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Unread 11-03-2010, 06:44 PM   #1
Redman
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Default Plugged Sunroof Drain...Wet Carpet...Bad Smell

Just thought I'd pass on a little info for future use......

For the last couple of winters, my '03 has had a bad mold smell, and perpetually wet driver's side carpet. I've made some bad assumptions about rainwater coming in when the doors were open, or it getting wet from snow on my boots.

Last week we had a real gullywasher (~6"), and my son drove the vehicle immediately afterward. He said he heard water "sloshing" up in the sunroof area, and then saw water running down the inside of the "A" pillar, and down to the carpet. I assumed that the water was not draining, and then running down the headliner.

Today I ran a wire down each sunroof drain, and then blew them out with a blow gun. They seem to drain perfectly, and I'm hoping I've cured the problem . I dried the carpet, and sprayed it with a bunch of Lysol to hopefully kill the bacteria that causes the smell.

I'll let you know all what happens....
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Unread 11-03-2010, 07:08 PM   #2
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That's great information with the age of the vehicle there is a good chance that debris will build up in the drains and cause the problem you described.

To add some information, if you suspect this problem it is easy to test the sunroof drainage system. Put the vehicle on a slight slope, driveway usually works. Open the roof and pour a few oz of water into the channel where the defector recesses into and the water will run out behind the front wheel, turn the vehicle around to test the rear drains and it will run out behind the back wheel.

An easy way to inspect some of the drain is to take off the A pillar interior molding. A small portion of the left rear drain is visible inside the stock jack storage area.
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Unread 11-03-2010, 07:23 PM   #3
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Did that (the water)...... after cleaning them. Drained right out like you said. Thanks.
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Unread 11-03-2010, 07:30 PM   #4
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No worries, great post just thought I would add to your thread for other people here.

You mentioned using wire to unblock the drains, that will work but I have bad thoughts of damaging the tubing (probably being paranoid). If possible I would try an air compressor first, worked great on a Chevy Tahoe the other day. Very easy for the front drains but not the back.
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Unread 11-04-2010, 06:42 AM   #5
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I just did the same thing on my 04 except it was for the passenger side. I got in the other day and could have taken a bath in the amount of water that was there. I too cleaned out the tray in the front of the sunroof and now it works mint!
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Unread 11-04-2010, 09:36 AM   #6
Cruiserhead
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common problem
use a long zip tie or weed wacker line to thread thru the drain pipe and make sure it's clean

check from the bottom under the rockers to make sure the end is not plugged

as you have done, check from the top sunroof tray paying attention to the corners where the plastic pieces may have distorted or cracked or bolts have loosened creating misalignment

more easily, hopefully just some debris buildup

also check all four corners as there are usually drains going to the rear too-- not sure if this is applicable to the 4th gen
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Unread 12-19-2010, 07:14 PM   #7
mntbikr18
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Where is this sunroof drain located?
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Unread 12-19-2010, 07:21 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mntbikr18 View Post
Where is this sunroof drain located?
There's four drain pipes, one in each corner. The front ones are easy to see/find look for a small hole , the rear ones are toward the back of the sunroof assembly.
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Unread 12-19-2010, 07:22 PM   #9
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Front corners of the sheet metal inside the sunroof area........

Using weedwacker string is a great idea for cleaning them out.
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Unread 12-19-2010, 07:54 PM   #10
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I have some pics I took a while ago picture = 1000 words:

The front drain pipe:



Front drain hole:



The rear pipe, also green:

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Unread 12-20-2010, 12:32 AM   #11
medic83
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Damn... Those drain holes are puny
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Unread 12-20-2010, 07:35 AM   #12
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Great pics Jon.
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Unread 12-20-2010, 09:48 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by medic83 View Post
Damn... Those drain holes are puny
The hoses are a decent size, I think the angle of the pic makes them look smaller than they are.
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Unread 12-26-2016, 09:47 PM   #14
Natek
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Hi everyone,
I've run into what I believe is the same problem as the OP. I ran weed whacker cable into the drain but hit some serious blockage about 5 feet in. I'm hoping someone can post a photo of the drain exit under the vehicle as I am unable to locate it.

Thanks in advance
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Unread 12-27-2016, 04:22 PM   #15
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Default rear drain tubes nissan 1998 4 runner

This is additional info for those who have come across leaks in the sunroof due to plugged drainage holes (4) in their Toyota 4 runners. It may also apply to other Nissan makes and models also. The two holes in the front corners of the vehicle around the sunroof are easily observed and cleaned out. The rear holes are not accessible as far as I could see so I got under the vehicle and was able to find one tube on the right side behind the wheel. On the left side of the vehicle there is no tube but if you pull the rear side panel away you will find the drain tube attached to a reservoir. Not sure why it was done this way but it is. It is this tube that was plugged in my case so I ran my compressor blower into this tube and cleaned out the debris. This fixed my problem and so I blew air into the other tubes and reinstalled the side panel and am happy to not have to hire someone to do this maintenance.
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Unread 06-21-2017, 03:44 PM   #16
RocketCityYota
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Natek View Post
Hi everyone,
I've run into what I believe is the same problem as the OP. I ran weed whacker cable into the drain but hit some serious blockage about 5 feet in. I'm hoping someone can post a photo of the drain exit under the vehicle as I am unable to locate it.

Thanks in advance
I finally found where the front sunroof drains exit. They don't. They dump into the body behind each driver/passenger footwell kick panel. This panel on the drivers side is next to the footrest on the left side. The body then drains from 1 inch slots along the pinch weld under the vehicle. I had to remove my running boards to be able to locate these drain points, there are several the length of the vehicle. On my '06 4Runner there is a black plastic strip on the outside of the vehicle below the doors that curves under the vehicle. The drain points are along the edge of this plastic strip under the vehicle. I used a 1 inch chisel to open these up slightly. Be careful, some of the drain points have a metal tab in them that aligns with the running board mounting points.This is not debris, as I initially thought. I used weed eater string to clear the sunroof drain tubes and used a chisel and small flat blade screwdriver to clear the body pinch weld drain slots.

No more soaked/damp carpet for me!

P.S. I was not having any visible leakage around the sunroof, which would indicate clogged drains. I had water/moisture in my drivers side floor carpet which was caused by the pinch weld drains being clogged which caused the water coming from the sunroof drain tubes to back up into the floorboard.

Last edited by RocketCityYota; 06-21-2017 at 03:48 PM. Reason: Additional info
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