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Rust, varmit and AC clogging prevention project

Discussion in '2nd Gen. Tacomas (2005-2015)' started by Clearwater Bill, Jul 10, 2018.

  1. Jul 10, 2018 at 5:06 PM
    #1
    Clearwater Bill

    Clearwater Bill [OP] Sometimes when I close my eyes, I can't see.

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    Apparently I should clean out my inner fender drain area more often. :anonymous:

    The other side was almost as bad

    20180710_115725.jpg

    Now the next project will be prevention / reduction by modifying the cowl area.
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2018
  2. Jul 10, 2018 at 5:33 PM
    #2
    Barzini

    Barzini Well-Known Member

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    I stumbled across a similar stash of pine needles, leaves and muck in the lower fenders. It was just chance that I found it. I saw a few pine needles sticking out while waxing the truck. They must be easy to miss if you don’t know to look there. The detailer at dealer’s used car department clearly missed it a few months earlier.
     
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  3. Jul 13, 2018 at 10:43 AM
    #3
    Clearwater Bill

    Clearwater Bill [OP] Sometimes when I close my eyes, I can't see.

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    So yesterday I worked on the cowl area. Others have done similar, I just did a couple of small things differently and took some pictures to help out folks who might be considering this. I have more problems with leaves and debris than vermin, but this will address both, and particularly in the AC system

    This is the AC fresh air intake chamber.

    20180712_102955.jpg

    This shows the chamber and the cowl channel drain for the passenger side.

    20180712_103004.jpg

    This is how gooped up the wiper shaft basket gets. Not much to do to prevent that.

    20180712_103023.jpg

    See the blue tape down in the AC fresh air intake? That's for reference. It's on the damper that is in the closed position when running the AC in recirculate. You can see that it has a lousy foam surface. Its one of the sources of foam blowing out your vents that people often wonder about.

    20180712_105233.jpg

    This shot is with recirculate turned off. Now the damper is open for fresh air. You see the trash that gets dumped on the filter. If you wonder how the trash gets in that air intake chamber, since it's covered with the cowl cover and doesn't get water, its from the turbulance of air in the cowl chamber when driving the vehicle. It's also your entry point for vermin that folks sometimes find in the AC. They have climbed up the fender drains into the cowl chamber, then over into the air intake. We're gonna fix that.

    20180712_105340.jpg

    This is rain gutter screen. Metal, poweder coated. ~$3 at Home Depot

    20180712_110454.jpg

    After spending some time carefully fitting, cutting, snipping and painting the raw edges

    20180712_125433.jpg

    Mounted using 2 holes already in the leading edge of the box. As mentioned, several others have done similar. Now the AC intake is protected from much of the larger debris getting in, as well as any vermin. I did not try to screen the drains on either end of the cowl chamber as some have, as I didn't want any risk of blockage of debris or water that needs to flow out the drains. If something crawls up the drain, they have no where to go but in the chamber or down the drains; no cab access now.

    Blue tape you see on glass was my mark of wiper position prior to removal, so no need to dink with it on reinstall.

    20180712_143828.jpg

    Here's the part that might be a bit different than others. The main entry for debris into the cowl chamber is via the horizontal slots in the cowl cover. There are vertical slots in some places, but not as much gets through there. So on the back side of the cover I hot glued fiberglass screen.

    20180712_144014.jpg

    The end result should be less debris in the cowl chamber, less debris in the fender drains, lots less debris in the AC air intake and no vermin in the AC system.
     
  4. Jul 13, 2018 at 10:46 AM
    #4
    Sig45

    Sig45 Well-Known Member

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    :eek:
     
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  5. Jul 13, 2018 at 10:54 AM
    #5
    CurtB

    CurtB Old Timer knowitall

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    Well done sir. :thumbsup:
     
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  6. Jul 13, 2018 at 11:05 AM
    #6
    Markcal

    Markcal Well-Known Member

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    I need to do this to my Tacoma.... great job making this thread Billy!! :thumbsup:
     
  7. Jul 13, 2018 at 11:44 AM
    #7
    CMD-KY

    CMD-KY Well-Known Member

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    Excellent write up, well thought through and very helpful. I will be doing this before Fall. Thanks.

     
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  8. Jul 13, 2018 at 12:23 PM
    #8
    casey2012

    casey2012 Well-Known Member

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    cut trees down or dont park under them
     
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  9. Jul 13, 2018 at 1:04 PM
    #9
    Taco'09

    Taco'09 Well-Known Member

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    Good job on cleaning that stuff out :thumbsup:. Depending on where you live if it stays wet/moist it can rust the fender from the inside out. Oh, and if you live somewhere where chipmunks and other adventurous rodents like to climb in there I've been advocating placing bronze wool in there -- it won't rust and the rodents hate it. I also run escape ropes (approx. 1 in. dia. or so) marine poly ropes from there and under the fender liner so if they get that far they can climb out. I had a couple of munks stuck there prior to the bronze wool and was concerned they would die and stink. They did do a great job of chewing the vertical fender seal all up though...
     
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  10. Jul 13, 2018 at 1:07 PM
    #10
    Clearwater Bill

    Clearwater Bill [OP] Sometimes when I close my eyes, I can't see.

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    Love my tree, love my shade.

    My 'fix' is just fine, thanks.
     
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  11. Jul 13, 2018 at 1:08 PM
    #11
    jross20

    jross20 Well-Known Member

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    Weekend project acknowledged
     
  12. Jul 14, 2018 at 10:22 AM
    #12
    Johnnytoppside

    Johnnytoppside Active Member

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    oh this is a good idea! i live in the desert so i don't have to worry about vermin really, but I'm curious to pop that cover off and see what kind of trash I've been carrying around. thanks for the cool write up!
     
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  13. Jun 24, 2019 at 10:22 AM
    #13
    novataco

    novataco Well-Known Member

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    Great job. I just took off the cowl cover, cleaned and disinfected my cabin air ducts, with some spray disinfectant from the auto parts store. We had a bad infestation of blind mosquitoes and the bugs reek of dead fish when they decompose and thus my truck reeked from driving through swarms. In my opinion it is poor design. Its amazing how unprotected the cabin air filter is from outside debris. It is just a gaping hole, with nothing between outside debris and the cabin air filter. The cowl covering has no screen like most cars do, and the cowl opening allows anything to drop right onto the cabin air filter. If the filter wasn't there debris would drop right into the squirrel cage. For anyone cleaning out this, I would also recommend taking out the squirrel cage just below the cabin air filter. Its just three bolts, and you may find some junk in there. Thanks for the tip and I will also add some screen as you did.
     
  14. Jun 24, 2019 at 2:03 PM
    #14
    jross20

    jross20 Well-Known Member

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    It seriously is insane that the hole just goes straight up, no cover or elbow. Just a direct to the filter.
     
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  15. Jun 24, 2019 at 2:16 PM
    #15
    BassAckwards

    BassAckwards Well-Known Member

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    Nice write up Bill!
     
  16. Sep 14, 2019 at 3:09 PM
    #16
    2001Tacoma

    2001Tacoma Well-Known Member

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    WOW Clearwaterbill it looks to me like Toyota read your post. I went out and took pics and it looks just like your fix. WTG. Thnx for the great post

    Vent1.jpg
    Vent2.jpg
     
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  17. Nov 22, 2019 at 4:44 PM
    #17
    CJP4X2X2

    CJP4X2X2 Active Member

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  18. Nov 22, 2019 at 8:37 PM
    #18
    vtdog

    vtdog Well-Known Member

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    Is there a thread on how to remove cowl? I just tried youtube Univ. but found nothing useful
     
  19. Nov 22, 2019 at 9:03 PM
    #19
    ucdbiendog

    ucdbiendog Well-Known Member

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    remove the windshield wipers (mark their location), and the two push clips on the sides, and it should come right out i recall.
     
  20. Nov 22, 2019 at 9:04 PM
    #20
    ucdbiendog

    ucdbiendog Well-Known Member

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    how did you do this OP? did you have to remove anything or just shove those tools up and pull stuff down?
     
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