Water sloshing behind dashboard

Asked by Dec 17, 2014 at 09:53 PM about the 1996 Subaru Impreza 2 Dr LX AWD Coupe

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

Reading different forums to figure out how to solve my problem. There is water sloshing
around behind dashboard that can be heard when I make sharp turns. This just started
about one month ago. Faint at first, but now sounds loud and clear.

A few places I've read say that it could be low coolant levels. If my overflow tank has
coolant in it, then low coolant would not be the issue? Correct?

Next, I've read that the AC drain may be clogged. I have located that in the engine
compartment and will attempt to clear with some stiff wire or pipe cleaners. If that does
not work, what would the next step be.

I have also read that drains in the tray below windshield wipers may be clogged. How
do I access these drains without taking the windshield wipers off?

I am also wondering about the seal right underneath the windshield wipers, what that
should look like with the hood up. It is curled, for lack of proper description, on both
sides then straightens "up" in the middle of the car. I see photos can be posed, which I
can do tomorrow.

Thanks ahead for any input. I am getting worried the water may freeze and cause

5 Answers


It does sound like it is the drains for the wiper cowl, most of them are located at the rear corner of the front fenders and can be accessed way down low through the door opening, it will just be a rubber plug with a flap in it, it maybe totally plugged with dirt and other stuff and could take a little work to clear them out.

Thanks for your reply. I just went out and looked, however, with the door open I don't think I can get my hand in to the space and I did not see anything that looked like a rubber plug with flap.


You may have to remove the inner fender to gain access to it, but try getting a garden hose and run it full flow into the cowl area, then watch to see if there is water flowing out from those areas I talked about, if no water shows then the inner fenders are going to have to come out, if there is water then the sound is not in the cowl intake area. Do you have a sunroof? If so it could be the drains from there forcing the water into the body partitions not going down the drains.

No sun roof. The inner fender would be inside the engine compartment?


Check in the wheel opening, yours may have another section that comes out in the aft area of the opening, but do the water test first before you go ripping things apart.

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