How Much Water is in a Leaky Car?

How Much Water is in a Leaky Car?
Jan
17
2022

You had a rain water leak in your car, and you got it fixed. What next? It will dry out on its own right? Maybe you can just vacuum the carpets, and it will dry?

People really don't seem to realize how much water is in their car when they have had a leak. They know the carpets are wet, they can feel that they are damp, and they assume they can vacuum the footwells with a wet-vac and that will suck out the water. Some people believe that they can open the windows a crack and put the heater on, and it will even dry out on its own.

In this compilation of clips, we show you, with a number of cars, what's actually under that top layer of carpet. There can be foam and felt which is as much as five inches thick. At the very least this will be sodden and there will likely to be a puddle underneath in the floor pan. 

Between the carpet and underlay there is often a waterproof plastic membrane, so the dampness you are feeling on your carpets may very well just be sitting on the top. Any water underneath will be trapped there, with very little surface area to evaporate.

You really do need to get the seats out and those carpets up, and make sure the water is removed, and the car thoroughly dried because it can and will cause damage. You can see that under the carpet there are wires and cables, electronic control boxes, computers, sensors for seats and air-bags, amps and even speakers. They are usually water-resistant, but if they sit in water long enough, they will go pop. 

You will also get mould growing and the metalwork on the inside of the car is only given a thin coat of paint at the factory, it isn't terribly corrosion resistant. And then there's the general issue that there's moisture in your car, the condensation problem will remain, your windows will still be steamed up every morning, and everything will remain damp and fusty. 

How do I dry wet carpets in a car?

We would advise against DIY and our lawyers would suggest we say, "Don't try this at home kids", because there are hazards, not least because electrics and water are a dangerous combination. But some of you will have some experience with motor mechanics and want to have a go yourselves.

So, you do exactly what we do here. We take out the seats and use bungees to lift up the carpet, so it can drip-dry. We use a wet vac to suck up the water from the floor, and we come back every few hours and do it again until the carpets are no longer saturated with water. Then we put in a warm air blower, and we use this to dry the car out over one to two nights.

It takes us a couple of days, and it's likely to take you longer because you will probably not be equipped with industrial blowers. A fan heater will do the trick but will take longer, so obviously you need to do it indoors.

An alternative method is to remove the carpets completely, but this can be easier said than done. Work from the front of the car, and if you find that you need to take the whole dashboard out in order to remove the carpets,  it's probably not going to be the most efficient use of your time.

Car Water Leak Specialists - Essex

Car Water Leak Specialist - Essex

If you have soggy carpets and wet floor pans because of a water leak, let us help. Even if you have already fixed the leaks, we are experts in decontamination and drying cars.

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