When checking for sources of leaks, a careful examination should be made of the complete floor pan, and the dash panel and dash areas before the floor mat or carpet is installed. Because of the vital importance of keeping engine fumes, dust and water out of the passenger compartment, dash panel grommets should be checked for a tight fit around all wires, conduits, and controls. Any missing plug buttons or grommets should be replaced. Seal all unused open holes or openings at weld joints with a gray body sealer.
Particular attention should be paid to the possible omission of the radio antenna wire grommet in the right side of the dash panel. This area is not readily visible and is commonly overlooked as a possible dust and water leak source.
A potential source of water leakage exists in the area of the cowl top inner panel drain tube in Ranger and Pacer cars. This drain tube is a bellows-type rubber duct and provides an outlet for accumulated water from the cowl air vent. It clamps to the neck of the cowl top inner panel drain trough, and passes through the dash panel end to empty between the dash panel and fender. One outlet is provided at each end if the cowl air vent. The tube clamps are accessible from underneath each end of the instrument panel and should be checked against looseness. However, caution must be used to prevent overtightening the clamps; this can cause the rubber tube to be squeezed out from under the clamp and result in a water leak into the passenger compartment
The outer end of the drain tube is fastened to the cowl with a metal retainer ring. Access to the two screws that secure the retainer ring is possible through the engine compartment between the fender and cowl side. Access can also be gained by disconnecting three bolts behind the wheel that attach the front fender apron, and pulling the reat of the apron away from the fender until the necessary working clearance is obtained. (On air-conditioner equipped cars, it is necessary to disconnect the rear of the fender and spring it away from the cowl.) Check to make sure that, in installing the retainer ring, the retainer screws have not pierced the flanged portion of the drain tube. Water leaks around the screws can be corrected by removing the retainer and packing a small amount of M-5397-B Sealer around the screw holes.
Inspect the cowl top inner panel drain area thoroughly. Remove any excess sealer or any other restriction to the free flow of water from the area. This is important. Of water is dammed upin the cowl drain troughs, it can overflow and leak through the various cowl openings into the passenger compartment.
Make a careful check of the luggage compartment. Thoroughly inspect all welds and seams, paying particular attention to the wheelhouses and surrounding area for traces of dust and moisture that may indicate a leak. A source of leaks into that compartment in Ranger and Pacer series cars are two 3/4-inch holes in the floor pan. These holes, which are located approximately two inches inboard from each wheelhouse above the frame kick-up, should be sealed with plug buttons (Part No. 352291-S).
In addition to the foregoing checks, the standard inspection should be made of all window and door weatherstripping. Leaks in these areas are usually the result of loose or incorrectly fitted weatherstripping. Cement or shim loose weatherstripping to correct this condition. Further information on body construction and sealing may be found on Pages 26-32 in the 1958 Edsel Service Manual.