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How-To Winterize - Sun Roof Drains

Winter and fall are upon us. With the cold wet weather maintenance isn't fun and leaves and debris can block those sun roof drains. A little preventative maintenance can help prevent those soggy floor boards and a PIA fix in the cold.

Here's the procedure I used to clear my drains last week. I had a rear and front drain clog. The dealership charges a grundle for this, and it will take you very little time to complete it.

As a quick check that your drains are working properly, pour a little water on the sunroof roof rail at the four corners of the roof opening with the sunroof open. Be careful not to let it spill into your interior.

Check that you have proper drainage. The front drains will expell water directly behind the front wheel well covers at the rear of the wheel. The rear drain expells water at the top of rear hatch opening. If you don't have water coming out, you'll need to clear your drains.

First start with a good vacuuming of the sun roof rail compartment. You don't want those leaves and crud to reclog your drains!

For the front drains, locate the drain opening at the front of the sunroof opening.

Note the red fish line in these two pics:
Green Vehicle door Plant Glass
Tire Automotive tire Auto part Wheel Automotive wheel system
Run a fish, or blow compressed air down the tube to clear. (I used weed eater line) Test with water. If it doesn't drain or you cannot get your fish to go all of the way through to the opening at the firewall, you may have to get a little more drastic.

The red line shows where the drain exits the firewall. I could not get to it from the engine compartment. Those pesky windshield wipers wouldn't come off. ARGHHHH!
Auto part Automotive exterior Vehicle Automotive wheel system Wheel

Additionally, I'd had trouble with leakage into the front floor boards so I had to get to the fitting of the drain tube/firewall drain block from the interior. These pics show what you need to do.
Remove the "A" pillar housing. Pull from the front to release the three plastic attachments, then pull straight up to remove the panel.
Leg Arm Hand Joint Foot
Motor vehicle Vehicle door Automotive exterior Vehicle Car

With the pillar exposed, locate the tube (mine was red) at the front bottom corner.
Motor vehicle Vehicle door Vehicle Automotive exterior Windshield

Pull the tube from the bulkhead fitting being ready to catch/soak up water. BTW, some members RTV this connection after they have cleared the drain. It will prevent water backup that will wet your floorboards in the future.
Audio equipment Bumper Technology Trunk Wire

Note: the red line is my weed eater line fishing out the bulkhead fitting drain. I used a combination of the fish and compressed air to clear the drain. There is a nipple on the engine compartment side that made it somewhat difficult to get the fish through.
Wire Electrical wiring Cable management Cable Technology

Reconnect the tube fitting in the pics above and test with a little water. If it drains freely, reverse the procedure above to put everything back together.
NOTE: These pics are for the drivers side. The passenger side is identical.

The rear drain is easy, although I couldn't see the drain from the sunroof side, getting to it from the hatchback side was easy.

Locate the drain cover and pull it off. Fish and/or shoot it with compresssed air. Test with water and replace the drain cover. Make sure that you put the cover on correctly. The 'notch out' goes to the bottom! You'll see what I mean when you pull the cover off.

YOUR DONE! NOTE: The pic does not show the drain cover. It just pops off to reveal the nipple.


I'm not a certified mechanic, just some guy with time on his hands, so decide to do this at your own discretion and responsibility.

Hope this helps. Now get out there and get that NB ready for winter. BTW, for you NB owners in Florida, those small river oak tree leaves clogged my drains more than once. At least you can do this in the warmth!
 

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Thanks for the how-to with great pics! I'll make sure I do this when my car comes out of the garage. I have never done this so I'm sure I have at least one clogged drain.
 

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Awesome job with the "How-To"! :clap:

Mod, please make this a "sticky". ;) ;)
 

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How-To Winterize - Sun Roof Drains

Winter and fall are upon us. With the cold wet weather maintenance isn't fun and leaves and debris can block those sun roof drains. A little preventative maintenance can help prevent those soggy floor boards and a PIA fix in the cold.

Here's the procedure I used to clear my drains last week. I had a rear and front drain clog. The dealership charges a grundle for this, and it will take you very little time to complete it.

As a quick check that your drains are working properly, pour a little water on the sunroof roof rail at the four corners of the roof opening with the sunroof open. Be careful not to let it spill into your interior.

Check that you have proper drainage. The front drains will expell water directly behind the front wheel well covers at the rear of the wheel. The rear drain expells water at the top of rear hatch opening. If you don't have water coming out, you'll need to clear your drains.

First start with a good vacuuming of the sun roof rail compartment. You don't want those leaves and crud to reclog your drains!

For the front drains, locate the drain opening at the front of the sunroof opening.

Note the red fish line in these two pics:
View attachment 22594
View attachment 22595
Run a fish, or blow compressed air down the tube to clear. (I used weed eater line) Test with water. If it doesn't drain or you cannot get your fish to go all of the way through to the opening at the firewall, you may have to get a little more drastic.

The red line shows where the drain exits the firewall. I could not get to it from the engine compartment. Those pesky windshield wipers wouldn't come off. ARGHHHH!
View attachment 22601

Additionally, I'd had trouble with leakage into the front floor boards so I had to get to the fitting of the drain tube/firewall drain block from the interior. These pics show what you need to do.
Remove the "A" pillar housing. Pull from the front to release the three plastic attachments, then pull straight up to remove the panel.
View attachment 22596
View attachment 22597

With the pillar exposed, locate the tube (mine was red) at the front bottom corner.
View attachment 22598

Pull the tube from the bulkhead fitting being ready to catch/soak up water. BTW, some members RTV this connection after they have cleared the drain. It will prevent water backup that will wet your floorboards in the future.
View attachment 22599

Note: the red line is my weed eater line fishing out the bulkhead fitting drain. I used a combination of the fish and compressed air to clear the drain. There is a nipple on the engine compartment side that made it somewhat difficult to get the fish through.
View attachment 22600

Reconnect the tube fitting in the pics above and test with a little water. If it drains freely, reverse the procedure above to put everything back together.
NOTE: These pics are for the drivers side. The passenger side is identical.

The rear drain is easy, although I couldn't see the drain from the sunroof side, getting to it from the hatchback side was easy.

Locate the drain cover and pull it off. Fish and/or shoot it with compresssed air. Test with water and replace the drain cover. Make sure that you put the cover on correctly. The 'notch out' goes to the bottom! You'll see what I mean when you pull the cover off.

YOUR DONE! NOTE: The pic does not show the drain cover. It just pops off to reveal the nipple.
View attachment 22602

I'm not a certified mechanic, just some guy with time on his hands, so decide to do this at your own discretion and responsibility.

Hope this helps. Now get out there and get that NB ready for winter. BTW, for you NB owners in Florida, those small river oak tree leaves clogged my drains more than once. At least you can do this in the warmth!
I loved this! Helped a lot! Found the front drains wouldn't go back together tight and still leaked so I pulled the firewall drain grommets out and put a slightly larger hose over the drain hoses, caulked them together and ran them through the firewall. No more clogs and drains fast! Rear ones aren't the problem those are easy. Thanks!
 
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