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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,

I've got a roof leak that I've not been able to find an answer to.

I've got a 2012 Odyssey with about 200,000 miles on it. Recently, we started seeing moisture in the headliner between the roof instrument cluster and the windshield near where the rearview mirror is mounted. Moisture is only felt during hard, driving rain at highway speeds. Thinking it might be a windshield problem, we took it to Safelight and they told us that the windshield was fine and that it was an issue with the sunroof drainage tubes. So yesterday I check the tubes and found that the driver's side drained freely and the passenger's side drained more slowly but still drained. Regardless, I can't resolve in my head how moisture that should be draining via holes in the corners could result in moisture in the center front, which is physically higher than the sides and where I don't see moisture in the A-pillars.

Any thoughts as to what I'm overlooking here?
Thanks for your thoughts and advice!
John
 

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Hi all,

I've got a roof leak that I've not been able to find an answer to.

I've got a 2012 Odyssey with about 200,000 miles on it. Recently, we started seeing moisture in the headliner between the roof instrument cluster and the windshield near where the rearview mirror is mounted. Moisture is only felt during hard, driving rain at highway speeds. Thinking it might be a windshield problem, we took it to Safelight and they told us that the windshield was fine and that it was an issue with the sunroof drainage tubes. So yesterday I check the tubes and found that the driver's side drained freely and the passenger's side drained more slowly but still drained. Regardless, I can't resolve in my head how moisture that should be draining via holes in the corners could result in moisture in the center front, which is physically higher than the sides and where I don't see moisture in the A-pillars.

Any thoughts as to what I'm overlooking here?
Thanks for your thoughts and advice!
John
looks like you have thorough in your detective work.
to clear that slow drain, others here have suggested using the plastic string from an edge trimmer to feed down the drain tube.

do you have any record of the windshield ever being replaced?
give a gentle tug on the upper weather strip over the windshield and see if it comes loose.
some RTV black silicone should rule out that upper area as being the cause.
 

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Blow compressed air into both sunroof drains. Highly doubt it's the windshield but it's possible. Check the exterior top windshield seal.
 

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On other sunroof vehicles I have been around, there is sometimes a joint at the front in that area that can rust and leak. Check the frame as best you can in that area. It might also be decieving where the water is coming from - it might only leak out in that location but come from a little ways away...

Unlikely to be caused by the roof seems (a 3rd gen Ody problem, I think?), as those are lower than the upper console.

-Charlie
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
On other sunroof vehicles I have been around, there is sometimes a joint at the front in that area that can rust and leak. Check the frame as best you can in that area. It might also be decieving where the water is coming from - it might only leak out in that location but come from a little ways away...

Unlikely to be caused by the roof seems (a 3rd gen Ody problem, I think?), as those are lower than the upper console.

-Charlie
Hi Charlie,

I'm not sure that I understand what you're saying. Is the "joint" that you're talking about visible when the sunroof is open? If so, where?

Also, when you say that it could be coming from a little ways away, is there any other opening in that part of the roof other than the two front drain holes that could lead to water coming from the roof? What seems illogical to me is that if one of those two tubes is backing up or leaking, I'd think that the area around the A-pillar would get wet first, and I don't feel it there. Yet in a driving rainstorm, the water can consistently drip from the center part, which is higher physically than the corners where the A-pillar is. It just seems counter-intuitive to me. Is there something about how the roof is structured that could still cause that to happen?

Thanks for your comments!
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Blow compressed air into both sunroof drains. Highly doubt it's the windshield but it's possible. Check the exterior top windshield seal.
I was going to do that but was told that blowing compressed air into those drains is dangerous because it can cause the tubes to detach from the holes. Is that not a problem with this generation of Odyssey? Thanks for your comments!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
looks like you have thorough in your detective work.
to clear that slow drain, others here have suggested using the plastic string from an edge trimmer to feed down the drain tube.

do you have any record of the windshield ever being replaced?
give a gentle tug on the upper weather strip over the windshield and see if it comes loose.
some RTV black silicone should rule out that upper area as being the cause.
So we tried the plastic string first and got a good 20 feet of line in there. But it still drains slow. I've heard of someone using wire that had a larger diameter, but I'd think that the wire would have to be extremely flexible for it to not be dangerous to the tubing or at least get stuck easily. Is there a particular diameter that you use or would suggest?

We purchased the vehicle used about 6 years ago, so the windshield may have been replaced before that, but even if it had been, we've still put 170 of the 200K miles on the van. But to me, before taking it to Safelight, the most logical failure point would be the seal on the windshield at that point because it doesn't seem to leak when we're just standing still. It's when we're traveling and driving in heavy rain that it happens. But the Safelight guy assured us that it wasn't the windshield. I'll look at the weatherstripping tomorrow when it's light and let you know what I find. Thanks for your comments!
 

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So we tried the plastic string first and got a good 20 feet of line in there. But it still drains slow. I've heard of someone using wire that had a larger diameter, but I'd think that the wire would have to be extremely flexible for it to not be dangerous to the tubing or at least get stuck easily. Is there a particular diameter that you use or would suggest?

We purchased the vehicle used about 6 years ago, so the windshield may have been replaced before that, but even if it had been, we've still put 170 of the 200K miles on the van. But to me, before taking it to Safelight, the most logical failure point would be the seal on the windshield at that point because it doesn't seem to leak when we're just standing still. It's when we're traveling and driving in heavy rain that it happens. But the Safelight guy assured us that it wasn't the windshield. I'll look at the weatherstripping tomorrow when it's light and let you know what I find. Thanks for your comments!
if you have a pressure washer, blast the areas in question with water and look for leaks.

if you dont have a pressure washer borrow one or go to the self serve car wash.

you will find where the water is infiltrating pretty quickly when you blast it down with 1800 psi of water.
 

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I'm not sure that I understand what you're saying. Is the "joint" that you're talking about visible when the sunroof is open? If so, where?
I don't know if the Odyssey has it - it is a general comment on sunroof units...

That said, I think the next step is to get more visibility in there. The roof console is fairly easy to remove. There are two screws visible with the sunglasses holder open and two screws behind the map lights. (those lenses are <$2 if you break one) The console can then be pulled out and wires disconnected. Obviously, you will loose some functionality with that removed... but you might be able to peak up in there and see evidence of where water might be coming from.

You can also probably pull the trim around the sunroof and pull down slightly on the headliner to get a view from the other side. You are looking for evidence of water trails and where it might be coming from.

-Charlie
 

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Here's a post on how to remove that map light cluster on my 2011 LX.


The only tough part is if you start trying to take it apart without knowing exactly where it is held in place. So the photos there should help.

I would not listen to anything Safelite tells you. They may be right but they have no idea.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
@johnkgerken
did you ever solve this?
Nope, not yet. I've been traveling and need to get back to it. Because the leak is only visible during heavy, driving rain, I guess the next step is to pull the kick panels to verify that the tubes from the sunroof are completely clear. I'd like to be able to determine once and for all whether those tubes are contributing to the problem. Personally, I have a really hard time understanding how a plugged tube that is known to cause water in the "A" pillars would cause water around my rearview mirror, but I'd like to rule it out. The seal around the windshield still makes the most sense to me, but I've not been able to discover a way to test the theory.

Do you have the same issue? What are your thoughts?
Thanks,
John
 

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Sounds very VERY Sunroof'y to me.

Had to deal with this on our '07 Toyota Avalon, they didn't install clamps on the tubes which come loose over time and WATER down the headliner, to the front and rear of the vehicle (depending on how level it is). Yeah, MAJOR PIA for something so easily resolved, there was a TSB but they'd only fix it if there was an issue which of course didn't show up until many years later well after and warranty.

Pull out the headliner, pour water on top of your sunroof and front windshield and see what's what.
 

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Nope, not yet. I've been traveling and need to get back to it. Because the leak is only visible during heavy, driving rain, I guess the next step is to pull the kick panels to verify that the tubes from the sunroof are completely clear. I'd like to be able to determine once and for all whether those tubes are contributing to the problem. Personally, I have a really hard time understanding how a plugged tube that is known to cause water in the "A" pillars would cause water around my rearview mirror, but I'd like to rule it out. The seal around the windshield still makes the most sense to me, but I've not been able to discover a way to test the theory.

Do you have the same issue? What are your thoughts?
Thanks,
John
no issue, was just following up on some unresolved threads.

you can easily pull the plastic panels off the A pillar, the tubes are visible there, and as Andrew816 mentioned, the spring clamps to the tube/drain hole are just a little bit back under the headliner.

asked the question before, was the windshield ever changed on your watch?
 
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