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E46 (1999 - 2006)
The fourth generation 3 Series (E46 chassis) was introduced in 1999 and set the standard for engineering and performance during it's years of production including being named to Car & Driver's 10 best list every one of those years! ! -- View the E46 Wiki

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  #1  
Old Today, 02:17 PM
whitcoatsyndrom whitcoatsyndrom is online now
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Mein Auto: 2002 325i
Is this a vapor barrier or drainage tube problem?

Hey All,

My 2002 325i has some intermittent leakage into the rear carpet on both sides. This only occurs during heavy rain. I snapped a few pictures to get your opinions before I go ahead and remove the door panel to check out/reseal the vapor barriers. The one thing that makes me think it may not be the vapor barrier is that sometimes it appears that water is not coming in through lateral portions of the rear floor (where the doors meet the body) but rather sometimes it looks like water is coming in right next to the raised center console (for lack of a better name) in the rear...right around the medial velco circle that holds onto the floor-mat. If you all think it's the vapor barrier I'll go ahead with that fix. Thanks!
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  #2  
Old Today, 02:41 PM
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Fast Bob Fast Bob is offline
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If you do a little research on the E46, you will see that the window regulators are a particularly weak component (most Forum members have replaced at least one), and in the course of replacing them, the door panel and vapor barrier must be removed. I would hazard a guess that half the time (especially if it`s an owner`s first time), the vapor barrier is not adequately re-sealed when the panel gets put back in place.

Another possibility is the drain holes in the bottom of the doors might be clogged. Also, the moonroof drains could be clogged as well.

Good luck !
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  #3  
Old Today, 02:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whitcoatsyndrom View Post
Hey All,



My 2002 325i has some intermittent leakage into the rear carpet on both sides. This only occurs during heavy rain. I snapped a few pictures to get your opinions before I go ahead and remove the door panel to check out/reseal the vapor barriers. The one thing that makes me think it may not be the vapor barrier is that sometimes it appears that water is not coming in through lateral portions of the rear floor (where the doors meet the body) but rather sometimes it looks like water is coming in right next to the raised center console (for lack of a better name) in the rear...right around the medial velco circle that holds onto the floor-mat. If you all think it's the vapor barrier I'll go ahead with that fix. Thanks!

Might be some clogged sunroof drain tubes if you have a sunroof..
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  #4  
Old Today, 03:15 PM
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Fast Bob Fast Bob is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fast Bob View Post

Another possibility is the drain holes in the bottom of the doors might be clogged. Also, the moonroof drains could be clogged as well.

Good luck !
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Originally Posted by TacoBuster View Post
Might be some clogged sunroof drain tubes if you have a sunroof..
Great minds drink alike !
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  #5  
Old Today, 03:50 PM
whitcoatsyndrom whitcoatsyndrom is online now
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Thanks for the responses. I've been doing research on it for a while now, as the water coming in isn't flooding nor constant by any means. I came to the same conclusion that it may be a sunroof drain issue but I'm hoping it's not the case as it seems to be quite a pain to get to those drainage inlets. I also set the hose loose on the sunroof and saw no leaking, but then again it didn't leak when I hosed down the windows either...of course it doesn't leak when I want it to.

I didn't think of the window work I had done in the past (3 of them went bad). I had a euro shop do the work so it didn't dawn on me that they too could maladjust the seals on replacement.

If I'm wrong in thinking that getting to the sunroom drainage inlets is a pain then please set me straight and I'll go down that rout first before I start removing door panels and breaking plastic clips. Worst comes to worst...I'll do the reseal. Thanks for all the help!
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  #6  
Old Today, 03:56 PM
adamrosee adamrosee is offline
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Mein Auto:
have you altered suspension at all, because the floor boards are fiber glass, and from my experience they are quite easy to bust. Does it happen when the car is parked or only when driven, if you have every hit the bottom of the car somewhere that could be your issue. also if you can pull your door panel off, see if the back of it is wet after a good rain, and one more thing, a lot of times your bee stinger antenna will also leak, check your headliner and see if its wet it could be from that as well. the vapor barrier, sunroof and the door sill rubber are all possible causes as well.
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  #7  
Old Today, 05:13 PM
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TacoBuster TacoBuster is offline
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Originally Posted by Fast Bob View Post
Great minds drink alike !

True true..

I own a glass company and i get that alot.. Its a pain in the a$$...
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