Question about 1998 Buick Regal

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Water leak internal on buick regal gs 1998

I have water leaking aroubnf the heater fan blower into the passenger side of my regal. I have checked both the cabin filter area and see no leaks and also used RTV so better seal around the squirrel cage fan assembly for the heater. This morning I vaumed out about 1/2 gallon of water

Posted by Anonymous on

  • 4 more comments 
  • Anonymous Nov 10, 2008

    Floor board and carpets are soaked after a heavy rain. 1996 Buick Skylark

    Please help...


  • Anonymous Dec 10, 2008

    99 regal and 99 century both leak on passenger side floor board. They FLOOD. I have complained to company and am getting nowhere. Neither car has any miles. What can I do?????????????


  • Lil_Bucky Dec 15, 2008


    I have the same problem. This problem doesn't seem to be related to
    the A/C system as we are in the middle of winter and I'm not using the
    A/C. Everytime it rains the passenger side (only) of the car fills up
    with water so I go to a local car wash and vacuum out a half gallon of
    water. I purchased a new cabin air filter assembly but after
    inspection the current air filter assembly seems water tight. I
    believe my heater blower motor is going bad because of the leak as it is chirping like a bird and
    this is why i believed it was cabin air filter related. Everytime I go
    to Jiffy Lube the technician comes in and shows me my filter and I
    assumed he screwed something up when reinstalling. Do I need weather-striping some where or should I caulk something? Does anyone have a
    picture of the what the assembly should look like or know how to fix
    this problem? We can't be the only ones with this problem... Thanks
    for the help it is much appreciated!

    -Poor Soaked 1999 Buick Regal Owner

  • Anonymous Dec 24, 2008

    99 Buick Century had the similar problem. The blower motor stops working first. I later found one of the fuses was blown up. However after I replaced the bad fuse and turn on the fan, water was gushing out...

  • Anonymous Jan 04, 2009

    On 1998 Buick Regal my blower motor seems to freeze up when cold out and not work at all. When it is 40% or above it works just fine. Is this related to leak that sometimes soaks passenger floorboards? How can I solve this, I live in New England and need defroster/heat.

  • Anonymous Mar 16, 2014

    how to change the heater fan in a 1992 buick regal



3 Answers

Gary Dowen

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I had this same problem. It is caused by water running downe the windshield and into the cabin air filter located under the cowling on the pasenger side. It is really easy to fix.

I've been told all "W" body GM cars have this same filter set up, so all 1997 through 2004 Buick Regals (mine is a 2001) and many other GMs have this problem. MY 2001 Regal would get 1-2 inches of water on the passenger side floorboard after a rain.

There are three things that can be done to prevent this and all three are quite easily accomplished. There is a water diverter weatherstrip above the filter that can become dislodged. Mine was out of place even though the filter had never been changed. I used RTV to glue this weather strip back in place. I also made a cover out of an old plastic 1 gallon antifreeze jug by cutting the ends off and then splitting it down the middle and doubling it to cover the filter but still remain above it so that air is not blocked. This is so that even if the diverter becomes dislodged again this still won't let water get to the filter. Once you pull the coweling, which is very easy to do with one plastic screw like fastener and two plastic "rivets" that you just pull out with needle nose plyers, you'll see what needs to be done. You'll need to use the ignition key to stop the wpers in mid-stroke on the windshield and open the hood to get clearence to the cowling. Speaking of the coweling, lastely I put a bead of RTV between the coweling and the windshield before puting it back on.
So for one tube of RTV, one old plastic jug, one hour of time using a pair of pliars and a knife I have fixed what had been a real PIA water leak. EASY!

Posted on Dec 30, 2008


paul erickson

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There is a drain that must be plugged . it drains the condensation from the evaporitor on the AC system. these need to be cleaned once in a while. look from under the car around the firewall . you will see the tube. stick a wire up it to clean it out. and it will dry up.
good luck paul

Posted on Sep 12, 2008



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I had the same problem, it happened after changing the cabin air filter. So what I did and it fixed it was to use silicon and where the plastic cover over the air filter attaches there is a rubber gasket that is supposed to seal between the glass and the plastic cover. I carefully used the silicon and sealed all across the top of the plastic cover all the way towards the passenger side of the windshield and that fixed it. It's just a lousy rubber seal and not heater core or anything else, just seal from the center of the windshield all the way to the farthest side of the plastic cover. No problem.

Posted on Jul 27, 2012

  • Gary Nov 16, 2013

    Just got a email from this site saying a couple thousand people have read my solution. Wow, forgot I even wrote this, but let me say this, my passenger side floor boards have not leaked a drop since this fix. Funny thing about getting this email is that it just reminded me that I need to change that darn filter again. That will mean once again removing the cowling and clean the silicon off the windshield and the cowling, perfectly clean and then again running a perfect bead of silicon from center of the cowling to the passenger side and replace and then maybe a couple careful dabs towards the outside corner and a nice smooth finishing so it doesn't show at all. Don't worry, you'll know if you screwed up because next time in rains or you go through a car wash your floor will be wet and frankly you don't want water running down your dash anyhow and it's awful close to the fuse box. Hum, I'm going to the parts store and get me that darn filter, might as well, board anyhow. Good luck and is your source. Sincerely ilregal

  • Gary Nov 16, 2013

    Guess I never saw the other Gary's fix from 08, he's dead on and it's no drain hose.


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I have seen some problems with water coming in through the cabin air filter. (Also known as passenger compartment air filter - see picture) Sometimes this is caused by a buildup of leaves and debris in the cowl area that causes water to overflow into the filter area. Sometimes this is caused by the filter not being installed correctly. I have even seen the water diverter that goes over the top of the filter get discarded by quick-lube "specialists". Anyway, these conditions will allow water to enter into the vehicle through the heater system. Many times I have seen the filter so badly damaged by water and debris that it ends up in the blower motor and stops it from running. This is where I would look for the problem first.

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Here' s trick to find water leaks into cabin area,.
Mix a quart of water with a tablespoon of Murphy's Oil Soap (won't harm finish on car) liquid, mixing gently just to mix but not foam.
Start car, and place blower fan on full setting. Close all windows and other openings to try to help increase positive air pressure inside cabin compartment
Get out of car with fan blowing (engine can be running but make sure you don't lock yourself out of car) and gently pour solution on suspected areas. If there's a leak opening, the air from cabin will cause bubbles indicated leak point.
Also raise hood and use solution on fire wall where there are seams and sealant applied. I've seen these be leaks soaking the driver's side floor mats.

If you find a leak, seal it with the best clear silicone caulk, generally about $7 a tube. Clean all areas to be sealed thoroughly of any dirt, oil, grease, or loose rusted metal.

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Have a leak under passenger side dash when it rains. I think the door under the cabin air filter isnt closing is it an easy fix

Having just repaired this problem in a 1998 Buick Regal, I can tell you that fixing the water leak is actually quite easy. It took me quite a while to track down the source of water, but I have discovered that it comes through the cabin air filter. There is a seal on the passenger side of the cowl (A two piece unit, black plastic, against the windshield) that seals it to the windshield to prevent water infiltration. It is very small and somewhat hard to miss. I took the cowl off to change the filter when I discovered this.

You can make a diverter to go over the air filter under the cowl, or even easier is to use some clear RTV silicone (avalible at any automotive and most hardware stores) and put a good bead on the old seal. When you re-install the plastic cowl, be carefull where it goes against the windshield to make sure you don't "smear" the silicone. After you re-install the plastic retainer hardware, smooth out the bead and clean up the excess silicone(a wet finger and some old cardboard works great). Let it dry and clean up the water in the passenger compartment.

Cleaning up the water is the hard part. Removing the plastic trim around the door (if you grasp the trip peices firmly they just pull up off some metal clips,but they can be quite stubborn) you will notice the carpet just pulls up. At the bottom front corner of the front doors the carpet has a plastic hook that is around one of the trim clips. Lift it off that and the rest of the carpet towards the firewall just pulls up. If it has been a long problem, your carpet may be moldy. Also, the carpet edges and some of the more hidden panel clips are very sharp and may cut you while you are poking around, so be carefull.

Since the water entered through the air filter and right over the fan, you will at minimum want to replace the filter. I had mold and moss growing on mine. My fan also squeels and chirps now, so I know it got wet. Not much to do about that but replace it or carefully lubricate the motor.

In your question you mentioned a door underneath the filter not closing. On my '98 Buick Regal there is no door or valve of any sort. The filter sits right above the fan blades. It is the cowel's job to prevent water from entering this part of the vehicle. I hope this helps you fix your problem.

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