Leaking Windshield, costs to repair

Messages
658
Location
Southern NY
2006 Sentra, with ~113K on the odometer. Primarily used for local errands, not more than 4K miles a year. At a times, I feel a water droplet on my right hand while driving and I could never find where that water was coming from, until the last week, when the wife took the car to work. She noticed a small droplet almost in the middle of the windshield. The headliner is dry. Other than the water droplet, absolutely nothing is wet to touch. I have been suspicious of rubber around all the windows for a while but due to cost (with the age of the car), I am not really interested in spending much money (saving that for the next car, down 4-5 years). I checked some YouTube videos and came across https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U0kqaMMd2Ec using Permatex liquid silicone. It seems like a quick and dirty job that may work for a couple of years. But I wonder if I want to do it correctly, like remove the windshield, clean the rust, replace the rubber, how much it may cost? Approx figure because I don't want to spend that money after 2 years, if this quick and dirty job doesn't work now. I would love to know if anybody has another/better idea to fix it. Possible leak location and water droplet location. The paint has bubbled in that area. [Linked Image from i.postimg.cc] Thanks in advance.
 
Messages
10,783
Location
Jupiter, Florida
Rust repair is rarely inexpensive, and often times, only marginally successful. If you see one spot, expect it to me more extensive than is apparent and that there will be other rusted sections too. If I were to cut out the rust and weld in new steel in that one spot, a wild guess is about 10 hours labor.
 
Messages
18,179
Location
NH
Originally Posted by Char Baby
My first attempt would be to fix it myself with some RTV or or similar. Then go from there.
Ditto. If it's low miles per year and just kinda living out the end of it is life, then no need to go crazy. I don't know if the rubber seal can be pried out of the way gently, but I'd think a good ole gob of RTV might solve this issue "good enough".
 

MoneyJohn

Thread starter
Messages
658
Location
Southern NY
Originally Posted by Char Baby
My first attempt would be to fix it myself with some RTV or or similar. Then go from there.
Do you mind linking RTV? I don't know what that is. Thanks in advance. Edit: Amazon shows links to the gasket makers. Aren't they too thick for the job? The video that I linked suggests Windshield silicone https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000BKEBO0, Wouldn't that be better at this job due to its viscosity and ability to get to tiny holes?
Originally Posted by supton
Originally Posted by Char Baby
My first attempt would be to fix it myself with some RTV or or similar. Then go from there.
Ditto. If it's low miles per year and just kinda living out the end of it is life, then no need to go crazy. I don't know if the rubber seal can be pried out of the way gently, but I'd think a good ole gob of RTV might solve this issue "good enough".
No, the seal can not be pried (and I am trying not to put too much effort to pry it more than I easily can). It is rather tight but the rubber is worn out for sure. Just the feel of it is not great.
 
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Messages
7,015
Location
Suburban Washington DC
That's not a seal but a molding, and not the original from what I can tell. Windshield has been replaced before and they didn't prime the rusty areas or scratched the paint when removing the glass originally and that has rusted.
 
Messages
18,179
Location
NH
That stuff might work. I think of RTV as basically automotive grade caulk. Goopy stuff that is pliable once set, but fills the crack and has sealing properties at that. Squirt some under the seal, then slather over the seal and the area, and hope it seals.
 

MoneyJohn

Thread starter
Messages
658
Location
Southern NY
Originally Posted by atikovi
That's not a seal but a molding, and not the original from what I can tell. Windshield has been replaced before and they didn't prime the rusty areas or scratched the paint when removing the glass originally and that has rusted.
Thanks for correcting the terminology. I bought the vehicle pre-owned in 2010 and it didn't come with the records so no idea if the windshield was replaced. But I have not replaced the windshield in the last 10 years of ownership.
 
Messages
22,678
Location
Apple Valley, California
The guy we use charges $200-$250 to put in a new glass. Does not include rust repair as thats not common here and he is not a body guy. I would pry that rubber up a little and get silicone under it myself.
 
Messages
17,586
Location
Upper Midwest
There is a special extra runny RTV that is made to try and seal windshield leaks. I saw it in the store when my old Sienna was leaking but I did not try it. On the Sienna the problem was that the pinch weld under the windshield was rusting and allowing water to enter. I had to remove the windshield (the first and last time I hope I have to do that), remove all the adhesive from the pinch weld, remove the rust from the weld down to sound metal, use epoxy primer to prime, and then reinstall the windshield. Since I managed to break the windshield when I removed it I had to have a new one installed, I briefly thought about doing that myself but considering the minor incremental cost of having someone else do it (plus getting a warranty) I called a shop. That's been a couple/few years now and so far no more leaks.
 
Messages
180
Location
Valley Forge PA
I paid $600 to have the same type of fix on a cherokee a few years ago, rusted out along bottom not so much top but required a lot of attention. That included a new windshield and gasket installed after and paint to match the body color. I did the silicone thing maybe 5 years before the real repair and it worked briefly and then on any tremendous downpour of rain I always still had puddles to the point that I pulled the carpet out of it and just lived with rubber floor matts for a long time. Buying a new carpet and driving a quiet car again afterwards was the best part of the whole job. Was probably not worth doing in the end but I had the money and just wanted it nice again.
 

JTK

Messages
13,518
Location
Buffalo, NY
Like said above, there's more going on here than a simple glass shop re-seal would take care of, but my local glass shop charged me $100 to remove and reseal the rear fixed glass on my 2017 Ram. It was a botched aftermarket job that was done before I bought the truck used.
 
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