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2016 Sorento EX
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Discussion Starter #1
I spent Mother's day removing the front and middle row of seat so that I could pull the carpet (and all the damn foam padding attached) out to let it drain and air dry. I vacuumed over 3 gallons of free standing water from the passenger AND driver side floors.

Usual suspects...
  • Sunroof. Well, it doesn't appear that the Sorento's have a typical sunroof with drain hoses, it looks to just run down the windshield/behind the reveal. This seems like the best culprit but I'm still draining water from the firewall padding that it's hard to tell.
  • A/C evaporator. I want to say that this is debunked since I was able to blow through the drain hose and it was clear. I guess the clog could be higher in the system though.
  • Windshield leaking?
Did I miss anything? I couldn't find any other posts that describe both floors being soaked.
 

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Sorento LX V6 2018
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536 Posts
Did you buy this car used? If so, maybe some improperly repaired prior accident damage. Has the windshield been replaced recently that would lead you to suspect it? I think your sunroof and evap box are the two main culprits (short of someone leaving windows down in a torrential downpour and then not fessing up to it) and I don't know the routing of the evap hose and they are never easy to get to at the source end. It could be clear from down below because it actually came loose from the catch tray - have seen this happen on cars and people blow through the hose and of course it passes air easily and they don't realize it came loose at the end inside the car.

Other than those thoughts, wow, what a problem to deal with, please let us know what the final fix is so that we can help others in the future who may have a similar problem.
 

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2019 Sorento LX AWD 3.3L
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How long vehicle last driven? Did it sit outside in rain snow since last drive? Windshield ever been replaced?

I wouldn't suspect the evap hose unless its been extremely humid recently and you've gone for longer drives. Even then, the water would have shown as wet carpet while driving. 3 gallons is quite a bit.
 

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2016 Sorento EX
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6 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
  • Certified preowned purchased last April. Shouldn't have accident damage, nothing was on the CarFax. Glass could be a different story.
  • I haven't had a hint of water in the vehicle until about 1.5 weeks ago when the car was suddenly humid inside and just a hint of musty. I'm in IT and working from home mostly so my driving has been limited. Figured it was that and I had just left a container of interior wipes inside the car. It's been driven every 2-3 days, so this could have happened all at one time or over the course of a few days.
  • Kia windshield, HOWEVER, I did find one single small cube of tempered glass when I pulled the passenger seat.
  • I pulled the entire front carpet so I can clearly see and access the evap drain. I pulled the hose AT the evap.
  • It's always out in the elements. I can't say for certain what was different in the past two weeks, although lately the days just blur together.
  • The one thing that confuses me is that it's on both sides with no way to traverse the hump/tunnel. So unless all the damn foam under the carpet managed to wick over a gallon of water to the other side, the leak is on both sides or directly in the center. The only material left in the vehicle right now is the firewall mat and foam. I even pulled the center console out to remove the two rubber and foam padding.
To your point theToucan, 3 gallons IS a lot....but have you seen how much foam is under our carpets?!? Pair that with some all weather mats and it can hide it pretty well.

The only 'good' news is that I'm currently trying to get it in with the dealer to address a noise (tire or hub?), a rotation that didn't happen last time (same tire is constantly loosing air since I purchased it), have a look at the sleepy steering (TSB CHA-060), and an inspection. So hopefully they can tell me if the windshield was ever replaced and clue me in on any possibilities.

I've always wanted a swimming pool...not quite what I had in mind.
 

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2019 Sorento EX V6
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865 Posts
Three gallons is not the evap. The cube of tempered glass is the clue, probably the roof was replaced and the seals are not right.
 

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2016 Sorento EX
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Discussion Starter #6
Well, it wouldn't been from the AC system. Have you seen the gigantic hole in our firewalls for the fresh air door? I haven't ruled it out yet. Good point though.

Yeah, I'm not sure if the sunroof glass is typically branded or not. Not sure if mine are. I'll have to take a look. When it dries out really well, I'll poor some water in the drain channels and see where it ends up. It wasn't sunroof glass though as it wasn't tinted.
 

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2019 Kia Sportage. SX with AWD. 2.0L Direct Injected Turbocharged & Intercooled Gas.
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894 Posts
BTW...Carfax is a big scam. Damage repairs only show up on Carfax if the repairing shop reports it, and there is no law or incentive to do so. Just so you know......
 

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2019 Sorento AWD V6 EX-Sangria with stone beige leather
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BTW...Carfax is a big scam. Damage repairs only show up on Carfax if the repairing shop reports it, and there is no law or incentive to do so. Just so you know......
I agree Carfax is somewhat of a scam but it is not of their doing. They gather information from many sources (insurance companies, police reports towing companies, repair garages, DMV, etc) but the information is only as good as how well it is input. My nephew has worked at a GM dealer for 20+ years and he said it is about 30% accurate but people demand it. They had a truck that showed major accident damage but it was actually towed in for a flat tire. According to Carfax, my Miata went from North Carolina to a new owner in North Dakota to a new owner back in North Carolina in a month. A single digit error causes many false reports. I take them with a grain of salt and it makes me investigate closely.
 

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2019 Sorento
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107 Posts
Contact some place like Safelite and see what they charge to reseal the windshield and sunroof, or even ask if they have heard of this. They may know right away which one is the culprit.
 

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2017 Optima LX, 2017 Sorento LX
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I spent Mother's day removing the front and middle row of seat so that I could pull the carpet (and all the damn foam padding attached) out to let it drain and air dry. I vacuumed over 3 gallons of free standing water from the passenger AND driver side floors.

Usual suspects...
  • Sunroof. Well, it doesn't appear that the Sorento's have a typical sunroof with drain hoses, it looks to just run down the windshield/behind the reveal. This seems like the best culprit but I'm still draining water from the firewall padding that it's hard to tell.
  • A/C evaporator. I want to say that this is debunked since I was able to blow through the drain hose and it was clear. I guess the clog could be higher in the system though.
  • Windshield leaking?
Did I miss anything? I couldn't find any other posts that describe both floors being soaked.
While you had all the flooring out by chance did you think of using a hose and pouring water over the car in hopes of finding out exactly where the water is coming in from?
I'd suspect the lower windshield area because the water is prone to collect there - but the fact that all that water is on both sides of the hump makes it harder to come up with an exact location.
3 gallons of water (plus the water in the insulation and carpet) is a LOT of water - did you have a downpour recently or did someone drive the car through a large puddle?
 

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2007 Kia Sedona (2 of them)
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Check how much crap you have piled up in the groove under your windshield wipers. I live in the woods and mine are inch deep in a week since I don't drive anymore. If enough builds up even a minor rain storm will pool up into the top vents and could flow down into the body of the car. I drive a Sedona so this may not be a good clue, but one doggone cheap fix if it is.
 

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2016 Sorento EX
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Discussion Starter #15
OK, just wanted to come back in case there's a rash of this happening to owners, although I still don't know how it was all of the sudden. Basically they came to the only conclusion that I could come up with after some troubleshooting. The robot must have ran out of sealant on one of the firewall panel seams. Water was running down the windshield, through the cowl, down the fender well and onto the firewall where it happened to find the gap. I have a feeling there are a bunch of cars out there like this but it just became apparent on mine for some reason. My best guess as to why it was on both sides of the tunnel is due to wicking through the foam and carpet.

The dealer covered the sealing under warranty and even got me a new carpet. I didn't expect that since I ripped everything out immediately so it wouldn't get moldy but I wasn't about to argue. They asked for the parts I had so they could put the carpet in for me. I took them over and they called to let me know it was done that afternoon. I only gave them the parts they needed to get everything back in like the air ducts and the heavy rubber/foam pads that go under the center console/dash. I didn't take over all of the door sills and kick panels. Here we go....

So, in my past I was a car audio installer so pulling the interior was a pretty routine task for me. I even had my 14 yr old helping me. We removed the front seats, the second row, the center console, and the carpet and foam all without breaking, damaging, or losing anything. So I got the car back and the next weekend I went to have a look at their work and start to see how I am going to install my car audio system. They managed to lay the carpet flat and between the doors. :eyeroll:
  • Air ducts were left to blow under the carpet. Easy fix but come on. Can't imagine how long I would have 'suffered' with that or what kind of condensation it would have created under the carpet.
  • Lost or broke two seat rail covers and attempted to cover it up by moving one of the 'flaps' from the front to the rear (where it's more noticeable)
  • Snapped a second row seat rail cover
  • Didn't reinstall the rubber mats under the center console/dash but also didn't return them to me. (Important to me for sound deadening)
Shaking My Head
 

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2019 Sorento LX AWD 3.3L
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Shaking My Head
Been working on cars for decades. I can port heads and build race engines. I can tune and fix all the mechanical shit out there.

I HATE interior work. No matter how careful I am, using proper tools and everything, I still break those plastic bits whether coming apart or going back together. I'll take my interior stuff to someone else...
 

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Sorento LX V6 2018
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536 Posts
Been working on cars for decades. I can port heads and build race engines. I can tune and fix all the mechanical shit out there.

I HATE interior work. No matter how careful I am, using proper tools and everything, I still break those plastic bits whether coming apart or going back together. I'll take my interior stuff to someone else...
You and me both. Could swap engines in the 30 minutes between race heats, couldn't put a carpet back in a car to save my life and forget pulling the whole dashboard - got way too frustrated way too early in the process.
 
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