Model 3 - roof glass misalignment - water intrusion risk?

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#1
Hi All,

Just received delivery of my Model 3 yesterday. Absolutely beautiful car! Build quality overall appears very good with absolutely flawless panel gaps. Really seems very well put together.

One exception to the above - my glass roof (piece between windshield and rear glass) appears misaligned just enough that the weather stripping between the roof glass and rear glass does not form a seal (see image below). I'm concerned about water intrusion into the space below the glass and the development of a leak into the cabin and/or rust in the future.

Does anyone know how water would drain were it to make it behind the weather stripping between roof/rear glass? Cosmetically it's a non-issue - I just want this car to last as long as possible.

Thanks for your time/thoughts!
 

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Frank99

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#2
If you're anywhere near the service center, I'd drop by, have them take a look at it and answer your questions. I doubt that water getting in where it isn't intended to will ever be a good thing, or even a neutral thing. Pretty much always a bad thing.
 

babula

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#3
I have a similar gap issue but the seal is intact. I'm taking it in Sept 5th for a different issue but will also ask about the gap.
 
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I'm not anywhere near a service center - I've contacted them with the above image and they've indicated it's nothing to worry about. Somehow I'm not reassured - I just don't see any path for water
I have a similar gap issue but the seal is intact. I'm taking it in Sept 5th for a different issue but will also ask about the gap.
Thanks! I will be interested to hear your feedback.
 

babula

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I'm not anywhere near a service center - I've contacted them with the above image and they've indicated it's nothing to worry about. Somehow I'm not reassured - I just don't see any path for water

Thanks! I will be interested to hear your feedback.
No problem, I'll let you know what they say.

BTW from what I know, that gap issue is somewhat common and the seal should be an easy fix.
 

babula

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Any update on what the service center said about this issue?
The gap is very common, even if you were to replace the entire glass its likely that the gap will exist, thats just how its installed.

If you have an issue with the seal, that should be addressed.

EDIT: I added more info below.
 
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babula

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I'm not anywhere near a service center - I've contacted them with the above image and they've indicated it's nothing to worry about. Somehow I'm not reassured - I just don't see any path for water

Thanks! I will be interested to hear your feedback.
Do you have any water coming through at all? Make sure you verify this under various circumstances (i.e. extreme weather situations).

If you are not near a service center, they should be able to send a mobile unit out to you, especially for this issue since it looks like a somewhat simple fix.

I asked the gentleman fixing my car on Friday and based on the picture he said you should be fine, but in my opinion its a bit of an eye sore and you should check under all situations like I mentioned above.
 

Scott_123

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#9
I have the same issue.

I *think* that any water that gets under there will run in a channel down under the seal to an exit point low down on the glass. It seems be to metal under there, but I can't confirm i the metal is sealed to the glass, or if it will let water \ moisture into the interior.

That weather seal is not one piece. There are several places near corners of the glass where two pieces touch in a way that water can get in. That further leads me to think that it's "only" a cosmetic covering, it's intended for water to get behind and drain out of the channel behind it.

That said, I'm taking a picture and asking the service center about both the water intrusion concern (so I have something in writing if it does cause a problem later) and fixing the cosmetics because it's an expensive car and should be perfect.
 

HappyDad

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Just got my model 3 and curious to find out from other owners if this is normal/common. The height gap at the edge where the front glass roof meets the rear glass roof seems more in the middle, then gets lesser towards the left or right sides. This is as if the front glass roof has a more bulging curvature than the rear glass roof. Looking from the back of car I can see the front glass roof edge sticking up more in the middle. Normal? Or defective? Thanks.

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#11
Just got my model 3 and curious to find out from other owners if this is normal/common. The height gap at the edge where the front glass roof meets the rear glass roof seems more in the middle, then gets lesser towards the left or right sides. This is as if the front glass roof has a more bulging curvature than the rear glass roof. Looking from the back of car I can see the front glass roof edge sticking up more in the middle. Normal? Or defective? Thanks.
I've seen a lot of them like that (including my own)... There was another 3 owner taking delivery the same time as me back in March, so we were going over each others' cars comparing things like this ("is yours like this too?"). So I don't think this is anything to worry about...
 

HappyDad

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I've seen a lot of them like that (including my own)... There was another 3 owner taking delivery the same time as me back in March, so we were going over each others' cars comparing things like this ("is yours like this too?"). So I don't think this is anything to worry about...
Thanks for your feedback Matt. With a different experience than yours, I too also checked out 2 other M3s and both were different from mine, i.e. smooth same height from front to back at the joining seams. Each of the 2 M3s I checked looks like a single piece of glass from rear trunk. I am taking mine in for this glass roof gap issue, along with frunk lid paint blemishes, and some other minor things.
 

HappyDad

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Just to close the loop on this, SC took care of the gap by replacing both pieces of roof glass. Now no more seam gaps like before and look like one single piece of roof glass from front or back (i.e. flushed). At the same time they also took care of the slight rubber gasket gap, though they said the rubber gasket gaps were purely cosmetic and wouldn't have caused a leak.
 

mswlogo

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I'd worry about water/snow/melting sitting in that extended gap and then freezing and expanding. I'm not that picky on panel gaps as these forums but I think I'd get the OP's gap fixed.

Even with a "normal" gap when it was snow/freezing-rain and temps just around freezing I could hear crackling/squeaking in the roof, I get out and I see the gap is filled with ice along the whole gap.
The glass moves slightly as the body flexes and it was fighting with the ice jammed in there.

I didn't like it, even though the ice was very shallow and probably wouldn't cause a problem.

I have since added the RPM Wind noise gasket to "fill" the space and not allow as much ice to ever form in the gap. Those conditions have not repeated since and are probably rare so I can't confirm it as a resolution.

Again, it was enough ice with just the right conditions to hear and annoying noise, with a NORMAL gap. It sounded like two chunks of styrofoam rubbing each other as you go over every little bump and turn, if you know what I mean. With a deeper place for water in the OP's gap (and probably pine needles to gather as well) it's asking for trouble leaving it.
 

PNWmisty

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#15
I'd worry about water/snow/melting sitting in that extended gap and then freezing and expanding. I'm not that picky on panel gaps as these forums but I think I'd get the OP's gap fixed.
No, water can't sit in that gap because water runs downhill (to the drains under the rubber trim).

The rubber trim pieces are not to keep water out (water can flow right past them), they are for aesthetics and to keep leaves and other debris from plugging the drains.
 

mswlogo

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No, water can't sit in that gap because water runs downhill (to the drains under the rubber trim).

The rubber trim pieces are not to keep water out (water can flow right past them), they are for aesthetics and to keep leaves and other debris from plugging the drains.
Water freezes. Water freezes on contact with a colder object. Water percipitates as ice. Water percipitates as snow. Water paths get blocked by pine needles. Cars can be parked on a tilt. Cars can be buried in snow, warmed and then freeze. Wet slushy snow can get swept into the channel when you clean it.

Shall I go on?

That channel froze with ice in it. Enough that I could hear it crackling in that gap. I think it (slush) got swept in there, it was evening getting colder and it froze as I drove and started to expand.

Would it have harmed anything, I doubt it. But I don’t want to test it with my car. So I put the RPM gasket in there. Which is hollow and ice / water can expand towards it. Will that actually work, I don’t know. But I wanted to try something.

So tired of folks telling me something didn’t happen that did.
 

PNWmisty

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So tired of folks telling me something didn’t happen that did.
You might read what I wrote again. The gaps between the rubber trim are not a problem. They are not water "seals" they are trim pieces. They are not designed to prevent water from going past the rubber trim. It's designed to drain the water beneath the rubber trim so putting more trim there isn't going to stop water from going back there. If it was a problem, we would have hundreds, if not thousands of reports of shattered roof glass due to water freeze.

I didn't address your desire to put the RPM gasket in there except I will say, it's not necessary to prevent freeze damage. The car is designed to handle rain/freeze events without having to add gaskets. Parking on a slope is not going to change that fact. I hope this was more clear than my last message.
 

mswlogo

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You might read what I wrote again. The gaps between the rubber trim are not a problem. They are not water "seals" they are trim pieces. They are not designed to prevent water from going past the rubber trim. It's designed to drain the water beneath the rubber trim so putting more trim there isn't going to stop water from going back there. If it was a problem, we would have hundreds, if not thousands of reports of shattered roof glass due to water freeze.

I didn't address your desire to put the RPM gasket in there except I will say, it's not necessary to prevent freeze damage. The car is designed to handle rain/freeze events without having to add gaskets. Parking on a slope is not going to change that fact. I hope this was more clear than my last message.
Ok sorry. Misinterpreted your post.

It’s fine to disagree with the necessity of putting in the rpm gasket. I respect that disagreement. I agree, I doubt enough ice could form to move glass or break seals. It can collect enough ice to hear it creaking in that gap. If the rpm gasket prevents just the creaking in this rare event of ice forming then it’s worth it to me.

And also by looking at the OP post with his fairly large gap. If ice formed there as it formed on my normal shallow gap, I’d be seriously concerned of it causing damage. That assumes I’m interpreting how deep that chennel is under that gasket/diverted on his photo. His diverter is not bridging the gap. I suspect it could easily collect debris as well and the debris could saturate with water and freeze.

For the record I live in NH and MA and I’m bombarded with pine needles, ice, snow, single digits a lot and all my cars have needed a little TLC. I just cleaned 3 gallons worth of pine needle and leave jammed between engine and firewall on my Jeep. Right above a bunch of heat shields. Pine needs get into everything.
 

PNWmisty

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For the record I live in NH and MA and I’m bombarded with pine needles, ice, snow, single digits a lot and all my cars have needed a little TLC. I just cleaned 3 gallons worth of pine needle and leave jammed between engine and firewall on my Jeep. Right above a bunch of heat shields. Pine needs get into everything.
I recommend cleaning tree debris off your Model 3 before it gets to the point you are measuring it in quarts, let alone gallons! Here is the driveway my model 3 parks in about 50% of the time. I park just to the right of that woodpile. The leaves were completely cleaned up the previous week. They make a nice "tea" colored water when they plaster to the car but the real issue are the hemlock and fir needles, and the little hemlock cones everywhere (I wish they were only pine needles, that's what I have on another property I occasionally park at):
1543802548854.png
 

mswlogo

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I recommend cleaning tree debris off your Model 3 before it gets to the point you are measuring it in quarts, let alone gallons! Here is the driveway my model 3 parks in about 50% of the time. I park just to the right of that woodpile. The leaves were completely cleaned up the previous week. They make a nice "tea" colored water when they plaster to the car but the real issue are the hemlock and fir needles, and the little hemlock cones everywhere (I wish they were only pine needles, that's what I have on another property I occasionally park at):
View attachment 18486
Don’t mix apples and oranges. My Jeep I didn’t know was collecting 3 gallons of leaves between firewall and engine. And no, I don’t open the hood to check every day. I do frequently pull stuff out around the wipers. I only gave that as an example debris collection on cars can sneak up on you and cause lots of problems. Like sunroof leaks due to clogged drain passenges.

I have even considered getting a cover for both cars or installing a car port. This is at my vacation house. My primary house has an attached garage. It’s at the primary house the ice formed and creaked when I left work. Only 5 miles.

With a normal gap I don’t think much would collect and I said nothing about gallons of pine needles in the glass gap. But it can still form ice in that gap and creak. It did.

I was referring to the OP and giving him MY advice to get it fixed. Because it looked deep and easy to miss debris collect in that HOLE. I was just giving examples of why he might want to get it fixed. Wind noise could be another.

I put an RPM gasket in there (that has a normal gap) to avoid ice ever forming in there (again). I don’t know if it will work. I suspect it will work and I don’t need to think about it again. It looks nicer and it might even help with what it’s designed for (wind noise). The RPM gasket would not work for the OP because his gap is to big. Gasket cost $30 and take 5 minutes to install. I like it and I was skeptical. I hope it stays put.

I stand by my recommendation to the OP to get his “cavity” fixed. It’s asking for trouble leaving it as is. It looks like someone else had the issue and got it properly fixed. It wasn’t designed to expose that cavity his photo shows.
 
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