It can be very disappointing to find your jeep wrangler hard top leaking. This can cause extensive damage to the upholstery and even lead to electrical shortages. You wouldn’t want to imagine the development of mold or the emanation of bad odor from your Jeep. While this is a serious inconvenience, it can be terribly frustrating in the event of a sudden rainfall.
Because Jeep Wrangler is a rough beast meant for off-roading terrains and challenging ascends, the water leak is more or less expected. This is amongst the most common concerns of Jeep owners. No SUV produced by FCA yet is absolutely reliable when it comes to top leaking. There are many temporary solutions but no permanent measure.
When it starts raining, the problems of a Jeep owner start ascending. So when the downpour begins, you must reinforce all rubber seals and replace all the worn out parts and gaskets with new and better ones. Your Jeep must be wiped down completely dry after each downpour. These steps are a reality and more necessary than you’d imagine. Unless you are okay with a Jeep that stinks on the inside.
This water leaking problem has to be dealt with for the time you plan on running your Jeep. we’ll introduce you to all the possible reasons and the dependable solutions that’ll come handy for the tough lover in you. Ease your burden by learning how to maintain this beast better.
Understand that Jeeps are not waterproof
Jeep Wranglers are remarkably tough and necessarily dependable on the most challenging terrains. But they suffer from water leaks whenever the rain decides to beat them down. You’d expect such a tough car to at least be impervious to water. Well, it isn’t so.
While the parts and fixtures of your Jeep Wrangler are definitely water resistant. Which implies that they wouldn’t get damaged on exposure to water. Even the electronics and the infotainment center has been built to be water-resistant. However, you might get wet if you happen to be travelling in this vehicle and it rains.
FCA has conducted reliable tests to ascertain that a Jeep Wrangler can safely control up to 19 inches of water. This car is also sufficiently resistant to light rains and drizzles. However, it can certainly not tolerate exposure to intense rain and moisture. Under no circumstances should you assume your Jeep to be incessantly tough and drive it down a car wash with the top down. Also, it is important to wipe your Jeep dry after its exposure to water.
Know the most common reasons for leaks
Jeep Wranglers have a tendency to leak even in their stock forms. This is essentially because of their removable front doors that’ll allow water to get in if you happen to travel in this weather situation. Even if the doors are attached, their hinges will have minor gaps that’ll let the water seep in. While all the exposed portions of a Jeep are resistant to moisture, they are not waterproof.
Even the four-door Jeep Wranglers with A/C systems will bear water leaks on the passenger side’s front floor carpet. This is because of the condensation of water from the Jeep’s cooling process.
Water leaks are evident in both hardtops and soft tops. The freedom top of the newer models is a three-part panel that allows excessive ease of storage and handling. The panel design for these Jeeps somehow directs the water away and prevents it from entering the Jeep. So this is a somewhat dependable option.
But for soft tops, one cannot expect the vinyl and velcro to protect you against insulting rain. Also, soft tops come out very often. This could expose your Jeep to excessive damage and wear.
Identify the problematic areas
The most crucial problem can be solved by identifying the place where it emanates. Once the cause has been gauged, you can rely on the abundant realm of quick fixes to aid you.
Excessive water could be pooling in your vehicle because of the presence of a clogged drain plug or a cowl. If your windows fog up constantly and there are frequent electrical problems, it may be because of a spot clogged by dirt or leaves.
This scenario could also be explained by the dilapidated seals around the windshield and window areas. Other factors include disengaged latches, improperly installed door seals, distorted or puckered top seals, and bent rubber gaskets between the panels.
Excessive amounts of water could be trickling down your windows. Another evidence could be the frequently wet floor carpets. Oftentimes, the problem lies in the hard-shell top that doesn’t connect properly. This is especially possible if you have installed the hardtop yourselves.
There could be fine spaces between your door and the hardtop that are otherwise unnoticeable. The water running along the outside portion of the HVAC drain tube could also be a reason for frequently wet front-floor carpets. This mainly occurs because of the presence of debris or obstructions in the drain hose.
Another possible cause is a leaking heater core or a leaking windshield seal. You should pay attention to the area the leak directs you at. There are numerous possible reasons for water leak in a Jeep Wrangler, far more than the ones mentioned above. Depending on where the water is seen, one needs to depend on different solutions that stop water from getting into your Jeep’s interiors.
You can depend on these steps to fix a water leak when it rains
A water leak in a Jeep Wrangler is even more serious than it sounds. Your whole experience of the Wrangler can be bleached down and deteriorated by this annoying reality. It is necessary that you take the following steps whenever there is a leak in your Wrangler’s hardtop.
- Take care to wipe all the hard surfaces of your Jeep Wrangler with the help of a towel or a moisture-soaking rag. There could be leaks under the dashboard and the steering column doors. The upper corners of the driver and passenger doors and the windshield could also be a source. Wipe them all carefully and secure every oil cap and distributor cap.
- Clean around all of your Jeep’s rubber seals with the help of a wet rag. This will remove all the dirt accumulated while off-roading and clear all the crevices. At this point, cotton buds could prove very beneficial.
- Pulling your carpets out will let you spot areas in your Jeep where water could be pooling. It is important that you thoroughly vacuum these areas and expose them to air before putting them back again. A Jeep bed liner could prove very beneficial in keeping your Jep floors protected and sealed.
- Clear the clogged drain plugs and cowls by unscrewing their top covers and flushing the drain with a hose
- Carefully glue the seals in a proper manner all around the car. It is necessary that there are no cracks in the rubber and none of it is peeling away.
- Ensure routine cleaning and good lubrication of your silicone-based seals.
- Make sure that the top is properly sealed. Also look for seals that may be folded outside. Check for the presence of disengaged latches and tighten them up in a criss-cross pattern.
- You could also screw-in bolts to adequately compress the seals to prevent them from leaking.
- Add extra weather stripping and carefully run it along the current liner for your Jeep. This will render extra compression and adequately seal your roof. A large gap would only let more water in. You could even employ a foam weather stripping to seal this area.
- You could inject a filler into the gaskets and improve their contact points. This will solve most issues with distorted top seals and bent rubber gaskets.
- Take a check of your Jeep’s exhaust systems, coolant levels, and the functioning of your A/c. A nice inspection and a requisite replacement of your exhaust system could solve this problem.
- In case the coolant levels are low, use an antifreeze coolant instead of water
- It is necessary to tighten hardtop bolts if they get loose. Make use of a hex wrench to tighten these hardtop bolts on both sides of the Jeep.
Conclusion – jeep wrangler hard top leaking
While the above-mentioned technique may prove to be very effective in handling the water leaks off your Jeep Wrangler’s hardtop, you must also learn about the recently popular Sil-Glyde that serves as an incredible seal for every leak. It is popularly recommended for freedom top and soft top owners. Not only does it stop the percolation of water, it also dampens the wind noises often encountered inside a Wrangler.
You may be able to control your hardtop from leaking by one or the other technique. But it is downright shameful for such a reputed car to deliver such a disappointing experience. However, not even leaking tops can stop the admirers of Jeep Wrangler from loving it any less.