Just washed car, have a question. - LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-17-2019, 09:42 AM Thread Starter
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Just washed car, have a question.

Hi,

I just used garden hose, no nozzle, gentle spray. Afterwards, I noticed a good sized puddle in the trunk, where the battery is. Luckily the battery was not affected. I had to use a couple big towels to get the water out. I didn't purposefully aim the water at the slits above the engine bay. I'd hate to think of what can happen if I get caught in a downpour. I must've done something wrong for that much water to collect back there. After all, these cars' natural environment is the UK, Lol. Do you guys have this puddle issue after washing your car?

Thanks,
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-17-2019, 09:47 AM
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I mean, check to make sure the seal is seated well around the top of the trunk; this is the easy thing to check, but probably not your problem. You likely got water in the trunk from your rear tail lights. There's a foam gasket on the Evora tail lights, but I believe the Elise lacks this layer. It might be worth your time to try to remove the lights, install some foam (can probably find some at a hardware store for a home window/door and use that) and reinstall the lights. This being said, I only have an Evora so I'm not sure how much of a sealing surface the Eliges have, however this is likely where your water came from.
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-17-2019, 09:51 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ShadowWulf369 View Post
I mean, check to make sure the seal is seated well around the top of the trunk; this is the easy thing to check, but probably not your problem. You likely got water in the trunk from your rear tail lights. There's a foam gasket on the Evora tail lights, but I believe the Elise lacks this layer. It might be worth your time to try to remove the lights, install some foam (can probably find some at a hardware store for a home window/door and use that) and reinstall the lights. This being said, I only have an Evora so I'm not sure how much of a sealing surface the Eliges have, however this is likely where your water came from.
Will definitely take a close look at the tail lights. I DID in fact aim the hose at them.
Thanks!!!
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-17-2019, 10:01 AM
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Ahh, just drill a hole in the bottom, problem solved.
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-17-2019, 10:02 AM
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Washed the five Eliges I owned dozens of times over the years.

First, you don't have to treat them like their fragile glass. A nozzle on a garden hose isn't going to hurt.

These things are not water proof, weren't designed that way. I can't say I ever got a puddle of water near the battery, but after every wash there was always some water (although not puddles, just some dampness) in the trunk.

Make sure the catch on the deck lid is adjusted correctly, that it's snugging the lid down tight to the seals. And check the condition of the seals.

The one thing I did do was lay a towel on the top of the engine when I washed, because the deck lid might as well be open, as waterproof as it isn't. Whenever I did that I also put a towel on my steering wheel, to remind me there's a towel back there on the engine, just in case.

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Last edited by 4380r; 05-17-2019 at 01:48 PM.
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-17-2019, 10:13 AM
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Smart move on the double towel strategy - can never be too careful!
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-17-2019, 01:38 PM
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Always park either on level ground or better nose down a bit when you wash the car.
The "rain tray" around the boot on the elise drains in the front towards the engine. There is no place for water to go in the rear.
If you park tail end down, the rain tray will fill up and water will eventually overflow into the boot.

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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-19-2019, 03:30 PM
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Man...from all your post, you really do over think these cars. 😛

Sounds like the rubber boot seal may be leaking. These cars are manufactured in a marine climate....same as us folks in Seattle. A little water in the slits from a downpour or hose isn't going to kill it.

I do know what you mean with a little water in the boot. When I caught mine....it was caused by just that, seal wasn't pressed down all the way.

You would probably freak but everytime I wash mine.....I'm used to seeing drops of water running on the inside of the windows (both Elise and Evora) when I wash them lol!!! Just par for the course. Glad nothing happened to your battery.....but your car is just fine.

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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-19-2019, 04:54 PM
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I remember when I first got my car, people were giving me crap for taking it to the car wash (manual, not automatic). I have washed it that way since day one without issue, just a little water comes in the window seals, but I always carry a couple of towels for that. I have never covered the engine, and never had an issue. I would also wager that I've washed my car more times than just about anyone on LT in my 10 years of ownership, and the only thing I've ever noticed is if I get too much water on the radiator, as I'm driving away from the car wash it steams up a bit.

And if you're wondering, I never wash my car at home because we have extremely hard water, so anything I miss will end up as a white spot. Washing at the car wash leaves no trace as the water is much better, and I use the spot free rinse as well.

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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-20-2019, 08:43 AM Thread Starter
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Man...from all your post, you really do over think these cars. 😛

Sounds like the rubber boot seal may be leaking. These cars are manufactured in a marine climate....same as us folks in Seattle. A little water in the slits from a downpour or hose isn't going to kill it.

I do know what you mean with a little water in the boot. When I caught mine....it was caused by just that, seal wasn't pressed down all the way.

You would probably freak but everytime I wash mine.....I'm used to seeing drops of water running on the inside of the windows (both Elise and Evora) when I wash them lol!!! Just par for the course. Glad nothing happened to your battery.....but your car is just fine.
Haha, FAR from it. I'm a driver, not a waxer. I saw some drops of water on the seats, some on the engine, no big deal, expected that. But the puddle in the boot surprised me. I would say that after mopping up with 2 large towels, I'd estimate the volume of water to be close to 1.5 liters. Why liters and not ounces? Because I squeezed the towels into a cut-off 2-liter Coke bottle.
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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-20-2019, 12:26 PM
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Think about ceramic coating. Aside from making it easier to clean dirt off, it can prevent water spots while washing the car. Supposedly not completely prevent it but from my experience with it so far, I have not seen any spots where I would normally so. My friend with the same coat, drives his AMG C63 in the rain and has not noticed any water spots as well.

Back to topic, so was it the tail lights, or the seal on the trunk?

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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-21-2019, 05:25 AM
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You could try adjusting the trunk latch a little tighter.
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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-22-2019, 08:40 PM
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Man...from all your post, you really do over think these cars. 😛

Sounds like the rubber boot seal may be leaking. These cars are manufactured in a marine climate....same as us folks in Seattle. A little water in the slits from a downpour or hose isn't going to kill it.

I do know what you mean with a little water in the boot. When I caught mine....it was caused by just that, seal wasn't pressed down all the way.

You would probably freak but everytime I wash mine.....I'm used to seeing drops of water running on the inside of the windows (both Elise and Evora) when I wash them lol!!! Just par for the course. Glad nothing happened to your battery.....but your car is just fine.
Haha, FAR from it. I'm a driver, not a waxer. I saw some drops of water on the seats, some on the engine, no big deal, expected that. But the puddle in the boot surprised me. I would say that after mopping up with 2 large towels, I'd estimate the volume of water to be close to 1.5 liters. Why liters and not ounces? Because I squeezed the towels into a cut-off 2-liter Coke bottle.
Just rustling the "new to Lotus" newb questions and poking fun. I've earned my stripes but before I got those....I was doing the same dang thing. Keep 'em coming as it helps everyone.

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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-23-2019, 07:11 AM
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I'm going to guess that the car was angled when you washed it. Front side up, back side down and probably a pretty good angle. You can overload the rain channels around the engine compartment and water will get into the trunk. Wash it on a level surface.
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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-23-2019, 09:41 AM
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There is a guy here on LotusTalk who makes and sells a kit to put a drain in the back of the "groove". Cheap and easy to install.

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post #16 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-23-2019, 11:21 AM
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Originally Posted by philethier View Post
There is a guy here on LotusTalk who makes and sells a kit to put a drain in the back of the "groove". Cheap and easy to install.
I'd be interested in seeing this. There are already drain holes in the groove so I'm not sure why someone would want anything more.
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post #17 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-23-2019, 12:00 PM
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I had two leaks - got one fixed. One went into the boot. The problem there was that the louvers on the lid had been removed when the lid was repainted and when they were screwed back in there was a water drain path around the mounting screws into the boot. A dab of RTV silicone under the screw heads sorted that one. I did do the weed-eater line trick on the boot lid seal while I was in there. Boot has been bone dry since.

The other leak, I've decided, is related. I get water in the floor when the car is pointed downhill. Initially I thought it was a chassis seam leak, but more careful examination points out that it's probably where the boot lid hinges mount to the firewall. I suspect a careful removal and seal of the hinges will result in the water pooling in the drain track as it's supposed to, instead of draining into the interior of the car.
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