Water leaking in hatch area - Ford Forum - Enthusiast Forums for Ford Owners


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Old 04-01-2017, 02:40 PM
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Default Water leaking in hatch area

Another good ole 04 Freestar issue......I've had this problem for awhile now. Doesn't effect driving so I have been putting it off....long story short

The rear hatch area, after a good rain, floods out...like filled, big puddle etc......car can be parked whole time, still does it.......the lock for the rear hatch is broke and completely rusted out, I gave up hope on that........the only area i see water entering is on top of hatch, seems to be a little space, or around the license plate housing assembly area, seems to be a little loose on one side......water does settle down by hatch/lock

Any ideas what to use/do to seal it up.....how do I remove housing around plate?...just clips?...any info appreciated


If anyone would like to see pics, I can gladly take some to make it easier



Thanx
Corey
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Old 04-07-2017, 08:51 AM
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Originally Posted by soopacee View Post
Another good ole 04 Freestar issue......I've had this problem for awhile now. Doesn't effect driving so I have been putting it off....long story short

The rear hatch area, after a good rain, floods out...like filled, big puddle etc......car can be parked whole time, still does it.......the lock for the rear hatch is broke and completely rusted out, I gave up hope on that........the only area i see water entering is on top of hatch, seems to be a little space, or around the license plate housing assembly area, seems to be a little loose on one side......water does settle down by hatch/lock

Any ideas what to use/do to seal it up.....how do I remove housing around plate?...just clips?...any info appreciated


If anyone would like to see pics, I can gladly take some to make it easier



Thanx
Corey
I have exactly the same problem with my 2004 Freestar. My license plate housing pulls out a little on the right (when facing the rear of the van). My Freestar has the factory spoiler. Corey, does yours? I would also love to receive any info on how to resolve this problem. I'm ready to give her the caulk if someone will tell me where!
Thanks in advance for any help you can provide.
Doug
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Old 04-07-2017, 01:24 PM
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I have exactly the same problem with my 2004 Freestar. My license plate housing pulls out a little on the right (when facing the rear of the van). My Freestar has the factory spoiler. Corey, does yours? I would also love to receive any info on how to resolve this problem. I'm ready to give her the caulk if someone will tell me where!
Thanks in advance for any help you can provide.
Doug
A little more info. It doesn't always leak inside the van but whenever we have heavy rain, the liftgate fills with water. Then when I open it I can hear water gurgling. Then when I close it water pours out of the drain holes. I think I'm going to try caulking around the license plate insert...
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Old 04-08-2017, 08:42 AM
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Originally Posted by DougOfWar View Post
A little more info. It doesn't always leak inside the van but whenever we have heavy rain, the liftgate fills with water. Then when I open it I can hear water gurgling. Then when I close it water pours out of the drain holes. I think I'm going to try caulking around the license plate insert...

Hey Doug

No, mine has no spoiler.......same with mine, water settles around where it hatches, it's always wet there after rain

Do you know if the housing around license plate is removable?

Thanx
Corey
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Old 04-08-2017, 12:22 PM
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Originally Posted by soopacee View Post
Hey Doug

No, mine has no spoiler.......same with mine, water settles around where it hatches, it's always wet there after rain

Do you know if the housing around license plate is removable?

Thanx
Corey
Yes, it is removable. You have to take the inner trim panel off of the tailgate. Remove the two Phillips head screws and the two bolts holding the handle on. Then just pull down on the panel. There are a bunch of clips holding it on. Then there are 7 nuts and two clips holding the license plate insert in. The five smaller nuts are rusty and one of the studs was already broken and three more of them broke during the removal. The studs are molded with plastic into the back of the insert. A terrible design. The weather stripping on the back is badly degraded and I think that this combined with the broken stud is where the water was getting in. I am going to remove all of the weather stripping and then run a very thick bead of construction adhesive in it's place. You will have access to your rusted latch mechanism. Maybe spray it all with rust penetrant and wait a day. Then hopefully your studs won't break off. But I'm sure that at least one of yours is already broken and that's why it pulls out a little on one side. I'll let you know if it passes the garden hose test after I get it back together and the glue has a day to dry.
Cheers and good luck,
Doug

Last edited by DougOfWar; 04-08-2017 at 12:25 PM.
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Old 04-09-2017, 07:15 AM
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Originally Posted by DougOfWar View Post
Yes, it is removable. You have to take the inner trim panel off of the tailgate. Remove the two Phillips head screws and the two bolts holding the handle on. Then just pull down on the panel. There are a bunch of clips holding it on. Then there are 7 nuts and two clips holding the license plate insert in. The five smaller nuts are rusty and one of the studs was already broken and three more of them broke during the removal. The studs are molded with plastic into the back of the insert. A terrible design. The weather stripping on the back is badly degraded and I think that this combined with the broken stud is where the water was getting in. I am going to remove all of the weather stripping and then run a very thick bead of construction adhesive in it's place. You will have access to your rusted latch mechanism. Maybe spray it all with rust penetrant and wait a day. Then hopefully your studs won't break off. But I'm sure that at least one of yours is already broken and that's why it pulls out a little on one side. I'll let you know if it passes the garden hose test after I get it back together and the glue has a day to dry.
Cheers and good luck,
Doug

Thank you for the info....I think I am gonna tinker with it next weekend

Please keep me updated with your results.....hopefully we can nip this in the butt

Thanx
Corey
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Old 04-11-2017, 11:53 AM
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Originally Posted by soopacee View Post
Thank you for the info....I think I am gonna tinker with it next weekend

Please keep me updated with your results.....hopefully we can nip this in the butt

Thanx
Corey
Well that was definitely where the water was coming in. It poured rain all night and this morning the rug was dry and there was no water in the tailgate. I'm positive that that's where your leak is Corey. If the fix works for you please post a message here.
Good luck,
Doug
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