Water leaks, rain, sunroofs, and mold, a bad combination.

Water leaks cause mold and mildew, contact us for a free quote for repair.

With all the recent rain we have had in Richmond VA it has brought some unwanted guests such as water leaks and mold/mildew. RVA Glass has gotten several calls for leaking windshields. Most of the time, the windshield is not to blame unfortunately. Water leaks like this one are from the sunroof’s drain holes being clogged. It is important to do some diagnostics before you assume your windshield needs replacing. Otherwise you could have a new windshield and the same leak. If you discover your vehicle has water inside, the first thing to do is get the water out. Use a shop vac to suck out the majority of water. Placing a dehumidifier in the vehicle and running it will help remove water and prevent mold. If you do not have a dehumidifier be sure to run the air conditioning in your vehicle for a couple of hours to help pull out the moisture. Be careful using bleach to kill mold as it will bleach stain fabrics and carpet. If you have a water leak in your vehicle call RVA Glass LLC for sunroof repair or replacement.

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Water leaks cause mold and mildew, contact us for a free quote for repair.

Rear glass leak fix, an infamous problem for Ford trucks.

Today, one of my regular customers, who we will call Tim, called me with a problem on his  newly purchased, pre-owned 2008 Ford F-250 Super-duty crew cab truck that he just added to his fleet of vehicles.  He said he hasn’t owned the truck long and recently noticed he had a rear glass leak. He told me a few days ago while he was driving in a rain storm that his passengers noticed that his back glass was wet with water streaming down the back of the glass.  Tim’s truck has a powered, 3 panel, encapsulated rear glass with solar privacy glass.  The center glass slides open when the button is pushed in the drivers’ area.  The other back glass option for this truck would be a 1 piece glass that does not open or slide.

I told Tim the powered rear back glass assemblies have drain ports/drain holes built in the bottom of them. They are designed to take water from rain that runs into the bottom of window channel and allow that water to drain out the bottom. Over time these drain ports can collect dirt, pollen and other small debris causing the drain holes to become clogged.  This results in water pooling up inside the channel until it runs over the channel and leaks down the bottom of the glass into the carpeted rear area of the cab. After I asked Tim some more questions about where the water seemed to be coming from the drain ports didn’t seem like the likely problem.

My only other thought for the cause of the water leak was the seal for the rear glass had failed. This seal is made up of a strand of butyl tape which surrounds the face of the glass assembly that mates to the metal pinch weld of the glass opening.  The glass assembly also has threaded studs that protrude through the metal pinch weld.  10mm nuts thread onto the protruding threaded studs that are now sticking through the pinchweld holes about 15 total. Once the 10mm nuts are secured on the inside of the cab it creates a water proof barrier by pulling the glass assembly inward towards the cab. As the 10mm nuts are tightened the butyl tape that is sandwiched in the middle between the glass assembly and metal pinchweld acts as a waterproof barrier keeping water out of the interior of the vehicle. Butyl tape is very sticky, tacky and messy. It does not break down like rubber or foam gasket seals so I was hesitant to pursue this as a possible cause for a water leak.

I told Tim that I would be over later that afternoon to diagnose and repair the water leak on his truck. When I pulled into Tim’s driveway his truck’s rear window was facing towards me. I was already scanning the back cab of the truck for potential problems. The first thing I noticed in the immediate vicinity of the rear glass was an aftermarket third brake light above the rear glass of the truck. This was of interest to me because this was my potential water leak problem staring me down!

Ford trucks since 1997 to 2014 are notorious for leaking water around the third brake light lens just above the rear view window. The problem is usually not with the plastic brake light assembly but rather the foam gasket seal. The third brake lights leak around the hole in the cab where the brake light mates to the back of the truck cab. The third brake light has a foam gasket seal that sits between the brake light fixture and the back of the truck cab. The foam gasket seal can become deteriorated or pulled away, resulting in water leaking into the cab through the hole in the cab for the third brake light. 20180905_124235

In Tim’s case, the foam gasket seal was present but it was old, smashed down and no longer doing it’s job of keeping water out. When it rains the water runs down the back of the roof of the truck and down to the third brake light and into the cab. The water would then travel down the rear back glass on the inside of the glass down to the floor and carpet. Tim told me that this problem has been going on for awhile because the bottom of his rear floor board was rusty beneath the carpet. Below is the picture of the old foam gasket seal.  20180905_124243

Confident that I had found the source of the water leak I showed Tim the third brake light assembly and the old foam gasket seal attached to it.  I told him I would make a new foam gasket seal and re-install the third brake light.  I replaced the seal and water tested the third brake light with a water hose.  Tim watched the inside of the back glass from the rear seat as I sprayed down the third brake light assembly and back glass for 2 to 3 minutes.  I was glad the rear glass leak was no longer present because it meant that I would not have to remove glass and replace the messy, black butyl tape! Tim was also happy because his repair bill was considerably less than removing and re-installing the entire back glass assembly.

 

A proper fix for rear glass leak brake light assembly

A quick google search for Ford third brake light leaking will reveal a variety of different fixes that other people have come up with. The most common fix that people seem to do is to permanently seal the third brake light assembly to the back of the cab with an  adhesive such as glue or urethane. DO NOT DO THIS!  The next time your third brake light needs a bulb replacement you will have a mess to deal with. The adhesive will either pull the paint off the back of the truck cab when you pull the brake light assembly, crack the brake light assembly, or have to be removed by cutting. The latter will most likely result in scratched paint.

I used a piece of 7/32 foam gasket seal that attaches with a piece of built in adhesive tape. This is the same type of material that is attached to the edges of windshields to keep dirt and water out of the pinchweld. This type of gasket seal can be purchased online or some automotive stores. If you cannot find the same material that I used, you can purchase a 3M double-sided foam adhesive tape at your local parts store.

Demonstration of a rear glass leak fix. Repairing the seal.

Tools/items needed: 3M double-sided tape, razor blade/cutting tool, rubbing alcohol & hand towel,  water source for water leak testing.

  1.  Remove the old foam gasket from the third brake light assembly
  2. Wipe down the brake light assembly with rubbing alcohol where the old gasket was removed.
  3. Evenly apply the double-sided 3M tape around the entire edge of the third brake light.
  4. Carefully trim any excess double-sided foam tape with a razor knife.
  5. Re-install third brake light assembly and tighten 2 Phillips screws.

How to do a simple water leak test

This is a very simple way to check for leaks yourself.  You will need a spray bottle filled with soapy water and compressed air.  This technique will work for checking water leaks around any solid mounted glass on your vehicle.  The compressed air can be in the form of a compressed can of air if an air compressor and nozzle is not available.

  1.  Spray the soapy water around the entire outside area of the glass to be checked.
  2.  From the inside of the vehicle one person blows the compressed air slowly around the entire outer edge of the glass while the second person watches the glass from the outside of the vehicle watching for soap bubbles to appear.  Where the soap bubbles appear on the outside is where the leak is located.  The compressed air passes around the glass forming the soapy bubble.

To schedule a windshield replacemenet or for more useful information check us out at RVA Glass Repair. You can also call or text us at 804-519-4218 or fill out a brief contact form and we’ll get back to you soon.

As always RVA Glass offers FREE Mobile Service! That’s right, as always we come to you at no extra charge for every windshield repair and windshield replacement in the greater Richmond VA area including: Short Pump VA, Glen Allen VA, North Chesterfield VA, Midlothian VA, Chester VA, Bon Air, VA, Forest Hill VA, Colonial Heights VA, and Chesterfield VA.

RVA Glasss services include but are not limited to:

  1. Free windshield replacement or repair quote.
  2. We accept glass insurance claims from all major insurance providers.
  3. Windshield repair for minor damages. You can read about the different types here.  
  4. Windshield replacement for major damage types and breaks.
  5. All auto glass repair. Anywhere on your vehicle you have damage, we can help fix it.
  6. Windshield rock chip repair usually resulting from small debris striking the windshield while driving.
  7. Window motor regulator replacement. If your windows stop working, normally it is the motor that is the issue. Contact us for a free quote.
  8. Rear view mirror repair or replacement. We can fix all internal glass structures on the interior of the vehicle as well.
  9. The back glass could leak or get broken. When inclement weather or age strike, RVA Glass can be the solution you need for an affordable price.
  10. Often, when parked or driving, your side view mirrors could suffer impact. Or, due to age, they may become structurally compromised. Usually this can be an expensive fix at most shops. Call us to see how we can repair your side view mirrors. We are fully mobile so we can come to you!
  11. Leaking windshield or back glass usually is a problem with the seal or gaskets. Normally this can be a relatively simple fix so contact us now for a free estimate.
  12. Although we can work on almost any vehicle, we are very adept at working on Jeep Wranglers, Subaru Outbacks, Toyota Rav 4s, and Toyota Camrys.

 

Auto Glass Damage Types

There are many different types of auto glass damage that can occur to your vehicle.  These damages are a result of small debris that are kicked up by car tires, or debris that fall off the back of other vehicles while travelling at a high rate of speed. We’ll examine the different types of damages and see what is the best course of action: repair or replacement. 

Most common auto glass damage types:

Chip – This type of damage is the most common. It is usually caused by a rock or other small debris colliding with the windshield while driving. Often, a small piece of the impacted area comes loose which creates the chip impact. Auto glass is designed to break into very small fragments so that when it breaks, the chances of it causing secondary damages (cuts mainly) are very low. Chipped windshields are traditionally easy to repair. However, if left unattended, chips can turn into cracks which may require replacement instead of repair.

Bull’s Eye – This type of damage is usually caused by a slightly larger object than that found in chip damages. Circular in shape and larger than a chip, often it can be repaired depending on the size. If too much glass has been compromised or the bull’s eye is too large, replacement may be necessary. 

Combination Break – This type of auto glass damage is defined by multiple features already discussed. Combination breaks can feature an assortment of chips, dings, or cracks. Depending on the size of the impact and how deep the damage is sustained in the glass, repair is possible. Often these types of damages can lead to windshield replacement being necessary. 

Edge Crack – An edge crack starts within a few inches of the edge of your windshield or directly at the edge of the windshield. This damage’s onset is typically instantaneous, and often requires windshield replacement to rectify. 

Auto glass damage required a replacement. RVA Glass was able to meet the client's needs in record time.
When a car’s windshield suffered a combination break, the type of damage it sustained required a windshield replacement. RVA Glass LLC met the client at their work for a quick and easy replacement. 

Contact us for a free consultation!

You can call RVA Glass LLC. at (804) 519-4218 or use our contact form to set up an appointment or get a free quote today! Whether you need a windshield replacement or repair, RVA Glass has all your mobile auto glass needs covered.

For more information about this topic, please consult the Auto Glass Safety Council Standard. They deal with all matter of specifications for auto glass repair and replacement standards.

Cheap windshield repair & replacement

When your windshield gets a chip or a crack in it, your first thought is probably: “why me and why now?” Fear not! At RVA Glass LLC, we are able to provide Cheap windshield repair & replacement quickly and safely so that you can get back to your normal routine quicker. We will come repair or replace your windshield at your office, home, or anywhere else you will need immediate and convenient service.

Many of our competitors will charge an arm and a leg for the same service. Being a small business, we will be able to tailor your service to fit exactly your needs. We will not be rushing off to meet corporate imposed quotas. Providing service for you, at your convenience, is our mission. We aim to deliver that to you every day of the week, rain or shine.

We work with insurance companies of all varieties. Working diligently to get you the best price is our creed and we can provide free expertise to help you understand your options.

Our technicians are prompt and professional, and will always be fair and honest. Rest assured, when you choose RVA Glass, you will be ecstatic with the outcome. That is, cheap windshield repair & replacement, wherever you might be.

 

 

Cheap windshield repair & replacement would solve this problem easily.

 

If you need a job completed quickly and professionally for cheap windshield repair & replacement, drop us a line for a free consultation. Let us help you get mobile again.

 

To reach us for a free quote, call us at (804) 519-4218. You can reach us at Facebook  or you can send us an e-mail at our contact page.

Insurance vs. paying out of pocket?

insurance to repair & replace a windshield.

When do you need your insurance to repair & replace a windshield? Often when you run into a problem with your vehicle and insurance claims, it is dependent on your deductible.

If you carry a low insurance deductible  of $100 or lower it will most definitely be cheaper for you to use your comprehensive insurance for a vehicle glass claim .  If your deductible is $250 to $500 then most likely it will be cheaper to have your glass paid for out of pocket.

Most windshields cost between $200 and $300.  The price goes up for new/newer vehicles with more windshield options.  Some of these options include rain sensor, Lane Departure Warning System (LDWS), heated windshield option to name a few. These advanced systems have more functionality, but generally carry a higher price tag.

For more information or help deciding call 804-519-4218.

You can also fill out this form or reach us on social media at Facebook.

How does the windshield rock chip repair process work?

Windshield chip repair works a bit like magic.   The windshield chip repair process is the same even for different equipment.
First the machine draws a vacuum on the crack by removing all the air. Once a vacuum is pulled, resin is then gravity fed into the crack. The windshield is then pressurized to force the resin out into the ends of the crack. This process seals off the crack, preventing the crack from spreading. The repair will still be noticeable, but the point is to save the windshield. If the damage to your glass is directly in front of your field of vision then you should consider a windshield replacement.
Generally, if the crack is too large, a windshield replacement may be necessary. An easy way to tell is if the crack spans more than the width of a $1 bill.
Send us a picture of your damaged windshield and we will advise you on whether a repair or replacement is best for you.
Text or call us at 804-519-4218. You can also find us on Facebook or contact us via web form.
The windshield chip repair process at work.
The windshield chip repair process at work.