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Ice on inside of windows...

Discussion in 'Stock 1995 - 2001 Explorers' started by jmden, December 7, 2018.

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    1. jmden

      jmden New Member

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      What could cause ice on inside of windows? Recently in cold conditions (eastern Washinton state) my daugther, away at college, has gone to her 1997 (V6) and had to run the defrost for awhile to clear ice from inside of windows. She claims there's no moisture in the vehicle in the way of spilled liquids, etc. I had her check the carpets under all the floormats, etc.

      Blocked A/C drain? Air blend door stuck closed...?

      Did a search and didn't see anything.
       
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    3. Mr. Alligator

      Mr. Alligator Elite Explorer

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      Maybe snow and water from boots and shoes?
       
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    4. 974X4BLACKSPORT

      974X4BLACKSPORT Active Member

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      Here is what happens, when you get enough people breathing heavy in a car without it running, all the humidity from everyone's breath can condense on the inside of cold glass, when the occupants leave the vehicle and the outside temperature drops below freezing, you get a thin layer of ice on the inside of the windows. I am not saying this is the problem with your daughters car, just one possibility if there are not other sources of moisture.
       
    5. 410Fortune

      410Fortune ELITE BRONCO2ERER Staff Member Moderator

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      if the defroster clears it up then you are in good shape!
      Here in North Idaho I can tell you we have moisture on everything and then it freezes overnight. Something I am not really used to since I am from Colorado where its super dry LOL
      I have not had alot of ice INSIDE the glass but there has been some here in our vehicles this fall/winter
      The defroster uses the AC compressor to dry the air, there is a reason the defroster works this way otherwise you would get more moisture on the glass...so if your defroster is working then the ac compressor is doing its job, you are good to go!
       
    6. koda2000

      koda2000 Explorer Addict

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      I live in the southern US. My '01 Sport Trac sits outside. Every now and then, when morning temps are below freezing, I may have ice/frost on the inside of the windshield. This is rare and the first time it happened I thought my heater core may have been leaking. The ST does not have carpeting so it would be very obvious if the rubber flooring was wet, it was not. Perhaps it had rained the day before and moister remained inside the vehicle, which then frosted the windows overnight.

      When I was around your daughter's age I would often sit in a car with friends (and girlfriends) w/out the engine running during the winter and we'd fog up the windows from our breathing. If the floors/carpeting in your daughter's truck are dry I say that's probably the reason. She may not wish to admit this to you to various reasons. In any case, it doesn't sound like it's a problem with the vehicle.
       
    7. jmden

      jmden New Member

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      Thanks for the replies, guys. The windows do clear up in a few minutes. She'll be home for Christmas break in a week and I'll check a few things, but was trying to get a jump on what to be looking for.
       
    8. Mbrooks420

      Mbrooks420 High Voltage. Elite Explorer

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      It might be nothing wrong. If there are fair temperature swings, and the windows are rolled up with no ventilation it might just be moist air getting trapped in the vehicle. This might be worsened by short trips.
       
    9. fast_dave

      fast_dave Active Member

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      Mr. Alligator has some good thoughts - especially if she's loading her Ex up with her buddies and they're in/out of the Ex in snowy conditions.

      With that said, here's where I'd go next with a college student that has a lot on their plate- start simple.

      How's the Coolant Level - is it LOW?

      If the coolant level isn't low, is it stable?

      Perhaps it might be useful to have her make a "level mark" on the coolant overflow tank so she can watch it.

      Does she smell a sweet smell inside the cabin? Anti-Freeze smells distinctive - sweet.

      Thinking if the humidity is high enough to make ice INSIDE the cabin, and there is no weather seal/window leaks, it might be the start of a leaking heater core.
       
    10. J_C

      J_C Well-Known Member

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      A thin layer of ice happens to me once in a while, from just the gradual moisture accumulation of wet boots or shoes, a little snow falling down inside the door frame, etc. and not running mine long enough at regular intervals for the HVAC to flush out moist air.

      When it starts happening I put the vehicle in the garage where it's warmer and more convenient, toss a dehumidifier in the cargo area and run it overnight.
       
    11. Macgiobuin

      Macgiobuin Active Member

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      If you have a sunroof, the drain tubes get clogged with plant/tree debris and they need to be cleared every year. When it rains, your sunroof becomes a large funnel directing the rain to the edges and if the tubes are clogged, they back up and pour into the cabin.
       
      Last edited: December 9, 2018 at 2:23 AM
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    12. fast_dave

      fast_dave Active Member

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      More great info since we don't know if the OP's daughters Ex has this feature!
       
    13. J_C

      J_C Well-Known Member

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      Might depend on (parking) location. "So far" I've never had to clear a clog out of my '98.
       
    14. fast_dave

      fast_dave Active Member

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      JC,

      I had it happen to an '89 FORD TAURUS SHO with Sunroof I owned.

      At college I used park it under a shade tree whenever possible due to high-summer heat California weather and the fact that my SHO has a leather interior that I didn't want to crack.

      BUT - that shadetree really dropped a lot of crap during the spring time, and after a few years it built up in the drain tubes, to the point where one winter rain storm I started getting water in the cabin. I totally forgot about that until Macgiobuin mentioned it.

      In my case, a local grey haired mechanic in the area immediately diagnosed the problem by asking where I parked the car. He fixed it with some stiff wire and compressed air.
       
    15. allmyEXes

      allmyEXes Elite Explorer

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      Recently after a flood I was getting something out of the back of my blue '97, the rear hatch area I noticed the carpet was wet. The rear trim piece clips are broken so it was easy to pull up the corner of the carpet. The padding was very wet. It appears that this Ex has side window leaks too like at least 2 out of 6 Explorers in the fleet. Here in north Alabama we just had 2" to 3" of rain in the past 24 +hours so sometime today I am going to check the 4 here at home to see how many are wet. I really don't want the floor panels to rust and I have noticed that the worst leaker sometimes has had a "sour" odor when it stays closed up with the rear carpet wet. If the sun would come out and make these trucks "greenhouse" a bit it, at a glance it would be easy to tell which ones are damp inside.
       
    16. koda2000

      koda2000 Explorer Addict

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      Very common problem. The rear side windows are held in place by a series of 10mm bolts. Over time these bolts loosen up and the the water gets in at the top of the window. If you take loose/remove the interior trim you can get at the bolts to snug them up. This completely stopped the leaking on 2 of my trucks, however some have reported that they had to reseal the windows, probably because too much dirt had gotten behind the exterior trim plastic. For a quick fix you can place a strip of black electrical tape along the top of the window between the plastic trim and the metal roof to stop the leak.
       
    17. allmyEXes

      allmyEXes Elite Explorer

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      When I was retrieving a JY window for my '91, after the nuts were removed and barely pushed on one top stud the window fell out and one hand happened to be below it. Between body twist and questionable windshield/glass sealer it seems that all of these rear side glasses could eventually leak.
       
    18. J_C

      J_C Well-Known Member

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      Is there a source for that rear window exterior trim, I mean the rubber molding? Once upon a time ago I looked for some and didn't find any.
       
    19. koda2000

      koda2000 Explorer Addict

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      Not that I've found. Maybe auto glass installers have something that would work.
       

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