I’ve owned my fair share of banger material motors, but I’ve never known one as rain intolerant as my latest car. I bought a ‘one owner’ Clio for not a lot of money, as a hack to get to work. The car was very honest. It honestly told me that not much in the way of maintenance had been done- in recent times.
Anyway, £60 or so on service and maintenance parts later and the 120K mile machine responded well, trouble was, that I needed a brolley and wellington boots to drive it, it leaked so much. My 1983 Austin Mini was more water resistant, it was that bad.
After doing a bit of Googling, I found that the classic Renault fault with the sunroof seals had plagued my car, but that wasn’t the end of my problems. Both door card gasket (the gasket between the door card and metal) had failed. A reel of £6.99 mastic tape fixed both sunroof and door card leaks, happy days.
However, when it rained hard, I still needed wellies to drive. This leak was eventually traced to a hidden drain hole, buried deep within the bulkhead/ scuttle area. A few videos on YouTube mention this, but I thought it was still video worthy to cover again with the wiper mechanism and heater blower removed to see the drain more clearly, in the hope it might help fellow Clio Mk2 owners with perpetual Athletes foot.
I seem to be having a run of failed repairs at the moment and while it’s disappointing to write-up a repair that didn’t succeed, it’s important to learn from failure.
A colleague asked me to look at a Parrot camera drone recently as one of the drone’s motors wasn’t running correctly. The fault developed after a visit to a lake where it got a little wet. It turns out that this model isn’t water-proof, despite the £300.00 price tag!
After drying out, when powered back up, one of the four motors wouldn’t spin at full speed. These motors seem to operate in several phased windings and it would appear that one of the motor’s phases was missing.
Upon opening up the drone, I discovered that the PCB had indeed suffered water damage along its main processor. However, three of the motors were fine and camera was working OK.
The double-sided printed circuit board (PCB) presented me with a dilemma. This PCB was fitted with extra tiny components and multi-layered board technology, presumably to save weight and cost, so a repair using conventional soldering techniques was unlikely to get good results as the excessive heat would more than likely damage other components. Located near the wiring connector that connects to the motor that wasn’t working properly, were several tiny surface mount fuses, one of which appeared to have failed. Assuming I could locate the right component, attempting a repair on a PCB like this would more than likely yield a molten mess! At this stage I could have used a conductive glue to bond in a new component or temporarily bridge the fuse, but on the basis that I couldn’t guarantee a repair and the fact that there seemed to be water ingress to the whole PCB, I decided that a complete PCB replacement was probably needed. Sadly, I had to return the drone back to the owner with the bad news.
Not strictly a FixItWorkshop blog article really, but hey! It’s a cheap fix.
My beloved 2003 Boxster developed puddles in the umbrella holder on the passenger side (RHD car) when it rained hard.
The window was adjusted correctly and the door aligned properly, but when it rained, water ran down near the door mirror, under the seal, down the door card and in to the umbrella holder area. Water leaks like this, especially on the passenger side (RHD car) are a real problem on the Boxster, since the cars’ ECU is mounted on the floor on that side and is big £££ to replace/ repair if it fails.
Seemingly, the door seal rubber on the car adjacent to the door mirror area had worn and become slightly porous and was allowing water to get in between the glass and seal.
New door seals are very expensive and to prove the issue, I applied a small trace of tap (faucet) silicone grease to the area to restore the wax-like finish, the seal should have to seal properly.
This has fixed the problem for now. The door seal is worn and will need replacing in the long-term, but for now, this is a very cheap fix.