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2004 Chevrolet Astro Cargo
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Pulled the front mat in my cargo to install some dynamat and good lord what a mess!
The underlay is totally soaked and gross.

Wondering if anyone has any ideas for a replacement? I may just dry out and reuse the underlay as it seem like the path of least resistance but thinking of replacing the top mat with something breathable to allow the moisture to escape.

Anyone have any clever ideas?

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Anyone have any clever ideas?

find and fix the leak first! :cool:
Oh wow I actually hadn't thought of that!

When I bought it, I replaced the back door drip rail because it leaked when it was raining. Hadn't thought about other potential leak spots and chalked this up to accumulated moisture from ages ago.

Thanks for the reply, I'll have a look ✌
 

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2000 Lifted 4x4 Astro 92 V8-350 Shorty
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Yes you can RE-USE the underlayment.
Lay it out in the sun for a while (couple days) and let it thoroughly dry.
I've done it with mine in the rear.
Fortunately no rust as I caught it right away.

Be aware water travels. It may be coming from either side.
There is some chance it may come from around the windshield.
Or it could be leaking door seals.
Roof rack?
Are all firewall grommets in place?
A/C condensation or heater core leak?
Lot's of possibilities.

You are going to have to pay close attention to see where it is getting wet first, after it's been dried.
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Yes you can RE-USE the underlayment.
Lay it out in the sun for a while (couple days) and let it thoroughly dry.
I've done it with mine in the rear.
Fortunately no rust as I caught it right away.

Be aware water travels. It may be coming from either side.
There is some chance it may come from around the windshield.
Or it could be leaking door seals.
Roof rack?
Are all firewall grommets in place?
A/C condensation or heater core leak?
Lot's of possibilities.

You are going to have to pay close attention to see where it is getting wet first, after it's been dried.
It seems to be the worst in the driver's footwell but doesn't travel up to the top. There's a possible leak point right where the harness is and a couple other connections. Tons of debris and rust in there.

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Passenger footwell is also pretty bad and it looks like it's collecting somewhere at the base of the wheel well.

Thanks for the reply, I will check out the grommets too.
 

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'93 Astro LT Ext w/ FE3 (RWD), 7 Passenger, Dutch Doors, Med Teal, 4.3 V6
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I had a water showing up in the same place. Apparently it was cracks in the seam sealer where the firewall meets the inner fender and possibly where it turns under the floor. I put a generous amount of sealer per the link below over all of the existing sealer, reaching the under-floor seam as much as I could. It's ugly but it stopped the leap. I bought color match touch-up spray paint, so I plan to sand and paint it sometime in the future. I have some bigger issues to work out before spending time on that though.
Passenger side also has a leak which I haven't addressed yet. I need to replace my heater core and blower motor/fan, so I'll do it then.
 
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I would leave the underlay padding and any mats out, so you can see where moisture is accumulating first.
If you are in the habit of parking 'nose down', it could even be coming from the back door seals, as following the floor grooves forward. Do you have anything on the rear floor area that can soak up water? If so, I would definitely check that also.
Good luck, and let us know what you find.

Rod J
Issaquah, WA
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I had a water showing up in the same place. Apparently it was cracks in the seam sealer where the firewall meets the inner fender and possibly where it turns under the floor. I put a generous amount of sealer per the link below over all of the existing sealer, reaching the under-floor seam as much as I could. It's ugly but it stopped the leap. I bought color match touch-up spray paint, so I plan to sand and paint it sometime in the future. I have some bigger issues to work out before spending time on that though.
Passenger side also has a leak which I haven't addressed yet. I need to replace my heater core and blower motor/fan, so I'll do it then.
This looks promising. Thanks for all your pics and info!

I just wanted to put a couple sheets of dynamat down but now here I am sealing seams, wire wheeling and repainting the floor of the van. No small jobs when working on an Astro lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I would leave the underlay padding and any mats out, so you can see where moisture is accumulating first.
If you are in the habit of parking 'nose down', it could even be coming from the back door seals, as following the floor grooves forward. Do you have anything on the rear floor area that can soak up water? If so, I would definitely check that also.
Good luck, and let us know what you find.

Rod J
Issaquah, WA
Thanks, that's a good idea. No point in putting it all back together until I can isolate the issue.

My van sits higher in the back when empty so it's totally possible that's where the water is coming from. Luckily the rear is just the cargo mat and a sheet of plywood so nothing to damage. I pulled it all out and didn't notice any moisture but I'm not ruling it out. I'll update as I go!
 

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I would get out the hose and start with the windshield, plenty of people have had leaks around the windshield.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Todays update:

I decided to do the rust treatment first since the van was already apart. I don't have a hose I can use at home so I'm going to hit the diy car wash in the morning.

Treating an area this big all at once was a hell of a job but I'm glad I discovered it before it was too late. Here are my steps in case anyone's doing this in the future.

Treating floor rust if you're a total amateur:

Liquid Product Fluid Font Gas

Equipment:
  • Grinder
  • Vacuum - Super useful for this job.
  • Ear protection, eye protection, n95 mask.
  • Rust Check Primer
  • Tremclad Rust enamel.
  • Dupli Colour Wax and Grease remover.


Steps:
1. Wire wheeled forever. Tried to get as much of the rust off the metal as possible and made sure all the loose paint and rust were gone.

2. Cleaned. Vacuumed and wiped everything down with water and a cloth. Then Cleaned with a grease and wax remover. The grease and wax remover I used was not good and left sort of an oily film even after waiting a while. It also smelled like death and probably took 2 years off my life. I ended up using a spray bottle of super diluted soapy water and going over everything again.

3. Primer. Because I was finishing in white, I used a grey primer so I could later tell that I'd hit everything.

4. Paint. I waited about an hour for the primer set and then applied one coat of the enamel. Waited about 45-60 minutes before applying the second coat.
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- Wire wheeled and applied rust paint to the seat bases, seatbelt mounting points.

I don't know if I mentioned, but I ended up just doing the whole floor. I used 2 cans each of primer and enamel. It was a stretch and if doing again, I would have 3 cans of each. I may go back and do another coat of the enamel in the rear of the van.

Thanks everyone for all your ideas and support. Following suggestions, I'm only going to put the drivers seat back in and turn a hose on it tomorrow. Cheers.
 

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'93 Astro LT Ext w/ FE3 (RWD), 7 Passenger, Dutch Doors, Med Teal, 4.3 V6
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Looks great! I've thought about getting mine done with Line-X, but it would probably be real expensive to have them do it.
 
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2003 Chevrolet Astro RWD
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Todays update:

I decided to do the rust treatment first since the van was already apart. I don't have a hose I can use at home so I'm going to hit the diy car wash in the morning.

Treating an area this big all at once was a hell of a job but I'm glad I discovered it before it was too late. Here are my steps in case anyone's doing this in the future.

Treating floor rust if you're a total amateur:

View attachment 285492
Equipment:
  • Grinder
  • Vacuum - Super useful for this job.
  • Ear protection, eye protection, n95 mask.
  • Rust Check Primer
  • Tremclad Rust enamel.
  • Dupli Colour Wax and Grease remover.


Steps:
1. Wire wheeled forever. Tried to get as much of the rust off the metal as possible and made sure all the loose paint and rust were gone.

2. Cleaned. Vacuumed and wiped everything down with water and a cloth. Then Cleaned with a grease and wax remover. The grease and wax remover I used was not good and left sort of an oily film even after waiting a while. It also smelled like death and probably took 2 years off my life. I ended up using a spray bottle of super diluted soapy water and going over everything again.

3. Primer. Because I was finishing in white, I used a grey primer so I could later tell that I'd hit everything.

4. Paint. I waited about an hour for the primer set and then applied one coat of the enamel. Waited about 45-60 minutes before applying the second coat.
View attachment 285498

View attachment 285499

- Wire wheeled and applied rust paint to the seat bases, seatbelt mounting points.

I don't know if I mentioned, but I ended up just doing the whole floor. I used 2 cans each of primer and enamel. It was a stretch and if doing again, I would have 3 cans of each. I may go back and do another coat of the enamel in the rear of the van.

Thanks everyone for all your ideas and support. Following suggestions, I'm only going to put the drivers seat back in and turn a hose on it tomorrow. Cheers.
I gotta do the exact same deal brother, excellent guidance....i just thorougly sprayed silicone grease to hold the oxidation at bay....until i get the mat back up....i juat went ahead and removed all the wet *** underlay.....i could just rip off a piece and squeeze like half a glass out of it.....idk how in tf lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I gotta do the exact same deal brother, excellent guidance....i just thorougly sprayed silicone grease to hold the oxidation at bay....until i get the mat back up....i juat went ahead and removed all the wet *** underlay.....i could just rip off a piece and squeeze like half a glass out of it.....idk how in tf lol
Yeah mine is super deteriorated and it really holds onto the water. I've had it out in the sun for 2 days and it's around 28c here, still damp though 😮
I'm hoping I can use it temporarily while I figure out the next move.

Good luck with your repair, have you found the source of your leak?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Looks great! I've thought about getting mine done with Line-X, but it would probably be real expensive to have them do it.
Thanks! I hope that it's enough to fortify against all the leaks these vans seem to encounter.

It's funny that you mention Line-X, YouTube just recommended me a video from them this morning. It looks really good. Did a quick search and prices seem to start at 450 - 500 loonies to get it done around here. Seems not too bad for what you get.

Do you use your van for work? Maybe you could write it off!
 

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Thanks! I hope that it's enough to fortify against all the leaks these vans seem to encounter.

It's funny that you mention Line-X, YouTube just recommended me a video from them this morning. It looks really good. Did a quick search and prices seem to start at 450 - 500 loonies to get it done around here. Seems not too bad for what you get.

Do you use your van for work? Maybe you could write it off!
Yeah mine is super deteriorated and it really holds onto the water. I've had it out in the sun for 2 days and it's around 28c here, still damp though 😮
I'm hoping I can use it temporarily while I figure out the next move.

Good luck with your repair, have you found the source of your leak?
im gonna blame the dutch door rusted drip edge...during rain i can see droplets running down the speaker panels in the back i believe its shooting under the floor mat and just working its way through out the floor.... same deal as yours the main cargo area is ok, but the driver's floorboard and shi is horrific.... completely corroded the air bag module under the drivers seat, now the air bag light stays on, and there pretty much non existent unless you salvage
 

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'93 Astro LT Ext w/ FE3 (RWD), 7 Passenger, Dutch Doors, Med Teal, 4.3 V6
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Thanks! I hope that it's enough to fortify against all the leaks these vans seem to encounter.

It's funny that you mention Line-X, YouTube just recommended me a video from them this morning. It looks really good. Did a quick search and prices seem to start at 450 - 500 loonies to get it done around here. Seems not too bad for what you get.

Do you use your van for work? Maybe you could write it off!
It's just personal use, mostly as a family bus, but also used for moving big loads of furniture and things.

One of the reasons I was considering Line-X is because they would also do the sanding. I also thought it would just be good for the longivity of the van, considering their apparent tendency to leak. I think Line-X is also supposed to help with noise and heat transition (probably not much). I was also thinking it might be a desirable feature when selling the van or handing it down to a family member.

I wonder if it would be hard to trim the rear carpet so that it could be removed without having to pull the side trim panels. The backing is so thick it might take a saw to cut it. A carpet shop might be able to finish the edges for a factory look. I guess I would also need a removable insulation pad for under the carpet. The ribs in the floor are so ruff on the knees I'm was hoping to have fillers of some kind. It would be cool if someone made an industrial quilt-like pad with pockets strategically located to hold the filler strips. Maybe I'll try magnets to hold wood strips in place, and maybe connect the strips with some kind of straps so they can be rolled up quickly ... and get a quilt (like movers use) for insulation. [... just thinking ...]
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Hey gang, just a quick update.
Hit up the car wash last week and soaked down the van. It was immediately obvious that the leak was coming from the back doors.

I am pretty sure the weak spot is this top corner:
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And the weatherstrip is also completely disintegrated on the bottom of the door which isn't helping water flow out the proper channel:
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This weekend I'm going to try to reseat the top weatherstrip and glue it with the 3M weatherstrip adhesive. It's in good shape, so hopefully that works.

Thinking that I might need to buy the Steele rubber back door seals for the other weatherstrip though unless you guys have any more brilliant ideas?

The underlay dried out and I'm going to reuse it for now and save the cash for other more urgent things.

Happy Friday, hope everyone's about to have a great weekend 🤟
 
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