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RWD - Condensation Under Trunk Lid

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Condensation Under Trunk Lid 200 1983

I live in the Pacific Northwest in a somewhat rural location. I am not able to garage my cars like I did when I lived in the city a decade ago.

I have only now started to notice that on my 1983 242, in cold weather, I am regularly seeing condensation form on the underside of my trunk lid. I have checked many times and it is not like it is wet anywhere inside the trunk. The side walls of the trunk, the floor and mat, etc are all seemingly dry to the touch and eye. Yet the condensation seems to imply that water is there there somewhere, somehow. And when the lid metal gets cold I guess that warmer (and it seems more moist) air from below is rising and condensing when it hits the cold metal of the lid.

I have checked and this is NOT happening with the wife's 1980 244. And I don't think her trunk lid seals as well as mine does. Almost as if the metal was tweaked once somehow. I don't know, maybe with a less good seal the moist air escapes that way? Seems a reach to me.

Can anyone explain what is going on here or suggest what to do about it? When I open the trunk and see it, I try to wipe down the interior surface of the lid. But that does not seem to reduce the condensation any the next time (not that I really thought it would).

Thanks





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    Condensation Under Trunk Lid 200 1983

    Well, you can ignore most of my post. I am just back in from taking it all apart. Under the "carpet" which felt dry to the touch but got wet when pressure was applied to it, I found a felt pad that was pretty drenched. So there is indeed liquid in there. I have now removed both carpet and pad and placed in my shed to dry out over time. I toweled away the moisture and have lined the entire trunk with newspaper in hopes it will help me spot where the liquid may be coming from. Most of the usual suspects, rear window seal, antenna seal, and such seem quite dry. Hmmm.





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      Condensation Under Trunk Lid 200 1983

      Our wet trunks have always been from the tail lights. Only in one case is the gasket an issue; that's where previous body work didn't match the light profile. All the other cases are the result of cracks, visible and internal, in the tail light lenses or their attachment to the black plastic housing.

      Check your lights with a close-up inspection before moving on to the lid seal. I keep dreaming of one day climbing in the trunk with a flashlight and camera while Mrs. B plays with a hose, but something keeps me from making that a reality.
      --
      Art Benstein near Baltimore

      It's all fun and games until your jeans don't fit.





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        Condensation Under Trunk Lid 200 1983

        Sorry for so long in getting back on this. I am thinking that both Art and Chris are on the right track here in saying the tail light is the source of the moisture. Surprisingly for the PNW, it remained dry (but cold) for some time and only recently has there been enough rain to see anything.

        What I see is that the newspaper I put down all over the trunk interior is only moist near the tail lights - both of them. I cannot quite recall why now, but I do recall having removed both of these, noting that the gaskets looked rather mashed to hell, and deciding I could "improve" things by applying some stick-on foam weather stripping I happened to have lying around.

        I suspect that my "repair" is the cause. I found gasket replacements for $10 each on EBay so it seems a good idea to do this again - the right way. I never had moisture problems prior to all this so I guess it makes sense that the last think I touched is likely the cause. So once I get and install them, I should know more and will report back here. If they work, I may update the wife's 1980 in the same way before too long.

        Unlike Art, I have no desire to have my wife lock me in the trunk of my car. While he may have his doubts about the outcome of such an experiment, I have none :-)

        Cheers!





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      Condensation Under Trunk Lid 200 1983

      Leaky tail light gasket(s)?
      --
      Current rides: 2005 Volvo S80 2.5T, 2003 Volvo V70 2.4NA, 1973 Volvo 1800ES (getting ever closer to road worthiness)





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        Condensation Under Trunk Lid 200 1983

        Gotta a moon roof?

        Do you see beige opaque vinyl tube at the front left and right corners of the trunk area at the hump behind the rear seat back.

        These tubes may appear connected, yet can leak and also disconnect as the hose ends lose grip with the plastic barbed connectors. The rear vents under the rear window backglass and at the front, hinged egde of the trunk lid do connect to these drain tubes in the trunk.
        --
        Give your brickboard.com a big thumbs up! Way up! - Roger Ebert.





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