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2000 Subaru Impreza Outback Sport Wagon
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone. I have a 2000 Impreza OBS. I've searched here and on other places and am aware this is a common issue. I still would like to have some inputs to locate the cause.

Condition:
Passenger-side front and rear floor get very damp. It happens after rain and the rear gets more damp. Occasionally I find water collecting on front, passenger weather floor mat (rubber kind).

Things I checked/did:
  1. No leak in the driver side
  2. Water doesn’t accumulate in the spare tire area
  3. Black gunk sealing the tail lamps seems intact. No trace of water behind the lamps/bulbs.
  4. Saw a wet spot under the glove compartment behind the blower motor.
  5. Cleaned the windshield cowling and put sealant along the bottom of the windshield. (Almost sure the glass was replaced at some point and job looks mediocre)
Questions:
  1. Missing the windshield top trim (65023FA000.) Would not having this piece cause a leak?
  2. On the passenger-side, the windshield cowling creates a gap between the plastic and windshield. Can water make its way from there into the cabin?
  3. I want to check the HVAC drain but I can't find any recent posts with images to point where it is. Can someone show me where it is?

Thanks a lot in advance!
 

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98RS, 98RS, 99RS, 99L
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384 Posts
HVAC drain is right behind where the ECU is, basically under where your feet would go. You can see the little 5/16"-ish hose bending down from the bottom of the blower box. Gaps in the trim can absolutely cause a leak, as well as a crappy windshield replacement job.
 

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2000 Subaru Impreza Outback Sport Wagon
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4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks, I'm gonna reinstall the cowling with proper foam washers. Most of them were missing or falling away. I read that someone else had leaks through loose cowling just now. And getting the windshield trim as well.

Is this the drain, or do I need to dig further? Do I need to remove the silver ECU shield?

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00 BRP RS Coupe
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820 Posts
Had a similar issue on my driver's side. Turns out it was the white clips that hold the window trim into the body (if I'm explaining myself correctly).
 

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1998 Impreza L wagon, EJ25D swap
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60 Posts
I can say there is a 99% chance that this drain is the cause of the issue. I had the same issue in my car a few months ago once I finally got my AC working in the car. The HVAC box on mine was completely shattered from what I can only assume was someone kicking it. I used JB welds Underwater weld, its for plastic and PVC and its waterproof. It worked perfectly for not only reattaching the pipe back to the box but also fixing the leak.
 

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1998 Impreza L wagon, EJ25D swap
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60 Posts
Thanks, I'm gonna reinstall the cowling with proper foam washers. Most of them were missing or falling away. I read that someone else had leaks through loose cowling just now. And getting the windshield trim as well.

Is this the drain, or do I need to dig further? Do I need to remove the silver ECU shield?

View attachment 88023
yes that is the drain
 

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2000 Subaru Impreza Outback Sport Wagon
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4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I did find parts of the weatherstripping around the doors came off the yellow clips. I'm gonna go around and clean all of them and patch any rips and holes if I find any.

2.5swappedL, thanks for the confirmation. I'm gonna try and clean the drain today. I had to recharge my AC when I got the car this summer (so maybe this issue wasn't discovered for a while) and just saw parts of the plastic duct behind the center console that sends air to the back had cracks.

Thank you all for all the inputs so far. I'll report back
 

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1998 Impreza L wagon, EJ25D swap
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I did find parts of the weatherstripping around the doors came off the yellow clips. I'm gonna go around and clean all of them and patch any rips and holes if I find any.

2.5swappedL, thanks for the confirmation. I'm gonna try and clean the drain today. I had to recharge my AC when I got the car this summer (so maybe this issue wasn't discovered for a while) and just saw parts of the plastic duct behind the center console that sends air to the back had cracks.

Thank you all for all the inputs so far. I'll report back
Yea I great way to check if it you pull back the carpet, and unbolt the ECU so there's nothing back there essentially other than the drain. Blow the AC on max cold and within 30 seconds you should be able to spot a leak or use your hands and you should feel the air blowing out of whatever crack is there, granted that the problem. If your AC isn't functional at all or you have not been using it, that most likely isn't your problem then because that drain is there solely for the condensation of the AC core.
 

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2000 Subaru Impreza Outback Sport Wagon
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Yea I great way to check if it you pull back the carpet, and unbolt the ECU so there's nothing back there essentially other than the drain. Blow the AC on max cold and within 30 seconds you should be able to spot a leak or use your hands and you should feel the air blowing out of whatever crack is there, granted that the problem. If your AC isn't functional at all or you have not been using it, that most likely isn't your problem then because that drain is there solely for the condensation of the AC core.
Unfortunately I read your reply after I spent like 2 hours messing with it haha But I ended up doing exactly what you meant! I feared damaging the ECU and moved it to the side. I didn't turn on the car because I knew the leak happens even when it's parked in the rain. (I'll try the AC trick tomorrow to spot any cracks)

When I pulled the drain hose, there was no water. I shot water into the hose using a spray bottle and saw that dripping under the car. Then I pushed and pulled air using a cordless vacuum so nothing remains in there. I also poured a bucket of water on the windshield but couldn't see anything getting wet in this area. I don't have a dedicated garage so it's not a perfect remedy but that rust and damp insulation tells me water is coming in somehow.

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If the AC thing doesnt fix it you may want to check the seal from the rain guard to the body. You have to pull down the rubber weatherstripping that the windows sit on. Lots of little screws hold that trim to the body off the car. Mine had failed on both sides and it was clear because under the rain guard it was very dirty. On heavy rains my floors would be soaked. You can still buy the rubber westherstripping from subaru but I couldnt find the rainguards in stock. So I scrapped off the old seal and put a new on one. Its worked for me. Next time you look at it try spraying water right on that seam where the black trim meets the roof.
 
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