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Discussion Starter #1
A 2014 Outback with musty odors coming out of the door when window is opened.
Dealership is unable to find the source.
They have pulled door panels 2x’s
Sprayed inside of door panels 2x’s
They have cleaned and treated ducts 3x’s
Replaced cabin filter 3x’s
Said the carpet was the problem and the entire carpet has been replaced
Checked all drains and all were clear, doors, a/c and sunroof
All of this at my expense
I can stick my finger in the window track once the window is down and will get a black film and it has the musty smell and I can scrape the seal with my finger nail and it will flake off
I believe there is something going on with the seal, this has been going on got over 2 years.
Never smell it until the window is lowered on both front windows, all year long, hot or cold it doesn’t matter dry weather or wet weather doesn’t matter.
Now it is also starting in the back windows but not as bad

Anyone have some help, thanks
 

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2008 OB Limited 2.5i, Portland OR USA
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You have identified the source of the musty smell, now the issue is to stop the moisture from getting in.

Window seals can be problematic as they dry out, lose contact with the glass, crack, etc. The fact that you don't notice it until the window is lowered suggests it seals OK when fully raised, but what you would like is to always be in contact. That's had to do on most vehicles.

An inexpensive test is to treat the seals to be more pliable; why not try this:
 

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Discussion Starter #3
You have identified the source of the musty smell, now the issue is to stop the moisture from getting in.

Window seals can be problematic as they dry out, lose contact with the glass, crack, etc. The fact that you don't notice it until the window is lowered suggests it seals OK when fully raised, but what you would like is to always be in contact. That's had to do on most vehicles.

An inexpensive test is to treat the seals to be more pliable; why not try this:
Thanks for your response I’m hoping the dealership will replace the seal at the top of the door panel but they seem to be reluctant to go there, why I don’t know. If not I’m going to treat the seals and see where that goes
Thanks
 

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Thanks for your response I’m hoping the dealership will replace the seal at the top of the door panel but they seem to be reluctant to go there, why I don’t know. If not I’m going to treat the seals and see where that goes
The weather strip along the top of the sheet metal, against the window, isn't meant to be a tight, squeegie-type fit. Water can get by. That's why all the doors have drain openings along the bottom, and a water/vapor barrier stuck to the inside sheet metal, under the door trim.

Normally, if the drains are not blocked, water will flow out, and any that remains will dry out as the car moves and air circulates inside the door.

I would hope the dealer checked the drains, but also, checked the door to see if there's that black coating on the interior of the door panels. That black substance could be mold.

Have you owned the car from new? Are you located in a high humidity area? Has the car ever been in a flood? (Flood water residue might lead to the growth of mold.)
 
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