Town Car "wet passenger floor" fix

Slick Fan

Senior Member
601
7
0
Utah
This should pertain to the 2003-2011 Town Cars.
Okay, so whoever brainstormed this cowl fresh air design needs to be slapped. Then the guy who signed off on the design needs to be slapped. Probably multiple times each!:D

The problem;
After a good rain, your notice your right front & possibly rear carpets are now curiously soggy.
Assuming your windshield seal isn't leaking, the culprit is most likely the fresh air intake plenum for your HVAC system, located just under the right windshield wiper.

The fix;
1) Open your hood, remove the two screws that hold down the outer vent grille, near the base of the windshield. Remove the grille. At this time, you can also peel up the hood-to-cowl weatherstripping that contacts that particular area. There's no glue involved here & it re-installs by simply pushing back on.

2) Remove the 5 screws (8mm hex) and the 2 larger nuts to the right, from the cowl plenum. If the area is filled with leaves & debris, use your wife's favorite vacuum (with the appropriate hose attachment) to suck out all non-car matter.:D


3) Carefully pry the plenum loose from under the grille to the right. Take note how they slip together. Once loose, this rubber sponge-like seal is the culprit that allows water inside your car. Mine is missing a piece on the side...


Also, examine & clean the drain area with the rubber flapper.

4) Clean up any dirt/leaves/etc. from the area...and use that same vacuum if need be!
And by the way, in the very left of this fuzzy (sorry) photo, there is a sponge-like item that is either there to hide "unsightly" fender bolts, or to simply serve to retain moisture in this area for as long as possible. I removed it & didn't put it back...that fender bolt might thank me one day. :D There's it's twin on the other fender that I'll also remove at some point. But, I digress...


5) If your seal is soggy, the moisture may actually help to release the sticky side from the plastic (mine came off in one piece). Once off, dry both the plastic & the metal cowl, then clean both with contact cleaner or brake cleaner...the idea is to have no oils left on either surface.


6) Armed with at least 1/2 tube of silicone sealant, lay a nice thick bead on the plastic surface. I also gooped up my front screw holes (seen in previous photo), but thinking back, this is probably entirely unnecessary.


7) Reinstall in reverse order. On my particular car (I assume all are the same), once I reinstalled the plenum, I noticed the rear half (nearest the windshield) didn't squish down as much as the front half, leaving a gap that water would slip past. So I screwed a nozzle onto the silicone tube & laid down a definite excess of silicone to fill the gap.
So, you may want to lay down a double-thick gob in that area before you reinstall the part. Then double check with a bright flashlight, to make sure it's enough.

8) The car's interior will now REEK of silicone! If you can park it with the windows down, I would strongly suggest that.

Tomorrow;
Examining the carpet! (with pics)
 

Slick Fan

Senior Member
601
7
0
Utah
Okay, now it's time to examine the soggy carpet. I strongly suggest pulling it up & getting it dry as soon as possible, to avoid mold & mildew. In my situation, the car was parked with the nose pointed downhill during a big rain storm, so the rear portion stayed dry, only the front was wet.
This is what I did;

1a) Remove the kick panel, starting with the back end first.


1b) This is held down with wide metal snaps, so grab the plastic on either side approximately where the snap is & carefully pull upward while rocking it side to side.


1c) The front is held in with one round snap. It's sort of delicate, to take it easy...rock back & forth, while pulling rearward.


2) Pull the carpet back & sop up the water with a towel. Then shove a new towel under there, lay the carpet back down & squish it with your feet...remove the towel, insert a fresh dry one & repeat. Continue until the towel comes out damp, not soggy.
Then lift the carpet up & stick something in there to keep it off the floor, so it can air dry. I used two 2x2 boards.



3) Now look at the firewall pad. Squish that thing & you'll get more water! I rolled a towel on the floor, then pushed the pad with my foot, to squish out some water. Then, I flattened a gallon water jug, and shoved it in between the pad & firewall, to let as much air in there as possible.


The only way to really do this right would be to remove the HVAC unit & pull back the whole pad...I'm not that desperate. :D
It's going to take a few days to dry, so make your passengers sit in the back.

Forum member All2kool has a great idea to help speed the drying process;
To wick the remaining moisture out of the car, buy a cheap colander (Dollar store) and a package of Dry-Z-Air. Set the colander in a dish (Dollar store again) that will hold water but not so shallow as to allow the colander to reach the accumulated water.
 

Boanna

New member
3
0
1
I did this a few years back and it definitely works. Thanks for posting this thread :)
I had too do the same to 03 Tc it was a easy fix
______________________________
 

Tmadzia

New member
3
0
1
I had too do the same to 03 Tc it was a easy fix
What about the tube that runs down the inside of the right cowl. I was told it was plugged. The body shop told me they unplugged it, never had an issue since, and mine always was wet on the right side floor mat after rain...
 

memolliver

New member
3
1
3
This should pertain to the 2003-2011 Town Cars.
Okay, so whoever brainstormed this cowl fresh air design needs to be slapped. Then the guy who signed off on the design needs to be slapped. Probably multiple times each!:D

The problem;
After a good rain, your notice your right front & possibly rear carpets are now curiously soggy.
Assuming your windshield seal isn't leaking, the culprit is most likely the fresh air intake plenum for your HVAC system, located just under the right windshield wiper.

The fix;
1) Open your hood, remove the two screws that hold down the outer vent grille, near the base of the windshield. Remove the grille. At this time, you can also peel up the hood-to-cowl weatherstripping that contacts that particular area. There's no glue involved here & it re-installs by simply pushing back on.

2) Remove the 5 screws (8mm hex) and the 2 larger nuts to the right, from the cowl plenum. If the area is filled with leaves & debris, use your wife's favorite vacuum (with the appropriate hose attachment) to suck out all non-car matter.:D


3) Carefully pry the plenum loose from under the grille to the right. Take note how they slip together. Once loose, this rubber sponge-like seal is the culprit that allows water inside your car. Mine is missing a piece on the side...


Also, examine & clean the drain area with the rubber flapper.

4) Clean up any dirt/leaves/etc. from the area...and use that same vacuum if need be!
And by the way, in the very left of this fuzzy (sorry) photo, there is a sponge-like item that is either there to hide "unsightly" fender bolts, or to simply serve to retain moisture in this area for as long as possible. I removed it & didn't put it back...that fender bolt might thank me one day. :D There's it's twin on the other fender that I'll also remove at some point. But, I digress...


5) If your seal is soggy, the moisture may actually help to release the sticky side from the plastic (mine came off in one piece). Once off, dry both the plastic & the metal cowl, then clean both with contact cleaner or brake cleaner...the idea is to have no oils left on either surface.


6) Armed with at least 1/2 tube of silicone sealant, lay a nice thick bead on the plastic surface. I also gooped up my front screw holes (seen in previous photo), but thinking back, this is probably entirely unnecessary.


7) Reinstall in reverse order. On my particular car (I assume all are the same), once I reinstalled the plenum, I noticed the rear half (nearest the windshield) didn't squish down as much as the front half, leaving a gap that water would slip past. So I screwed a nozzle onto the silicone tube & laid down a definite excess of silicone to fill the gap.
So, you may want to lay down a double-thick gob in that area before you reinstall the part. Then double check with a bright flashlight, to make sure it's enough.

8) The car's interior will now REEK of silicone! If you can park it with the windows down, I would strongly suggest that.

Tomorrow;
Examining the carpet! (with pics)
My Town Car is 2009. Same problem. I want to replace the rubber sponge-like seal with an identical replacement instead of silicone. Does anyone know the part number and where to get it (other than the dealer)? I have a concern that silicone will not work well.
 

Nongmin

Active member
138
65
28
Charlotte, NC
X2 on using silicone from the tube. Worked well on both of mine, just lay down a good, thick bead from the tube, following the pattern of the original doofus foam seal used by the factory. If you do it right, it'll never leak or disintegrate, unlike the foam.

While you're in there, make sure the little rubber drain with the flap thingy is clear and unobstructed. Poke around between the fender and firewall, you'll find it. It catches mucho gunk!
 

memolliver

New member
3
1
3
The silicon has worked well for, like, a zillion of us.
I called a Lincoln dealer. The part number, for those who want to know, is 3W1Z19C928AA. Lincoln does not sell the gasket by itself. You have to buy the cowling with the gasket already attached. Lincoln wants $70 but I found it on eBay for $40.
 

04TC

Junior Member
220
90
28
Tampa, FL
I called a Lincoln dealer. The part number, for those who want to know, is 3W1Z19C928AA. Lincoln does not sell the gasket by itself. You have to buy the cowling with the gasket already attached. Lincoln wants $70 but I found it on eBay for $40.
Thanks for sharing this information. Mine hasn't leaked under my ownership but it's good to know that is an additional option. I would guess the OEM replacements could develop the same leak problem? Please let us know how the replacement gasket fares
 

Mrmerc49

New member
9
2
3
My 06 is wet after car wash only in the rear right floor pan, seems to be coming from under seat heat duct or something like a box under the center of the rear of the front seat. My crown vic has a duct for under seat heat to rear passenger in the same place as the water is coming from the towncar. I did the cowl fix with silicone and it didnt work. Thing is if the pressure washer hits the wiper area the floor is immediarely wet. So if the cowl fix isnt working then where else could if be coming from.sides of carpet are dry,front carpet is dry but a little damp near the side of the rear of the center console where the heat comes out.
______________________________
 
87
25
18
My 06 is wet after car wash only in the rear right floor pan, seems to be coming from under seat heat duct or something like a box under the center of the rear of the front seat. My crown vic has a duct for under seat heat to rear passenger in the same place as the water is coming from the towncar. I did the cowl fix with silicone and it didnt work. Thing is if the pressure washer hits the wiper area the floor is immediarely wet. So if the cowl fix isnt working then where else could if be coming from.sides of carpet are dry,front carpet is dry but a little damp near the side of the rear of the center console where the heat comes out.
On an 07 I had they had to seal the area around the hood release on the firewall.That car was wet in the front and back passenger because of that. If you have a sunroof that could also be an area that water gets in if the drains are clogged.
 

CuttingToolGuy

Well-known member
385
1
296
63
Houston
Mrmerc49,

I agree driver side leak is your most likely culprit since you say it comes when the water hits the cowl. Some people have also gotten water in the back when the door drains are filled with rubbish but, they usually hear sloshing when doors are opened & closed.

Take a look at this thread....

 

Koach

New member
10
3
3
Bought my 06 at the end of August here in central FL (think land of retirees). Experienced a torrential downpour the next day and with the nose pointed slightly downhill I came out to a couple inches of water on the pass front floor board.

Quick search showed the standard RTV repairs…looked easy enough. Took mine apart and found the drain to be plugged with leaves/debris in varying stages of decay. Thorough cleaning and a tube later that took less than an hour, but then came the fun part of what to do about the carpet. Further investigation showed the drivers front and pass rear to be damp as well. I was not happy to say the least.

Removed seats/console/carpet and placed it on my trailer behind the house to let the FL sun do its job. After a few days the thick foam appeared to be drying nicely, but instead of buying new carpet I decided to get the power washer out along with some carpet cleaner and went over it three times.

I let it tan for four days while rotating to ensure all was dry. Luckily the floor pan had zero evidence of corrosion so I was able to install the following Sunday afternoon and happy to report that (knock on wood) I haven’t had an issue since.

I had read about applying RTV to the driver’s side grommet as well, but that didn’t look very fun or solid and after looking around for the drain, I found it to be a ¾”ish diameter by about an inch long spout. Ran down to Ace and grabbed two feet of clear tubing and ran it down inside the fender, secured with a zip tie, and leaked checked with a garden hose…all was gtg. This was, IMO, much easier than trying to properly seal that grommet.

My point; the root cause repair is an easy fix. Restoring the collateral damage was another story…

All of this was just a few months after dealing with Ford regarding the evaporator drain leaking into the cab of my 2018 F150…carpet saturated and moldy. WTH is wrong with Ford and why can’t they get this right?!
 
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