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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I thought it might help others to post this here as well as in my "new member" intro post.

After driving my new SX five-door back from the dealer Friday, I noticed what I consider a serious problem. After noticing that the driver's side floormat was damp, I discovered that the carpet (and underlying padding) was soaked. Further investigation showed that the entire driver's side of the carpeting (front and rear footwells) was soaked. My drive from the dealer was about 100 miles in a light rain. Obviously, the windows/sunroof were closed.

Clearly, there's a leak somewhere. My first guess is that the drain tube from the sunroof isn't connected and is draining into the interior. Another idea is that water may be coming in from the wheel well or some other source on the underside.

Just passing this along in case someone else has this problem - you're not alone.

It's going to be interesting to see how this is worked out. My salesman mentioned a possible swap to another, identical new Forte. I'd rather do a swap than have my new car become a "refurbished" car by having the entire interior ripped out to find the leak.

I'll be sure to share my experience with this as it happens...

EDIT: As of today (Sunday) the interior is still damp. Not good.
 

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It is possible that they shampooed the carpets before you took delivery The vehicle. Let it sit in your garage over night with the windows down and the sunroof open and when it's dry take it for another drive in the rain. That will confirm one way or the other. If it is a leak I would push for a new vehicle. You could never be sure if they actually fixed it or just stuck a wad of gum over the hole.
Good luck with your new car, goose. And welcome to the forum!

Deuce
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the kind words, guys.

I'm glad you guys agree that a replacement isn't unreasonable, since I'm going to push for just that tomorrow. When I bought mine, the dealer had an identical car in stock - I simply bought the one with fewer miles on the clock. I'm worried that the dealer will push for the huge repair, though.

Deuce, your theory about a prep shampoo makes sense, but I didn't get much prep at delivery, so no shampooing was done. I like to "geek-out" with a new car and detail it myself when I get it home. As long as the paint looks good and there are no glaring problems, I don't like to tempt fate with the guys in the dealer's wash bay. Everything cosmetic is perfect on the car - no scratches anywhere.

Unfortunately, my carpet was totally soaked (and just on the driver's side of the floorpan); yesterday, pressing a towel into the floor was like squeezing a sponge. The leak is obviously on the left side of the car and the "hump" in the middle of the floor kept the water on one side only. I've had the car in the garage since yesterday with windows and sunroof open, and it's still pretty wet.

The idea of ripping out all the plastic trim (broken clips/potential scratches/adding rattles) for a questionable repair isn't an option at this stage. Frankly, my dealer's service department hasn't inspired confidence in my very limited experience with them. As far as I can tell, only two items needed to be done as part of the car's mechanical prep when the car rolled off the transporter - and they weren't done right; the tires were still inflated at 50PSI(!) and the wheel locks had been installed WAY too tightly (like 150 lb-ft). With that kind of work on a simple job, how would the interior survive unscathed?

Sorry for being long-winded, but this is the only way for me to stay sane. I can only wait until tomorrow to see if I'll have an actual "new" car or a "refurbished" car. I can guarantee I won't accept the latter.

We'll see what happens tomorrow - and the forecast is for thunderstorms. I hope this won't be unpleasant...
 

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I vote for replacing the vehicle. I don't like the sound of this; the leaks. What else might be wrong?

Besides they might just give it the "fresh air and sunshine treatement" and give it back to you. You don't need the aggravation. I'd be prepared to get downright nasty if need be to get it replaced with a brand new one. Then they can take the one you are swapping and do it properly. A couple of hundred miles isn't going to affect their resale. the only hitch is if the paperwork has been submitted. Has the salesman put a hold on that? If not, I'd call him first thing in the morning and stop it from going in to be registered at which time you will be going round and round while you are waiting for all this sort itself out.

I know they can do this. I once bought a Hyundai Sonata and agonized over the weekend because it didn't have the wheels I wanted, they would have swapped it out for another new one but with 600 miles on the odometer (they had to drive it in from another state). It wasn't a big deal but I wound up keeping the one I had and replacing the wheels with some OEM wheels I found on ebay. But it can be done.
 

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I'd suggest calling Kia's Tech Support. I called them shortly after getting my SX 5 door on December 29, 2010 to complain (nicely) about the aggressive throttle. They were very professional and personable and sent me a $100 MasterCard for experiencing "a bump in the road". It didn't solve the accelerator problem, but it was a nice touch.

Since you probably haven't been lucky enough to win the lottery, I'm guessing there are others who have experienced the same problem. However, the sunroof on my SX is quiet (no wind noise or rattles) and doesn't leak.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I agree that things could get nasty. I'm not sure if the paperwork was sent in, but I'll bet this happens quickly so the dealer can avoid this situation. The bottom line is that I bought a new car, not a reconditioned car.

I'm not going to contact Kia directly yet, since I'm going to give the dealer the chance to make this right on his own. It would really suck if I'm the only "lottery winner" that got a five-door with a leak.

I'll be sure to update you guys once I get back from the dealer tomorrow.
 

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I agree that things could get nasty. I'm not sure if the paperwork was sent in, but I'll bet this happens quickly so the dealer can avoid this situation. The bottom line is that I bought a new car, not a reconditioned car.

I'm not going to contact Kia directly yet, since I'm going to give the dealer the chance to make this right on his own. It would really suck if I'm the only "lottery winner" that got a five-door with a leak.

I'll be sure to update you guys once I get back from the dealer tomorrow.

If the dealer doesn't give you another car, then you should contact KIA asap. Trust me on this, give them a call, that way they have this on file and can help you work through this. My experience has showed that some dealers don't give a F***. If this happens to be your case, then KIA will tell you to go to another dealer instead. The chances that KIA will give you another vehicle is relatively low, so don't get your hopes too high. Also, if your state has some type of "mediation" for new vehicles, USE IT, it will help speed up the process in your favor.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Update...

Okay - just got back from the dealer (I'm sure you were all on pins and needles). :)

To make a long story short, the dealer was great and gave me an identical car with no questions asked. I'm a very happy camper. I may put in a plug for the dealer and sales guy, but I want to be sure it's okay with them first. Since I really think my problem was very rare, I don't want to give referrals unrealistic expectations.

The new car made the hour-long drive home through a light rain and remained dry inside. Still, I'll probably be unconsciously checking the carpet after rain/car washing for some time to come...

Thanks again, guys, for all of your input on this problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks for the link. I'm sorry I missed that thread, because the seal problem mentioned sounds exactly like my problem.

I'll be sure to follow up with the dealer to find out what happened.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
An update (since you were all waiting)...

While I was getting my oil pan leak fixed today, I saw my "original" Forte SX that had the water leak. No information from the dealer regarding the cause of the problem.

Neither the service advisor nor I thought the car had been touched since I returned it almost three months ago...
 
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