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Old 02-03-2018, 01:01 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by JWA View Post
Anytime one of these pieces is handled during removal or installation the potential for breakage is higher than most people believe. As such every step is important, no real room to become lax or unconcerned with following proper techniques and steps. If I'm talking too much about small issues I'm simply hoping to save a few of you the aggravating and costly mistakes I've made---keep in mind I'm a "professional" at all this.

This is very timely for me as I'm currently removing and replacing both rear windows, one fixed and one opening. I've bumped the glass a few times while it's out, and each time I cringe, but so far so good. I figure I'll tighten the nuts just snug, let it sit for a while so the buytl settles and then another few rounds of tightning until it's in the right place. Thanks for the warnings..............
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Old 02-03-2018, 05:07 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by arctictraveller View Post
This is very timely for me as I'm currently removing and replacing both rear windows, one fixed and one opening. I've bumped the glass a few times while it's out, and each time I cringe, but so far so good. I figure I'll tighten the nuts just snug, let it sit for a while so the buytl settles and then another few rounds of tightning until it's in the right place. Thanks for the warnings..............
I completely get that cringing feeling----even after its happened a few times it never goes away handling tempered glass. Its actually a bit comical holding nothing when just a nanosecond before you had the glass ready to install and collect a check.

With any glass the edges are most vulnerable to bumps and sharp edges. Moving slowly and deliberately while maintaining a firm solid grip on the glass (I use purpose-built suction cups) along with knowing and watching your area of work for possible hazards should keep your glass all in one piece.

I'll add a strong suggestion to use nothing but the 3M Windo-Weld butyl not only for its consistency and high quality but its a solid piece of butyl unlike foam-core butyl tape used for older vehicles (pre-1978 mostly). Because urethane adhesive has pretty much replaced butyl for windshield installation the foam core material is to provide the proper space between the glass and the body, urethane used after to effect a extremely long-lived installation.

You don't really need to let the butyl rest or settle---in fact I'd say if it's 50* F or more its perfectly acceptable to compress it fully all at one time. Given how the plastic separator rings are made to accommodate the butyl rope there's almost no concern of over-tightening the nuts. Assuming they're pulled down in an even pattern at some point the glass will bottom out against the body and there's no mistaking when that happens.

Hope this is helpful.
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Old 02-05-2018, 08:44 PM   #23
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IT WORKED!!!

So we finally got a chance to tackle the leaking windows this past weekend. We used JWA's technique of masking and over filling the channel. After a lot of sealant and a major forearm cramp, we are happy to report that it appears to have worked. We have tested all the windows by running water on them and we cannot see any leaks. Before the fix the water came in as if there was no sealant at all! I don't know how you got your sealant so pretty JWA, ours is not that smooth at all! Well I guess in a few spots its pretty but the rest are not so pretty but the channels are all filled very well.

For the driver's side big popout window we took BrianW's advice and removed the glass from the frame (the frame was sealed to the body with some sure adhesive that made it immovable. With the glass off we filled the channel between the frame and the body (very similar to JWA's technique just not sealed to the glass). After a long wait we attached the glass to the frame again and a day later water tested it. It didn't leak at all and the glass is still able to pop open. We were very worried that the seal between the glass and frame was going to leak also but we lucked out and it seams to be good.

The only down fall of this whole process is that it put a crazy idea in our head... When we had the window all the way out we thought it would be cool to just make a hinged panel that could be lifted up in order to have a wide open window and "awning"

Now we can get back to the fun modifications. This coming weekend will be installing popouts in the very rear doors that we picked up at a salvage yard after reading this tutorial http://www.sportsmobileforum.com/for...uts-10090.html

We can't thank you guys enough!!! This was going to set us back a lot, but now it just became another fun weekend with a story to tell about the van.
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Old 02-06-2018, 03:33 AM   #24
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That's all great to hear Van-essa----a water tight van is good to own!

I achieved the smooth finished appearance by dragging a putty knife across the over filled bead, much like applying drywall compound in a seam. In fact that's the primary function of the masking tape---gives the smoothed over fill sealant a place to move. Once its all smoothed removing the masking tape afterwards is what gives the appearance of huge effort.

The good part of all this is you're able to remove almost all the external sealant and re-do the job if you want to keep it as is.

The idea of a factory window being hinged in an awning-like configuration is quite romantic for certain but it presents a lot of issues to solve in order to maintain any sort of weather-resistant sealing of the glass to the body.

GM offers something like you envision as an option on a new Savannah/Express van but those movable panels cannot be supplied in any sort of glass. This option isn't done by GM itself---they have an outside vendor do the work on a brand new van before its delivered to the dealership.

OTOH BrianW's how-to on re-fitting the rear door fixed glass with pop-out style is a good read.

So anyway glad all this worked out----happy to help!
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Old 09-27-2018, 05:10 PM   #25
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Itís my turn. We had a heavy rain a couple of weeks ago. The water leaked into the van and into one of the plastic storage tubs in the closet. Definitely not something I want to deal with in a finished interior. Have been thinking about where the leaks could be; roof bolt or rain gutter. Last night in a dream I saw myself flowing water over the top of the fixed window on the drivers side. I took the dream as a sign and this morning I tried it here in the physical world. Sure enough water came into the same storage bin.

Now I just need to decide which of the two methods above I want to use to fix it. Accessing the window nuts means removing three cabinets. One with the sink one closet and one with the power panel and heater mounted in it. Once those are out the wall covering needs to come off. None of this is hard to do, just time consuming. Sounds like a winter project to me.

For right now I am planning on putting a piece of Gorilla Tape across the top of the window for our trip to the Steens Mountains next weekend. After that, put a tarp over the van till I have time to tear into it.
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Old 09-27-2018, 07:53 PM   #26
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Larrie, I have had this happen. The seals obviously give out on some of the fixed passenger van windows. I do not remember if it was on your van or another. It seems like some folks here would have a solution.

Good luck!
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Old 09-28-2018, 05:24 AM   #27
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For right now I am planning on putting a piece of Gorilla Tape across the top of the window for our trip to the Steens Mountains next weekend. After that, put a tarp over the van till I have time to tear into it.
That'll work in the short term and get you on the leak-free road without major surgery to you home-on-wheels. I've applied Gorilla tape in a light rain to build a temporary shelter on a big truck----its amazing stuff.


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Larrie, I have had this happen. The seals obviously give out on some of the fixed passenger van windows. I do not remember if it was on your van or another.
From '92 forward the body side glass sealant doesn't really wear out or stop sealing unless something or someone has acted upon it. We're talking factory glass, aftermarket installations another issue altogether. Most often I've seen the inside nuts work themselves loose (or weren't properly tightened during manufacture) with the glass pulling away from the body ever so slightly just from normal everyday driving. Member AnnieO had this exact situation.

When the window pulls away from the body especially at the top water seeps in. A lot of times simply tightening the inside nuts is enough to permanently stop the leaking, in worst-case situations a complete refresh of the butyl sealant is called for.

Do keep in mind the body side fixed glass parts have sealant only between the glass unit and the body---the glass is bonded to the mounting ring. It would be extremely rare for that bond to break and a leak develop. If it did leak there evidence of where that leak was would be very evident as it would show up on the actual glass inside the van.

I'd recommend doing whatever's necessary to secure the mounting nuts to the body despite the effort required. Using a 10 or 11mm hand powered nut driver snug them down to the body---there's no need to use massive force as that only squeezes the butyl defeating its purpose.

Naturally water-test your work before replacing any interior paneling etc.

Hope this helps!
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Old 09-28-2018, 10:23 AM   #28
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For right now I am planning on putting a piece of Gorilla Tape across the top of the window for our trip to the Steens Mountains next weekend. After that, put a tarp over the van till I have time to tear into it.
Gorilla tape will certainly seal the leak, possibly too well. My last van had a windshield leak at the top, that I cured with Gorilla tape. When I took it in to be re-sealed, we had a hell of a time removing the tape, and it left a lot of sticky adhesive behind. I've found the best way to remove it is to soak a paper towel in Orange solvent, get as much of it as possible on the adhesive, let it sit a while, and start scraping with a plastic putty knife. The tape did stop the leak though and may have saved the windshield. The glass guy said it was so loose, that it may have popped out if I had hit a curb hard enough.
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Old 09-28-2018, 05:24 PM   #29
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JWA, will definitely try tighten the nuts first before pulling the window.

AT, I know what a mess Gorilla Tape can leave. I usually use acitone, rubber gloves, respirator and putty knife to remove the residue.
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Old 01-14-2019, 05:19 PM   #30
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Tightened the very loose nuts on the window. It helped some but water drops still got through. Did the silicone caulk as outlined by JWA. Very easy to do and it came out looking great.
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