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Discussion Starter #1
Noticed late afternoon on Saturday that the floor mat (Original equipment) on the passenger side was soaking wet. Pulled it out and found the carpet was even wetter. How wet? Used a spongy towel, and easily wrung out a pint of water, probably more. Driver's side and back seat floor were bone dry.

Yes, it had been raining most of the day on Friday, and into Saturday AM, and yes, leaves and other crap have been falling for awhile.

Noticed immediately that there was a small seed that was perfectly filling a little drainhole under the passenger side windshield wiper. The pair of holes towards the drivers side (but much closer to the middle of the windshield) were clear. Removed the seed, put the heater on high, and by this AM it's all dried out.

Not expecting rain for this week, and would rather not wait until the next storm to find out if it was a little blocked drain that caused the mess.

Thoughts?



Edit: And yes, I did a "search" for this problem, but I didn't scroll down and see the other thread. Duh.


So to answer those questions:

Sunroof: Yes
Moistness anywhere else: No
 

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Same exact problem !!! thought it was only a issue i had with the 2007 outback i sold..noticed it Saturday myself...passenger side soaked ! called the dealer today...basically told me its a inherent problem with these cars..i am not happy..have to figure out a way to put a screen or something over these holes...shouldnt have to its brand new car..
 

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Discussion Starter #5
So I've read the other thread, but I haven't used the AC or the defroster, and the car is new enough that I doubt (hope?) the AC hose isn't clogged.

Could it have just been that drain hole near the wiper? Or should I check further?

Had no water on the floor yesterday or this AM, of course it isn't raining.
 

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the drain hoses for the a/c clog, debris, kinks, bugs build nests in there - etc. pull the drain plug out and run something through it to clean it out - coat hanger, compressed air, etc. easily accessible by passengers side footwell, i've fixed them on a 2009 Legacy. very easy, just a couple minutes and i barely recall using any tools.

if it only happens when a/c (or defrost...any form of climate control) are on - then it's likely the drain hose from the a/c.

if it's when it rains then:

do you have a sunroof?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Do you have access to a garden hose?
Normally, yes, but it's put away for the season.

the drain hoses for the a/c clog, debris, kinks, bugs build nests in there - etc. pull the drain plug out and run something through it to clean it out - coat hanger, compressed air, etc. easily accessible by passengers side footwell, i've fixed them on a 2009 Legacy. very easy, just a couple minutes and i barely recall using any tools.

if it only happens when a/c (or defrost...any form of climate control) are on - then it's likely the drain hose from the a/c.

if it's when it rains then:

do you have a sunroof?
Yes, I have a sunroof. And I have spiders (always clearing those single strand webs out), but not tons of them.
 

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There's a reason that you always see these leaks described as passenger side floorboard wet. It's because the evaporator housing sits above the passenger side floorboard. If it was a sunroof leak, how likely do you think it would be for the leak only to result in water in the passenger side floorboard?

Google is your friend...this problem is not isolated to Subarus or Outbacks. It's a fairly common occurance across multiple brands. There is very likely some sort of debris between your evaporator housing and the end of the discharge tube. If it were me, I'd start with the easiest end to work on, and that is the end of the discharge tube under the car. Put some suction on it somehow (shopvac, regular vac, etc). If that doesn't pull anything out and result in a stream of water coming from the tube, use a non-sharp, rigid object to probe upward into the tube (wire coat hanger streched out and the end covered with some tape, etc.) to see if you can dislodge whatever is in there. My last choice to approach from the bottom would be compressed air, as it may dislodge the debris, but may push it upward and back into the evaporator housing if it doesn't come out with the water. My last resort would be to attack it from the evaporator housing and work downward, as this is the most labor intensive way to approach this...you have to disassemble parts of the dash (differs depending on the year).

Good luck, and let us know what ends up being the issue and what works to fix it.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Since I'm under warranty, I think I'll wait for a reoccurance to start messing with hoses and dashboards.

I'll pray for rain and see if it happens again before I take the next step.


Thank you for laying out the scenarios.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Answer: No.

First long drive (more than 20 miles) was Saturday. Boston to New Haven and back. getting out of the car in New Haven I checked the mat and it was quite damp. Hadn't rained in days, hadn't used the AC or the defroster. By the time we got home it was wet, but not even 20% as wet as the prior incident.

Will be scheduling service to have them check it out and see if we can nip this in the bud.
 

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. . .First long drive (more than 20 miles) was Saturday. Boston to New Haven and back. getting out of the car in New Haven I checked the mat and it was quite damp. Hadn't rained in days, hadn't used the AC or the defroster. By the time we got home it was wet, but not even 20% as wet as the prior incident. . . . .
Was it dry before you left? (I'm assuming that was the case, but prefer to be sure.)

Other than rain from the outside, or condensate from the evaporator, the only other source of liquid in that area is the coolant that flows through the heater core. But the coolant would have a distinct smell and tactile sense, and should be easy to identify as different from plain water.

Does your OB have the manual, or automatic heater/AC controls? If it has the automatic controls (can be set for a particular temperature), then if the fan was on at any time, the system could have turned on the AC compressor without you knowing.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Was it dry before you left? (I'm assuming that was the case, but prefer to be sure.)

Other than rain from the outside, or condensate from the evaporator, the only other source of liquid in that area is the coolant that flows through the heater core. But the coolant would have a distinct smell and tactile sense, and should be easy to identify as different from plain water.

Does your OB have the manual, or automatic heater/AC controls? If it has the automatic controls (can be set for a particular temperature), then if the fan was on at any time, the system could have turned on the AC compressor without you knowing.
It was dry before we left. I've been checking it every time I start it, when getting in it in the morning, parking it at work, and again on the way home.

Definitely water. No feel, no smell, no taste. Manual AC controls.
 

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No rain, not using the heater/AC (fan not turned on manually), and it's not coolant. There's no other existing source I can think of. Seems almost impossible.

Time to think of off-the-wall situations?

Children or passengers with water bottles that leak;

Water that pooled underneath the carpet at some time earlier; the upper fibers dry out, but not the water below. When someone sits in the front seat, their feet squeeze down on the carpet, forcing the water up. (Question: when the carpet is wet, is it wet only on the bottom flat part, or where the carpet goes up the foot well slope at the front?)

Or, despite the heater/AC fan control being Off, the compressor nevertheless starts to run, and water in the air naturally coming through the ducts (even with the fan off) condenses, hits a blocked drain hose, and overflows onto the floor. (The 2012 uses a variable displacement AC compressor that is always running. The AC controls vary the compressor's displacement; normally when the AC is off the displacement is zero, so there's no compression of the refrigerant and no cooling. When cooling is needed, the displacement is increased in increments depending on the heat to be removed. Although doubtful, perhaps a fault could lead to the compressor displacement remaining high even when the AC wouldn't otherwise be running. The evaporator would then be chilled, and air that can flow naturally through the heater/AC duct would be the source of condensed water.)

This is really puzzling!
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Water bottle integrity has been checked. Floor was totally dried out after first incident (not necessarily 100% dry this time, I must say). Appointment scheduled for this Saturday AM.

Will be interesting to see if it got any wetter over the past 24 hours during "Sandy", as it sat in the driveway getting poured on all that time.
 
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