a webbed pattern of openings in it. And being so obviously open I suspect that is where the rain is entering my car and then somehow getting in to my blower box and not exiting fast enough, so it "floods" the air box. I was going to remove that cover and peak inside but I would have had to break the tiny plastic clips that secure the weather strip that sits on top of the firewall; and with rain coming Monday I decided to wait. The car has to be outside at the moment so I covered that vent opening with plastic and after two days of rain the blower box did not get wet like it was doing. So if you can describe to me how the vent opening (if that is what it is) at the base of the windshield and the air box under the hood at the firewall work together that would help me a lot! As I attempt to fix this issue. So far I can see that I will now need a new blower motor at the least, and possibly another resistor, which I had just replaced a couple of months ago for $125, yikes!
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Old October 27th, 2020, 04:45 PM   #7
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That's a no-brainer... Just install this before driving in rain.

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Old October 28th, 2020, 11:35 AM   #8
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You will be able to remove the Weather stripe from the clip instead of removing the clip from the car, when you remove the air box you will see that the water and air is directed from the base of the windshield into this airbox that leads inside to the hvac system. You can look down into the hole and see the blower fan. There is a small ridge that is supposed to direct the water away from this opening and out the drain. Any large amount of water entering this box will over flow the ridge and let water run directly into the blower motor and housing. When washing the car do not spray directly into the cowl opening at the base of the windshield on the passenger side as this will flood over the ridge and put water in the air box. Build this ridge up slightly with silicone to direct water to the drain and away from the air box opening. Like I said it will make sense once you see it. Hope this helps. If you need to replace the blower motor grab one from from a Dodge p/u, exact fit replacement other than the wire harness being a couple of inches longer. Dodge Ram 1992-2002 / Jeep Cherokee 1993-1998. Less than 50 bucks from Rockauto or 10 bucks from a junkyard.
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Old October 28th, 2020, 05:23 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by BRENT View Post
You will be able to remove the Weather stripe from the clip instead of removing the clip from the car, when you remove the air box you will see that the water and air is directed from the base of the windshield into this airbox that leads inside to the hvac system. You can look down into the hole and see the blower fan. There is a small ridge that is supposed to direct the water away from this opening and out the drain. Any large amount of water entering this box will over flow the ridge and let water run directly into the blower motor and housing. When washing the car do not spray directly into the cowl opening at the base of the windshield on the passenger side as this will flood over the ridge and put water in the air box. Build this ridge up slightly with silicone to direct water to the drain and away from the air box opening. Like I said it will make sense once you see it. Hope this helps. If you need to replace the blower motor grab one from from a Dodge p/u, exact fit replacement other than the wire harness being a couple of inches longer. Dodge Ram 1992-2002 / Jeep Cherokee 1993-1998. Less than 50 bucks from Rockauto or 10 bucks from a junkyard.
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Thank you very much Brent, it makes sense to me now what has been happening. And thanks as well for letting me know about the compatibility of the pickup blower. I really appreciate your help!
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