Moisture buildup on inside of windshield

TDI_Cubed

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Jun 16, 2005
Location
Frederick, Maryland
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05 Jetta Wagon, 14 BMW 328dX
I'm at a loss. For months now, I come out to the car in the morning and the inside of the windshield is coated with moisture. Now I'm having to scrap the ice off of the windshield. If I cover the dash with a towel, making certain that the area next to the windshield is covered, I eliminate the buildup of moisture and ice. I did notice the first time I placed the towel on the dash, I found a lot of ice buildup on the windshield where I did not push the towel against the window tightly - this was in the bottom right corner of the windshield.

Car does not have additional moisture accumulation on the windshield after sitting in the parking garage at Metro all day. I have a 25 minute drive to Metro, so, if this was due to fluid leaking from cooling system, I would expect to hear it escaping once pressurized and have moisture built up when returning to car after work.

What I have checked: 1) Carpet under the heater core is not wet and, 2) Antifreeze level is consistent.

:confused: Could I have a damaged seal on the windshield that is allowing moisture in at the bottom?
 

Joe_Meehan

Top Post Dawg
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Ohio USA
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NB TDI, 2002.5, Silver
Check the area under the vent (grill) in front of the windscreen. Do you have leaves etc in there? Do you have the heater set to recirculate air or to bring in fresh air? Are the floor matts dry? Do you have a sunroof?
 

TDI_Cubed

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05 Jetta Wagon, 14 BMW 328dX
Check the area under the vent (grill) in front of the windscreen. Do you have leaves etc in there? Do you have the heater set to recirculate air or to bring in fresh air? Are the floor matts dry? Do you have a sunroof?
Joe,

1) No leaves under vent grill
2) Heater set to recirculate when temp is high enough for heat
3) Floor mats are dry
4) I have a sunroof - Lines are open and clear
 

mrGutWrench

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Wallace, NC
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'03 Jetta Wagon
Joe,

1) No leaves under vent grill
2) Heater set to recirculate when temp is high enough for heat
3) Floor mats are dry
4) I have a sunroof - Lines are open and clear
__. Try setting the selector to "defrost" and switch recirculate off (i.e outside air) for the last mile you drive. Then leave those settings when you park it.
 

dandywriter

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Jul 18, 2007
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Ottawa (Kanata), Canada, eh?
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2014 Golf Wagon 6M
You could also leave one window cracked open if no rain/snow is expected; this allows more moist (from your breathing) air to escape before condensing on the windscreen. I did this when I lived in Winnipeg, Canada. Never any frost on the inside.

The heated air in the Metro garage is going to be more moist than outside air - run the fan with the window cracked to get rid of the moisture when you start off (gonna be cold, might as well be cold and dry).

I'd invest in a frostheater -then you don't have to use recirc to stay warm. Two hours before you go is plenty of time - full temp from the start.
 
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IndigoBlueWagon

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You should try not using recirculate at all. I never use it, except in extreme heat when I want to cool the car down quickly. You may simply be accumulating humidity in the car during the drive home.
 

TDI_Cubed

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You could also leave one window cracked open if no rain/snow is expected; this allows more moist (from your breathing) air to escape before condensing on the windscreen. I did this when I lived in Winnipeg, Canada. Never any frost on the inside.

The heated air in the Metro garage is going to be more moist than outside air - run the fan with the window cracked to get rid of the moisture when you start off (gonna be cold, might as well be cold and dry).

I'd invest in a frostheater -then you don't have to use recirc to stay warm. Two hours before you go is plenty of time - full temp from the start.
There is no heat in the Metro garage - basically an open air parking garage...
When I leave for Metro in the morning, 5 AM, temps are currently in the 20s here, I am using defrost settings, with temp set for high heat and utilize A/C as an assist in pushing a little heat to the windshield to assist in keeping windshield from fogging over and clearing remnants of ice on inside of windshield.

I am not experiencing this issue with any other window in the car - only the front windshield. With the amount of ice build up, this appears to be too much from just normal breathing.... Is there a possiblity of a broken seal on the bottom of the windshield causing this - windshield is original on this 03.
 
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Zedbra

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Feb 26, 2006
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Squamish, BC
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2005 Jetta TDI
__. Try setting the selector to "defrost" and switch recirculate off (i.e outside air) for the last mile you drive. Then leave those settings when you park it.
my car doesn`t allow defrost with recirculate.

my car was getting water on the inside for awhile. replaced my windshield - and the problem is gone.

if you want to keep the frost off, use an in-car heater hooked to a timer. i have mine turn on for a few hours before i leave for work, and i don't get frozen doors and enter into a nice warm car without frost on any windows.

 

40X40

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Feb 12, 2006
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Kansas City area, MO
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2013 Passat SEL Premium
Stop using recirc at all for a week, crack a window for the last minute or two on the drive home to let all the moisture and heat out of the cabin.

Give it this treatment a week and see what happens. You might be stuck in recirc mode and not know it.

Report back.

Bill
 

TDI_Cubed

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my car doesn`t allow defrost with recirculate.

my car was getting water on the inside for awhile. replaced my windshield - and the problem is gone.

if you want to keep the frost off, use an in-car heater hooked to a timer. i have mine turn on for a few hours before i leave for work, and i don't get frozen doors and enter into a nice warm car without frost on any windows.

Thanks for the info on the heater. What is the mfg and model for your timer? What does it need to be rated for - in amps?
 

Joe_Meehan

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Joe,

1) No leaves under vent grill
2) Heater set to recirculate when temp is high enough for heat
3) Floor mats are dry
4) I have a sunroof - Lines are open and clear
BINGO! You need fresh air to remove that moisture. Believe me it will not take much longer to warm up and you will be able to see.
 

TDI_Cubed

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05 Jetta Wagon, 14 BMW 328dX
BINGO! You need fresh air to remove that moisture. Believe me it will not take much longer to warm up and you will be able to see.
Thanks! As I primarily use the defrost mode, recirc is not engaged - at least not on my year and model. This issue has been an issue for several months, only recently resulting in ice formation due to the cold. What I mean by moisture buildup is there was enough moisture earlier this past summer, when the temp hit almost 100 that the headliner on the sunroof motor access panel came off. The car had not been driven in months when this happened.

Anyway, I will be replacing the windshield, which is also been pitted by the gravel on the roads here winter after winter that there is a consistent glare when driving into the sun and at night. :D
 

Joe_Meehan

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… Anyway, I will be replacing the windshield, which is also been pitted by the gravel on the roads here winter after winter that there is a consistent glare when driving into the sun and at night. :D
Sounds like a good idea. Good Luck :D
 

Seatman

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Also make sure the cabin filter isn't really old, makes quite a difference to the amount of condensation.
 

tgray

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You really need to check under the carpet for moisture. The carpet has a rubber backing and can make it seem like the car is dry when it really has another layer full of water. I had this issue with mine and was shocked on how much water was under the carpet. Pull off the plastic part on the bottom of the door jam and put your hand under the carpet to feel the jute backing. A leaking windshield or body leak can drip behind the carpet and you never know it until your windows fog up or it starts to stink like mine did.
 

NB_TDi

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All my VWs fog on the inside. I attribute it to the fact that VW disables the AC below 5C.

I now keep a mini scrapper in the cars.
 

otty

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Mine fogs up something fierce at the end of the day when it starts to cool off.

It seems it only happens this time of year when it is above freezing during daylight hours and just begins to freeze at the end of the work day. It may also have to do with the near 100% humidity here at all times (it is a rainforest).

Only really happens at this time of year with the above temperature conditions. I try and blast heat once the car is warm with fresh dry air to mitigate it.

I keep a towel in the car to wipe the condensation off before the car is warm so I can see.

Good luck to you!
 

TDI_Cubed

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05 Jetta Wagon, 14 BMW 328dX
Thanks for everyone's recommendations. I will perform a more through check under the carpet for moisture.

I place a towel on the dash making certain it is secure against the windshield each night now resulting in no issues since I started doing this.

I replace my cabin filter every time I change the air filter with each oil change at 10K.
 

Rob_MacCara

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Joined
Sep 16, 2004
Location
Halifax, NS
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Audi Q3 gasser
I use the micro-fiber VW branded towel I was sent along with some other trinkets after I took delivery of the car. The windshield fogs/ice's up whenever it gets cold out.
I've tried turning the heat off 5 mins before getting home, cracking a window, turning the AC on to help remove any moisture, no water under the mats - been using Monster Mats since new, and I still can't figure out why the windshield gets so wet!
 

Dimitri16V

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Jan 30, 2005
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DE
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01 Golf, 04 Golf
excessive moisture in the air will cause that. Just saw it on my 01 the other day when it rained alot and then temps dropped to 25F
 

TDI_Cubed

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Jun 16, 2005
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Frederick, Maryland
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05 Jetta Wagon, 14 BMW 328dX
Pull the wheel well plastic covers and verify that there isn't water building up due to excessive dirt/mud/debris that may be blocking the water that runs down into the wheel wells, I suspect that maybe where some of the moisture is coming from.
 

Bob_Fout

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Sep 5, 2004
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Indiana
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Yup, the weather lately has been causing frost on both sides of my front and rear glass. High humidity, over 80% (sometimes 100%), with temps during the day getting above freezing and dropping below freezing at night.
 
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